The Black Wind Howls

There once was a kid named Matt. Matt was a good kid, tall and strong, a sophomore in high school, enrolled in honor classes and co-captain of the school’s varsity basketball team. He lived in Indiana with his parents and his younger brother, Jason. It was the second semester and Matt was looking forward to spring break, being able to play some basketball, hang out with friends, and play some good ole video games. The weekend before spring break Matt and his younger brother Jason, who was in eighth grade at the time, was called to the living room by his dad.

“Hey Dad, what’s up?” asked Matt.

“Oh nothing much, everything is alright. So do you two remember my older brother Richie?” asked Matt’s Dad.

“Yea, we remember your stories about Uncle Richie. How’s he doing by the way?” asked Jason.

“Well, he’s doing alright. I wanted to let you know that your mother and I decided that for Spring Break this year, we’re all going up to Minnesota to see him and his son. Ever since his wife, Aunt Jenny, passed last year, things have been hard for them. So we thought that since it’s been a few years, we’ll all go up and see them,” said Matt’s Dad.

“What about the game that Saturday?” asked Matt. “I can’t go, the team needs me! Besides, last time we saw him he really did creep me out.”

“Enough is enough” said Matt’s Dad. “I’ve already talked to your couch about it and got it cleared. Now get ready for bed, it’s getting late. No more discussion about this.”

So time passed and a week later the family was on the road. It was a two day trip and to avoid trying to hit his brother, Matt brought a remake of his favorite game of all time, Chrono Trigger, on his Nintendo DS to play with. He decided to start a new file and managed to beat the game by the time the family reached Uncle Richie’s house. The family pulled up the long and winding driveway up to the almost cabin like house in the woods. Uncle Richie had his own property in the woods with few neighbors around and worked in the nearby town, about a half hour drive away. The family got out of the car and was greeted by Uncle Richie.

“Hey everybody, welcome to my humble home! Good to see ya’ll again!!!” yelled Uncle Richie from the front door.

Matt was never too comfortable around his extended family whenever he met any of them, so he took a few bags and went inside to unpack for the week.

“Great,” Matt thought. “I’m out in the middle of nowhere, stuck in this stupid little cabin with my family all break. If only I could reverse time, like in-“

Just then Matt’s thoughts got cut off. He heard a noise from across the room and turned. He saw a little boy, about 6 or 7 years old in jeans and a dirty, thin white tee shirt. When Matt looked at the boy, he jumped up, a little surprised, and ran off. After about a minute the boy looked into the room, peeking in from the doorway of the poorly lit kitchen.

“Hello? Dan, come on out! Remember me?” said Matt. “I’m your older cousin Matt. We met when you were just a little kid.”

Just then the whole family shuffled into the house with the rest of the bags. After some talk and Uncle Richie re-introducing his son, Dan, to the family, everyone went to their respective rooms to unpack.

“Awww man, why do I gotta share a room with you?” said Jason. “You snore and you’re no fun to hang around with. I bet you’ll just play that stupid game the whole time anyways.”

“Hey, don’t make me punch you” said Matt. “I don’t like being here either, especially with Uncle Richie and Dan. They creep me out.”

After some small bickering and unpacking, the boys were settled in. Matt decided to fire up his DS again to try and get an alternate ending in Chrono Trigger before bed. After a few minutes, the DS suddenly shut off. This shocked Matt as he thought he had more charge left in it.

“Shit! Why now, of all times?” said Matt. “Hey Jason, I’ll be back later. I’m going to check out the rest of the house.”

“Whatever. Find your own room while you’re at it,” said Jason.

After wandering around the house a little bit, Matt grew rather bored. Everyone was getting ready for bed and he wasn’t very tired. It was then that he noticed an almost hidden door that sort of blended into the wall. Cautiously, he opened it up and walked inside. To his amazement, the light was on and he saw Dan sitting on a couch in front of a huge TV, the only one that Matt saw in the house. Hooked up to the TV were an SNES and a few games scattered on the table. He noticed Dan was trying to decide what to play and upon hearing the door opened, turned around.

“Hey there,” Matt said. “Mind if I join?”

