Sleepy Hollow Fanfiction
Through Your Eyes
Rating: PG for now
There was blood in his mouth!
Ichabod felt like recoiling as he tasted the copper on his tongue, the cold metallic only spreading about his palette the more he chopped at the tree, determined to see what was behind those bleeding branches. Gritting his teeth the constable pulled away the last pieces of dripping bark…and felt the sudden urge to throw up his meager food of the day as well as tipping over to pass out. Yet he fought both knowing young Masbeth and Katrina were standing but a few paces behind him. Clearing his throat, he turned to the both of them to present his findings. “It’s a gateway for the Horseman.”
Covering her mouth Katrina would turn away from the sight, Masbeth placing a comforting hand upon her arm with a hopefully encouraging smile. “It…it might be best if you return home, Miss. You shouldn’t have to see such things.”
“Young Masbeth is right, Katrina.” With a shallow gulp Ichabod would attempt to rid the deathly taste from his mouth…it didn’t help much. “It best you leave the rest of this to us. The town will need to be informed of this and warned as well. They must stay away. Far away.” He attempted to straighten up in front of the woman, lifting his chin to add to his façade of authority.
“You mustn’t!” She would move closer, gaze avoiding the heads staring out from the tree. “I came here to help you when no one else from Sleepy Hollow would. I am determined to stay.”
Ichabod couldn’t help a faint smile. Brave and beautiful Katrina… But no, he must protect her. He vowed to get rid of the ghost and that would include keeping her safe, it was not often that such a wonderful lady would take notice of him. “Please, Katrina, you must go back to keep everyone else safe. To stay indoors…and…” He would rub his neck with a cringe. “Well, you know.”
It looked as if she may refuse again but shaken hands would grab up her skirts with nothing more than a quick nod and tightened lips. Katrina did not want to go but she would as it was asked of her. With help of the young Masbeth she would saddle upon her horse. “Be careful, the both of you. I expect to see both of you back.” And not a second later Ichabod could hear the soft thud of horse hooves fading in the distance.
At least one of them was out of harm’s way. Dark eyes would look to the boy then, Masbeth offering a weak but supportive smile. “Right then…” With a deep breath the constable would gingerly move away from the bloody portal to hell, a turn of his head soon spotting the vine covered sword sticking up from the ground higher up on the tree. At the spark of intrigued, and thankful to get away from the head-riddled trunk, he climbed up to spot above. What he found absolutely shocked him, chilled even. “It’s a grave…and yet the soil is loose. Masbeth, bring the shovel!”
At first Masbeth was reluctant to move but would bring the shovel soon enough, perhaps wishing he had asked if he may escort Katrina back to town. Ichabod felt pity but he needed someone else here if only to have a pair of eyes watching his back or perhaps, more like his head. So it was he let the boy stay close to the horses while he dug into the cold dirt, flinging it over his shoulder until there was a moment he almost shoveled a rib cage. With sudden shock Ichabod would stay his hand, the tip of the shovel hook underneath the old bones, and delicately removed it so that he may start digging away the soil with his hands, not at all thinking of the worms that squeezed out blood between his fingers as he pulled the earth away. It was like the constable was in a fever as he then shoveled the piles of dirt away until he could clearly look down on the remains…the remains of the Hessian. Gingerly the man would climb out of the hole, wiping his hands on an already blood smeared cloth.
“What is it, Master Crane?” Masbeth was clutching the rifle now as he walked closer to the tree, looking from Ichabod to the gateway in the base of the tree.
“It’s…it’s the head.” Slowly he would make his way back down the tree, coming up to stand near the boy. “The skull is missing from the grave, taken…stolen. I believe that is why he rides, taking the heads of others until his own is returned.” It would then be a matter of just who had done the thievery, being so bold as to plunder a dead butcher’s grave.
So caught up was he that Ichabod didn’t notice the pulsing of the exposed trunk, the gore and heads moving about at the base…until Masbeth suddenly gripped his arm and tugged quite fiercely. At that the man whirled about, the breath caught in his throat as the portal started to stretch out like a membrane, pushing and stretching until the Headless Horseman breeched through, breaking away from the womb of the Devil. And there he was, charging away from the tree and right past the two mortals, the dark charger screaming in the cold air as the Horseman swung about his deadly blade.
