Woman in White

How do you react to someone calling out to you in the middle of the night? What if it happens in a dark, deserted street?

With a mixture of worry and apprehension?

That’s how I reacted. I jerked around and almost dropped the cigarette I’d lit.
In my mind, I imagined some angry drunk or deranged homeless person coming for me. Then whoever it was spoke up again.

“Excuse me, do you have a moment…?”

I realized now that this voice wasn’t mad or angry. While it was piercing, it was also melodic, and more than a little awkward.

It came from a woman who stood a dozen meters away from me. When I saw her, my worries evaporated. She looked young and wore nothing but a white dress which seemed almost too tight for her slender figure. She shuffled around, her shoes scraping over the concrete of the sidewalk before she started towards me.

“I’m on my way home, but I think someone’s following me,” she said in a sharp whisper. “Do you mind walking with me for a bit? Just to be safe…”

Taken a back and slightly confused about the situation, I nodded and told her it wasn’t a problem.

Earlier that night, I’d been out with friends. We went on a little bar crawl that led us through the alternative district of our city.

As the hours ticked by, we eventually ended up in an old, dirty corner bar. With little thinking, we ordered ourselves a beer and sat down at the bar, not realizing how shady the place was.

It only dawned on us when a man as gigantic as he was drunk stumbled from the bathroom and promptly yelled at us for taking his seat.

Our tries at diffusing the situation fell on deaf ears and only made him angrier. In a motion much too swift for his drunk state, he got a hold of my beer, smashed it in front of my feet, and seemed ready to beat the shit out of me and my friends. By this point, some of the other patrons had gotten up as well, most likely to join in the fun.

Thankfully, the barkeeper stepped in.

He told the guy enough was enough, and if he wouldn’t leave right at this moment, he’d have no problem calling the cops on him. Again. The guy’s eyes rested on me for a few more moments before he stormed off, grumbling and cursing to himself.

After this rather unpleasant experience, and finding ourselves still at the center of attention, we quickly left the bar behind and decided to call it a night.

Once I’d said goodbye to my friends, I went to a nearby tram station, only to realize that I’d missed my tram by almost half an hour.

A quick look at the department schedule told me it was the very last one for the night. Checking my wallet, I also realized I had nowhere near enough money to afford a taxi, given I lived at the other end of the city.

And so, after a copious amount of cursing at myself for not watching the time, I set out on the long, long way home.

That’s when I’d met her.

As we walked on, the fear she’d shown before slowly faded and, before long, she walked next to me, without a care in the world. What a strange woman, I thought.

Yet, every once in a while, her words returned to me, and I couldn’t help but feel watched. Whenever I looked over my shoulder, however, the streets were entirely empty. The only signs of life were other stragglers, and a few rare cars. Apart from that, the entire city was deserted.

The woman, however, didn’t seem to notice anything, and soon started chit-chatting with me, telling me she’d been out dancing with friends, but had gotten lost and missed her tram, just like me.

As she babbled on, however, the strange feeling persisted, became almost feasible.

About twenty minutes after she’d joined me, I stopped to light yet another cigarette. I only saw it for a moment, but there’d clearly been a figure at the end of the street, watching the two of us.

“Whoever the hell you are, fuck off! I swear, I’ll call the cops!”

By now, the situation was unsettling me, and I already had my phone in hand, ready to follow through on my threat. The figure, however, seemed to be gone, and after a few more seconds, I breathed a sigh of relief.

When I began to walk again, I noticed how close the woman had gotten to me, almost pushing her body against mine, smiling at me shyly. A moment later, I felt her hand grabbing onto mine.

“Sorry, I guess I’m still a bit scared,” she said, yet her voice sounded much too happy for that, and almost… seductive.

As I stared at her face, however, into her dark green eyes, I had to admit that she was cute, really damned cute.

What can I say? I was still pretty drunk and before long, I put my arm around her, pulling her even closer. Only a mere five minutes later, we were making out at a dark street corner.

As we did, I thought I heard echoing footsteps nearby again, but my longing for this woman had replaced all my worries, all my fears.

Our lips were sealed onto each other, and my hands slowly wandered down her back when she stopped me and pointed ahead, giving me a coy smile. Just a few blocks away was a small park, and taking my hand, she led me there, half-running and giggling the entire way.

The moment we entered the park, she found a deserted bench, pushed me onto it, and got on top of me.

She was taking the lead now, aggressively though, almost restraining me with her legs. None of her former shy character remained. She pushed her lips onto mine, and her tongue into my mouth as she furiously made out with me.

Then something felt strange. Suddenly my mouth seemed on fire, then my throat before the heat spread through my entire body.

I tried to push her away, tried to free myself, but something was wrong. I felt dizzy, hazy even, and wasn’t in control of my body anymore.

Before long, the hot feeling left, being momentarily replaced by cold before all feeling seemed to leave me. Her lips were still pressed to mine, but I couldn’t feel them anymore. My arms started tingling, then grew numb and slid down the length of her back and came to rest on the bench to either side of me.

Oh god, something was terribly wrong!

I wanted to push her off me, wanted to speak, tell her to get help, to call an ambulance, but wasn’t able to do anything.

Then I noticed something out of the corner of my eye. Nearby, behind some bushes at the edge of the park, a dark figure was watching us. No, I realized a moment later, not watching us but coming for us.

Finally, her lips released mine, her head jerked back, and she giggled before her face warped into a disgustingly wide and hungry smile.

Then I heard the figure call out. Its voice was slurred, barely audible, but I understood enough.

