Toget var helt fyldt. Ikke én eneste plads var ledig; det var heller ikke så mærkeligt, siden det var første dag efter sommerferien. Alt fra forretningsfolk til skolebørn skyndte sig af sted. Det var generelt ikke en særlig god idé at komme for sent den første dag. Jo længere ud på landet toget kørte, jo færre mennesker var der med. De fleste der forblev i toget, var omkring hendes alder. De havde store tasker og rygsække med, og nogle havde også deres forældre på slæb. Det havde hun ikke. Der hvor hun skulle hen, var ikke noget for dem. De havde med det samme slået hånden af hende, da de fandt ud af den magt der gemte sig i hende. Hun knugede sin taske ind til sig. Hun havde alt i den – alt der nogensinde havde betydet noget for hende. Det var det næstsidste stop. Alle andre end de unge og deres forældre stod af. En lang strækning land ventede forude, for de nåede deres destination. Derefter kom togstewardesserne rundt og uddelte navneskilte. De kikkede forventende på hende. Sløv i optrækket som hun var, tog det hende et par sekunder at opsige sit navn.
”Øh… Akane Munakata!” sagde hun stille. Stewardesserne indtastede det i en lille håndholdt maskine, og hun fik sit navneskilt. Det ville tage ca. en time at ankomme til skolen, så hun besluttede at tage sig en morfar.
Hele verdenen rystede, som et gigantisk jordskælv… troede hun, indtil det gik op for hende, at hun blev rusket vågen. Hun stirrede ind i et kønt pigeansigt, beklædt med en alvorlig mine. Pigens udtryk ændrede sig til et smil.
”Så er det tid til at vågne, sovetryne. Vi er der næsten, og vi kan ikke have at du falder på vej ud i søvnrusen, vel?” sagde hun med en venlig tone. Pigen kikkede grundigt på hendes navneskilt.
”Akane Munakata… så skal vi være på værelse sammen,” tilstod hun, og så lettet ud. Måske havde hun forventet noget andet? Akane gned øjnene og kikkede ordentligt på pigen. Hun havde skønt blondt hår, sat op i en stram hestehale, og mørkeblå øjne. En meget klassisk skønhed. Hun skulle lige til at spørge om hendes navn, men blev afbrudt.
”Jeg hedder Chie Kashiwagi. Skal jeg hjælpe dig med at samle dine ting sammen?” tilbød hun. Akane nikkede og begyndte at pakke sine magasiner, bøger osv. ned i sin håndtaske. Chie hjalp hende – hun havde alt sit bagage med sig – og de nåede at blive færdige lige til tiden. Toget stoppede larmende, og ungerne steg alle ud. Det gik lidt besværligt, siden alle havde så meget bagage med. Chie havde tydeligvis prøvet det før, så hun hjalp Akane med at få det hele gjort hurtigt. Den tungeste sportstaske løftede hun uden besvær overhovedet. Da alle ungerne var stået af og stod forvirrede på perronen, kom et fint udseende par. En høj, slank mand og en kurvet kvinde, begge i uniformer, bad dem om deres fulde opmærksomhed.
”Før vi gør noget som helst andet, vil vi bede jer tage afsked med jeres forældre.” Et klagende opråb rejste sig. ”Det er imod skolens regler at lade elevers forældre komme ind på skolen. Det er en pludselig afsked, men det kan ikke gøres anderledes.” Forældre og børn tog afsked, nogle følelsesløst, andre tårevædet. De gamle satte sat tilbage ind i toget, og tog af sted. Det uniformerede par tog igen ordet.
”Hvis I vil være så venlige at følge med, skal vi nok få jer indrettet på skolen,” sagde manden. Den store flok traskede efter de to. Skolebygningen var enorm. Det blev den også nødt til at være, siden den havde så mange elever. Det var dog ikke noget gotisk slot, som man måske ville forvente. Akane studerede den barokudseende struktur; hun kunne lide hvad hun så. Chie virkede slet ikke nær så interesseret. De blev ledt ind ad den gigantiske hoveddør, og samledes i den smukt dekorerede forhal. Alle de nye elever blev gennet ind i et rum til højre – Chie vinkede til Akane.
”Vi ses på værelset!” råbte hun. Så hun skulle altså bo med en ældre elev? De nye elever satte sig alle ned på stole der pegede op mod en tavle. Manden i uniformen rømmede sig.
”Mit navn er Osamu Itoh. Jeg er jeres rektor. De næste par år er i elever på denne skole. Vi vil uddanne jer i, at bruge de evner i alle besidder. I vil selvfølgelig også modtage normal undervisning, da dette naturligvis er nødvendigt i nutidens samfund, men I vil primært blive oplært i hvad populært kaldes Den Guddommelige Kunst. Som nogle af jer måske ved, er det ikke alle samfund der ser positivt på disse evner. Derfor er I nødt til at være i sikkerhed her. I vil blive opdelt i værelser, bestående af 3-6 elever. Når nu I er nye, vil I for det meste blive placeret på et mindre værelse. Før I får besked på, hvor I skal være, skal I lige have styr på de vigtigste regler,” prædikede Itoh. Han tog et stykke kridt og skrev nogle få regler op på tavlen.