The last thing Ichabod remembered was his companion firing a shot at the demon and a darkness enveloping him, the feeling of vertigo…oh yes, he knew this feeling. He was fainting.
His ears were ringing with sounds of clashing steel while men howled in pain or yelled for blood, it was a symphony of death. No, it was war. Somewhere nearby a horse screamed and shocked Ichabod enough to bolster him to his feet. What his eyes revealed was an expanse of a burning field, the smoke of guns and cannons nearly blurring out the setting sun. All around him were soldiers in uniform, some American, British...like him.
//How did I end up here?// Ichabod turned around in a circle, the shock of it having seemed to settle deep in the pit of his stomach, churning and bubbling until he moved his mouth and fell to his knees to prevent from vomiting. But the smells did him in, scorched flesh with the sting of gunpowder while death coiled all around him. With a choked sound the constable emptied his stomach in blood soaked grass, moaning softly as the waves of sickness slowly abated.
But then he felt more than heard someone coming up behind, Ichabod turning around in a blur as he stopped an American soldier brandishing a short dagger at him, snarling as he struggled to stay upright with his other arm nearly cleaved in two. Ichabod scrambled backwards, slipping in wet grass and feeling that all was lost. The crazed soldier leapt at him then, landing upon Ichabod’s chest and raised up the dagger above his head, the man’s smile was bloody but it held a hope of taking his enemy down with him.
The beat of hooves was faint at first, and then the pounding nearer to the pair, Ichabod’s eyes squeezed shut as he waited for the final blow… There was a thundering of a voice, deep and filled with rage, “Würfel!” And quite suddenly Ichabod did not feel the heavy weight upon his chest anymore, one eye cracking open to investigate why he didn’t feeling a stabbing pain… He almost fainted again.
“Stehen Sie oben.” This was coming from a man most frightening sitting upon a brute of a horse and black as night. The man had pale skin with a shock of black hair, wild from battle or birth Ichabod didn’t know but it was really the sharp predatory teeth that he was staring at. Normal, human teeth…filed down to points that made a mortal man look like a devil.
Ichabod tried to say something but it caught in his throat, nothing more than a kind of squeak that made the armored man give another shark smile, tilting back his head and emitting loud and chilling laughter.
“Sie sind kein Krieger, Sie sind eine Maus!” He was still smiling but there was disgust in those ice blue eyes as he turned the charger about, drawing his sword once again and giving a yell of bloodthirsty rage, riding back down towards the carnage of battle still raging on.
Staring down the bloodied field, Ichabod took a deep breath before eyes rolled up and he fell back to the ground, unconscious.
2. Stand up.
3. You are no warrior, you are a mouse!
Ichabod could feel the weight of his waking scream as he sat up, eyes wild and heart beating madly. Something would touch his forehead and pure instinct caused the constable to jerk away from it, hands coming up to shield himself…but saw nothing…only the wind kicking up the leaves around the ground of the Tree of the Dead. There was no one around, just a lone rifle tossed on the ground, smoke still coming from the barrel as if just fired. In the distance Ichabod heard the screaming of a horse.
Rushing to his feet the constable took off running in the direction of the horse, branches whipping at his face and rocks attempting to trip him in the wild run down the forest path. Ichabod’s chest was burning as he gulped in air, rounding about the trees to follow the zigzagging signs of tossed leaves and dug up earth as he hoped for the boy’s safety. Masbeth was faster than his father, he was still a boy, he could…
Ichabod grunted in shock as he tripped, falling to the ground and just barely saving himself from smashing face first into the hard earth. He lay there, panting heavily before risking a look around, slowly turning his head and wishing, quite soundly that he never did. “Masbeth…no, no….” The constable crawled over the still form, knowing all too well that he what he would find.
“…Masbeth?” The boy’s head was still there! Ichabod reached out and began shaking him, feeling warmth on the shoulders that he gripped.
Eyes started to move beneath their lids before they suddenly fluttered open. “Con-constable?”
