The night came in quickly as if GOD had reach over on his bedside table and switched off the sun. Cold and fog now started layering in towards the cabin as if in slow motion, and the five unsuspecting holiday makers inside had no idea what was going to happen next. Dave a car salesman sat next to the log fire stoking the dry cedar with twigs and leaves to start the solid burn and push back the seeping cold from outside. Lucy a hairdresser and Dave's girlfriend was looking reading "Who" magazine finding out if Kim K's marriage is all over or not. The other three still unpacking as the first jolt hit the timer construction.
the whole cabin shook and Lucy screamed as she fell to the floor.
Screams could be heard from the other rooms. Joel came running out from one of the back bedrooms, brown eyes wide with shock and fear. The whole cabin groaned as if it would at any moment fall apart from the shocks. He fought to stay on his feet as the floor tilted and heaved, trying to throw him around. The light flickered off and on, the wall hangings crashed to the floor as the walls rolled with the force of the shakes.
Joel blacked out for a minute or two, awakening a dim, flickering light and a low rumble as the room swayed roughly from side to side. There was a searing pain in Joel's left leg, and he groaned as he tried to bend it. His whole body was covered in cuts from rubble that had fallen from the ceiling. He could see Dave buried under a pile of bricks and wood, only the top half of him visible.Lucy was screaming, attempting to drag him out by the arm. Dave was swinging in and out of consciousness, moaning. The left side of his face was covered in blood, the right pale.Joel pushed himself up, gasping at the pain as he shifted his weight onto his broken leg. He limped as quickly as he could over to Lucy, constantly being thrown off balance as the room rocked back and forth.Joel felt sick, and could taste blood at the back of his throat.
"Joel, for God's sake help me!" Lucy screamed, her cheeks streaked with tears. He bent down, grabbing Dave's other arm and tugging with all his strength.
Trying his best to stay conscious, Joel looked around. The cabin was in ruins. Dave was unconscious. Lucy was crying and trying to comfort Dave. Jenna was coming out of the rubble, bleeding on her arms. Joel staggered his way over to her, to aid her and ask where Max was. He couldn't see him.
"I-I don't know," Was all she said before walking over to Lucy. Joel staggered through the rubble.
"Max!" He tried to shout, but it came out as more of a pained gurgle. He tried to move things out of the way but was too weak. The events that just happened finally caught up to him and he fell over from body exhaustion and the huge bump on his head. Before he blacked out, he saw a limp, torn, and bleeding arm sticking out of the rubble. "Max..." Joel whispered before completely blacking out.
Jenna bent down next to Lucy and stared at Dave. She wondered if he was dead, but saw him breathing. Lucy was crying uncontrollably. Jenna looked over and saw Joel fall over. She was trying to make sense of what just happened when her phone went off. She jumped and reached for it. She had forgotten about it. It was an alarm she had set to go off at this hour everyday to remind her to take her medication. With shaky hands she dialed 911 and tried her best to tell them what happened and where they were. But all that came out was uncontrollable rambling. The police could only grasp that something bad happened, people were hurt, and where they were. It didn't take long for the kids to hear sirens. Jenna didn't care about that. She crawled over to Joel and tried to drag him away. But she saw Max's arm and freaked. She began pulling rubble away the best she could and saw his frightened face. She checked his pulse and found he was dead. The sight was just too much to see. Jenna began to cry terribly. Things were happening too fast.
Jenna is still crying and thinking why Max had to die; Joel and Dave are still unconscious and Lucy comes over to comfort Jenna, "It's okay." Lucy says as sirens start getting louder and louder. From the forest, a young seventeen year old boy dressed in black comes up running as if he was running from either something or someone.
"What happened?" He asks.
"Who are you?" Jenna asks tears still streaming down from her eyes burning them.
"I'm Asher, Asher Knight and you?" Asher asks.
"Jenna and this is Lucy, Dave and Joel." Jenna explains pointing to each of her friends. The police finally come and contact an ambulance.
"Yes, we need you immediately," The policeman says as he helps Asher, Jenna, and Lucy with Dave and Joel.
"Your eye, what happened?" Lucy asks noticing Asher's bleeding right eye; Asher quickly cover his eye and walks away. The ambulance comes and puts Dave and Joel onto two stretchers, the police gave Jenna and Lucy a drive to the hospital; they found Max's body and they cover it up so other people will know that he is dead.
"Do you know where that Asher kid is?" Jenna asks.
"No, he just… left when I asked what happened to his eye," Lucy explains.
"What's wrong with his eye?" Jenna asks.
Hesitating, Lucy finally replies. "His right eye was bleeding and maybe… gone."
After Lucy got treated for minor cuts and scrapes, she sat in the waiting room, biting her fist and trying to block out the events from earlier in her mind. Moments later, Jenna approached, holding her discharge papers in hand.