”Den første og vigtigste regel er, at I ikke må bruge jeres evner mod hinanden uden vores eller lærernes tilladelse. Det burde sige sig selv, hvorfor det er forbudt. For det andet, må I ikke gå uden for skolens areal uden tilladelse. I skal alle være i seng kl. 2 om natten. Det gør ikke noget, at I ikke kan sove, bare I er på værelserne. Og I er selv uden om det, hvis I er trætte næste dag. Indtagelse af alkohol og rygning er tilladt, men det er strengt forbudt at ryge indendørs. Druk er selvfølgelig ikke tilladt i selve skoletiden. Sammen med jeres værelsesopdeling, vil I også modtage et regelsæt og et skema. Her på skolen har vi få, men vigtige regler.” Den kurvede kvinde delte papirer ud til alle, efter at have kikket grundigt på folks navneskilte. Akane var én af de sidste der fik sin seddel.
Værelse 218, 3. sal
Så hun skulle altså være på et lille 3-personsværelse.
”Nu vil lærerne følge jer op til værelserne på de forskellige sale. Jeres værelseskammerater vil informere jer om dagens begivenheder,” afsluttede Itoh. De nye elever rejste sig, og fulgte med lærerne. Flokken blev mindre for hver etage. Trapperne var af marmor, og meget smukke, men det måtte gøre frygteligt ondt at falde på dem. De nåede til 3. sal og Akane listede af sted sammen med flokken. Hun ledte efter dør 218. Langt nede ad gangen fandt hun den. Skulle hun banke på eller bare gå ind? Hvad hvis Chie var i gang med at klæde om eller sådan noget? Mere nåede hun ikke at tænke over det, før hun blev prikket på skulderen. Hun vendte sig chokeret og så på den store dreng. Han var bredskuldret og stærk, og havde grønne øjne og rodet brunt hår.
”Skal du ind eller hvad?” spurgte han, med et glimt i øjet. Hun nikkede forsigtigt og han åbnede døren. Værelset var meget pænt og rent, men områderne omkring sengene var ret personliggjorte. Chie sad på en seng der var nyredt med fine hvide lagener. På væggen bag hende var der plakater af fortidens modeller, som Marilyn Monroe og Audrey Hepburn. Hun smilte til dem, da de kom ind.
”Kazu! Længe siden!” sagde hun, og krammede drengen, der måtte være Kazuhiko. Akane var forbavset. Var det ikke meningen, at kønnene var opdelt?
”Skal jeg bo på værelse med en dreng…?” hviskede hun stille. Kazuhiko grinte.
”Jeg skal bo på værelse med to piger! Hvem har det måske værst?” grinte han. Chie smilede til hende.
”Det er okay, det er bare sådan det fungerer her. Man mener at kønnene er helt lige, så derfor skal de også kunne bo på værelse sammen,” forklarede hun.
”Og bare rolig, jeg er ikke en stripper eller noget,” forsikrede Kazuhiko hende om. Akane kunne ikke lade være med at smile og grine lidt. De to kendte tydeligvis hinanden, hvilket var meget beroligende. Kazuhiko gik hen til en seng i hjørnet, og rodede straks i den nyredte seng, og smed sine tasker på den. På væggen ved hans seng hang der plakater af bands, der for det meste bestod af langhårede mænd med mange tatoveringer og piercinger og helt sort tøj. Øverst var der også en indrammet, signeret fodboldtrøje. Akane satte kursen mod den sidste seng i den anden ende af værelset og lagde sine tasker der. Hun havde slet ikke taget sådan nogle pynteting med. Hendes sengeareal ville være super kedeligt i forhold til de andres.
”Har du fået din uniform?” spurgte Chie pludselig. Akane vendte og drejede spørgsmålet inde i hovedet. Skulle hun da have fået sådan én?
”Hvad for en uniform?” spurgte hun forvirret. Chie smilte og vendte øjne af hende.
”Kazu, skaf hende en uniform,” kommanderede hun, og så strengt på Kazuhiko. Han havde lige fået sat en høretelefon i det ene øre og sat stikket i mp3’en. Han nikkede hurtigt, rejste sig fra sengen, tog Akane i armen og hev hende med ud af døren.
”Du bliver bare hos mig, så giver jeg dig en lille rundvisning.” Der var utroligt mange elever på gangen, så hun var glad for, at han havde fat i hende. Hun var mindre end de fleste, så hun forsvandt nemt i mængden. Menneskemængden blev mindre, da de nåede de større gange. Han gav slip på hende, og ledte hende opad. Hun ville inderligt gerne indlede en samtale, men vidste ikke hvad hun skulle sige.
