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The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

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The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished* - Chapter 7 is up 2/20

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 4:50 am

Maturity: Not sure. A car crash, possibly some violence, and probably some minimal romance.
Fantasy: Something supernatural. I'm not quite sure what yet.

As you can see by the ratings above (^^) I haven't planned much out in the story yet. Also this is my first time writing in present tense, so bear with me. nod If you see a place where I accidentally put past tense please tell me. Smile

--------------------

Prologue
“It’s my turn,” I argue, following Mom down the driveway.
“Is not,” Mary insists, slamming the door shut behind her. “You sat in the front yesterday.”
“Did not!”
“Did too!”
“Girls!” Mom yells impatiently from beside the driver’s side door. “Just get in the car, you’re going to be late for school. Gabriella, let your sister sit in the front seat for once.”
Smugly sticking her tongue out at me, my twin flounces around the hood of the faded red Mazda to sit in the front passenger seat. Scowling, I straighten my red-and-black plaid uniform skirt and slide into the back, dropping my bag onto the empty seat beside me.
As Mom starts the ignition I pull back the sleeve of my pale red blouse, revealing my plain black digital watch. Only a few minutes late. “I think this is a new record,” I comment, pulling my sleeve down to cover my wrist again.
“What is?” Mary asks absently, already busy texting on her bright purple cell phone.
I roll my eyes and lean back in my seat. “Never mind,” I say. I rest my head against the cool glass of the window, watching houses and cars and trees flash by outside.
We stop for a red light. A boy, maybe a little older than me and with two vivid scars down his left cheek, is standing on the corner. He stands still, despite the little “walk” symbol on the opposite side of the street. He meets my gaze through the tinted glass, his eyes filled with an infinite sadness that seems to echo back years and years, centuries, even millennia. I shiver and avert my gaze, but his face seems to linger on my retina, floating in front of me like some sort of ghostly apparition. I blink hard and the image dissolves into air.
Suddenly Mary shrieks. My head snaps up and I’m able to take in the whole scene in a split second.
The light turns green. Mom hits the gas. So does a driver coming the opposite direction who seems to be drunk. He swerves out of control and careens towards us. Mom hits the brakes, but it’s not enough.
An instant later I’m on the ground, legs crushed under something heavy, shrapnel raining down around me. The ringing of Mary’s phone fill my ears, the constant, pulsing noise the only thing that ties me to life.
Suddenly it stops, and I begin to fade. A cool hand presses against my forehead.
So sorry, someone whispers, and then everything goes black.

--------------------

Table of Contents:
Prologue - Page 1, post 1
Chapter 1 - Page 1, post 8
Chapter 2 - Page 2, post 6
Chapter 3 - Page 2, post 9
Chapter 4 - Page 3, post 2
Chapter 5 - Page 3, post 5
Chapter 6 - Page 3, post 8
Chapter 7 - Page 4, post 7


Last edited by rattyjol on 2/20/2010, 9:06 pm; edited 6 times in total
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/10/2010, 11:04 am

Holy crud! Surprised I need more, Ratty. (And I didn't notice any past tense . . . I was actually looking for it, too. xD)

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 1:20 pm

Very depressing, isn't it? xD I am so sadistic to my characters. Tanku. Very Happy I'll add more if two more peoples post. nod
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/10/2010, 1:35 pm

Sadism is fun, though. xD I don't blame you.

I shall wait for those people, then. nod

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by Arianna on 1/10/2010, 2:29 pm

Zoh. Em. Gee.
I need more, Ratty. I'll die otherwise.

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 2:38 pm

Tanku, Ari. One more post and I will. Smile
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by LuckyPenny666 on 1/10/2010, 4:48 pm

This is AMAZING. grin I can't wait to read the next part. I'm so hooked. nod
I wish the car-crash scene in my story could be so gripping.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 5:32 pm