"I'm jealous," Jenna joked weakly as Lucy looked up. "You've only a mere gauze and tape and I'm the one with a buck-fifty on my arms!" Lucy gave a weak laugh.
"Stop lying," she said, waving Jenna off. "Seriously, I had twenty-eight stitches on my left and sixteen on the right."
"You're lucky." Lucy blew a heavy sigh and turned away, holding her chin in hand. "Are you going to be all right?" Jenna asked, noticing Lucy's pallid face. She sat down beside her, concerned.
"What kind of question is that?" Lucy cried as she stood indignant to her feet. "I'm freaking out here and you've the nerve to ask if I'm going to be all right?"
"I don't know if Joel is in a coma or if Dave's paralyzed... The doctors won't even let me ask about Dave; They say I'm not even family!"
"I'm sure you can pull a fast one, Lucy!" Jenna protested. "You might as well say you're his wife!"
"If I never asked Dave up to that cabin to propose to him, this would've never happened!" Jenna looked at Lucy in stunned silence, watching her storm out the waiting room. On her way outdoors, she bumped into the young man in black and he let out a surprised yelp.
"Sorry!" he said, smiling sheepishly. "Lucy, is it?" Lucy nodded.
"Asher..." Lucy trailed off, noticing Asher had gauze packed over his right eye and an eye patch over it, holding it in place.
"It's going to be a while until I get used to having a blind spot," Asher replied.
"How can you be so upbeat about that?" Lucy demanded.
"Oh, I'm very upset about it, but there's no use crying over it." He shrugged.
"Did you hear anything about what caused that earthquake?" Lucy asked. Asher scoffed.
"Some earthquake!" Lucy raised an eyebrow. "I'm sorry that you all had to get mixed up in all this..."
"Mixed up in what?" Lucy shook her head, not quite understanding. "Please don't be so vague! If you know what caused that--" Asher beckoned Lucy to step closer. Lucy leaned in and she strained to hear what was said.
"If I told you the truth," he whispered, "something worse than today might happen."
"Is that the reason you're missing your eye?"
"That cabin exploding was no accident. Because I saw too much, these guys took out my eye with a spoon in return." Lucy felt as if the blood froze in her veins as Asher walked away from hospital grounds.
Lucy Stood for a moment in the hospital grounds, the sun starting to rise and take away the death and despair she was feeling.
"Max is dead" she said to herself out aloud and as she hung her head and started to cry she felt a presence close to her that made the hair at the nape of her neck rise and a chill spill down her spine like ice water poured down her back. She spun quickly and caught a glimpse of something in the shadows, but it was gonewith a blink of her eye.
"Lucy" Jenna called from the open automatic front doors ofthe hospital. "David is awake and they say we can see him" she yelled.
Lucy turned to walk back towards the medical facility but as she turned her eyes drifted upward towards the roof to of the three story historic building. A figure was beckoning her to turn away, she heard a voice in her head begging her to go back, to not enter the hospital. Her gaze fixed on the figure bathed in the rising sunlight of morning was David; she knew it was him although the glare from behind his silhouette obscured his form slightly.
A dark image flashed next to David and almost glided to where he was on the roof, there was no struggle no fight just the known forecast of what was to happen next. The world stopped as the figure pushed David from the edge and she could see in his face as he fell towards her he had his eyes shut and his arms crossed as if laying on a morgue slab. David hit the ground in front of her, bones and vital fluids escaped his bodies shell as he hit with such force and as she look at his face she realised his eyes were not shut they were missing as if ripped from his skull.
"LUCY! C'mon David's awake" Jenna screamed one last timeand the words spun her senses as the image of David faded with a snap of her eyelids.
Oh Shit! What's happening to us? Lucy thought to herself.
Lucy's eyes snapped back to the front doors, Jenna standing there looking at her with a confused expression.
"Lucy what the he...." Jenna was saying Lucy gave her head a small shake and looked back up once again, knowing she would see nothing, drowning out what ever it was that Jenna was saying. How could Dave be awake when she had clearly seen him a moment ago? She jumped when she was suddenly shaken out of her daze by Jenna tugging on her hand gently. She met the worried eyes of Jenna. Jenna looked her friend over with concern
"Are you sure your alright? Maybe we should get a doctor to take another look at you."
Lucy shook her head softly, "No, I am fine. Just a trick of sunlight, that's all." She nodded at her own explanation. Jenna gave a small hesitant nod of her own.