”Så… Øh…” stammede hun. Han så interesseret på hende, og studerede hendes generte ansigt. Hun rømmede sig et par gange før hun prøvede at spørge.
”Hvor gammel er du…?” spurgte hun og fortrød det med det samme – sikke en dum måde at starte deres forhold på. Han lod til at bemærke, at hun blev pinligt berørt og smilte til hende.
”16, næsten 17. Og du?” svarede han med en oprigtigt venlig tone. Hun rødmede.
”Også 16…” – hun pausede for at finde på en ordentlig måde at fortsætte på – ”Du er ikke ny her, som mig, er du?” Hendes stemme var næsten en hvisken.
”Nej, det er mit andet år her. Hvis jeg var normal, ville jeg starte mit første år i gymnasiet, ligesom dig… Hvorfor rødmer du sådan?” spurgte han nysgerrigt. Hun sænkede hovedet, lod sit røde pagehår falde ned over sine ligeså røde kinder og knugede hænderne sammen. Hun sank en klump i halsen.
”Jeg er bare ikke så god til at tale med folk…” stammede hun. Han grinte og lagde en hånd på hendes skulder; det gav et spjæt i hende.
”Det er helt okay at være genert, men der er skam ikke noget at være bange for. Jeg bider ikke,” forsikrede han hende. Det var første gang nogen havde været så venlig mod hende. Normalt ville folk ignorere hende, hvis de opdagede hendes generthed – som for ikke at presse hende – og den strategi gjorde det hele meget værre. Han fjernede hånden fra hendes skulder, og de fortsatte op. Hun kunne høre høj, larmende musik fra hans frie høretelefon. På 5. sal fandt de et stort lagerrum, med en serviceskranke der lignede dem man så på film fra fængsler. Manden bag skranken kikkede forbavsede på dem.
”Jamen dog, I to er tidligt på den. Hvilke uniformer skal i hente?” spurgte han og fandt en blok frem.
”Vi skal hente for Chie Kashiwagi, Kazuhiko Goto og…” Kazuhiko pegede på Akane.
”Øh… Akane! Akane Munakata!” svarede hun, hurtigere end sidst hun skulle oplyse sit navn.
”Hvad for en størrelse skal du have?” spurgte manden. Hun kunne mærke varmen blomstre i sine kinder, og tog en dyb vejrtrækning.
”Medium,” tilstod hun. Manden forsvandt ind i mængden af tøj. Der blev næsten helt stille. Hun kunne kun høre deres åndedræt, sin hjerterytme og Kazuhiko’s fod der trippede i gulvet. Der måtte være et godt beat i de sange han hørte. Efter et minut eller to kom manden tilbage, med 3 uniformer. Akane gøs da det gik op for hende, at hun skulle have nederdel på. Kazuhiko rakte hende uniformen, og tog selv resten. Hun stirrede forskræmt på uniformen, mens de gik tilbage ned til 3. sal. Den store dreng rømmede sig pludseligt.
”Okay, så de fleste klasselokaler er på første, anden og fjerde sal. Der er også nogle på sjette, men de bliver ikke brugt så tit.” – Akane så nysgerrigt på ham imens han forklarede – ”Dem på første er de mest normale fag, altså matematik, engelsk, samfundsfag osv. Der er også en gymnastiksal der, men hvis vejret er godt er vi alligevel udenfor. På anden og fjerde er der mere specifikke fag, som andre sprogfag og musik og sådan. På sjette er der mere obskure fag som man normalt ikke har så meget af i skolen, som drama. På første er der også spisesal, og helt oppe på syvende etage er der fællesareal. Nåh ja, og der er både stalde og drivhus på skolens område,” forklarede han. Akane smilte bredt.
”Mange tak, Kazuhiko… Men jeg har altså fået et kort,” konstaterede hun. Han smilte lige så bredt og grinte stille. Der var også andre elever der havde hentet deres uniformer, og nogle af de nye så lige så skeptiske ud som Akane. De vendte tilbage til værelset, hvor Chie sad og så utålmodig ud på sengen.
”Kazu! Hvad tog jer så længe?” spurgte hun irriteret.
”Det tog da ikke lang tid, tag det nu roligt. Du giver mig sgu stress allerede,” peb Kazuhiko. Det meste af eftermiddagen gik med at høre på de to småskændes.
This one is, um... weird. It's one of the only stories I've ever written in first-person, and I wrote it in about a day or two, although I never finished it.
It's about this dude... who has serious mental issues. I'm not sure where this story even originated, but I think it might have been from a joke conversation between me and my grandmother. That might partially explain why it's so odd. It genuinely confuses me.
I felt the darkness. Again.
In the latest of late nights, I was on my knees in my room, choking on myself. Again. I could hear her knocking the door. Anxious. Worried.