Thanks, Lucky. Smile

----------

Chapter 1
My eyes open a crack. Everything is blindingly white so I close them again.
“How are you feeling?” an unfamiliar voice asks gently. It takes me a minute to remember how to work my mouth.
“Am... am I dead?” I wonder, my dry throat and cracked lips making it difficult to talk.
“No, sweetheart, of course you’re not. Can you tell me where it hurts?”
I have to think about that for a minute. “Everywhere,” I croak finally.
“Where does it hurt the most?” she clarifies.
“Everything hurts,” I say again.
“I know, honey. But can you tell me what hurts the most? Is it your legs? Your head?”
I’m silent for a moment, then moan, “Leave me alone. I want to go home. I want my mom.”
“I’m sorry, sweetheart, your mom can’t talk to you right now,” the unfamiliar voice says after a brief pause.
“Why not?” I demand, sounding like a little kid. My voice cracks as I try not to realize what it’s too late to forget. “Who are you? I want my mom!”
“I’m Nurse Summer,” the woman says soothingly. “I just want to help.”
“I don’t want your help!” I yell. “I want my mom!”
The nurse’s voice is sharper now. Her patience is running out. “Your mother is dead, sweetheart.”
“No!” I scream, trying to sit up, but her gentle hands easily pin me down. My eyes fly open as I struggle. Over Nurse Summer’s shoulder stands the boy who was on the street corner before the accident.
“Leave me alone!” I shriek, half at him and half at Nurse Summer. “Go away!” The boy’s image wavers and vanishes.
“Gabriella, please listen to me,” the nurse begs. “You’re disturbing the other patients. Please settle down. Your father wants to talk to you.”
That stuns me into silence. “My father?” I echo, frowning in bewilderment.
“Yes,” she promises. “In fact, he’s on the phone right now.” She reaches over and picks up the receiver, which she holds up to my ear.
“Dad?” I whisper into the phone.
“Hello, Gabs.”
His warm voice melts through me, transporting me back in time. Suddenly I’m four years old and sitting on his lap.
“I have to go away for a while, Gabs,” he says, smoothing down my untidy hair. I swat his hand away like I always did.
“Where are you going?” I ask, tilting my head back to look at him.
“To the cabin,” he replies.
“Can I come with you?”
“No.”
My eyes start to tear up. “How long will you be gone?”
“I don’t know yet, Gabs. I’ll see you soon. I promise.”
He kisses the top of my head and sets me down gently on the kitchen floor. He gives Mary a hug, barely acknowledging Mom’s presence, and picks up his suitcase, and then he’s gone.

He only came back once to get the rest of his stuff, and he made sure to do it when none of us were home. He had never even called us.
And then suddenly I’m back in the hospital room. The pain returns, flooding back into my limbs, and I realize that tears are streaming down my cheeks.
“You left us,” I accuse, my voice harsh through the tears.
“I didn’t,” he protests. “I swear I didn’t. I just... I was busy.”
“Eleven years, Dad. Eleven. You promised you’d come back.”
“I know. I’m sorry.”
“Is Mary there?”
He’s silent.
“She’s... not?”
“She’s with your mother.”
“But Mom is...” My voice trails off as I grasp what he’s trying to tell me. “No. No, she can’t be... She...”
“She’s gone too, sweetheart,” the nurse says gently.
“You can shut up!” I snap, snatching the phone from her hand and leaning away, despite the pain in my head. I turn my attention back to Dad. “So will I... will I come live with you now?” I ask, voice quivering.
“Gabs, you know the ground around the cabin is rough.”
“Mmhm.”
“Not good for wheels.”
“And...?”
“Wheelchairs have wheels.”
I’m silent for a moment as it hits me.
“No!” I cry. “No, no, nononono!”
“I know it’s bad, but is it really so terrible?”
“I’m an athlete, Dad! I live for sports. If you hadn’t missed the last eleven years you’d know that!” I slam the phone back on its hook and slump back onto my pillows, covering my face with my hands and sobbing uncontrollably.
Nurse Summer moves to the side of the bed and does something to the IV. I immediately begin feeling drowsy. Darkness begins to creep through my mind. I silently urge it to move faster. Anything to escape the pain, the nightmare that my life has become. As the darkness envelopes my mind I welcome it with open arms, sinking gratefully into unconsciousness.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by LuckyPenny666 on 1/10/2010, 5:47 pm

Woah...poor Gabriella.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 5:59 pm

I know. Like I said, I'm sadistic to my characters. xD
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by LuckyPenny666 on 1/10/2010, 6:07 pm

XD Yeah. But it makes the story more interesting. And like Shadow said, it's fun.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/10/2010, 6:21 pm

Exactly. nod
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by DreamCatcher81 on 1/11/2010, 9:50 pm

That's really good Ratty!!!
Whoah, she reminds me a lot of Katelyna from BTW. The whole car crash thing, her sibling dying, having to get a wheelchair, and other stuff. Haha. But still amazing!!!!!!