"Then lets go inside." She wrapped her arm around Lucy' and started for the doors. She watched her friend from the corner of her eye as they stepped back inside. Lucy was quiet. How could she explain what she had seen? She didn't understand it herself. Why did she see Dave and not Max? Max was dead, but Dave was alive and awake. Wasn't that how it was suppose to work? Why was he trying to warn her from returning to see the others? Unless the person that she was going to see wasn't Dave. But how was that possible? Was it even possible? Perhaps it was just a trick of light, the shock of Max' death, combined with the stress of the night. That would explain everything. She nodded to herself mentally. That was it. That settled everything. Lucy looked up just as she and Jenna approached the room. She felt calmer. Then right at the thresh hold she stopped. That same cold feeling washed over her once again. Her body began to shake as she looked to the bed at the man lying there. Then looked just past him to see that same figure she had seen outside only moments ago, standing next to the bed looking at himself. When her wide eyes fell on the man lying on the bed looking at her, wrapped in in bandages with a small smile on his face, she took a small step back. Dave and Jenna both frowned at her. Jenna was speaking to her, but she didn't hear a word. The blood rushing in her ears cut off any outside sound. Her heart pounded. Her eyes connected with those of the figure once again. He looked back at her with a sad expression before he disappeared once again. What the hell was going on?!
Meanwhile, in a room on the opposite side of the hospital, Joel's eyes snapped open. His vision was blurred, but after several hard blinks he could see ok. The room contained the bed he was in, with plain white sheets and a pale blue pillow, a sink with a square mirror hanging above it, three padded red chairs and a set of drawers, one of which was open and contained dozens of needles varying in length, lined up neatly in a box. A tube was attached to Joel's arm, as well as a wire leading up to a machine monitoring his heartbeat. He lifted up the duvet to see he was wearing a hospital issue nightgown, and that his left leg was in plaster. Joel felt a shudder run through his body as he remembered the earthquake, the cabin collapsing, Dave unconscious and buried in rubble, Lucy's terrified screams. And Max. All he'd seen was that mangled arm; he couldn't even tell if it had been attached to Max's body or not. He hated to admit it, but he could have taken Dave's, Lucy's, or Jenna's deaths. Of course he'd be distraught, but they were just friends. Max was his brother, his only sibling. Joel's heartbeat quickened considerably, confirmed by the continuous beeping of the heart monitor. He clutched his stomach, panicking. Max had to be ok. He would be ok. He'd been hit by a car when he was ten, gone into a coma with all odds against him, and pulled through. Max could do it again. Joel got up, pulling the wire and tube from his arm. The machine complained that he was dead with a long beep. Joel switched it off, and walked over to the mirror. He was shocked at his reflection: his head had been shaved down to a number one, and he had six stitches on his scalp. His face was bruised, and there were three more stitches on his chin. He jumped as the door handle turned. "Joel?"
The doctor was standing in the door way. Joel stared with shock and fear. He backed up, his mind still crazed with the thoughts of Max being alive. The doctor saw him and raised an eyebrow.
"Joel, please get back to bed." Then Joel realized it was a doctor. That meant that Max was fine! The doctor came to tell him that! Max was a live! Oh that little rascal! Joel just knew he wasn't dead! He hurriedly rushed up to him and gripped his shirt.
"Max is fine right? He's alive, yeah? I knew it! I just knew it!" The doctor stared up at him with shocked sad eyes. He took a deep breath. If he didn't say this, Joel would go crazy.
"I'm sorry Joel, Max died. I'm very sorry."
'No, that can't be. So Max really is dead?' Joel thought his hopes rapidly going down.
"I am so terribly sorry Joel, but it is true, your brother is dead," The doctor explains leaving the room;
"Joel your awake!" Jenna shouts out hugging him.
"Oh my gosh, Joel!" Lucy says hugging him too. Dave comes Crutch walking to the scene and asks Joel for some little bromance.
"What have I missed? Anything new?" Joel asks letting go of Dave's "bromance"
"Asher, you missed Asher." Jenna explains.
"Who's Asher?" Dave asks raising his eyebrow in confusion.
"Asher, a boy we met in the rumble. He helped us get you two onto the stretchers, he was here wearing a patch over his now gone eye, he said something about the earthquake, what he saw, and what these people did to him," Lucy explains.
"What exactly did he see?" Dave asks holding Lucy's hand.
"Not sure, he didn't tell me; he only told me that since he saw too much of it, these people took his eye out with a spoon as sort of a punishment." Lucy explains as the two boys give the girls the impression as if they had just seen the movie SAW not too long ago.
"Then what happened?" Dave asks
"Then… he left, I don't know where though." Lucy explains as everyone looks at each other as if they just saw a ghost.
"Why would someone try to kill us?" Joel asked.
"Don't say crazy things, Joel!" Lucy protested.
"I'm not sticking around here," Joel snapped. "Hospitals creep me out!"
