Kate was the first to notice that something was different. If she was driving, this would've ended like any other day. She and her friends would've graduated high school a month later and gone off to Virginia Tech.
Her cousin, Lynn, was the one driving, while Kate was just one of the three bikini-clad passengers crammed in the back of her Honda CR-V. Lexi sat in the passenger seat. Her long jet-black hair floated in the wind as she tilted her head out of the window, letting the summer breeze dry her ebony skin.
Kate didn't mind it, though. She was sandwiched between Amanda, and her Asian girlfriend, Tiffany. Their ample breasts were squeezed against her arms. One hand rested on Tiffany's thigh; she tried to rest the other on Amanda's, only to have Amanda brush it aside after a few seconds. Tiffany occasionally nibbled at Kate's ear. Her pussy ached, and Kate had to remind herself that this was not the place, each time her hand crept towards her crotch.
They cruised down Great Bridge Blvd, on their way home after spending the day at the beach, celebrating Lexi's eighteenth birthday party. They came around the bend, and turned onto their street, the street sign read Pellerito Rd; it was supposed to be Joyner Rd.
"I think you're turning the wrong way," Lexi shouted.
"Don't worry, I know where I'm go–" Lynn screamed as a man appeared in front of them. The car jolted to a stop. Kate lurched forward, as did her companions.
"Who the fuck is that asshole?" Lynn yelled.
The front bumper was inches from the man. He was pale, with black hair, and a black tuxedo. A wide grin was plastered across his face. Kate's jaw dropped, but, not because of the strange man.
The landscape was like nothing in Chesapeake, or anywhere else in Virginia. They were in a desert. It was featureless, save for the highway before them, and the occasional cactus. Mountains etched themselves over the horizon, in all directions. It was still daylight as they turned, now only the stars illuminated the sky. There were so many stars, more than Kate had seen in her life, that they would easily outshine the full moon.
The man knocked on Lynn's door. She screamed. He didn't even seem to walk around the vehicle. One second, he was in front of their bumper, the next, on the driver's side.
"No!" Lexi screamed as Lynn lowered the window.
"What the fuck do you want?"
"Good'evnin ladies! My name is Stephen Woodhouse, and I'd like to welcome you to Pellerito Road–"
"Hey, my cousin asked a question, answer–"
"To return to your world, reach the gate–"
"Are you even–"
"I'd advise remaining in your vehicle at all times. Try to keep moving–"
"Fuck this!" Lynn floored the gas pedal. They sped off as Stephen droned on.
Lynn stopped a few feet ahead, and turned around. Stephen was nowhere to be found. The road ended at an archway, draped in vines and leaves. Chesapeake, Virginia, was just on the other side.
"I suppose this is the gate?"
"Yeah," Lynn replied, "it wasn't so hard. Probably didn't think we'd turn around."
A cloud of dust and smoke trailed behind them. They crossed the threshold seconds later.
The desert lay before them, the archway was once again behind them. Kate clutched her stomach, and covered her mouth, as the afternoon's feast tried to make its way up her throat. The others gagged and held their stomachs.
Amanda opened the door, and staggered out onto the asphalt, and vomited. Kate's stomach lurched, Lynn and Amanda groaned.
"What the fuck is that?" Lexi screamed.
Tiffany screamed in Kate's ear. Kate froze.
A beast gripped Amanda's legs, dangling her in the air. Its body was that of a man, though, twice as large as a bear. Muscles rippled across its body. It had the head of a boar, with giant tusks protruding from its mouth.
"Help me!" Amanda screamed and flailed as it lifted her into the air and spread her legs. "No! It hurts! It hurts!" The creature stretched her legs. Something snapped, and she wailed. It opened its jaw, revealing a mouth of jagged teeth, each longer than a steak knife.
"Stop it!" Kate screamed as the beast chomped down on her friend’s groin. The lower portion of her torso ripped off, organs falling out. It tossed her pelvis into the air, and caught it in its throat, swallowing it whole.
