I was walking alone one late evening on a lonely road. How I came to be walking along this road isn’t really worth relating but suffice to say I needed some time on my own to think about my forthcoming examinations and I have found that a long walk helps me to think.
In fact the problem I have is ending a walk because once started I will just keep on walking and thinking almost oblivious to all else. So I started walking with the intention of walking until and then hopefully find myself near to home. I guess a walk like that would be just a few kilometers and I guessed that I would be home before dark. I was so engrossed that I never realized I was going the wrong way until I had gone quite far. I am vaguely aware of my breathing and my muscles working and have a feeling that this is what my body was designed to do. I was also mindful of insect sounds and the constant noise of frogs or toads croaking which formed a natural background noise.
After a few hours of walking I began to feel a strange sensation like prickling in the remaining hair follicles at the sides of my head. I noticed a strange metallic taste in my mouth. I felt myself slowing down, almost involuntarily, and an awful dread took hold of me and I smelt a whiff of something terrible like rotting meat. The air seemed thicker and for the first time I experienced myself struggling to catch my breath like being in a stuffy steamed up car in a colder country. I was walking through a dark wooded area and no cars had passed me for some time and in fact there was very little sound at all except what I thought sounded a little like a baby crying far away as if muffled. All the insects and frogs and toads seemed to have chosen that precise moment to stop making a sound. It was as if some kind of tension was slowly building up and they had in someway sensed it.
I turned around and saw what I thought was an old woman with long white hair and the most extraordinary silvery eyes that were...