Quiet and still she remains, a sudden sweet aroma filling her conscious on every level, from head to toe, heart to abdomen. So pleasing it is that she thinks it perhaps her psyche’s own manifestation of hope, dangerous and urgent, upon her senses. Deeply, she inhales it, clings to it, moves towards it… touches it.

Startled by the hit of physical contact, she jolts awake, to find him standing less than half a foot from her, leaning against the tree with his arm outstretched by her head. He traps her.

This time, her voice eludes her less effectively, and a sharp, shrieking peal escapes from her throat. Her raw fear is audible even to her own ears. Her heart is desperate within her chest.

Death smiles.

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