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/11/2010, 10:12 pm

Thanks, Dream. Smile

Oh yeah... sorry about that. xD But believe me, it's not gonna be anything like BTW. xD
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/11/2010, 10:54 pm

Woah. Sad Poor Gabriella . . .

More, Ratty, more! Very Happy We want more sadism!

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/11/2010, 11:17 pm

You know what's freaky? This chapter is exactly one word shorter than the last one. o.0

------------

Chapter 2
When the hospital finally releases me, several weeks later, I still don’t know where I’m going. A nurse I don’t know wheels my chair down to the reception room. A woman stands up from one of the hard plastic chairs and comes over to me.
“You must be Gabriella,” she says, shaking my hand. “I’m Mrs. Foster. I’m here to take you to your new home.” I nod soundlessly, looking her over.
She’s robust, with a kindly-looking face. Her auburn hair is up in a tight bun and she’s wearing a plain white apron over a simple brown dress.
I don’t bother asking her where we’re going. I’ll find out soon enough.
She loads me into the back seat of her battered old Civic - I’d refused the front - and folds up my wheelchair. She gets into the driver’s seat and starts the car.
The whole ride I’m terrified. I keep my eyes fixed firmly on the back of the seat in front of me, my fingers clenching the upholstery so hard that my scarred knuckles turn white. I catch a glimpse of myself in the rearview mirror; my face is chalky and pale. Finally, the car slides to a stop. I look out the window and see...
My house.
I look questioningly at Mrs. Foster.
“To get your things,” she explains. “Take whatever you need.”
Shivering from a combination of memories and the cold wind, I crawl into my chair and roll myself slowly towards the house I had lived in all my life.
I pack only one small suitcase, unable to bear taking anything that reminds me of my absent family members. At the last moment I grab my locket from where I left it the last time I took it off, what seems like a million years ago. I stuff it under the clothes at the bottom of my suitcase and slam the lid shut. I zip it up and set it gingerly on my lap, then wheel myself out into the hall, where Mrs. Foster is waiting to help me back down the stairs.
* * * * * *
It takes another hour and a half of driving to reach our destination.
It’s a large building, built of dull gray bricks. Colors seem to have all faded since the accident. I wonder if my eyesight has really physically been affected or if it’s just psychological. Over the entrance is a sign that reads “Easthall Orphanage”. I guess I should have expected that, but it gives me a jolt. Dad really doesn’t want me around. I try not to let it get to me, but I’m in such a fragile emotional state that my eyes begin to tear up anyway. I try not to think about it.
The entrance is a pair of large, heavy-looking doors, preceded by a large flight of steps. Luckily, there’s a ramp on either side of the stairs. Mrs. Foster rolls me up the left one, her car idling illegally at the curb.
“This is Matron White,” she tells me, handing me off to a stern-looking woman who is dressed the same way. “She’ll show you where you’ll be sleeping and get you settled.” She leaves.
Matron White starts off at a brisk pace down the hall, leaving me to roll myself after her as best as I can. She launches into a long list of rules, like “no running,” “no loud voices,” “don’t leave the building without permission,” “only go to the sick bay if you’re sick,” etcetera. I try to pay attention, I really do, but my legs are hurting like crazy and I’m distracted further by what I can see through the doors that line the hall. Sullen-looking, pale-faced children, both boys and girls, sit on the beds that line the walls, not playing, not talking, just... sitting there, as if waiting for something that will never come. I wonder if I’ll become like them. Maybe I already have.
Each door has a different year on it. I guess the kids are sorted by the year they were born. Finally we reach the room labeled “1994”. Matron White waves me impatiently inside. She leads me to a vacant bed in the far corner. My neighbor is a boy with his head in his hands. As I roll past his bed he looks up. His features sink into my brain one by one: the pale skin, the mousy brown hair, the sad brown eyes, and, finally, the two vivid scars that run down his cheek.
“No!” I yell, backing away. “No, go away!”
His expression changes from merely curious to bewildered. Matron White lays a heavy hand on my shoulder.
“Gabrielle, this is Terrence.”
“Get him away from me!” I yell. “He was there, he’s always there, get him away!”


