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Flying Lesson



Estimated reading time — 4 minutes

During the past few months, I’ve spent approximately fifty hours trying to obtain a private pilot’s license. I was just about ready to take my final test, but first I wanted one final lesson with my teacher.

Luckily, it was a beautiful day with close to no wind. My teacher, Lawrence, felt comfortable enough to let me do most of the work. He was a relaxed, but stern man in his late fifties, and he’d been flying for the better part of his life.

The airport was small, and situated about an hour from the city. It only had a handful of planes, and little staff to speak of. Still, it had its charm, and the surrounding nature was absolutely breathtaking.

To the west, stood tall mountains that looked gorgeous from the air. It was only contrasted by lush forests and vast, green fields. It was a beautiful sight.

I started the engines, and before long, we were flying gently through the air. I’d gotten quite good at take-off, and though my landings tended to be a bit rough, we always got back in one piece.

As we hung in the air, I glanced over at Lawrence. He looked nervous, and kept staring towards the western horizon.

“Something’s wrong, John. Put her back down on the strip,” he commanded firmly.

“Alright. What’s going on?”

He just pointed towards the mountain range. A storm was approaching out of nowhere. Thick, gray fog poured from the mountain, approaching us with impossible speed.

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“What the hell?” I asked.

“Just turn around, that doesn’t look good.”

I did as instructed, but even our plane couldn’t outrun the oncoming storm. Before we even started our descent, the fog had taken over the landing strip.

“Don’t worry, I’ll take over,” Lawrence said.

He attempted to contact the staff. There weren’t supposed to be any further flights that fay, but we had to make sure we didn’t collide with anything on the ground. Alas, all we got as we turned on the radio, was a mess of incomprehensible static.

“What the hell is this shit?” he asked, more annoyed than afraid.

Despite the thick clouds, there wasn’t much wind to speak of. He gently put us down, careful not to let the storm shake us up. As we landed, the fog had become so thick that we couldn’t see ten feet in front us. He parked the plane, and started looking for the rest of the staff.

“Where the hell is everyone?” Lawrence asked.

“Maybe seeking shelter from the storm?” I suggested.

We ran towards the main hangar, which also contained access to the main offices. As we got close, I noticed the number on the building was missing. In its place, someone had written a strange symbol that looked like random lines mashed together.

“Did someone vandalize the hangar sign, or am I having a stroke?” Lawrence joked, trying to brighten the eerie atmosphere.

I didn’t laugh. Something was horribly wrong.

There weren’t any planes inside the hanger, just scraps of rusted metal. By all means, it looked like the building had been abandoned for years. Parts of the internal structure had fallen to pieces. Still, there were no signs of our team.

We entered the offices. The power had gone out, and each and every room appeared barren. All that was left behind, were a few broken chairs and ancient posters still hanging on the wall.

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“This makes no sense,” Lawrence said as he ripped one of the posters off the wall.

The picture was faded, but looked like a plane from the late forties. The text was in a language we couldn’t understand, just incomprehensible symbols similar to the hangar number.

I picked up one of the papers. That too, contained a string of weird symbols. It was clearly a different language, though not one either of us had ever seen before. It mostly resembled corrupted data printed onto a piece of paper.

Before we got a chance to investigate the bizarre situation, we heard a crashing sound coming from down the hall. Something had broken down the front wall.

We rushed over, hoping to find another person. Instead, an obsidian black creature stumbled into the office. Its skin moved around, whirling as if it were a liquid poorly forced into a humanoid shape. It growled at us, and started approaching us with impossibly long steps.

Without hesitation, we bolted back into the hangar. A dozen more creatures had wandered onto the strip, contrasting starkly with the pale fog.

“What are we gonna do?” I asked.

There were too many of them at the landing strip. The only possible escape would be by getting back into the plane, and reaching another airport.

“Get to the fucking plane!” Lawrence yelled.

We tried to swiftly move past the horrific, dark creatures. They were slightly slower than ourselves, but we’d need time to get the plane into the air.

We got the engine going, and slowly started accelerating. One of the creatures had latched onto the plane on Lawrence’s side. He attempted to push it off, but just a simple touch seemed to burn his skin. He let out an agonized yell, and resorted to throwing his bag at it. When that failed, he opened the door, which finally detached it.

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As he let out a sigh of relief, another of the creatures jumped in through the open door, and grabbed Lawrence. His skin melted off the bones from the touch. Knowing he could do nothing to escape, he simply unbuckled his seat belt, and let the creature pull him out. I was free, but at the cost of Lawrence’s life.

“Get out of here!” was the last thing I heard him scream.

By then, I’d garnered just enough speed to take off. I had no choice but to leave him behind. With shaky hands, I ascended up through the fog, praying for a ray of sunshine to greet me.

Before I knew it, the skies had cleared, and the fog had simply vanished into thin air. Below me, lay nothing but the beautiful landscape I knew and loved, touched by the warm sun.

Back at the airport, I could see the staff going about their day as if nothing had happened. They seemed confused at my sudden appearance, and came running when I finally managed to land the plane.

At first, they were furious because I’d taken off without Lawrence. But, when they noticed the patches of burned skin and blood he’d left behind… they got scared.

The police was called, but without a body, not any reasonable explanation to what had happened, they let me go. After a long round of questioning, and a long investigation, the case died down.

I’ve tried to come clean about what happened, but who’d believe me? Whether we ended up in the future, or another dimension, I don’t know.

I just wish I could have saved Lawrence.

WRITTEN BY: Richard Saxon

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