The wind whispered through the dark, empty forest, like a warning in a foreign language as I took the shortcut to Beck’s house. Winter was coming, and with winter…
the Icolytes, demons of the ice wind. Everyone knew that the first of the winds signaled their soon to be arrival. It was when the air was so cold that your bones began to ache, your lips began to crack, and you could barely open your eyes, that you knew they were right next to you.
That’s when you were screwed.
I’ve never seen it happen, but my uncle’s girlfriend’s brother was caught in their crossfire. They found him at the bottom of a snow covered hill, with cuts all over his body, and wheezing breaths, like the slow steady drumbeat at funerals, coming from his barely parted lips.
It took him three months to recover. After that, even the skeptics made efforts to stay indoors as much as they could in the winter. My neighbor even stocks up on canned goods so she doesn’t have to go grocery shopping once the first snow hits.
As much as I didn’t want to run into one, that was a even extreme for me, the chick who carries six silver plated knives in case an Icolyte shows up on my shortcuts on my way to school.
I was almost to Beck’s house, and could hear the loud thump of music coming from her winter solstice party, when the wind picked up, blowing my hair in every direction. I scanned my surroundings and quickened my pace, hoping I’d get there before a stronger wind picked up.