Until Dawn

Chapter 4

I have written many LGBTQ+ books ranging from romance, adventure to horror. Visit my website to browse my full bibliography. You can also sign up for my mailing list to ensure you don't miss any fun future updates. 

Grab the full book Until Dawn, it's available from Amazon. Check my website for more details.

View Website




I peered at the mess before me. Bao didn't seem to be moving, but I sensed movement in my peripheral vision. Thinking that it could be the person who hurt Bao, I glanced at the windows again, witnessing a swift, but faint figure run among the trees at breakneck speed. My eyes struggled to keep up with the hapless shape-shifter. Confusion seeped into my brain as I attempted to make sense of the fast-moving person. Not even Usain Bolt would be able to run that fast, and for some reason, I don't think anything would ever be capable of it either. Even the Shinkansen, which Ms. Poulter spoke about in Geography one afternoon, in school, after she visited Japan, would be left in the wind.

Not wanting to be caught by the attacker outside, I ducked in behind the upholstered bench so that the person couldn't see me. Looking back out of cover, the apparition disappeared. So, deciding to help Bao, I crawled out of my safe spot and moved on hands and knees, approaching the new kid. Subconsciously as to not hurt myself from the broken glass, I pulled my sleeves forward and used the cuffs to sweep the discharge away, and eventually, I reached him. I could hear the woman in the background on the phone, asking for the police and an ambulance.

Coming to a complete stop, I hovered over Bao and stared down at his peaceful face. He didn't seem hurt, not even a scratch. So, deciding to try to wake him up, I reached out and began wiggling his lifeless body. I had never had CPR classes or anything. So, my first initial reaction was to try to get him to rouse. My heart was beating mightily in my chest, and sweat was profusely coming from every orifice. Another time I would have killed to be leaning over another boy, their lips ripe for the taking, but I didn't seem to care at this moment. There was just a general alarm for the health of my new friend. When he didn't wake up, I resorted to checking if he was still living and breathing. Holding my index finger under his nose, I was relieved to find an exhale; Bao was still breathing. Even if the brief reprise was weak, it made me realize that he could still be saved.

Reaching over, I swept the loose flakes of white glass pebbles from his hair only to find my fingertips smeared in a warm, but dark substance that could only be blood. With another booming bang from somewhere in the pool hall, I peered up at the noise. The receptionist noticed the noise too. Alarmed, I started to back away, looking for a grownup. The woman from behind the desk was slowly walking over to me after she had finished with the phone call. At least she called for the emergency services, but I felt like I needed an adult to take over from here on out. Wiping my fingers on my jeans, I sat back and assessed the situation. Determining if I should get up and run for help or let the other boys know what was going on, I clambered up and raced for the locker rooms. Running to the double doors, I stumbled to a stop when I realized I could tell the guy who was washing down the tiles around the pool. Another adult would be better, so the woman wouldn't have to be on her own.

Turning back toward the little seating area for viewing, I dashed to the bar table with my backpack sitting on top of it. Looking through the floor-to-ceiling glass, a charge of fear sparked in my imagination. What happened to the guy was my first thought? He was no longer hosing down the tiles. Hell, if anything, he'd need to hose down all the tiles again, sweep all the broken glass and drain the pool. It looked like a bloodbath and slaughterhouse all in one in there. Something strange was happening, and now trepidation raced through my bones. I hoped my friends were okay, but more importantly, I turned on my heel.

In mid-step, I attempted to tell the receptionist her colleague was missing, and well… the pool would be out of commission for a while. I hoped she didn't just call some poor ambulance guy. Rounding the corner, the woman was slumped on top of Bao. In a weird coincidence, his hands were wrapped around her head.

Were they kissing?

It seemed like a dirty thought at the time, but then I saw the two of them move, and the woman let out a groan. I couldn't believe my eyes.

What the fuck was going on?

I stepped toward the two of them and was startled when the receptionist got flung from Bao. She crashed into the seats with a sudden groan of metal chair legs. A trail of blood dispelled itself in midair, but other than that, the entire room returned to silence.

Peering at the woman from a distance, there was a large hole in the receptionist's jaw, just like little strips of string cheese that quivered with each breath. Though what surprised me more was when Bao started to twist on the ground, his arm started to jerk toward me. I contemplated helping him, but some part of my body told me to stay put. Instead, it wasn't his arm that was reaching for me. Something miraculously profound had become of his arm. It no longer had any visible skin; instead, it was furry, and instead of speaking, Bao was snarling like a rabid dog. I hoped she called the entire police department too, and that the chain of command didn't stop there, and instead, it went straight to the FBI, CIA, then the bloody Army and Airforce and Navy. Let's not forget Animal Control; now, my thought was to bring them all.

How was it that Bao was thrown through the window with such force, to be knocked out, only to come back as some zombie-ish creature?