I felt the spit on my tongue, as it fell towards the greyish floor. I was drenched in sweat.
The room, no, the world was spinning before my eyes, as I heard her squeaky voice behind the door, trying to get through to me.
I emptied my lunges in one last, long, loud scream, before I hit the floor. Again.
I had the usual stain of blood on my forehead. I knew I did – my hands had blood on them and the floor had a small blood spot where my head had been lying.
I rolled over, looking at the off-white, almost yellow, ceiling that used to be completely white.
As I tried to stand up, I coughed my first morning cough. The loud, rasp noise escaped my throat, and a bad taste entered my mouth. I spat on the already too dirty floor, and managed to stand up yet another day, though, not without help from the desk.
I limped towards the window, and pulled away the curtains. In that one moment, every day, I knew what it felt like to be a vampire.
The sun burned my tired eyes, as I was scanning the building across the yard for that old lady who sent me the look of death every morning. Nowhere to be seen.
I sighed and slowly shambled towards the door, forcing it open.
She was sitting there on the couch, with a couple of worn out sports bags. She spotted me in the doorway and snorted in revulsion.
“Oh Christ, look at you! You… you look disgusting!” I began to breathe normally. Long, deep, noisy drags. Almost like something was dying inside of me. She shook her head.
“Your hair is filthy, you’re wearing the same clothes as always, you smell like shit, and you have blood on your head!” I shrugged. She sighed. “You fat bastard…!” I looked down at myself. She rose from the couch and swung the bags over her shoulders, the best she could. She looked at me one last time, with a hopeless look in her eyes.
“I’m leaving you. I’m leaving your life.” My existence. “There’s nothing you can do about it. I hope I’ll never see you again!” She left through the front door, to the staircase, and slammed the door behind her.
I slowly moved to the couch, and let myself fall down into it. As I slumped into myself, I lit my first morning cigarette. Slow, deep drags. My second morning cough. I found my cell phone on the floor, and pressed quick call.
A few seconds passed by. “What’s up?” he said, in the other end of the phone. I took a few slow drags. He waited, as always.
“She dumped me,” I blurted out. I wasn’t surprised that my voice sounded so moist. He laughed slightly, and nervously.
“You did see that coming didn’t you?” I shrugged. Took a drag. He understood. He sighed:
“I’m coming over.” I let my phone fall to the floor, where it belonged.
I waited. My head felt too heavy. I was smoking my second morning cigarette, when I heard him lock himself in. As he entered the door, he looked at me, and rolled his eyes.
“You look like shit,” he exclaimed and laughed that nervous laugh. Again.
He placed his bag on the floor and headed for the kitchen.
“You want some breakfast?” I shrugged. Took another drag. He still understood.
I closed my eyes and listened to his humming in the kitchen, while he was cooking. I felt an urge to go get my bat, but I was too tired. Too lazy. A few minutes later he came back with two plates with fried eggs and some unrecognizable things.
“Not hungry,” I growled. He just sent me a pitiful look, followed by a half-hearted smile, and began to eat. We were silent for a few minutes, while he ate. He looked at me again, with the same worried expression that she had had.
“Why don’t you go clean yourself up? You’ve got blood on your forehead.” I shrugged. His expression turned blank, and he continued eating. A long minute later he got up to make himself a cup of tea. Third morning cough.
The images were flashing before my eyes. All those memories of grief. The same grief, every day.
Seconds later the moron entered the door.
“Hey Nick,” he said with a smile, as he finished his tea. Nick looked at me and was evidently, smirking, about to burst into laughter.
I was already heading towards my room, and his smirk disappeared.
I returned with my bat, ignoring the pain, ready to beat him to death.
“Kevin!” he screamed, and K got up to defend him. That son of a bitch.
“Out of my way. Don’t wanna kill you too,” I murmured. He was so tiny; I could crush him in one hit. My heart was beating insanely fast, as was my brain. I felt the blood, the thoughts, and the energy pump through it without end. K grabbed my shoulders and pushed me slightly backwards.
For once I decided to back down.
I sent Nick one last threatening look, before I went back to the couch, letting myself slump inwards. Again. Nick was roaring with laughter. He looked at me with a strangely satisfied look in his eyes.
I turned away from him and grabbed the food K made me. Slowly. Just like almost everything else I did. Nick chuckled one last time and sat down between me and K in the couch. It squeaked as he sat down.
“Dammit man, I hate this leather- fuck, Psycho, you stink!” he shouted. He stood up, pushed K into me and sat down on the other side of him. I almost dropped my food. K quickly sat up and scooted away from me, once again looking nervous.
Got my bat, I reassured myself. Was that thing I was eating from my kitchen? It tasted great.
K and the jackass were talking and laughing together for a little while. I just listened. I always did. Fourth morning cough.
