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The first chapter of my novel. Hope you all enjoy ^^ View table of contents...


Chapters:

1

Submitted:Aug 24, 2012    Reads: 8    Comments: 0    Likes: 0   


Hope

Chapter 1

Waking up, my head felt like it was about to split. Careful I arose, and in doing so my vision began to return. I was on a bed, with a navy blue cover laid carefully over my body. An old rowan wood stool next to me had a single glass of crystal water, still and calm, almost beckoning to be drunk. However my thoughts trailed off. Who am I? The thought felt like it was on the tip of my tongue but the harder I tried to remember the worse the sharp pain in my head stung. It was as if a tiny creature was literally drilling holes through my brain with needles. I looked once more at my surroundings, the flooring was made of simple planked wood and the walls were coloured a faint creamy yellow. Something sent a shiver down my spine as I realised an open window was gently swinging in the breeze.

Slowly I turn my body around so my feet touched the flooring; using the bed for leverage I rise up only to once again become dizzy and un-focused. In a half shuffle half walk motion I stumbled toward the open window and glanced out being temporarily blinded by the suns glare; my eyes adjust, revealing a radiant open field of bright green grass and coulufull flowers that seems to stretch out for miles. With the gentle wind stroking my skin carrying the sweet smell of blossom, and the warm sunlight glow upon my dazed face, I should, have felt refreshed. No, something about the empty field made me feel on edge like there was something out there, just waiting for me. I listened intensely, and while doing so I realise that the wind had came to a sudden halt, like the quick death of a knife to the throat sound dies. Silence grips, and my ears started to sting with a tang so sharp and splitting. Within a minute I realise my breath is halted from fear, I release with heavy panting and sweating. My attention turning to the worn oak door, Before opening it I place my ear on the door, it feels so cold and out of place to the warmth of the room. I stay still, straining my ear to hear something on the other side.

'Thud, thud, thud,' 'It sounded like something was moving outside my door; I peered through the key hole, but to my dismay it's unnaturally dark. For what few windows I could see were covered with thick curtains shrouding escaping light like the eclipse of the moon. Only the stair way heading down was visible, because a faint light was illuminating its dusty wooden banister and deep red carpeted steps. Again I heard the noise thud, thud... the noise was cut short. It was then that I realised it was emanating from down the stairs. Maybe, just maybe I was not alone in this house after all. It would certainly explain why there was a fresh glass of water on the stall. Shaking with sweat, my hand gently curled round the smooth icy brass handled door. I took a deep breath, and ever so slowly I open the door, it creeks back with a growl similar to that of a bear. The light from the window did not have enough intensity to reach into the darkness beyond.

Upon venturing in, the dreaded silence seems to rise even more, creeping into an intense pause like time itself was holding its breath. Why am I so scared? I thought to myself. Everything I was doing, I had no reason to be afraid. I was acting like a small child afraid of the dark, scared and wanting to not be alone anymore. I have to physically will myself to keep venturing forth, the slow moan of the stairs threatens to break with each step I take, getting ever closer to the source of the light. For what seems to take an eternity I finally reach the bottom, and I see at last the room lit by the suns calming rays, but a curious smell of burning drifts from it, a smell that seems so deathly and wrong, I cannot put my finger on it. Once more I stop to collect myself, every nerve in my body warns me to leave, but I am determined. I force myself to walk through the door way in a delicate stride I peer round and gaze through... My body freezes, my breathing halts... There, charred into a smouldering heap. I watched in horror as I saw what was left of the old man's smiling face staring eerily calmly towards the ceiling above me. Before I even questioned looking up I felt it, a dry hot breath drifting down the back of my neck.

