Chapter 3: South American Terror Folklore
That old storybook nursery rhyme pounds in your head like the sound of beating drums from ancient and haunted South American jungles. “Oh, the lantern it shines in the darkest of night, keeps away the darkness with the brightest of light, through the twisting tunnels it shows frightening sights, It will show the way at the right time of night, the top will twist and and extinguish the light, time will reverse but not without it’s price.” It was only suppose to be a storybook nursery rhyme, it never was meant to mean anything. The cool autumn night brings fear of possibilities. 10:37 p.m. A cricket in the garage keeps you company by letting you count its chirps to tell you the temperature. You think back when you wrote your final thesis paper for biology class on the lives of crickets. Count the number of chirps in 15 seconds then add 37. It has to do with their oxygen consumption. You got a B- on the paper because of grammar issues, which is bullshit considering it was for biology not English. Regardless of the grade you know that its 43 degrees outside at this very moment. You reach into your pocket and pull out the folded note card that I gave you with the list of items that I wanted you to bring. You see a pair of headlights in the distance, you are wondering if it’s my truck, you check the time, it’s twenty minutes til 11, and you know that I have a history of being late, so you can’t imagine that I would be this early. You walk slowly outside as the car approaches. Oh no, you say in your head….its Bri. Her eyes are puffy, which let you know without saying a word that she been crying all day. There is no doubt that she read your note that you left under her windshield wiper earlier that day. As she rolls down her window you watch her lip quiver but you’re not sure if is from the cold or your letter. You ask her what she’s doing out here, and she musters up a sarcastic laugh and tells you that she was about to ask you the same thing. The dog from across the street leaps onto the top of the fence, its bark echoing into the night sky. You rest your arms on the roof of Bri’s car, and take a deep breath of cold October air. You say to her that everything she needs to know is in that letter. She asks you if you honestly expect her to believe that, as her eyes release a tear there is more emotion in her voice as she unfolds the letter, and reads it back to you.
What I am about to tell you is going to sound crazy, but it’s not and I need you to believe me. You mean everything to me Bri and I want you to know that I would never do anything to hurt or upset you, but this is something that I have to do. Remember in August when we went to your grandpa’s place to help clean out his basement? There were boxes and boxes of books, some dating back to the early 1700s. But there was that one book we found in your grandpa’s basement that I wanted to keep for myself: South American Terror Folklore…..Remember? The title itself intrigued me, and as I flipped through the pages my eyes grew wide with the thought of the possibilities of these stories being real. I knew that I had to keep this book. I asked you if could have it, and you let me but made me kiss you before I could have it. It was our first kiss, that’s how I know you that you will remember the book I am talking about. Later that night I read it in its entirety with awe beyond belief. 735 pages full of old pictures that gave great insight and detail of ancient myths, terrifying stories, and bizarre artifacts believed to be true. These stories were told from tribe to tribe and passed on to children from all across the countries of South America. On page 454 is a children’s story written in the form of a poem, “The Eternal Latern of Buenos Aires.” Bri….I’m not sure you will ever trust me when I tell you this but Ryan has that lantern. I am not expecting you to believe me, but I have to tell someone that I love the truth, you may not hear from me for a few days, but know that I love you, never forget about me.”
With all my heart,
P.S. Yeah I watched Grey’s last night, and I can’t believe McDreamy said that to Meridith!!!! LOL!!!!
A light rain begins to sprinkle as you stand in the middle of the street, it feels as if seconds are going by like minutes. You watch the rain fall onto Bri’s windshield and hood. The sound of those raindrops is pleasantly hypnotizing and time is standing still. Bri looks so vulnerable sitting in her car crying with her hands pressed against her face. She held up the note again and asked you again if she seriously was supposed to believe this. You demanded to know why she came as you slam your fist down on the top of her roof, it was sure to leave a dent, you wish you could have controlled your anger better. She looks so pretty tonight, you begin to question your decision as well as your sanity as her eyes well up with more tears. You crouch down and rest your arms on her car where her window rolls up. You start to say “Bri….I….,” but just as you do a set of headlights pull up to the left nearly blinding your eyes. You cover the lights with your hand, but all you can see now is the rain against the light. A horn honks, and you realize it’s me. You stand up again, and Bri reaches for your hand, and tells you not to go. I honk my horn again longer this time. The rain is coming down heavier, and there is a faint smell of gasoline in the air. You look at me at the truck, and I give you the signal to hurry up. It feels like its freezing outside as you roll your fingers into your palms to keep them warm. You look at Bri again, she stares back at you with glassy eyes as they begin pouring tears that stream down her face, and her lip continues to tremble. She manages to say the last 4 words you might ever hear her say but she says them in such a way as if she is asking a question. Each word harder to make out because of her shaking voice. “South….American…..Terror……Folklore?” she says. “Bri…..You need to beli…” you begin to say…but that’s when you hear my truck door slam, and my footsteps splashing the rain on the street. I ask if you are fucking coming or not. You look at me through the rain, I am just a silhouette in front of my truck headlights. You can’t make out any details on my face yet you know the look that I am giving you. You glance over once again to Bri she looks perfect….even as she’s crying. Your head is now swimming with thoughts as you take a deep breath letting the cool and wet night air sweep the back of your throat….and then you make your decision.....