A novel I'm currently working on
|Trees. I was surrounded by them. They were all I could see. My brother, Charlie, ran towards me, his jacket on fire. Mum’s ghost stood beside me, her hand on my shoulder stopping me from running towards him. My instructor and best friend, Leo, hung from a nearby branch, a noose around his neck. My father was absent, the way he’s always been. I would’ve been relieved to see he wasn’t being tortured or killed... Until I saw the brand-new, white, marble headstone, his name freshly carved. A decaying hand clawed through the fresh grave and soon a second hand followed, then his head, the hair falling off with pieces of his scalp. I heard a bloodcurdling scream. I looked up at my mother and saw blood leaking down her translucent face like tears and her mouth open wider than humanly possible. As I looked around, my brother had stopped running, Leo stared into my eyes and my father’s rotting head had turned to face me. Each of them had the some crimson, bloody tears, their mouths agape in a way I had never seen before. Their voices joined in with the first scream and only when my throat was raw and tasted of blood did I realise that the initial scream was my own.
I manage to stop myself screaming at the same time my airways become blocked by some unseen force. Gasping against the strange sensation I felt like I was suddenly drowning and a fire started in the canopy above me. Slowly all the images of my loved ones bubbled and melted away like a film cartridge left in the sun. I was thrown back into darkness as strange spots began to appear before my eyes. I was still drowning though I couldn’t see any water. Determined to stay alive I pushed back the fuzzy areas around my vision threatening to make me pass out and opened my heavy eyes.
Whoosh. Another bucket of water was poured over my face as I struggled against the bonds holding my wrist. The ache in my shoulders told me I was out of it for at least 2 hours, maybe more.
“For God’s sake Cara!” a familiar voice said to my left, “Do you really have to keep doing that? She’ll come to when the tranquiliser wears off, not a moment before.”
“Couldn’t you see the smoke rising from her clothes? It was dangerous for everyone involved to leave her to her hallucinations.” A woman’s voice came from my right; I assume her name was Cara.
“The amount of water you were pouring over her could have drowned her, how would we explain that?” another voice, much gruffer and manlier than the first two came from above my head.
From what I could deduce there were 3 people in the room with me, Cara and two men. I knew with all my training I could only take out 2 without a weapon but with the way I was bound, the chance of me taking out even just one was as small as the chance a dog called Toto would run up to me and tell me we aren’t in Kansas anymore. I tuned the voices out and focused on my surroundings. I had something covering my eyes so I had to rely on my other senses if I had any hope of getting out of here. Around my chaffing wrists was a cold heavy metal cuff, only one though. A gentle tug revealed it was attached to the ground by a thick and heavy chain. The floor beneath me felt grimy and rough like dirt but beneath the dirt was hard and cold.
Tiles? I wriggled a little more to get my hands flat on the frigid ground.
“She must be awake, look! She’s moving around!” Gruff Man exclaimed.
Shit! I forgot they were still there! I mentally slapped myself for being so stupid. Of course they’re still there; they aren’t chained to the ground like an animal.
“Open your eyes, girl,” Mr Familiar Voice cajoled as he removed my blindfold. “Open those beautiful eyes and look at me. We need to make sure you don’t have a concussion or anything.”
My heavy eyes were bleary as I slowly blinked into the harsh fluorescent lights above. I squinted trying to make out what the 3 shadows were hovering above me. One of them moved away and I groaned, cringing away from the bright light.
“Switch those lights off so she can see better, she’s been in darkness the past week almost and it’ll be too much all at once.”
The past week? I had been unconscious a whole freaking week? That couldn’t be right.
The lights above me switched off and I was once again plunged into darkness. This time, though, I didn’t see terrifying images of people burning or bleeding; this time I saw my father.