Running pell-mell back to the locker room, I ran at breakneck speed in fear of being caught by Bao. I couldn't have been sure what exactly he was, but I knew something wasn't right. Figuring everyone should know, I barged through the double doors and into a silent changing room. Peering around, I concluded that it was safe, then absently, I thought of Bao outside in the lobby, and I just knew I needed to put as many obstacles as possible between him and me.

Looking around for a device I could use to block the door, I grabbed hold of a locker to see if I could shift it, but it was too heavy. Panicking further, I remembered the belt I put on. So, undoing the flap, I yanked out the leather belt, looped it through the handles, and then drew it to a tight close. Peeking out through the small porthole window, I came to realize that Bao was no longer lying on the ground, helpless and disoriented. He disappeared, and with the knowledge of him on the loose. I backed away from the door, even more, frightened by his absence.

Glancing left to right, I sprinted up and down the head aisle by the locker banks to see if I could catch sight of any of my friends. When nothing became of the venture, I slowly crept down one of the lanes with my side brushing against the blue doors. I didn't know where to look. My eyes darted everywhere. To the ceiling, behind me, and in front in case Bao suddenly popped out. My mind was racing, just in case I stupidly forgot about some brainless back corridor that I hadn't locked up that he could use to move around.

Unzipping my jacket, I sighed. It was starting to get a tad stifling under my sweatshirt. It never occurred to me just how scary the changing facilities could be without your friends all laughing and jeering in them.

I was so used to hearing people in the locker room that as I crept along, it made me feel like one of those poor fools in a horror movie. You know, the type where you realize that you are the last hope of anybody ever making it out alive. And if you want people to find out what happened, you are that only assurance.

The floor space opened up at the locker bank's end, and I could see a few of the benches where our team often used to get dried. Many people didn't like the private changing rooms on the other end of the locker room because nobody got to interact with each other. We all wanted to talk to one another, plus, everybody didn't care about nudity. Hanging out in the change room wasn't all that bad when we had practice, as the pool was closed to other swimmers in the evenings. Though the communal area where all my team congregated seemed bizarre when empty.

The boys didn't bypass me in the lobby. I would have noticed, and it was even more peculiar to find all their belongings left strewn around the place like they needed to leave in a hurry. One large orange and grey towel was draped over the back of an empty bench, and beside it was a gym bag with a large tick on the face of it. The Nike logo was predominantly present, so I knew it was Elliot's. Approaching the bag, I looked down at the open top, eyeing up his clothes inside and out of the duffle. Even his $100 shoes sat by a pair of wet, clumped swimwear.

Where had he gone?

On the other side of the aisle, a small drawstring bag lay empty on the bench slats, and all the clothes from the pack were now bunched on the floor with wet patches of dark grey, yet no towel. Walking forward in confusion toward the last remaining evidence of my friends being in this room. I came across a white towel spread out on the floor with a pair of quicksilver speedos dropped in the center of the towel. There was a Star Wars sports beaker on the seat that I knew was Jonathan's; he always liked that stuff, and he was probably the geekiest of the entire group. Apprehensively, I peered around at the mayhem. My friends' disappearance was a strange coincidence, but then again, what happened outside in the reception was an unusual occurrence. It seemed to have blown my mind a little, as I didn't have all the answers, and I didn't understand what it all meant yet.

Therefore, I called out, "GUYS?"

There was no answer. Instead, a slight pop echoed through the building, the one you sometimes can hear from air ducts when they are expanding with the heat being piled through them. And thinking it could be the boys, I edged out of the changing area toward the bathroom. The same restroom I hated having to use. Exiting the bench area, I noticed an extensive trail of soggy red liquid, and looking to the source of the track, I gazed over at the access point to the pool zone. Could that have explained all the red I saw outside when I was looking into the swimming arena from the lobby's viewing box?

Pretty sure that the track was blood, I cautiously accompanied the thin daub around the corner to the exit for the leisure area. I followed the trail as far as it allowed and found it vanished beneath the door and into the hallway on the other side—the staff corridor. Terror had struck; I began to wonder whose blood this was, and I badly wanted to go home, and for Elliot and the guys to be okay. And I wanted my mom at the same time, so it was difficult to keep track of how many things I desired.

My shoulders hunched, my breathing accelerated, as did my heart rate. Yet, coming to the door, I froze and couldn't push myself to walk. All the muscles in my body had jammed themselves. It would be like trying to get a 200-year-old steam train to move again after being left outside in the elements to rot. At the moment, I ached for the horror to stop. It was like I got thrown onto a carousel and couldn't get off. Just when I thought I was brave enough to lean out and take hold of the handle, there was a rumble against metal and then, 'achoo.'

Startled by the curt stillness that followed the sneeze, I stepped out, putting my back to the staff door, and my eyes grew wide, then scanned the cubby holes. The sound had to come from those locker bins right in front of me. I shifted to the side, trying to stay out of direct view of the center bins, and in doing so, I attentively snuck up to the large three-tier towers. Standing opposite the storage bins, I could hear soft sobbing, and my hopes shot up with the notion that it was one of the boys inside the locker.