Kate climbed out, and grabbed Amanda's arms. "Let her go you fucker!" She screamed, gritting her teeth. The beast growled, and swiped at Kate. A pair of brown arms gripped her torso and pulled her back. The monster's claw hooked onto her bikini, ripping it off. Her perky breasts bounced as Tiffany pulled her back into the car.
"Don't leave me!" Amanda screamed as the beast pulled her from Kate's grasp.
"Go!" Lexi screamed.
"We can't leave Amanda!"
Tiffany's eyes locked with Kate's, tears streaming down her cheeks. "There's nothing we can do."
"There's another one! Hurry!"
Kate looked to see another beast rushing towards the car. Lynn stepped on the gas pedal as Tiffany shut the back door. As they sped off, the creature forced Amanda's head into its mouth. Her scarlet hair disappeared into its jaw, which tore through it like paper. The second beast grabbed her headless corpse as it fell to the ground.
Tiffany pulled Kate into her arms.
"She-she didn't deserve to be left behind."
Kate looked back. The beasts, now fighting, grew smaller, until they disappeared over the horizon. She laid her head against Tiffany's shoulder, letting Tiffany massage her breasts as they both sobbed.
Lynn drove for an hour. Lexi fell asleep. They passed dozens of creatures like the one which killed Amanda. Each one turned their heads towards the car as they passed.
The manpigs, as Tiffany called them, were not the only monsters out there. Lizards, nearly the size of a lion, scurrying about, outnumbered even the manpigs. Tiffany whimpered the first time a cactus and started to walk towards the road; a crease appeared in the lower portion of the trunk, and formed legs. A snake rose its head, probably a mile, over the ground. Lexi stirred as the three of them screaming, as its glowing red eyes locked on them. The ground shook as its head impacted the ground, and a mountain of dust surged into the air. Lynn sped up.
The most terrifying of all was the man. He first appeared as a black silhouette emerging from behind a cactus or rock. With each appearance, he was closer to the road. Was it Stephen Woodhouse? It didn't matter. Each time he appeared, Kate gripped Tiffany and kissed her deeply. Kate thought Tiffany would get irritated, but she never stopped her. Did she see him too?
One of the giant lizards scurried across the road and turned towards the car. They screamed as it reached into the passenger side window. Lexi barely opened her eyes as the beast closed its jaw around her head. Kate reached forward as Lexi's muffled screams filled the car, gripping her chest. She pulled, sinking her hands into Lexi's breasts, as the lizard tugged on her skull. It pulled her head off with a wet crunch, leaving strands of flash dangling from her neck, as Kate pulled her body into the back seat.
"Oh my God!" Kate and Tiffany screamed as Lexi's body hit the floorboard, blood gushing from her neck. "Oh my God! Lexi!"
Her body flailed. Piss soaked through her thong, dampening the carpet.
Something thudded against the back door. They looked up to see the glass crack as the lizard's head impacted the window. The third impact shattered the glass.
"Let it have the rest of Lexi!" Lynn shouted as the lizard forced its way through the window.
"We have to!"
Kate's lip trembled as she lifted Lexi's body off the floorboard, and shoved it towards the beast. Its jaws clenched around her chest. Kate grabbed Lexi's thong, trying to pull her back in, but it slipped from her ass, as the monster dragged her out into the frigid night.
"Go! Go!" Tiffany screamed.
Lynn floored the pedal. The lizard devoured Lexi chunks at-a-time as the car shot off down the road.
Tiffany gripped Kate. They curled up, refusing to let their feet touch the floor.
"How much further is this fucking gate?"
"I have no clue babe." She kissed Kate on the lips.
"Hopefully not far," Lynn tapped the gas gauge, showing it was empty.
The car sputtered thirty minutes later.
"Fuck!" Lynn shouted. "We're out of gas." The car rolled to a stop. Lynn slammed her fist against the steering wheel. She turned to Kate and Tiffany, gritting. "Why the fuck couldn't we stop by the gas station when we left the beach? If you hadn't been in such a hurry to get home … we're fucking dead now! Thanks!"
Kate gasped, Tiffany cried.
