For an English assignment we were to turn this paragraph with 72 sentences into a much better paragraph. We could add and take away words, but we had to keep all 72 points. Afterwards, we were to count every sentence’s word count and tell what writing style we used for every sentence. The italicized paragraph was the original paragraph and the one after that is my version of it.
There was a forest. Gloom shrouded the forest. There was a path. It was narrow. It zigzagged into the darkness. There was a mansion. It was old. It stood through the trees. There were weeds. They were tall, They surrounded the mansion. There were bushes. They were untrimmed. They surronded the mansion. There was smoke. It was a wisp. It was thin. It came from the chimney. It curled. The curl was lazy. The chimney was vine somethered. No sign of life appeared. There was thunder. It was low. It was rumbling. It gave a warning. It warned of a storm. The storm would come. It would come soon. There was a Girl Scout troop. It was troop 7740. They sught shelter. They entered the mansion. The mansion had a door. The door was creaky. There was a gust. It was of wind. It was great. It blew through the window. It slammed the door violently. There was a light. It was dim. It filtered into the lower hallway. There were footsteps. They pounded on the floor. The floor was above. Shrieks filled the air. Wails filled the air. They were wild. There was a face. It was ugly. It appeared over the staircase. It held a candle. It lurked in the distance. They were terrified. They were bewildered. There was a wall. They groped their way. Their way was along the wall. They searched for a door. Minutes passed. They found a knob. They twisted it. It opened readily. They were surprised. A blast of air struck their faces. It was coool. It was night. There was a trail. It was winding. They fled down the trail. They did not glance backward.
Another low rumble of thunder growled across the land giving a warning of the forthcoming storm that would soon envelop the gloom-shrouded forest below. Hidden away within the overgrown foliage of the wood, a narrow path zigzagged into the shadows, beckoning the Girl Scout Troop of 7740. Curious of where the trail led, the Girl Scouts decided to continue on.
Following the quaint dirt path, the team came upon an aged mansion looming amongst the trees. Tall weeds encroached upon the mansion’s front porch nearly reaching the front double doors. Surrounding the immense building in an even deeper sea of green were untrimmed bushes that were beyond the point of taming. From a vine-smothered chimney, wisps of thin smoke trickled into the outside air, curling in lazy patterns almost mimicking the storm clouds overhead. The girls didn’t detect any sign of life, but quickly huddled into the mysterious building seeking shelter from the approaching storm.
As the creak from the ancient door leaked into the bleak hallways, terror came over the troop. Suddenly, a great gust of wind blew through an open window and violently slammed the door shut. Screams emitted from the troop in an instant reflex. Bewildered, they glanced around the foyer. Dust and age covered the darkened home and it looked as if no one had cared for the place for many years. Within the dim light that filtered into the lower hallway, the troop was able to spot the candlestick that emitted the light. Resting on the stairway banister, the faint luminescence flittered and flickered.
Just then, the Girl Scout troop heard a noise from above. Pounding on the thin floorboards above were footsteps with an unknown master. Feeling even more frightened, the girls began to huddle closer together holding their breath in fear. Within the silence, wild shrieks and wails began to arise filling the air. The girls screamed aloud and turned to run up the staircase. Before reaching the spiraling stairs, an ugly, distorted face appeared hovering over the banister. The face lurked in the distance with a leering expression.
Terrified and mystified, the troop instantly whirled around towards the front door. At that instant, the candle’s fire extinguished, surrounding the girls in complete darkness. Compelled to leave the haunted mansion, they groped their way along the walls, determined to find the door. Torn wallpaper helped lead the troop through the darkness. It seemed as if many minutes had passed until one of the girls found her hand wrapping around the cold, rusted doorknob. Frantically twisting the knob, the door surprisingly opened readily. Thankfully dashing out into the night, the Girl Scouts were welcomed with a cool blast of air to their faces. The troop continued to flee and once again found the hidden winding path within the glade. Not glancing back, the troop fled down the trail, never planning to return.