“Found you, you little shit! Thought you’d get lucky tonight, didn’t you? Oh, I’ll make sure you’ll get lucky!”

That voice, I knew it. I’d heard it before. When could finally make out the figure’s face, it clicked. It was the giant drunk from the bar. He’d been following us all this time, or rather… he must’ve been following me!

Before he reached me, however, the woman got off my lap in a single swift motion and pushed herself in front of him.

“The fuck you want, bitch? You want some, too? If not, you better get the fuck…”

His voice trailed off when the woman’s body began to change. I watched her muscles tensed and pushed heavy against the fabric of her dress. Then her entire body contorted. She grew taller, became more elongated, the dress stretching, ever-stretching, but not tearing apart. In this moment I realized it wasn’t a dress, but part of her body. I saw it glisten in the moon light, saw it growing slightly wet, becoming scalier and scalier. Then her head pushed forward, her neck growing longer and longer, watched as her arms seemed to vanish, seemed to retreat into her body. Her legs pushed together before they became a single long… tail?

The guy in front of her was freaking out, screaming obscenities in his terror. I watched as he pulled a hunting knife from his pants, ready to plunge it into the monstrosity, but he was too slow. In an instant, her neck shot forward, coiled around his arm, and a moment later, the knife clattered from his hand.

He began beating against her, trying desperately to get free, but she didn’t even seem to feel it. Then, the rest of her body moved forward, at first pushing itself against him before slowly wrapping around him.

My mind was going haywire. What the fuck was I seeing? How could any of this be real?!

My mouth was open, but no sound escaped it. I couldn’t speak, was still paralyzed. Inside my mind, however, I was screaming, screaming at the impossibility I was seeing in front of me, but also screaming at my body to move. Yet I couldn’t. All I could do was watch.

Ahead of me, the she-snake had entirely wrapped herself around the man, who was still screaming, still trying to get free, to claw his way out. Then her distorted face came to a rest right next to his. I heard the creature giggle again before planting a long, hard kiss on the man’s lips.

When she detached herself from him, his screams had faded, his body had grown limp. At the same time, hers tensed up, and I watched as muscles furiously worked below her scaly, white skin. With each second, her entanglement grew stronger, harder, and finally, the disgusting sound of bone breaking and flesh tearing reached my ears. I watched in stunted horror as blood dripped, then gushed from every orifice in the man’s face. Then her mouth unhinged, and she began devouring her prey.

Right at that moment, I finally felt feeling return to my body. I could move, if only slightly. In pure desperation, I told myself to get up, to run, to flee, but all I could do was to lean forward. I crashed to the ground, felt distant waves of pain wash over my body, but I didn’t pay them any mind. Instead, I began to crawl. Still not in full control, every single inch took an agonizing eternity. Like a worm, I pushed myself onward, trying desperately to get away.

All the while, the sounds behind me continued, sounds of retching and swallowing.

Then they ended, and only moments later, I felt something touching me. Instantly, my entire body froze. Oh god, she was back, it was my turn now. In my mind, I already imagined her coiling around my still numb body, crushing me just like she had the man.

“There’s no need to be afraid,” I heard the woman’s voice.

Instead of attacking me, she got a hold of me, her body now that of a human again. With much more strength than her subtle frame should be able to muster, she pulled me to my feet and pushed me back onto the bench.

“I’ve been going hungry for quite some time, but not anymore, not for a while,” she said, giggling.

“Really, you didn’t taste all that bad, but your ‘friend’ over there turned out to be quite the hindrance, and I hate being interrupted during a meal. But I guess you made for some rather good bait.”

Once more she giggled, but this time, I heard the snake-like hiss that echoed behind it, and I heard how piercing and otherworldly her voice truly was. It was nothing but an imitation of a human’s, one almost perfect, but much, much too different.

“Oh, and sorry for the poison. It should have worn off come morning.”

With that, she got up, but after only taking a few steps, she turned to me once more, giving me another smile. This one was much harder, much crueler.

“I am sure tonight will stay our little secret, won’t it?”

For a second, her green eyes turned to slits, turned to those of a snake, and I watched as a slithering tongue escaped her mouth, licking hungrily over her lips.

Then she was gone.

For minutes I remained in the same state of terror, of panic, but as it slowly waned, nothing but exhaustion replaced it and I soon passed out.

When I awoke, it was early morning, and the sun was already up. My entire body hurt, and at first I didn’t know where I was.

Then I remembered what had happened last night, what I’d seen. A cold shower went down my spine. I started shaking and my eyes darted around, trying to see if the creature was still nearby, lying in wait for me.

I was all but alone, and after I’d calmed down, I pushed myself onto weak legs, and set out for a nearby station. It still took me more than half an hour before I finally made it home, where I collapsed on my bed.

After some much needed rest, and sobering up for good, I wondered just what had happened last night.

I considered that I might simply have been too drunk. Who knows, maybe I fell asleep on this bench, and my mind conjured up the entire thing as some sort of twisted nightmare. After all, there’d been no hint of the guy, no hint of the woman, nothing.

Before long, the rational part of my brain repeated this scenario as gospel whenever the images of that strange night returned to me.

Yet, as much as I try to convince myself, I can never truly trust it. For I have seen her again, that slender young woman wearing nothing but a tight, white dress. She’s always there in the alternative district of town, away from the crowds, watching, waiting, and preying on those random stragglers, just like me.

And more than once, she noticed my eyes resting on her, and whenever she did, she gave me a well-knowing smile before she put a finger to her lips.

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