The Last Day
This story originally appeared in Withersins when it won their 666 contest where the story had to be 666 words.
Wind blew dust into his eyes as his bleeding fingers clutched at the shattered bricks. Whipping clouds of debris stained the glaring sun a muted red, causing it to look like a floating wound. Breaths came in gasps as he maneuvered through the rubble as fast as his wasted body would allow. Finding an intact wall, he leaned his back against it.
He had not seen another human for days and had been running three times that. Jason Scott used to be a salesman. He had a simple life and an average family, but all of that was gone now. Everything was gone.
Soon he could be gone too.
If only he could find another human, it could give him hope. How could he be the last one?
The ground rumbled under his feet. Terror owned his face. He had to keep going. Feet twisted and threatened to break as he scrambled over the wreckage of what was once a town. A building, which had faired better than its brothers, loomed before him, its broken wall beckoning like a darkened maw.
Once inside he realized that the place had been a hardware store. Piles of tools and supplies choked the aisles, but his eyes had focused on a vending machine. Grabbing up a shovel, he shattered the machine’s glass front without a second thought. Eating three candy bars in huge bites, he stuffed more into his ragged pockets.
The sugar filled him with a rush of energy, which brought him back to how the nightmare had begun. No one knew why it had started. Some had speculated that the beast was some sort of frozen animal, while others blamed corrupt foreign scientists. As the monster destroyed city after city and whole countries began to fall, their views changed. Before long even the greatest skeptics began to fear that they had indeed released the wraith of God.
The last show he had seen before the stations went off the air, was a frantic priest calling the monster the beast of revelations and damning us all for our sins; our sins which brought this beast down upon our world.
Whatever the case or the cause, it quickly became apparent that there was actually more than one beast, or perhaps that the beast was creating offspring in some way, for where the beast itself was wreaking havoc on entire cities, smaller clones were spreading over the entire globe.
The sound of a collapsing wall echoed through the empty ruins. The rumble of an entire building exploding against the rubble quickly followed this.
One of them was coming.
Pushing away from the wall, he set off again.
One of the smaller beasts was coming for him. In this case small meant that it was only the size of a whale. There was nothing he could do against it. Fleeing was still his only hope. Maybe he could somehow get lucky.
Up ahead he heard what could be the sound of rushing water, even as behind him a titanic roar tore into the hovering silence. The beast had his scent and was coming for him, but if he could make the river, he might have a chance.
The sun seemed to suddenly set behind him, but he did not dare to look. Men had lost their minds by the hundreds just gazing upon one of the foul things. He could barely keep his legs moving when a shadow the size of a building fell across his path.
Crutching his hand over his mouth, to keep from screaming, he continued to sprint away from the colossal beast. A loose rock almost broke his ankle and it was all he could do to remain on his feet.
He could see the river now.
He was so close. Never had his fear been greater, for to make it this far and fail would be all the more tragic.
Reaching the edge he leapt in.
The cool water enveloped him.
Then he saw the eyes.
Like what you see.