“Uh-huh,” said Dan. “Just closed the umm door behind you. Daddy doesn’t want us to be in here at night, but I can’t sleep so I wanted to play a little while longer.”

“Cool! Well, he doesn’t have to know. What games do we have here?”

Matt closed the door and sat down on the couch next to Dan. He noticed there was Final Fantasy III, Duck Hunt, Earthworm Jim, and to his surprise Chrono Trigger.

“Wow, I’ve never seen an original copy of this,” said Matt. “Mind if we try this one out for a while?”

Dan shrugged. Matt dusted off the game cartridge, blew in it to get the dust out, and inserted it into the console. It started up just fine and there was already a save file. Figuring it was his Uncle’s file, he decided to leave it alone and start his own new game. Matt played for a while until it got to where he had to finally fight the wizard Magus. Even though Matt had defeated Magus many times, he didn’t quite level grind like normal for this file, and consequently was defeated by Magus.

“Are you serious?” Matt said upset. “That was bull.”

Matt put the controller down and heard Dan say something softly.

“What did you say? I couldn’t hear you.”

In almost a whisper, Dan repeated what he had said. “Game over…. One among you… will shortly perish.”

“What are you talking about?” Matt said.

Again, Dan simply repeated, again in an almost whisper, “Game over…. One among you… will shortly perish.”

This was starting to creep Matt out, so he decided to go upstairs and go to bed. Right as Matt closed his eyes, he thought he heard a faint sound. He heard the wind outside picking up a little bit and fell asleep. The black wind howls “Game over…. One among you… will shortly perish.”

Immediately, Matt woke up from this in sweat. He sat up and looked around the room and was shocked at what he saw. He was in a bedroom, with something sitting on the table next to him. He picked it up. It read “Matt Rogers, Graduated May 2015”.

“What the hell is this?” Matt wondered. “Is this some kind of joke? Nice one Jason… One of these days, I swear…”

Matt got up and wandered around the room. It looked kind of like his bedroom back home, having his trophies and furniture in it. Before wandering out of the bedroom, he saw his DS turned on and sitting on a desk, with only a white screen showing. Confused, Matt picked it up and shut it off. He noticed his favorite game sitting in the slot. Putting it down, he wandered out of the room and found he was in an apartment, all alone.

“This must be a dream…” said Matt.

After coming to this conclusion, he decided to head to bed. Slowly he was starting to fall asleep. Right before losing consciousness, he heard the wind and the voice of a young boy. “Game over…. One among you… will shortly perish.”

Beep! Beep! Matt woke up, swinging his arms around. He somehow managed to hit the alarm clock that was buzzing next to him. 6:00am.

“What? Who set the alarm for 6…” thought Matt.

He got up and looked around. Again, he was in the same apartment as before. His back was aching and he saw something else one the desk. It was a sealed envelope, sitting under his DS, which again was on with only a white screen. He opened the envelope and was horrified. It read “Game over…. One among you… will shortly perish. You could’ve stopped that man.” What the hell did this mean? Matt looked next to where the DS was and saw a few pictures. It was a picture of the whole family outside Uncle Richie’s cabin. Everyone was there, except himself.

“What… when did this happen? I was just there!” said Matt. He dropped the picture on the ground and ran. He kept running and running until everything started to turn black. He looked up, and was standing in his Uncle’s cabin again, looking at himself and Dan. He tried yelling to himself, but couldn’t say anything or even move for that matter. He saw out of the corner of his eye his Uncle walking in.

“Didn’t you warn him?” said Uncle Richie.

Dan nodded. Matt watched in horror as his Uncle grabbed a scythe from the wall and cut down his body.

“Janus, clean this up…” Uncle Richie said. Dan merely nodded and dragged the body to another room. Matt felt like his heart was going to explode as his Uncle turned around to face him, eye to eye. He saw he was wearing a purple cloak and had what seemed to be fangs. His eyes turned red as he stared. Everything started to fade for Matt, hearing the last words in this world.

“The Black Wind howls…. One among you… will shortly perish. I’m sorry Schala, I couldn’t save you in this life either…”

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