"I-I'm s-sorry, I didn't mean for this to … I just wanted to go…."
Lynn sighed. "I'm sorry, I'm just frustrated. We're about to fucking die and I can't take this anymore. I think there's a gas can in the back."
"How are we going to get to it?"
"Look under the seat. There should be a baseball bat."
Kate crouched down, peering beneath the seat. The bat was near the back. "Found it," she shouted as she grabbed it. It was heavy, but, useless against practically everything out there. Still, it had to be better than nothing.
"Alright, you keep a lookout while I take care of the gas."
Lynn and Kate climbed out. Kate followed Lynn around the back.
She surveyed the landscape as Lynn shuffled through the back of the vehicle. Kate turned at every noise. She kept her gaze westward, from where a continuous rumble emanated. It might've been the snake, but she couldn't recall exactly which direction they first saw the beast.
Kate screamed as something shuffled around the vehicle. She raised the bat, and almost swung as Tiffany came into view.
"What the fuck? You scared the hell out of me."
"I'm sorry! I didn't want to be alone."
"But you're not carrying a weapon."
"Neither is Lynn."
"I'm protecting her."
"Can't you protect me, too. It's not like I'll be safer in the car, anyways."
"Fine! But get back in when I tell you. I don't want to lose anyone else tonight."
"Found it!" Lynn shouted as she held up the gas can. "Hopefully this will get us home."
She closed the back. Kate and Tiffany stood beside her as she poured the gas in.
A creaking echoed across the desert. Kate turned her head in the direction. Her eyes widened as what was a cactus moments before ran towards them. It's body continued to morph with each step, forming arms, with fingers growing out of the end. It let out a wet, high-pitched screech the moment it formed a mouth. Kate raised the bat.
Tiffany screamed, Kate looked to see another walking cactus closing in on her.
"Get in the fucking car!"
Tiffany ran into the desert as it approached.
"The car, Tiffany!"
Its screech was piercing. Kate swung the bat. It crashed into its skull with a sickening thud, and it dropped to the ground. The other cactus screeched louder.
"Tiffany, get away!"
Kate chased after as Tiffany almost ran straight into the cactus. Its hand gripped her thigh, she tumbled to the ground, screaming and thrashing.
"Get away from her you bastard!" She brought the bat down on its skull before it could grab Tiffany's other leg.
"Are you okay?"
"No!" Tiffany grunted. "I-I can't move my leg. It hurts!"
Kate kneeled next to her friend. A dozen metallic needles pierced her left thigh. A greenish liquid, mixed with blood, gushed from the wounds.
"What is this?" She groaned.
"I dunno ... my-my leg won't even move. You'll have to carry me."
"I can do that," she said, scooping Tiffany into her arms.
A screech filled her ears. "No!"
Three more walking cacti were running towards them.
"Leave me! Save yourself."
"I-I can't do that, I can't lose you."
"But I can't lose you, either," Tiffany kissed Kate, "Please, I-I'll show you my tits one last time if you just promise me that you'll go." She removed her bikini, throwing it to the ground as her melons plopped out.
"I-I'm not leaving you unless I have to." She lowered Tiffany to the ground, and gripped the bat with both hands. She charged at the cacti, screaming to match theirs. "I'm not going to let you kill my girlfriend!"
Each one hit the ground, twitching with a cracked skull. Screeching from behind caught her attention.
Five of them closed in on Tiffany. "Just leave! There's no need for you to die as well."
"I can't!" She charged, swinging in every direction. Two more went down. The third swing was too high, and she jumped back as a cactus swiped at her. The bat flew from her hand. "Fuck!"
"Just run!" Two of them closed in on Tiffany. The first cupped her breasts.
She screamed as needles punctured her tits. The other ripped off her thong, and forced her legs apart. A knot appeared in its crotch, then expanded into a rod.
"No!" Kate screamed. She started towards them when another cactus approached her.
"Please go!" Tiffany screamed as its prickly cock penetrated her pussy.
The cactus advanced on Kate. As it reached for her, she ran. "I love you, Tiffany."