"Well, somebody's going to drive me home," Dave grumbled as he hobbled for the door on his crutches. "Let's get going. There's nothing left for us to do here."
"Shouldn't you wait until the doctors give you clearance?" Jenna asked.
"I agree," Lucy said quickly as Dave made his way out in the hall.
"We all should get home and just..." She shook her head and left the room, then froze when she found Dave gone. "David!" she shrieked.
"Lucy!" Jenna cried and grasped at nothing but air when Lucy took off down the corridor, pushing past the doctors, nurses and orderlies. Jenna and Joel raced after Lucy and came to a break in the hall. Jenna sprinted down the right end while Joel broke left. He spotted Lucy stepping on the elevator and rushed for the cable car.
"Wait!" he called and banged on the door when they hushed shut. "Damn it!" he growled and whirled around as Jenna came up to him. "She's going upstairs," he said before she had a chance to ask. Jenna kept up Joel's stride as they made their way for the stairwell. Throwing open the door, Jenna took the stairs two at a time, taking a moment to peer out the door's glass panel on the exiting floor to see the elevator's numbers light up as the car steadily ascended. On the fifth floor, a pair of nursing students stepped off, but not Lucy. Once Jenna made it to the 7th floor, she leaned against the railing, gasping for breath and Joel ran to the 15th floor before getting winded.
"A few more flights," Jenna said as she took his hand and they made their way together for the 20th floor. Hearing the top floor door that led to the roof click close, Joel and Jenna hustled for the exit. Jenna shoved open the door and paused in step when she found Lucy standing with her hands up in stark fear, facing the barrel of a high-powered rifle held by a woman that wore all black. "Lucy!" Jenna wailed. "What's going on?"
"Stay back!" Dave shouted. Joel pushed past Jenna and grabbed her by the arm when he saw Dave offside, also held up by a young man in black that held a heavy pump-action shotgun. Between them stood Asher, seemingly agitated.
Part fourteen (final part):
Asher turned his head towards the sound of Joel and Jenna as the door closed behind them,leaving no one a place to run.. He watched the confusion and fear on their faces. Sighing he looked back to Dave and Lucy. He turned away from Dave, there was no sense in saving him. But Lucy, she could still be saved. he touched the bandage over his eye. His lips drew into a thin line. It wasn't ready yet, but it will have to do. He looked over to Jenna and Joel. With his eye in this shape, just barely healed, he could only take himself and three others. Dave was out of luck. Joel was holding onto Jenna's arm, trying to keep her behind him. Asher decided that now was the best time to do this before someone was killed. Quickly he reached up and yanked off the patch over his eye, the light stung the sensitive tissue, but he didn't hesitate. The woman holding her gun eyes widened and she pointed the weapon at Asher. She shook as she saw the white eye, the pupil a red slit in the shape of a narrow diamond. Her weapon went off, at that moment things slowed. The young man shot Dave in the chest, the bullet flying towards Asher went past his head just as he stepped to the right and wrapped his arm around Lucy's waist. Joel and Jenna watched in horror as Dave's body was flung backwards by the impact. He heard Lucy scream and then there was nothing but blackness. Asher let go of Lucy and gripped his eye hissing in pain. Lucy dropped to the ground as Joel and Jenna joined her. They looked around with wide eyes.
"Wh-where are we? What happened to Dave?" Joel demanded. He looked at Asher in confusion and fear as he stood up. Asher took a deep breath. Lucy was silently crying into her hands at his feet. He looked at Joel calmly
"He is dead" he said his voice certain. Joel flinched when he got a look at Ashers eye. The red pupil now wider then before. "What are you?" Asher sighed and looked down at Lucy who was now looking up at him.
"I thought they took your eye?" she said quietly Asher sighed a bit.
"They did. But it grew back." They all were now very confused. Jenna looked around them as she hugged herself. It was blackness everywhere. The darkness seemed to move like fog rolling over the world. She looked back to Asher as he spoke once again. "You are in a tempral pocket. I can send you to your homes from here." the red in his eye narrowing once again. Jenna and Lucy both stood and moved to Joel.
"But what has happened?" Lucy asked. Asher looked at her.
"Trust me. You don't want to know. Lets just say you'll be safe.. for now. They may find you again. Then maybe not." He gave them all a small smile "Goodbye." Before any of them could speak there was another flash of darkness. When it cleared they were standing before Lucy's home. The sky was darkening as the sun dropped behind the clouds. The three friends looked around in astonishment. They shakily made their way inside, Lucy getting the spare key from under the door mat. Once inside Lucy and Jenna fell on the couch in the living room. Joel took the loveseat. None of them spoke. What was there to talk about? None of the events that had happened seemed real. Yes, it had all been a dream. That was the last thought they all shared as they each drifted off to sleep Just a dream.