Ichabod almost laughed aloud as he pulled the boy up to his feet, giving him a slap on the back. “Well done, young Masbeth, well done! I knew you could get away from the Horseman.” He was quite relieved himself, he was almost sure he would find the boy decapitated without a head in sight. It was just so strange…
“I don’t know what happened, Sir. I looked back, I SAW him ready to cut off my head!” Masbeth reached up to rub lightly at his neck, as if needing to confirm he wasn’t dead. “But then he just ran right past me.” The boy was shaken, clearly, but confused as well, as anyone would be when looking death in the face and living to tell the tale.
“Count yourself lucky then.” Ichabod’s brow furrowed then as he looked about the silent wood. “But we must go back to town. If he’s riding again…there will be trouble.” With Masbeth’s wits about him again the pair went and found the skittish horses milling about the trees. Seated firmly upon Gunpowder Ichabod would turn towards the boy. “You must listen to me, Masbeth. Ride as fast as you can, wait not for me, and get the townsfolk ready and able for the Horseman.”
No more was needed to be said as the pair kicked their mounts into action, the horses racing off in the darkness.
Why was it that Ichabod seemed to be getting into all the wrong situations? This thought was fleeting as he charged the Horseman with raised scythe, not at all knowing if he’d be helping Brom or just getting in the way. The dark ghost was, after all, dead and swinging about a few farming tools didn’t seem to be a logical choice in defense but the constable was set on no one else dying by the Horseman’s fearful sword. Even if that meant his own life apparently but it wasn’t his fault that Brom was too thick headed to listen to him.
With a wild swing Ichabod managed to lodge the sharp weapon into the Hessian’s back, his eyes wide as the demon simply whirled about, trying to get at the back-stabber. Ichabod wasn’t going to wait and find out though as he quickly grabbed Brom and made a dash for the bridge, intent to get away from the angered soul as quickly as possible and in one complete piece.
They almost made it too.
Except the Horseman wasn’t going to just let them go after getting in his way, no…no he wasn’t.
Because the last thing Ichabod Crane felt was a stabbing, burning and unimaginable pain in his shoulder followed by a very unconscious inducing slam to the ground. Head reeling and body screaming, he simply passed out.
Ichabod once again felt something on his forehead, except this time he felt he didn’t have the strength to pull away from it. Instead he would slowly open his eyes, trying to blink away the fuzz in his vision to see what the blob was above him.
“Sie sind jetzt wach, Maus.” The same rumbling voice as his earlier…dream, vision? And as his eyes adjusted they were focused on that same chilling yet unique set of ice. He would stand up from where Ichabod was, turning to another man and barking something in that same language. He couldn’t place it…German! Yes, the council said the Hessian was German!
//Oh God, it’s the butcher, the headless horseman…or the…not so headless horseman.// The constable felt the welcome blanket of darkness tugging at the corners of his eyes, telling him it was alright to pass out again.
Ichabod was forced out of his near-faint by a sharp slap of a gloved hand, the snarling face of the Hessian looming over him. “Aufenthalt wach!” He didn’t know what was being yelled at him but Ichabod felt nothing but a wave of shock was over him, indeed banishing any thought of dropping into black sleep once again. Once again the Horseman stood up, pointing to the prone Ichabod while growling more things to the other man again. With but a single look back at the shaken man upon the bed, the Hessian would walk out of the tent.
His…guard?...would move away from the entrance, crouching down next to him. “Sind Sie der Brunnen, genug zum zu gehen?” But Ichabod didn’t understand, simply shaking his head and covering his face with his hands, not understanding what was going on or how this was happening. Why was here? How did he get here? Was it only when he fainted? Was this more magic.
Finally the bed-ridden man simply clutched at his head, letting out a gut-wrenching yell until he ran out of breath, star-spotted vision seeing the other man run out of the tent, shouting something…something…no, a name, shouting a name. He heard the clanking of armor, saw only a brief flash of sharp teeth and wintery eyes.
1. You are awake now, Mouse.
2. Stay awake!
3. Are you well enough to walk?
Maybe this will jar a bit of life in this community yet, eh?