It all started on a normal, warm July day. July 5th, to be exact. My cousin, Jacob, had invited me over because he apparently had some "Bad news" for me. Now, the last time I had been to my cousin's house was ten years before that day. On that day, he had told me a scary story about someone called "The Shadowman". He told me he was walking in the woods behind his house when he lost the trail and came face-to-face with a man he described as "Tall, with a black hoodie, boots and gloves, and wearing a black expressionless mask like the ones at that Halloween store". Needless to say, I did not want to even go NEAR the woods that day.

Continuing on, when I arrived at my cousin Jacob's house, he told me what had happened. His mom had been KILLED. Yes, KILLED. In the WOODS. Apparently, his family had been celebrating the Fourth by having a huge bonfire. They soon ran out of kindling, so his mom went out to get some more. His father decided that Jacob should go help, and he said OK. A few minutes later, Jacob had come back, covered in cuts and bruises. He frantically told his father that they had been attacked by someone. His father had asked where his mom was, and he told him that the man had killed her. His dad called the police, and found her body lying near the entryway into the woods, covered in stab wounds. So many, he told me, that he could barely tell it was her anymore. He also mentioned that the cops had found NO sign of the killer or ANY evidence at all.That was all he told me, except that the ceremony began in a 45 minutes.

Being the idiot I am, I decided to take a walk through the woods because one, I thought that since the cops didn't find him, that maybe he moved on, and second, I also thought that if I stayed on the trail, I would be fine. I tried staying on the trail despite the fact that it was covered in leaves and fallen branches. As I was walking I heard a small crunch. I turned, and didn't see anything, so I just kept walking, thinking it was a squirrel or something. But then, I heard it again, closer this time. Much closer. I quickly turned, and my eyes widened as I saw him. The Shadowman, exactly as Jacob had described him, height, outfit and all. But what made me start running back was what he was holding. In his right hand, he wielded a long curved dagger. In his left, a big hatchet covered in blood. I turned and quickly ran as fast as I could back to the house.

I burst out of the woods, yelling "Help!" Jacob came running out of the opposite side of the woods. "I heard yelling! What the hell is going on?" He asked me. I frantically told him. He nodded, and called the cops on his cell phone. Once the cops arrived, they told all of the guests to leave and told us to stay out of the woods no matter what. When the cops entered the woods, Jacob and I waited anxiously for them to return. About 10 minutes later, Jacob's dad called him inside to help him in the kitchen. I sighed, waiting. 20 or so minutes more, I heard the back door open. I looked, thinking Jacob had come back out. But no one was there, so I dismissed it as the wind. I waited once more, 10, than 20, than 45 minutes. I sat, all alone, not knowing where the cops were, or where Jacob and his dad were. I stood up and went into the house. "Jacob! Uncle Mark!" I called, slightly frightened. I looked in the living room, at first seeing nothing. But when I looked more carefully, I noticed a dark splotch on the carpet. I saw a bigger one on the linoleum floor in the kitchen. I walked into the kitchen, and instantly regretted it.

In the kitchen, Jacob's dad was laying on the floor, blood pooling under him. He had a large steak knife stuck in his eyesocket, and a butcher knife in his heart. I saw bloody footprints leading up to Jacob's room. Thinking The Shadowman was up there, I cautiously made my way up to the room. The bloody footprints lead into Jacob's empty closet, where a pool of blood lay. It was there, looking at the blood, that I realized what was going on. I ran downstairs, grabbing a kitchen knife. I ran to the woods, and purposely walked off the trail. I soon heard the crunching. I ignored it, until it was close. I quickly turned, jabbing the knife. It missed, and I was rewarded with a deep cut from the dagger. I swung again, hitting his chest. I dodged a hatchet swing, and then I knew what I had to do. I screamed at him, "I know who you are!" He stopped in his tracks, giving me enough time to stab him in the chest. He fell to his knees, the knife embedded in the area just above his heart. He whispered, "Do it." I smiled, picking up his dagger. The two final words I said to The Shadowman were, "Goodbye, Jacob." I stabbed him in the eye, killing him just as he had killed his father. I slowly made my way back to the house, calling the cops.

I was taken to the hospital to have my wound examined, and when I was released, I made a beeline for the room where they held the evidence lockers. I picked the lock and went to the locker labeled with Jacob's first and last name. I broke open the lock with a large scalpel. I took out each individual bag. I put on the outfit, opened a window, and escaped, without anyone finding out.

The next morning--well, let's just say, the cops got more than they had bargained for when they did their daily patrol in the woods. And as a warning to anyone reading this, The Shadowman lives.