Jerk rolled his eyes at me, and K stood up and dragged me to the bathroom, as fast as I allowed.
“C’mon chubby, clean yourself up,” he said and handed me a piece of cloth. I looked down at myself, as I took it. Then I looked at him, trying my “hardest” to look sceptical.
“Why?” I asked, with a purposely dark voice. K began fidgeting with his fingers.
“Well b-because,” – he swallowed – “You’re dirty and smelly…” I stared at him for a few seconds, before I pushed him away from the sink, where the mirror hanged. He hurried back to the asshole.
I took my shirt off. The small scars on my chest were still quite prominent. Ugly. I wet the cloth and ran it across my torso. Afterwards I washed my forehead and my fingers. Didn’t give a damn about the hair. I put my shirt back on, to avoid any sarcastic comments, and went back into the living room.
“Here comes Batman,” Nick joked. I cursed under my breath and was about to slump back down on the couch, when K grabbed my arms.
“We’re going out today. Out to look at some chicks,” he mumbled. It clearly wasn’t his idea.
“Yeah, maybe you’ll get a one-minute-stand!” Nick laughed. I gave him the finger and was about to grab my bat, but K reached for my hand and stopped me. He quickly shook his head.
“Not bringing that today, Psycho!” I snorted, offended, and we walked, and limped, out the door, down the staircase and into Nick’s piece of shit car. I almost fell asleep during the ride.
We soon arrived at the usual cheap, slutty bar. Inside the ladies were already making more money than I had my whole life. We sat down, and the two got a beer each. I still insisted that I didn’t drink, and I really didn’t. Never had, never would.
While looking around me in boredom, I saw her. Standing very close to some guy I’d never seen before. She looked at me. No cringe. No smile. No nothing. Just a short, blank stare. At that moment I realised that she’d never be mine again. She’d been serious.
My stomach turned and my throat felt oddly tight. I had tears in my eyes. Something I hadn’t experienced in years.
I’d lost my count, but the cigarettes were eventually around number 9 and coughs had become 7, when the others wanted to leave. They’d got their share of booty for the day – at least Nick had. K had always found women strange. As we left the bar people stared at me, like I was from another planet.
The moment we went outside, the world went blank. I couldn’t hear my own breath, and I could only just see K anxiously rush towards me, as my bad knee collapsed. The pain shot through my whole body, and I fell over head first.
Immediately after, the pain went away. I got back up, light as a feather, and looked around at my colourful surroundings. I took a deep, healthy breath of fresh air and took off from the ground. I flew towards my special place in the desert, where I knew good things would happen. I landed on the bank of the purple pond.
And there she was. Beautiful. Happy. Mine. She ran towards me, leaping into my expecting arms. Kissing me. I smelled her newly washed hair, before my breathing turned rasp. All of a sudden, I felt myself getting worse very quickly. Why was that happening in my dream?!
She pushed herself away from me. Her eyes had changed, her face had changed. I took a look at my gorgeous wings in the reflection of the water, before they withered away and I looked the nurse in the eyes.
She smiled at me and felt my forehead. It ached when she touched it, and I cringed. Then I noticed those odd plastic breathing things they always put in my nose.
“How are you feeling?” she asked, and I noticed that she looked like my mother.
“Like shit,” I whispered, with a voice that was much more coarse than normal. She just smiled and me and exit the room. I wanted to rip out the breathing device, but she came back a minute later, accompanied by a doctor.
“Hi there, I’m Dr. Smith,” he said, and reached out his hand to shake mine. I didn’t take it. The nurse sat me up in the hospital bed. They were both smiling that disgusting, professional smile. Such fake friendliness made me sick.
“We need to have you examined. Are you feeling up for it?” he asked. I shrugged. The nurse thankfully took out the breathing device and grabbed my arms, with a grimace, and had me stand up. My knee both hurt and felt numb at the same time.
Outside my room K was waiting for me. He looked like he was mad at me, and he followed me to the doctor’s office. The nurse left us alone and Smith made me sit down on the examination couch. K shut the door behind us and scowled at me.
“You had a seizure!” he complained. I shrugged.
“Except for a few hours ago, when did you experience these seizures last?” Smith asked.
“Yesterday,” I growled. K’s jaw dropped and his eyes widened.
“Yesterday?! And you didn’t tell me?!” he shouted. I shrugged. Felt like having a cigarette.
“I’ll just do a basic check-up on you,” Smith said and found some doctors’ equipment and started out with a stethoscope. I pulled my shirt up, and he noticed my scars.
“Where did you get those?” he asked, for the sake of conversation. Trying to be friendly again.
“Gunshots. From some rookie cop.” He sent me a strange look. Probably afraid. He listened shortly. Seemed to be thinking. What a surprise.
“Heart sounds fine,” he stated. K seemed to exhale quickly in the corner, almost in relief. He listened a little more.
