Just thought you might like to see the START
of a story I am writing.
I am wanting feedback for it so please feel free to post constructive critcism. Thanks a lot and hope you enjoy it
Trial and Error
By Matthew Meadowcroft
For Claire and Peter it was a new beginning. There stood a proud 200-year-old cottage, plants were growing in and amongst the trellis. It looked traditional and beautiful, if not a little overgrown. Peter and Claire stood there leaning on one another, admiring the house. They walked slowly on the gravelled path and turned the key in the lock of the door. With a few creaks and cracks it opened. It was a lovely cottage but the couple couldn’t help feeling the eerie atmosphere about the place. It was as if they were being watched. All the creaky floorboards and very little light shining throw the windows didn't help either. Nor Peter or Claire wanted to say anything though, they thought it was best to put it down as a new experience. We'll soon be happy they kept muttering to themselves. After looking around they went to unpack everything from the van, even with the help of the deliverymen it took quite sometime. Everything in the house was very dusty, it looked as if the house hadn’t been lived in for quite some time. It was going to take a lot of work to make it to their tastes.
After getting over the initial anxiety and stress of unpacking everything, the young couple began to relax a little more. They had decided to move because things weren’t working out in their past home, especially with the neighbours. So they made their decision to move to the quiet town of Knighton, as it seemed just right for them.
Claire sat down on the sofa and curled up her legs whilst Peter made a fire, and lit a candle, which he placed on the table next to them. He then sat down next to Claire and they both snuggled up warm together watching the crackling fire and gleaming candle. The fire reflected from their sparkling eyes and they slowly started to fall into a deep sleep. Before long they had lost their fire and were fast asleep, it had been a long day for the both of them.
The couple woke some hours later, it was now gone 8pm. The fire had burnt out but the candle was still slowly burning away. A nasty chill slowly became present around the couple. That akward presence of them not being alone had come once more. Peter and Claire couldn’t see or hear anything but in their mind, heart and throat they certainly could.
Their throats began to tense, as did the back of their head, as if to say something or someone was behind them. The couple’s hearts began to sound louder. Bum…BA…Bum. Peter and Claire swung their heads around. A swoop of chilling air brushed past the couple which killed the gleaming candle and the room went into complete darkness. It brought shock and fear to rush through the mind and veins of them both. Almost in unison the couple swung their heads around…nothing could be seen, just the sound of the tap dripping from the kitchen could be heard. Claire moved her hand cautiously onto Peters and clutched it with fear. They knew what they had to do – get out of the house and calm down...
In total silence that’s what the couple did; stumbling across the living room they grabbed their coats from the rail and walked quickly out of the front door.
Peter pulled out his car keys but dropped them into the gravel. He crouched down to pick them up as did Claire, both clutching onto them, the young couples eyes met. It wasn't love that was beaming through their eyes, it was fear. What had they just experienced in the cottage? Not one word would even dare creep out of their trembling, numb lips. After what seemed like minutes but was only seconds, Peter grabbed the keys and lunged for the car. Claire bolted round to the other side and threw herself in. This time she didn't make any form of contact with Peter, she just looked straight ahead out of the windscreen very focused.
Peter put the key into the ignition which took a few attempts as his hands were trembling, he kept turning to face Claire for some reassurance. His face was white as a sheet. He wanted to get out as quickly as possible but his body wouldn’t let him with fear. After about 10 attempts, Peter finally managed to start the car. They drove off into the night with gravel spraying. The young couple didn’t have a clue where they were going to go but anywhere felt safer than in their new found home...for the time being.
Claire breathed a sigh of relief as they both left the front drive.
“Where do you think we should go?” Claire finally said. They’d not spoken a word for ages.
“Anywhere from here.” Peter replied sharply.
“Well there’s surely going to be a pub or something around here. How about we find the local? We’ll need too know where it is someday and we can always ask if there’s ever been reports of ghosts around here.” Claire suggested.
“So you really think our house is haunted then?” Peter asked.
Not really wanting to admit the house could very well be haunted Claire said. “Well…no but we can always ask. You never know it could just be our mind playing tricks on us. After all that cold chill we felt when we first woke, could have a really simple explination.”
“But we can’t really explain how the candle just blew out just like that. Can we?” Peter replied quizically.
“Maybe not but you just concentrate on your driving Peter. I’m sure we’ll sort it out by then end of today.” Claire said intently. She uttured those words as reassuringly as possible, although she couldn’t help feeling that by the end of the day things wouldn’t be better…they’d be worse.
As Peter drove along the dark and narrow winding roads; he could see a building with lights on in the distance. The couple had finally found the pub at last. Would arriving there help to get all their unanswered questions heard? Peter kept playing the events back through his mind becoming transfixed.
“Peter, watch out!” Claire yelled.
Within a blink of an eye he snapped out of his trance. They saw a car within meters from them, blowing the horn. Peter's feet slammed on the brakes. With a harsh turn of the wheel he manged to swerve missing the oncoming car by inches.
“What the hell were you doing?!” Claire exclaimed.
“I...I...was thinking about you know.” He said apologetically.
“Well you obviously wasn't thinking about us seeing tomorrow.” Claire immidiately replied bluntly.