Last edited by rattyjol on 2/21/2010, 7:52 am; edited 1 time in total
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/13/2010, 8:31 pm

Creepy! xD Both the wordcount thing, and the chapter. I wonder why this Terrence keeps showing up . . . ?

:3 Awesome job. Keep writing!

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/13/2010, 8:36 pm

You shall see. Eventually. -evil laugh-

Tanku.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/15/2010, 10:49 pm

Chapter 3 - Terrence
I watch in confusion as Matron White leads the girl in the wheelchair away, her face masked by the familiar stony expression that means someone is in big trouble. The other ‘94s are all staring, some at me and some at the girl. The moment the door closes behind Matron White whispering breaks out around the room.
“What did she mean?”
“How hard do you think she’ll go?”
“That’s a beat.”
“No way. The girl just got here, and she’s in a chair. White’s not that bad.”
“You sure?”
“Well...”
They keep talking, speculating about what Matron White would do. I slump back onto my lumpy mattress and hard pillow, tuning out the noise. I shut my eyes, but the wheelchair girl’s terrified face lingers in my mind. I can’t get rid of it. What was she talking about? I’ve hardly ever left the orphanage and I know for a fact that I’ve never seen her before, or at least not after my parents vanished. I finger the scars on my cheek that are all I have to remember them by.
After about ten minutes the door opens again and the girl rolls herself in, head down. As she passes me again she lifts her face just lightly, her eyes darting towards me and then quickly away again as she notices me looking. Her face is streaked with tears but she doesn’t seem to be crying anymore. She puts down her tiny suitcase and then transfers herself carefully to her bed. I can tell that she’s trying to keep her face impassive but fresh pain, both physical and mental, gleams in her eyes. I wonder what had happened to her.
She curls up in the fetal position on her bed, facing the wall. I look away. It’s none of my business.
* * * * * *
I wake with a start. The small digital clock someone somehow managed to get tells me it’s close to three in the morning. A familiar sound echoes softly around the room: crying. I roll over to see the outline of the wheelchair girl, faintly illuminated by a street lamp outside the window, her shoulders shaking with quiet sobs.
I think about saying something, but what would I say? She’d probably just freak out again, anyway. I decide that my best bet is to leave her alone. I roll over again and try to fall back asleep, but the sound of the girl’s crying keeps me awake for a long, long time.
* * * * * *
Matron White flings open the door, knocking her large fist heavily on the wood. “Six thirty! Up!” Then she leaves, going on to wake up the next room, the ‘93s.
Muffled groans come from around the room as we drag ourselves out of bed and trickle a few at a time down to the dining room for breakfast. I force down most of my plate of egg mush, knowing it’s all I’m going to get until lunch, which won’t be much better. As I take my dishes to the back I see the wheelchair girl just coming in. Her face is dry and free of tears, but she has dark circles under her eyes. I wonder if she got any sleep at all last night. She gets a plate of eggs and retreats to a corner, not touching the food at all.
I glance up at the clock on the wall. “Any second now,” I mutter under my breath to no one in particular. “Three... two... one.”
Right on cue, Matron White bursts into the cafeteria. “What are you doing?” she demands, instantly silencing the entire room. “It’s seven o’clock, time for class. Move!”
As one, we all stand and file towards the door, everyone trying to hang back but not look like they are. The crowd thins with each door we pass as each year trickles off into their classrooms. Finally we reach the door marked “1994” and pile inside the undersized room. I sit down at one of the rickety old desks in the back row. The wheelchair girl is the last one in again, trailing after the teacher, Mrs. Woode with her eyes fixed firmly on the ground.
“You can take that seat there, dear,” Mrs. Woode tells her, pointing to the only available seat in the room, which is the one right next to me. “Class, this is Gabriella Karamë.” There are a few halfhearted “Hello”s from around the room. Everyone is thinking of her outburst yesterday.
Head still down, Gabriella rolls over to her seat and moves the chair to the side, making room for her wheelchair. She takes her place and Mrs. Woode starts the lesson. It’s something about proper sentence structure, but I’m not really paying attention. By the way Gabriella is sitting I can tell she’s not either.
Her head is down, her eyes half-closed and gazed over. She’s slumped back in her chair and something gold glints in her hand. I study her curiously, wondering what’s going on in her head.
Suddenly it’s like her mind opens up to me, revealing her thoughts and memories. I gasp sharply as vivid images that I don’t have time to examine flood into my head. Her eyes lock on mine, as shocked as I assume mine are, and the connection breaks.
I jerk away from her, alarmed. Her eyes are filled with such a jumbled mess of emotions that I can’t tell what she thinks of what just happened. Maybe there’s a clue in the images that still crowd my mind. I quickly sift through them. Every one is like an electric shock. I recieved Gabriella’s emotions as well as her memories. I see through her eyes as her father leaves, I watch as her as she gets into the car to go to school, but the shock I feel when I see myself on the street corner is my own. I feel the blinding pain as she’s suddenly the victim of a car crash, recognize my own voice as I whisper to her to keep her alive. And that doesn’t make any sense, because I know that I never did that, wasn’t there, have never seen her in my life before yesterday.
And it scares me.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/16/2010, 10:43 am