“Do you smoke?” he asked. I nodded slowly.
“It sounds to me like you have COPD. You could afford to lose some weight. That would help your breathing difficulty. And quit smoking of course,” he preached. I shrugged, groaned and looked down at myself as I pulled my shirt back down. He made me blow into some kinda tube that apparently showed my lung function. The test confirmed his theory further, of me having COPD. Whatever that was.
Next he wanted to test my reflexes with a puny little hammer. Everything went fine – I was virtually sleeping – until he hit my right knee. It felt like a lightning bolt struck it. I screamed in anguish and automatically kicked him in the face with my left foot. K got so shocked that he almost cried.
I was twisting in pain as Smith got up, holding his nose. It was bleeding. He looked at me with fret in his eyes and found some paper to try and stop the bleeding. He didn’t exactly succeed, but it got better. He glared at me.
“Well… you’re certainly stronger than I thought,” he said, with a shaky voice. He quickly put away his doctor instruments. Didn’t want to get anywhere near me. He sat down on a chair near his desk, next to K, and was quiet for a few seconds. Then he took a deep breath. So did I.
“S-so… What are the seizures like…?” he asked. I didn’t need to think to answer that question.
“It varies. Usually either a really great feeling and a good dream, or a terrible fucking feeling and a nightmare. I always black out. K says I have spasms, but I never remember it. I usually fall over though. Hit my head,” – I felt the bump on my forehead again and it gave off the same pain as before – “And I feel like shit afterwards, but I paint what I dream, so I have strange paintings all over the apartment. It’s usually so… vivid that it seems real,” I explained. Smith looked at me, analyzing me. Son of a bitch.
“Hm. First of all, it’s not a dream, and, most importantly, it most definitely isn’t real. It’s an illusion created by your mind. We’ll probably have to have some tests done, but that’s not going to be right now. It seems quite violent when you… black out. Your friend, Kevin, told me that you scream sometimes in your spasms?” I shrugged. I knew it was true, but why would he care? He sighed and stood up, analyzing me. Again.
“I’ll get you a crutch for your leg. How tall are you?” I narrowed my eyes and tried to remember.
“He’s t="on">6 feet,” K answered. I halfway smiled at him, but then thought I had no reason to do so. Smith nodded and left, coming back a few minutes later with a crutch for me. He just handed it to me, in a fully stretched arm, and backed off. It was a piece of cake for me to stand up with it. I was used to it.
“Hungry,” I murmured and looked at K. He understood after a few seconds of looking like a dumbass, and then made a deal with Dr. Smith that he would pay for my “treatment”. That was one worry off my back.
We went outside where Nick was leaning against his car. Damn.
“What took you so fucking long?!” he complained. I wanted to hit him with the crutch, but K strategically went in front of me and opened the door, helping me inside. Afterwards they both got in. Nick was driving – K was usually too neurotic. Such a pansy.
The second we drove around the corner, I lit a smoke. That’d be my first afternoon cigarette. K glowered at me.
“Hungry,” I whispered again. Nick laughed.
“You’re always endlessly hungry after you have a retard-moment!” I shrugged. K gave him directions to a local take-away. Suddenly I rather wanted to go home. I sighed and the two both stared at me.
“Watch the road!” K shouted at Nick. He cursed at him and watched the traffic, pouting.
“I need to release her,” I murmured. He laughed. Again. I was getting sick of it, and quickly.
“You said that yesterday too! And the day before that! And the week before that!” I sent him a hostile look through the rear-view mirror and he immediately stopped laughing.
“Um… We can just bring home some food and then you can release Dahlia,” K suggested. I nodded slowly in approval. He soon bought all of us some food from the local “pizza” parlour. Nick insisted that he’d only have a salad. He “had to keep up the good looks”, if one could even call it that. K always had some fancy pasta dish that no one else than he could pronounce. I just had a pizza, some fries, a burger, and some chicken things. It felt like I had been starving for several days.
I was more than halfway through it when we arrived at “my” apartment. After the struggle up the staircase I went straight to my room and locked the door. She needed freedom immediately. I ate another chicken thing. It fit right into my mouth. I looked at the old aquarium I’d put her in. And there she was. The only thing that was left worth loving. She was sitting on one of the sticks K and I found her once. I sighed regretfully and opened the aquarium, letting her crawl onto my finger. I took her to the window and opened it slowly. It was difficult to move around without the crutch already. I stretched my arm the furthest I could manage out of the window, with her on my finger.
How I wished I was a butterfly as well. Spread out my beautiful wings and fly off into the sunset. Free.
She wouldn’t fly away. She just sat there, on my finger, motionless. I shook my hand a slight bit. Still no movement. Shook it a bit more. Confused.
“Dahlia?” I whispered. I was wondering if she could hear me. Understand me. She finally took off from my hand, but flew right back inside, onto the wall above my bed. I decided to take that as a sign. She didn’t want to leave.
