They raced down the staircase, carrying their children, eager to reach the front door. Mary stopped dead in her tracks. A dark red substance was oozing into the house from under the door, creeping across the floor, devouring everything in its wake. They watched as the huge circular rug and the large hall table disappeared into its thick slime. Extending its reach farther out, it made its way toward them.
A high-pitched keening cry was coming from within the slime. She backed herself into a corner. “It’s going to swallow us.”
“Run out the back!” John shouted above the children’s frightened sobbing. He pushed her ahead of him. “Don’t think. Just make sure you get out of this house and down the stairs to the beach. Or else you might be living here forever.”
They climbed through the destroyed kitchen, through detached pieces of ceiling, through broken pieces of cabinets and sharp shards from shattered dishes.
Once outside, they were struck by flying debris. The patio was engulfed in a strong wind, which lifted the furniture high into the air. The white wicker pieces crashed against each other, the broken pieces falling into the empty pool.
The pool had been filled already twice that season. The house had a mind of its own: it wanted the pool empty of water and her family gone; and it was making sure that it remained that way.
The red liquid was creeping out beneath the kitchen door, inching its way toward them. She screamed above the sound of the howling wind. “It’s getting closer. It’s followed us outside. WE ARE ALL DEAD!”
“We must escape now. Don’t look back. Just run.” John pulled on her arm.
She gazed down the steep staircase to the rocky shore below, to the jagged rocks that were being beaten by the raging waves of the ocean. In her heart, she knew that their fate was not going to be much better.