Tears streamed down her face as she rushed back to the car. Tiffany's screams trailed behind her. She dove into the seat. Lynn was already behind the wheel.
"What happened? Where's Tiffany?"
"She-she didn't make it!"
Kate looked back.
"Oh my God!"
The cacti raped Tiffany. Her screams ceased as one grabbed her throat.
"Go! I can't watch this anymore." Kate shut the door, and Lynn drove off. A dozen cacti followed until their car was out of sight.
The cousins rode in silence. Kate stared out the window, as they passed through this nightmare desert. The mountains began to loom ahead; those behind them had disappeared over the horizon. The stars were dimming, obscured by a growing cloud of dust.
He continued moving closer: Stephen Woodhouse. His features became more discernible as he appeared closer to the road. With his last appearance, emerging from a cloud of dust, his grin was visible.
Lynn screamed. A manpig ran out onto the road. Lynn swerved as it stretched out its hand. It gripped the back door, ripping it off as they passed. Kate fell out with it, hitting the asphalt. She screamed as the back wheel crushed her left foot.
The car spun out, coming to a stop inches from a large rock.
Another manpig emerged from the dust, and charged at Kate. The Honda peeled out, and disappeared down the road.
"Wait! Don't leave me! Please! Help me! Lynn!" The manpigs stood over her. She whimpered. "I'll see you soon Tiffany!"
They turned their heads as a loud crash shook the ground, and ran into the opposite direction.
Kate sighed. Stephen appeared.
"J-just end this quickly. Please?"
"Oh, no no no, my dear. I'm afraid that's not going to happen." He snapped his fingers, and his pants disappeared. He stood over her, erect cock in his hand.
"You con't rape me! I belong to Tiffany."
"Tiffany isn't here to claim you. Besides, tis a terrible crime to let a lovely young thing like yourself go to waste. Isn't it?" He snapped his fingers again, and her bikini bottom dissolved to dust. A gust of wind lifted it away, exposing her pussy as he mounted her.
"Please! I don't want this." He pinned her arms to the ground. She groaned as his cock plunged into her. She shoved at his chest, but it was like trying to move a brick wall. Kate thrashed as he fucked her.
Above them, the cloud of dust parted. The snake's head rose into the sky.
Stephen groaned as wads of semen filled her, spilling out onto the ground. Once the last drop seeped from his dick, he vanished.
The snake's head grew as it approached. Its maw opened, revealing a torrent of orange light. Hot air enveloped her, becoming hotter as it closed the distance. Her skin started to singe, then bake. Kate screamed as her hair ignited, then her skin. Flames engulfed her body. Hot air blasted charred flesh from her bones, her eyes melted in their sockets.
Lynn sat up in her bed as her cell door clanked open. She rubbed her eyes as two people entered wearing black tuxedos. One was carrying a large duffel bag.
“Good evening Miss Roy. My name is Doctor Hendriks,” she set the duffel bag on the floor and waved to her partner, “and this is Doctor Green.”
Doctor Green smiled. “We want to ask you about the desert.”
Lynn rolled her eyes. After ten years you’d think they’d have gotten bored. Couldn’t they just kill her already and get it over with? Her best friends were dead and everyone in Virginia was certain she killed them. What other explanation could there have been? They only found her, in the wreckage of her Honda after crashing it into a box truck, with only Lexi’s blood coating her seats and floorboards. Lexi’s body, and the other girls who were last seen in her car, were never found.
She killed them and tried to commit suicide. That was the only explanation as far as their friends and family were concerned: prosecutors agreed. Nobody believed the magical desert filled with giant lizards and cactus people. Lynn knew they wouldn’t, so why tell them? She would spend the rest of her life in a psychiatric ward; riots broke out across Virginia when she didn’t get the death penalty. It would’ve been better if she told the truth, because she’d be with her friends. She wouldn’t have to return to that desert—to see HIM—in her dreams.
“Miss Roy?” Doctor Hendriks opened the bag.
Lynn gasped as she pulled out a green plant-like arm.
“You have seen this before, haven’t you?”