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Fire

It was about four weeks ago when I first discovered the pile of sticks being placed in the field outside my home. I thought it was kind of weird since nobody has been around my property ever since, what I like to call, "The Egging Incident". I remembered finding it when I was on my combine doing some hard labor, when I spotted it, turned the combine off, and hopped down to take a closer look. I thought somebody must be on my property, and went over to ask the neighbor across from my house if his kids went over to my home to pile up some sticks in the fields. But he said that his kids were in the backyard at the time, which made me cock an eyebrow.

Somebody must be fucking with me.

I remembered leaving the sticks where they were, and continued my work in the fields till sundown. And that's when I saw that the pile of sticks was now on fire. I didn't see who lit it, nor what the reason was, but I took out my phone, went to camera, and took a picture of the burning pile, just to show my wife and friends about the odd event that took place. They thought that I was burning some wood since it was around November, and I told them that I wasn't planning on doing so, and that I was planning on mowing down the fields, hit the shower, and watch The Andy Griffith Show till it was time for bed.

The next morning, I found two more piles of wood in the fields, and I was now getting worried. I think some random prick was yanking my chain, but then I found each and every one of my hunting dogs messily decapitated. Each one was slumped over against the side of the cage. There were no signs of the heads. I called the sheriff's office, and when they checked out the corpses, they said that they'll get to the bottom of this. After that, I cleaned up the mess, and buried the remains.

Tonight I was gonna find out who, or what, was doing this. At sundown, I pulled out my wooden chair out on the front porch, shotgun in hand, sat down, and stared directly out in the fields. I thought that some teen would wind up going near the fields, and I would point it at him and telling him to scram and get. It was getting darker, and darker, and the only thing keeping me up was some 5 Hour Energy drinks. When I did hear something, I was more than ready to spring to my feet and point the gun at whatever was on my property.

I was finally going to catch the bastard red-handed!

But, what I saw... made me lower my gun, and my look changed from anxious, to downright awe-struck.

In the field was something I've never seen before. It was about the height of a teen, that's for damn sure, but it didn't look human. It's arms and hands were nothing but large, bat-like wings, and it's legs were twisted and ended in hooves. It's long tail ended with a barb, and it's head resembled that of a hairless Sphynx. By the way, it's entire body was hairless, but it didn't have any wrinkles at all. It's skin was dark, and looked more human than anything else. It's eyes were black, and it's fangs were so long that they slightly stuck out of it's mouth. I can even see short horns on it's head.

It stalked, hunched and deliberate, through the field with the posture of a tiptoeing thief. It might have seemed almost frail. The thinness of it's diaphragm and the emaciated, caved-in quality of it's chest reminded me of a starving animal. Still, this thing was undeniably strong, and I watched it hoist each stick up into it's winged arms with ease, and set them down carefully a while away, taking only a few strides to cover the distance. I watched it work, moving each branch thoughtfully. Every once in a while it would straighten up to look around at the other piles’ positions in the field, before adjusting the one it was working on ever so slightly and lighting them on fire with a match it had stolen from the house.

Before it left, it looked towards the house. I felt it's eyes sweep over me in the dark, but whether it saw me or not I couldn’t tell. Then, it turned silently and disappeared into the dark of the woods. It took me an hour before I had the courage to move at all. I went inside after a while, but didn’t sleep that night. It was only when the sun rose that I dared step off my porch into the fields. The burning piles were where it left them. Strangely, it didn’t move them as far as it had in the previous days.

They were approaching something invisible in the fields, and as I looked at them I realized that they seemed to be marking some line. Indeed, as I walked around the house, I saw the distinct circle that they formed with me at the center. At first I thought the piles were just being haphazardly moved away from the house, but now I could see that they were instead being moved towards some boundary.

The thing was sending me a message.

I slept uneasily that night, and only because I was exhausted from a hard day of work. The next morning the piles began to appear all over the fields. They were finally where the thing wanted them. I made myself sick trying to interpret them. Why would this thing expend so much energy making a slew of burning piles, and threaten me with such violence should I try to interfere? Killing my hunting dogs was just that - a threat. An intelligent threat, at that. It knew what would scare me, and it knew that I would understand the implications.

The sound of an automobile working it's way along the road to my farm one morning gave me a little rush of excitement. I’d been planning to abandon the farm since I saw the thing, but I couldn’t hope to leave on foot without risking it treating me like it treated my dogs. But, if I could get in the car with whoever was coming my way, I might be able to escape before it could stop me. I didn’t know or care who it was. I decided that the moment they stopped the car, I would jump in the passenger’s seat and tell them to get the hell out of here. I didn’t get the chance, since while I was running towards the vehicle, I smelled gasoline...

I stopped running, and looked over my shoulder... and saw it.

On the roof of my house, holding one, single, lit match. A mischievous grin spread it's feline lips. My eyes were about as wide as wide could possibly be, and I blurted out loud, "Oh, shit!"

I knew why I smelled like gasoline, while I was asleep, it poured gasoline everywhere on my property, and it was now going to burn my entire property to the ground! Apparently, the little piles of sticks weren't doing the trick, anymore. The thing, whatever it was, had already dropped the match where it poured, and the whole entire place ignited into flames. The flames were growing, and growing, and growing into a raging inferno, while the thing already flew back to the woods.

I ran as fast as I could as the flames began to chase me towards the vehicle, which is about from me to the road just ahead. Whenever I felt the heat of the flames get closer and closer, I would quicken my pace faster and faster until I reach the vehicle just in time. The car worked its way quickly along the road, trundling across the burning property. I urged the driver to hurry. It was when it passed between the property and the road that I began to look on at the house, which burned to the ground. The giant clouds of black smoke rose high to the ocean blue sky as we drove off.

Suddenly, I understood. The message was clear. The piles of burning sticks were marks where the thing can pour the gasoline at, so that it can burn me inside the house. It was trying to kill me. But the question is, why. Why did it want me dead, and what is the motive behind it? I still ask myself these questions to this very day, and I never went back there ever again.

The next morning I watched the news article about my property being in charcoaled remains as it presented me the image of my house, the fields I worked so hard on, and the farm itself completely, and utterly, destroyed to the point where nothing ever grows there again. Firefighters already put out the flames and everybody already fled to see the carnage of the farm. My old neighbor said that I was alright, I fled the destruction and moved to a little town in Gates County North Carolina, where I reside to this day.

That afternoon I still remember that event, even when I am hard at work. Every day and night I waited outside with my pistol in my pocket, just in case that little pyro came back. But thankfully, it didn't. It must've thought that I already died in the flames.

I am writing this to get it all off my chest, I can't stop thinking about it, and I haven't got much sleep after the whole ordeal. Don't get me wrong, I am grateful that I'm still alive and kicking, but I can't shake off the feeling that I haven't seen the last of... whatever's out there. I might be over-exaggerating, I don't know if I am or not, but I don't have much time left.

I'm gonna go ahead and take my 5 Hour Energy drink, I'm not gonna let it spook me any longer than it already has. It's time I teach the bastard a lesson. Like that old saying goes; if you play with fire, you get burned.

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