*points* That is just creepy. Very Happy You did awesome!

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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/16/2010, 12:20 pm

That's the point. xD Thankee. Smile
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/24/2010, 1:46 am

Chapter 4 - Gabriella
I stare blankly at Terrence until Mrs. Woode notices and asks me a question. I turn back to the front of the room. “Huh?”
“I asked what the last thing I said was,” she explains patiently.
“‘I asked what the last thing I said was,’” I quote dully. It’s a trick I’ve learned from long years of being asked that question at school when I wasn’t paying attention.
“Clever,” Mrs. Woode relents, then restarts the class. I go back to staring at my desk, trying to figure out what just happened. Terrence was in my mind, yes. But how? Why?
I decide to try this out. Terrence, if you can hear this, tap the leg of your desk three times. My eyes dart back to him but his hand is still. Frowning slightly, I tried again. Terrence, can you hear me?
Nothing.
The rest of the day inches by. I’m exhausted, but I know I won’t be able to fall asleep even if I try. By the end of the day, though, I’m so tired that I skip dinner - despite having not eaten anything since the day before - and go straight to bed. I lie awake for hours. By the time I finally doze off, the rest of the ‘94s have already been in bed and asleep for a while.
My dreams are a whirlwind. First I see my father, looking exactly as he was the last time I saw him, laughing with my mother in the kitchen. Mary and I are probably around three and playing on the floor beside them. Suddenly he begins to fade. Soon he’s gone, leaving nothing but coldness in his wake. Mary and I start to grow, Mom begins to age, until suddenly I’m fifteen and the remainder of my family vanishes into the dark as well. And I’m left alone, eyes stinging and legs broken, still sitting on the floor and waiting for the nightmare to end.
Only, when I wake up, it doesn’t. I’m still alone, still broken, my eyes watering. I first I think it’s tears, but then I start to cough and I realize it’s much worse than that. Flames are burning in the hall, blocking off the doorway with hungry tongues of fire. I stare at them in horror, paralyzed in fright until a voice tells me, “Get out!” I blink hard, tearing my gaze away from the flames to see Terrence standing next to my bed, his face ghostly pale. But... someone is still sleeping in Terrence’s bed.
I open my mouth. “Who-”
“Get out!” he interrupts. “Wake the others!” He points at the window, which is the only way out. Luckily we’re on the first floor. I realize he’s right: I may not like this place but I still have to wake everyone.
“Fire!” I shriek. People begin to stir but no one gets up. “Fire!” I repeat. The first few kids start to wake up. Whoever is in Terrence’s bed sits upright, eyes wide. It’s Terrence. He seems to see the apparition of himself for a moment, and then it vanishes.
He stares at me blankly, his eyes demanding. What was that? he seems to be asking.
I shake my head. I don’t know.
Kids are stampeding towards the windows now. I realize the window is too far for me to reach from my bed and turn towards the wheelchair, but as one boy runs by in a panic he pushes it out of his way, subsequently pushing it away from the bed. I reach for it, and it’s just an inch away from my fingertips. A little closer... Just a little more... My fingers are about to close around the cloth of the chair back when I realize I’ve reached too far just in time to feel myself tumbling off the bed. I hit the floor with a jolt. The combination of the impact and the pain that explodes in my legs as they fall heavily against the hard wood knocks the breath out of me, which isn’t good seeing as smoke is filling the room, making it hard to breathe as it is. I gasp for air but get nothing but smoke. The fire is sucking all the oxygen out of the air. Black spots begin to dance across my vision. My head is spinning. Sparks are already licking at me hungrily. I’m going to die.
Good, I think dizzily. The nightmare is over.
My eyes close. My rigid body goes limp. The pain in my legs and head and lungs begins to fade, in and out with my consciousness. When a pair of hands lift me away from the ground I’m not sure if it’s real.
Is this what it’s like to die? I wonder blearily. I fade out for a few seconds, then regain consciousness just in time to feel myself being put down on blissfully cool cement. There’s more oxygen here. The pain starts to return. My eyes flutter open at a hacking sound that I can’t make sense of. I see a dark shape, a person, on his hands and knees, coughing from the smoke. His face is darkened with soot and I can’t tell who it is. Really, I don’t care. I just want to sleep.
Let the nightmare end, I think, and then fall into the darkness.
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by shadowsowner888 on 1/24/2010, 10:22 am