I smiled and laughed for once – even though it sounded more like a strangled cry. I closed the window, took my food, unlocked the door, and limped back into the living room. The two glared at me. I scowled at them. They quickly looked back at the TV.
I exchanged the crutch for my bat, which I had left there in the morning. They were both silent for a few minutes. K was fidgeting his fingers uneasily. Again.
“So… Did you release her?” he asked, with a very tiny voice. I shook my head, considering if I should tell them why I didn’t. I decided not to. Nick rolled his eyes and laughed sarcastically. I held my bat a little bit tighter.
I woke up in the middle of the night. I was coughing terribly. My lunges hurt and felt useless and weak. I slowly sat up, only to find that I was coughing up slime. It was on my clothes. Around my mouth. Stuck in my throat. I felt like I was going to throw up, but I just coughed some more and spat out what seemed like the rest of the slime for the moment.
I shakily stood up, only to shout in pain and fall over. I had happily forgotten about my knee. When I fell, I got some kind of liquid in my mouth, lunges, and eyes. I struggled to get up. When I was finally sitting on the bed again, I realised what it was. Blood. It was rising.
I wanted to get it off of me. I waddled to the bathroom, only to find that the blood had risen to above my waist. I looked in the mirror. It was all over my face. Dripping out of my mouth. I would have screamed if I didn’t have more slime in my throat. The red liquid was rising so quickly that I was lifted off my feet. Soon to be over my head. Reaching for the ceiling. Head under. Fingertips under.
Someone shaking me. I opened my eyes and looked into K’s frightened face. I had a terrible taste in my mouth. Slime. Again. I could barely breathe. He was talking to me. Couldn’t hear what he was saying. He helped me stand up, and I spat it out in the sink. Afterwards I threw up. A long, long minute after, K helped me back in bed. Dahlia was sitting on the wall, batting her wings as I lied down. He exit the room, wanting to clean the bathroom. Good idea.
I’d slept for about half an hour when he returned and woke me up again, escorting me to the living room where he’d prepared what he called “a nice, healthy breakfast”. He looked at me with a question mark in his face. I shrugged. He handed me the food. Or whatever it was.
Fly Me to the Moon
This story is actually an essay I wrote for one of my buddies. The task was to take one of the other students' essays, and turn it into a horror story. So this is a story I'm writing for a friend, who got it from someone else. Lots of credit goes to [whoever wrote the original story]!
I had a lot of fun with this one. It was originally a sci-fi - my favourite genre! - so it was no trouble trying to make it "scary". I also threw in lots of not-so-subtle sci-fi movie and tv. references. I could've probably done a better job today, what with my much too frequent visits to the SCP Foundation, but I still find it quite entertaining.
Once upon a time, in a galaxy far, far away called The Yogurt Way, on a planet called [insert name] was the land of Wiggly. The once beautiful nation had been destroyed by the wonders of technology, mostly owned by the Irosas race, and was now a barren wasteland, where only the harshest of people were able to survive. Those who could afford it lived in dome cities. These cities were usually ruled with an iron fist by a tyrannical dictator. On a rock formation, much like those you would see in Grand Canyon on Earth, sat Seltzer. The space pirate, who was of the race Emasik, had landed his space ship in the wasteland, to explore the land and hopefully find some ancient treasures from the once gorgeous native civilization. His beloved spaceship, Veto, was parked on lower grounds. As he prepared to go to sleep, after having injected some nutrients that served as food, he heard noises behind him. Automatically he drew out his phaser gun and pointed it behind him. Thankfully, it was only a rugged old man clad in dusty robes. They both realized that they were to no harm of each other, and Seltzer lowered his weapon, only to ask the obvious question, of who this old man might be. The elderly man lowered his head with a sigh, and told him the heart-wrenching tale of his daughter, Lydia. This Lydia had been kidnapped by the former Irosas dictator, now eccentric space pirate, Russo. Russo had claimed her as his wife and test subject – he wanted to create the ultimate human weapon. They were hiding on Titan, one of the biggest moons of the planet Saturn in The Milky Way. The old man was of course worried about his daughter, and was on the brink of tears, as he finished his story. He knew that Lydia would not make it, if no one could save her. Seltzer shrugged it off – why should he care? That was when the old man waved a credit card in front of his face. Apparently the old man had once been the wise man and oracle of the extinct native Aradied tribe; he had been paid handsomely to back his army down and let the technology-obsessed Irosas people. He had not spent a dime of the cash that was all stored on that credit card. Seltzer realized what the wise man was hinting at, and immediately offered him a trip to Titan, to rescue his daughter – if he got both the daughter as his wife, and the credit card. The wise man jumped at the opportunity, and soon they were starting the engines of Veto.