I look up to manage nothing more than a stammer, dogging by launching myself into the room feeling its fiery claws singe a strand of hair from my head. I lose balance and back up slamming so hard against the wall, a nearby ornament plate falls down and shatters. The thing drops down on all fours making the very floor boards shake, its muscles tighten around its hind legs as it slowly rises, shadow towering over me. What is this creature, no demon? Its whole body made of magma as blue flames seemed to lick the atmosphere around its hulk like muscles. The demon was bent double like some kind of savage and even from here you could smell its terrible breath that smelled of burning and decay. From the top of its bulky bull like head two solid black horns coated in dried blood point towards me. Its looks like a mocking gesture rather than a readied position for a kill, most strikingly his emerald eyes seem to penetrate my very soul. It just looks at me for a while; silently like an assassins it makes no noise. The way he studies me, I get the feeling he is toying with his me. He is waiting, waiting for the chase that all hunters crave. At any moment he could easily dispatch me, but no this is his game, his sport. He wants his fresh meat to be of some kind of challenging victory. I am not sure what happened, but something in me changed. Instead of going mad with fright and giving up all hope, I began searching the room with frantic eyes for some kind of weapon, am I crazy how in the hell am I going to beat that? I thought. However my body didn't seem to care what I thought, it was like it had a mind of its own.

Finally I saw it, right behind the left side of the demon an open door way lead into what looked like a kitchen. Without a single thought I charged forward and dived, I realised with horror as the demon let out a silent fume of hot air from its gaping jaws. Only visible due to it vibrating in the air like a plane engine makes in warm weather. Even before getting caught in it I could tell that the fume was something to be feared of even more then fire. I landed behind it screaming in agony, my left leg stinging so much I dare not look at it, all I could feel was the disgusting popping of huge blisters forming around my burn. I kept advancing using whatever was nearby to support my injured leg; sensing the demon move behind me. More than likely preparing another blast of that deadly fume, I stagger forward at last reaching the kitchen draw. What was keeping this monster? I thought. I turned round in more curiosity then fear realising that he had to have much more time to prepare another blast; fumbling and panicking I desperately searched the draws. There's nothing there! My mind screams. I look about elsewhere, head now drenched in sweat I finally see a stack of knifes rusted but still deadly. I reach an arm out grabbing the largest one and spun round to realise in horror it is already upon me, ready to send me to my death. So deciding to take it with me I launched forward with my one good leg for a last resort desperate charge, I feel the fumes rush past me but it's too close; my right shoulder screams with pain so un- bearable. Everything goes black...

My eyes reopen, and to my confusion I realise I am in some kind of black void, no flooring or ceilings, no signs of the place ever ending. My body simply drifts through its vacuum. I feel the emptiness of the void slowly drain me both physically, and mentally making me feel so worthless, Then I hear a voice; just a mere whisper in the so lonely dimension "you are no normal spirit you were destined to be different from the others, there is something inside you that must be unlocked that can only be discovered by you alone, I name you Hope, welcome... to the after-life..." the last word echo's, sending a icy chill down my whole body.

The voice sounded almost human, like a woman... but something about it seemed wrong, it sounded almost dead. I wanted to reply, ask it who it was. I tried hard but no sound came out from me, so I just give up realising it is gone. Like a child I curl into a ball and cry, alone in the darkness.