"Eep," the werepire squeaked out, her eyes wide. "You're so sadistic!" At that she had to laugh, for Ratty had said this herself several times before. "That was cool, that was cool. You must write more!" Shadow urged her, beginning to cartwheel insanely around.

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(Credit to Forry for this picture.)
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 1/24/2010, 1:48 pm

Yush. cheesy Torturing characters is awesomeful. Thanks. Very Happy I have a few more chapters written but I'm waiting for someone else to post before I put them up. nod
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Re: The Nightmare My Life Has Become {working title} *unfinished

Post by rattyjol on 2/6/2010, 12:34 am

This chapter has some swearing. You have been warned. nod

EDIT: It didn't get blanked out...?

Chapter 5
When I wake up, someone has washed the soot from my face. I’m in a simple white dressing gown. I try to roll over and a moan escapes me; every muscle in my body is screaming in protest. On top of that, my lungs burn with every breath and my throat is raw. My legs, wrapped in plaster, hurt so much they must be burning up. They haven’t been so agonized since they were first broken. I don’t know what happened to them but it’s nothing good. After a few minutes I gather my strength and turn my head. I blink hard to clear my fuzzy vision when I see Terrence - not the pale apparition, but the real one, his face flushed with pain - just sitting up in his own bed a few feet away. He doesn’t seem to notice me yet, too busy examining the long white bandage wrapped around his whole left arm that must be hiding a burn. He prods his forearm gently and winces.
“Why?” I manage to croak, my throat burning with the effort.
His head turns. “What?”
“Why did you come back for me?”
He studies me for a moment. Then he shrugs. “I don’t know,” he says, his eyes showing nothing but truth. “I just felt like... I had to.”
I frown. “You had to?”
He nods. We’re silent for a moment. “Where did you get those scars?” I ask finally, lifting a limp arm to point at his face and then letting it flop back onto the bed.
His fingers automatically reach up to touch the two vivid lines that mar his face. “I don’t know,” he says again, and again, I can tell that’s he’s not lying. “I’ve had them for as long as I can remember.”
We’re silent again, and then I try to move my legs.
“Ah!” I yelp as pain races up and down my whole body. I slump back against the pillows, shutting my eyes tightly.
“Gabriella?” Terrence’s voice is right above me, filled with concern. “What’s wrong?”
“My legs,” I choke out, my voice taut with pain.
“I’m calling for a nurse,” he tells me, and I guess he pressed the call button. “You need painkillers.” There’s a few soft noises like bare feet on a tiled floor, silence for a few seconds, and then a sharp intake of breath.
“What?” I groan, my eyes fluttering open. Terrence is at the foot of my bed, holding the clipboard that holds my information. He turns it around so I can see. It’s an x-ray of my legs.
“----,” I mutter, squeezing my eyes shut again. I don’t want to see that.
“----,” he agrees. He hangs up the chart again and I hear him moving back towards his own bed. A few seconds later a nurse comes in and my eyes open.
“How are you feeling, Gabriella?”
“It hurts,” I mumble.
“Would you like some more painkiller?”
I nod a little. Please.
She consults my chart, I guess checking how much I’ve had and what the dosage should be, and then goes over to the IV and inserts something into it. Relieving numbness begins to spread through my body, but just before I pass out, a flurry of memories that aren’t mine flash in my head and I shudder as I sink into darkness.


Last edited by rattyjol on 2/6/2010, 1:32 am; edited 1 time in total
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