The space ship had quite the mind of its own, since it might not always obey what the captain commanded it to do. Thankfully the few crew members he had on the ship were more than capable of handling the ship. The ride however had been smooth so far, until they reached the asteroid belt, between Mars and Jupiter in The Milky Way. They were not hit by an asteroid, no, but suddenly the engines died out. Seltzer frantically tried to restart them, but there was no response. Suddenly Veto shook dangerously, and everyone held their breaths. Soon the sound of heavy steps reached their ears, and everyone on the commando bridge gasped as they saw the uninvited guests that entered the bridge. It was Borgs; they had sabotaged them! The Borgs soon uttered their trademark phrase “Resistance is futile!” and everyone drew their phasers. Unfortunately, as legend had it, phaser weaponry had no effect on the cyborgs. Soon the horrifying enemies were turning the crewmembers into Borgs as well, while the lasers were flying across the room! Blood and guts were splashed all over the place, and soon Seltzer realized that they were doomed if they couldn’t escape. He grabbed the wise man and dragged him through a maze of deadly Borgs. They only just made it to the escape pods in time, as all of the crew had involuntarily become part of the enemy forces. Our two heroes squeezed into the cramped pod, and immediately launched off, just in time before the Borgs tried to rip the tiny ship open to get them. They were both shocked and had minor injuries – but at least they were alive. Their journey to Titan continued.
Russo laughed maniacally as the stunning Lydia once again had shockwaves of anti-matter sent into her body. He was certain that it would enhance the transformation process that would turn her into his weapon. He had already infused the powers within her; they only needed to be awakened. The young woman coughed up masses of blood, and her whole body ached, as the shockwaves stopped again. The thought of surviving had long since disappeared – she was certain that she was going to die. A scream escaped her throat, and the blood vessels in her eyes popped as another wave was channelled into her. Russo suddenly felt a disturbance in the atmosphere… almost as though someone had penetrated it and was heading towards his hideout! His sensitive senses also felt a slight shake in the ground. He set the anti-matter machine on hold, and went outside, prepared to take on the assailants. When he saw that only two people – an Emasik and an old Aradied – had arrived in a beat-up escape pod he chuckled darkly. Seltzer growled at him, as the villain asked of them what they wanted on his moon, with a vile smirk on his face. The wise old man explained their situation, and as Russo realized that he was facing his bride’s father, he immediately trapped them both in a wicked illusion. Seltzer found himself surrounded by fire, and he was standing on spikes. He bellowed in pain, as he tried to remove his feet from the spikes, but to no avail. The fire was slowly closing in on him, and his feet were bleeding rivers of blood. Soon the fire engulfed him, and the pain his burning flesh was unbearable! Meanwhile the wise man was tied to a huge pole with barb wire, as loud noises entered his ears. When he realized what kind of noise it was, he screamed in horror. It was the forever sealed-off music made by The Devil of the Earth, also known as Justin Bieber! His ears were soon bleeding, and his ear drums were shredding. Soon Seltzer realized that he was trapped in an illusion. How else could that horror suddenly have happened? He manned up the best he could, with being on fire and all, and relaxed. “It’s not real” he kept telling himself, over and over, until the pain abruptly disappeared. The illusion had been broken! At the same time the old man decided that he might as well enjoy the devilish music, as he was soon going to die. He sang along the best he could with Baby Baby Baby ohh! and soon, much like Seltzer, the illusion came to a halt. Our two heroes were shaken, but they were not going to give up! Russo was astonished – no one had ever broken his illusions before! He realized that these men meant business, and gave them a task. If they could complete it, he would back down. The task was to blind themselves – to stab their own eyes out. To everyone’s surprise, Seltzer drew out his trusty light knife and gouged his eyes out. The pain was unbearable, and the blood pouring from the wounds were almost enough to drown him, but he had to save Lydia… and get the money! The wise man was stunned and encouraged by his partner, and followed his example and clawed his own eyes out. Russo bellowed in anger at their avail, and drew out a light knife of his own, and charged at Seltzer. However, he had forgotten a very important thing about an Emasik: they barely relied on their eyes, since they had sensor-like powers, much like a shark. With lightning fast reflexes, Seltzer countered Russo’s attack, and cut his head off. The Irosas acid for blood etched Seltzer’s hands and face, but he did not care. Lydia and the money was all his now! He once again grabbed the wise man, and pulled him inside the vast laboratory. And sure enough, there she was. They released her from the gruesome machine, and she embraced her blinded father and hero. The deal they had made, about her becoming Seltzers wife, did not matter to her – she was free! They triumphantly went back outside, to travel back to [planet]. They were all looking forward to going home and live happily ever after. The three of them squeezed back inside the escape pod, and took off. That was when Lydia began to feel strange; it was as though an immense power inside her had been woken, and was in dire need of a sacrifice. A beastial growl escaped her throat, as she let the power take control of her body and mind…
Seltzer, Lydia and the wise man were never seen again.
© 2017 sidselstories