A high pitched noise hums through my right ear, like the sound you would hear after an explosion. I open my eyes and jump back with fright from the sight of the demon, immediately regretting my sudden movement as my wounds whine in pain. The thing is in front of me collapsed with a knife in-between its horns, motionless with once roaring flames reduced to a skin of dark grey granite stone. The faint smell of the still burning corpse in the other room drifts into my nose, I could tell from the smell he had already begun to decay. My attention turns to the pain from my wounds; still so sharp, it is as if someone was right now plunging a fiery sword into my burning flesh. I moaned, screamed and bellowed in pain for a while, tears trickling across my dry face as I tried to get used to a pain imposable to bear, I could tell without treatment soon I would die, but how could I with no help? I thought. I still did not dare to actually look at the wound. Gingerly I rise using my good leg to stand up. I look around the room more, I see a few simple wooden counters and an old stove, but just in the corner I notice a sink, 'perfect!' I carefully raise my leg over into the sink, the pain roaring again making me scream out into the quiet house, but it has to be done. With a deep breath I examine the injury, and what is revealed fills me with sudden nausea. The burn, as I suspected is covered in blisters and a layer of skin is dislodged and hangs disgustingly over the smooth sink base. I turn the tap on, but to my horror nothing comes out. I slam my arm down, almost completely void of hope. Then, just out of the corner of my eye I see the glistening of water from a window, a pond! I use a nearby brush leaned neatly over one of the counters, and use it as a walking stick. I hobble towards what looks like the front door; it is wooden like everything else but is painted a glowing white. As I approach I make the mistake of glimpsing at the corpse in the other room and imminently regret it. My body can no longer take the sights that I see as horrid bile works its way out of my stomach landing aloft on the old stony floor. Leaving my mouth with bitter tang that makes it become dry and thirsty, finally I reach the door. I open it up and sunlight falls down upon my face like the rushing of waterfalls. As I feared, even after opening the door sound is still dead. The wind is gone, it's almost like it never existed. I take my clothes off and lay them down in a heap on the floor; now without shoes I can feel the fresh green grass tickle my feet. I dip a toe into the pond to find it is still quite cold, suitable for helping my burns. I rested the broom stick down behind me, and without hesitation I laid down so nothing but my head was above the water's surface. I felt the pond sliver into the gaps of my wounds like a snake, slowly the water nursed my swollen burns cooling the pain down but not healing it. I looked into the pond; it was so clear and fresh, I could see the bright colours of fish shimmer about at the bottom. Without warning two ghostly silver eyes stare back at me. I vault back realising as the reflection faded the silver eyes are my own. Everything seems so tranquil like nothing has happened, almost too tranquil. I still felt the ominous presence of the house behind me, but being outside I felt even more endanger. Although I was more refreshed I felt more open, more exposed. It did not occur to me in till I was in the pond that there may be more of those, things... If I got out now though the pain would come back again and I would not be able to think straight. I looked out to the distance, but I see nothing. The feeling of danger felt more threatening now, despite the sunlight. It was almost as if the sun's rays had betrayed me into believing it was safe to be out. Suddenly I hear a whisper, but to my horror I realise it's coming directly from my head, "there is something inside you that must be unlocked that can only be discovered by you alone" the voice in my head fades.

I'm frozen for a while, nervously trying to understand if I am truly insane now or if the dream was real. So many questions, and every time I had some kind of answer it only made more. No, I decided to try and understand it later. For now I focused on my burns trying to think of a solution to healing them in some way so I could at least make it to a doctor. But I'm out in the middle of nowhere how am I going to find a hospital? I thought. I had no choice, either I die here or I die trying. With not much of a choice I decide to at least try. I get out of the pond to see if I could find some kind of dressing for my burns. As soon as my wounds left the water's surface the pain returned, I clenched my right shoulder in pain as I bent down to pick up the brush for a walking stick. The shadow of the house loomed over me, radiating an atmosphere of something ancient, strange it was only a house yet it seemed so old and mysterious. I could see it was a very run down house. The roof was pointed, covered with fungi it looked completely green. Its walls were painted white like clouds, but the long years and weather had corroded what was left of it revealing the greyish brickwork behind. All the windows were intact but they were filthy and barely see-through due to bird droppings. Yet despite all this, it was shelter, shelter from the looming danger of being out in the open that caused my nerves to tingle irritably. I look up to realise the sun is already setting; strange it seemed earlier when I got into the pond. As the sun was directly over head I assumed it was the afternoon, how much had I spent in the pond? I thought. The door still hung open half way, the wind was gone and the door did not sway like it should of so it seemed almost frozen in time. I entered; the smell of the charred body was faint now but did not help me forget what happened here. Without warning the pain from my burns suddenly rocket, leaving me heavily distracted. I was un-able to think anything in detail; my thoughts trailed into something like 'find... maybe, in... Don't know, where I would, find bandages...' I stopped; putting both hands on my head in frustration I halted my breath completely contracting my stomach muscles so tight it was as if a Python had wrapped itself round me, the pain subsided given me a brief moment to think more clearly. 'Bathroom...probably upstairs,' I finally decided that would be the best place to search. I let go, the pain returned almost instantaneously causing my body to put its full weight onto the handle of the broom. I took a few gasps from the dusty air around me, coughing and wheezing I made my way up the stairs. Once up I felt my way around till I found the sand-paper like curtain. I yanked it down, and ruby red light shone faintly through making the room much more see able. I began opening the doors, there were three in total. Finally I found what looked like a bathroom, I open the cabinet inside, to find it's empty.





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