"Elliot, is that you?" I mumbled aloud.

The crying continued, but there was no sign of a response. Unsure if I ought to disturb the guy inside the locker, I tried peering through the narrow slits in the top of the compartment. When I didn't see much, I stretched out and gripped the handle. Hesitantly, I angled my leg towards the exit just in case I had to run for it. Though it didn't come to that.

When I cracked the hatch, Jonathan was sitting, curled up inside the chamber, just rocking himself back and forth contently. I was glad to have found one of my teammates. I had so many questions. You know, about where everyone was gone? What was the meaning of all the blood on the floor? Why are you hiding? Are you hurt?

That one was the most important.

I scanned over him for any sign of injury, and to my surprise, he looked okay. However, it was evident that Jonathan was cold from the amount of shaking his small body was exhibiting. A mix of fear and cold was running within his bones, or either it was full-on terror. I didn’t blame him, he only had on a pair of underwear and a t-shirt. Either way, it made me more nervous about the fact that something terrible had happened to the pool boy out in the leisure area. And the receptionist now had a hole the size of the softball in her face.

"Are you okay?" I asked.

Pivoting my head around, I looked for anything out of place. Jonathan didn't answer. Instead, he just whimpered, and my heart broke. Seeing Jonathan terrified didn't bode well. He seemed perfectly capable of turning in for the night without the need for a nightlight. Now he'd never sleep without one. If he slept at all. It made me believe that something horrible must have happened to put him into such a senile state of shock.

"Jonathan, what the fuck happened?" I muttered.

Crestfallen, I sighed as I failed to reach Jonathan, yet again.

"You're okay… Can I get you a jacket? I said, reaching out and rested my hand on his cold shoulder.

It was the most life I had seen from Jonathan since I found him, but he blatantly sang out with a mourn.

"Please don't kill me; I'm still a virgin."

He brought his hands from his knees up to his head and ran them through his damp hair.

"I… I'm not going to kill you!…." I cried out.

What an odd statement, I pondered. I subconsciously stepped back in fear so I wouldn't upset Jonathan further by being so close. But our conversation was put on hold when I detected a door open down in the private changing area. The door groaned and then slammed shut, and here I was, thinking of a place that had a door that could open. Then it clicked, the lifeguard office overlooking the pool connected to the changing rooms as well as the pool. With that, I darted my attention around the room.

Where was my escape route?

For one, I wasn't exactly thrilled about following a blood trail.

So, with that, I looked at Jonathan, clasping his arms to his chest and softly working through the agitation. Shutting the door to his locker, he didn't protest. He appeared to have welcomed my departure.

Except, I didn't want to leave him. Therefore, I raced toward the commotion of something beastlike coming. It thumped with each footstep, and it was like a great big bear was grumbling to itself just around the corner. Plucking open a locker four or five doors up from Jonathan, I squirmed into the narrow space, trying to fit. I drew my knees up to my chest and reached out for the door, and gently shut it. It was tight and uncomfortable. I thought I had locked Bao outside. How the hell did he get on this side of the rec center?

I listened for footsteps and exhales. It got closer. I held my breath, and it was so loud I could almost feel it breathing down my neck. It was just there, outside my door, and suddenly I didn't want to know anymore. My heart was hammering at the back of my ribcage. I questioned if that was what a heart attack felt like? I cupped my palm over my mouth to stop myself from squealing. Be as quiet as a mouse, I rebuked. I even felt the need to pee, but I just couldn't personally bring myself to soil my pants.

I shut my eyes; it was somewhat comforting to block out the world. My lower teeth chattered off my top teeth, and I struggled to control my ragged breaths. I listened for what seemed like countless hours as the large animal pressed on, stopped, and backtracked.

Beneath the carping of the creature, I could make out the vague presence of a sob, then it clicked. It heard Jonathan. I knew whatever was out there was going to kill him. I just knew I wouldn't be able to listen to his cries and screams. No matter how scared I was, I made it my mission to help my friends when I joined the team. I didn't want to sit idly by and know that my friends would be turned into chunks and loose limbs. So, without thinking, I foolishly fumbled out of the locker onto the tiled floor. Hurriedly I turned and secured eyes with a relatively small bear. I was confused; it looked like a human. Was it a young animal that had somehow gotten lost, or was it by chance prowling for food? Maybe it was fending for itself, but then the monster started to rotate, and my blood drained cold. Its hairy hands and head told me everything I needed to know. I knew from horror movies what I was looking at, and I had done a ridiculous thing that could end up getting me killed.

It was a fucking Werewolf.




Thanks for reading, comments are welcome and I reply to all. I hope this has been a interesting start to our run-up to halloween, my favourite time of year. 

I have written many LGBTQ+ books ranging from romance, adventure to horror. Visit my website to browse my full bibliography. You can also sign up for my mailing list to ensure you don't miss any fun future updates. 

View Website