Fiction Friday: [Galloway House]

Perched atop the hill protruding in the middle of the village, Galloway House loomed over Townsley. No one had been seen leaving or entering the home in years. Yet, every night, after the sun dug itself into the horizon and the moon cast a pale blue over the village, warm light glowed between the green shutters of the eerie, eye-like windows. And although shadows never crossed those windows, every villager bore the uneasy feeling that they were being watched.

The Galloway family’s history was steeped in mystery. Aside from their ancestors being the first to settle in Townsley, little more was known of them. Speculation and tall tales had been passed down from generation to generation. Each year the stories grew more fantastical and cautionary like a morbid, decades-long game of telephone.

To this day it was believed that no one could ever escape the long gaze of Galloway House. Those who have traveled far beyond the village’s borders claim that its image still flashed through their nightmares and questions about who resided behind its wall still tumbled noisily through their thoughts, even years after cutting the cord and moving away.

Younger children often stared up the hill, eyes wide with wonder before their parents yanked them away and explained to them—in hushed tones—that they were never to approach the house. As these children grew older those words turned into dares of ringing the bell which always ended with teasing. No one had ever summoned the courage to go past the middle of the hill.

In the distance dark clouds gathered and aimed their sights on Townsley. As they eased closer, an uneasiness spread amongst the town. A sense of dread that was as thick as the murky gray sky following in the clouds wake. An energy swept through the village and with it, the knowledge that they needed to brace themselves. The storm on their horizon would prove to be unlike any they had ever faced before.