The Stray Soul

The Stray Soul

Status: In Progress

Genre: Horror

Houses:

Details

Status: In Progress

Genre: Horror

Houses:

Summary

Sage Bellman is twenty one years old and trying to give her life a fresh start in college. After killing her own parents a year and a half ago, she has struggled out of a dark place and into the life that she has now with friends and a chance. When a serial rapist begins stalking women on campus, Sage tries to avoid any danger but soon matters may be out of her hands. Sage promised herself to no longer kill, but that is a promise that she may have to break. If broken, can she ever steer herself back? Sequel to "The Tragic One". Third entry in "The Bad People Series".
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Summary

Sage Bellman is twenty one years old and trying to give her life a fresh start in college. After killing her own parents a year and a half ago, she has struggled out of a dark place and into the life that she has now with friends and a chance. When a serial rapist begins stalking women on campus, Sage tries to avoid any danger but soon matters may be out of her hands. Sage promised herself to no longer kill, but that is a promise that she may have to break. If broken, can she ever steer herself back? Sequel to "The Tragic One". Third entry in "The Bad People Series".

Chapter1 (v.1) - A New Direction

Author Chapter Note

Sage's has given up killing and started her new life at college. However, the past can never be wiped away.

Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: January 27, 2017

Reads: 61

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Chapter Content - ver.1

Submitted: January 27, 2017

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She sat in the classroom while focusing on the test that was given that day. The last two weeks consisted of so much studying that the young lady was certain that she was about to go crazy at any second. This was the big moment though and everything that had been worked for came down to it. There was no excuse to take it lightly or screw it up. She’d have to concentrate. Still, even after all this time, the memories of the dead continued to plague her mind.
 
College is an important step in a young person’s life. It is supposed to be that defining moment when shifting past teenage years and into the first stages of adulthood. For this generation, it was something that their parents pushed them towards for the hope of a better future. Come graduation, mom and dad would be in the stands watching their children in that proud moment.
 
Mom and dad? No. Not for her.
 
It had been a year and a half since that terrible night. Everything had just gone so terribly wrong. Nobody was supposed to die. She just needed to get her mother out of there, but when dad fired his rifle it changed the situation entirely. Killing him was not hard at first. Self defense mixed with vengeance is one of the easiest acts to execute. Killing her mother though, that was what tore the young woman apart. The pain had to be ended but out of every life that she had ever taken thus far, that was the one that truly felt like murder. The memories of that night have never left her. She came there looking for her family and now she was once again alone and this time the only one left alive. The last of the Bellman bloodline.
 
“Sage”, her friend Allen whispered from behind her. She tilts her head over, acknowledging that his words have been heard. He continues with what was going to be said.
 
“I didn’t see any of this crap in the textbooks. Do you remember our teacher ever going over it?”
 
“Yeah I did but I can understand why you would have missed them”, Sage begins to respond. Allen leans in closer so that she wouldn’t have to raise her voice and risk getting accused of cheating. “Being able to read usually makes studying a lot easier”, she jokes.
 
“God I am so gonna fail. And thanks, at least I know where my real friends are. Definitely not sitting in front of me”, he says sarcastically. Sage silently chuckles and whispers back to him one more time.
 
“Then find someone else to hang out with after class. Otherwise, I’ll be at the courtyard”, she says before turning around to finish up the rest of her test. Her brain was still stressing about all the questions ahead but Sage takes her time. So many hours were spent studying for this and she was not about to give up. It had been two months since she arrived at this campus. So far Sage felt like she had really progressed in her academics despite the early challenges that she faced in this new type of place. She was now twenty one years old and trying to push past the life that was once known to her. Sage’s mother Sarah left her with one dying wish: to create a life for herself in spite of all the death that surrounded her. 
 
As she continued to answer the questions on her test, Sage maintains her focus, ignoring the negative thoughts that festered inside. Deep down she was still a broken mess, coated in the blood of those that she has killed and the rotting self-anguish that she carried. Sage still held her brutality, but it could not be unleashed again. 
 
The whole school year was still ahead of her and she couldn’t afford to make any mistakes. Not this time.
 
Sage spends the next hour focusing on the seemingly endless piece of paper. Even though the last few nights had been spent studying to almost no end, the subject of the test was one of her favorites: World History. It was simple enough to learn unlike her math classes and their complicated sequences of numbers that are never applicable in everyday life. Reading up on the course material was kind of fun at times, especially when she would discover sections focused on disasters and wars. Before coming to this college, she wasn’t one to be perceived as uneducated.   Now that the opportunity was there, Sage realized just how many different things that she had not learned. It was exciting at times and on other occasions, it was almost too much to handle. Regardless, that was what should be expected. This was school after all.
 
Eventually the test is completed and Sage gets up to hand it in to the professor in charge of the class. He does not say a word while reaching out to take her paper. The silence is most preferred by his student though, Sage just wanted to get out of there. On the way to the door, she takes the time to walk past her friend Allen who was still taking his test. Sage chuckles quietly but loud enough so that he can hear it as she goes by. Allen was clearly stuck on many of the questions and places his hand against his forehead while reading on. She walks over to the classroom door and opens it, stepping out into the hallway. 
 
The feeling of change was all around her. Sage was still in some way unfamiliar with her surroundings. Living at the foster care center all of those years gave her a permanent environment to settle in, even though it wasn’t her favorite. Ever since they let her out, things have changed so rapidly for her. In some form, she still missed that little town and Polgerton, where she spent around a month of her life going from motel to motel. Peter and Jack’s deaths were long passed. The news probably didn’t even care about them anymore. For them, the Teardrop Killer came and went, never to be seen again. It was a nice and quiet place. If it didn’t have monsters, maybe she could have stayed there longer. 
 
It was simpler back then. Just Sage and no one else. She never believed that her family was still out there and that the search for them would have did anything. Had that paper not reached her hands with their names and address, Sage might have gone a different route. They would probably still be alive. There was no reason to go back down South to that state. What was done was done and everything that she ever needed there laid dead and gone. It was for the best to just never go back. Up North, up here, there was still something for her.
 
Sage’s overcoat draped down her short and slender body as she walked along. It was one of her new favorite items. Stealing money was something that she no longer had to do nowadays, for now she held a job as a retail clerk at a store on campus. It didn’t pay as much as she liked but it was enough to live on. Still, Sage was responsible enough with her income, saving up for this coat and making it the only expensive thing that she would buy for a while. The weather was already cold and looked to be getting even colder. She would be needing it.
 
Not only was she employed finally, Sage was also no longer homeless. For the time being while she was at the school, she lived in a dormitory with other women. As much as Sage would have loved to be just by herself, she had to contend with having a roommate. The idea of one worried her at first, especially since there was no telling just who she was going to be sharing a living space with. But thankfully the one she got was fairly tolerable. Taylor Cunningham was her name. The girl sounded like someone straight out of a mystery novel in her opinion. The two months spent together thus far have been good and Sage and her roommate were even starting to become better friends. This was a new life for her indeed.
 
Sage opens the exit door and is quickly hit with the burst of harsh, cold air. The approaching winter was almost suitable for someone of her type. Pale skin and dirty blonde hair. Only problem, though, was that Sage being as thin as she was resulted in her body getting cold rather quickly. Her frame and size didn’t produce enough body heat as well as the bigger girls or most of the guys. She always wore sweaters and jeans during this time along with a thick pair of boots. Beauty was always nice and Sage tried to remain fashionable, at least within her budget. 
 
  The breeze tosses her hair around moderately and she ends up tying it into a ponytail to make it more controllable. Having long hair for once was okay. It was something different compared to the shoulder length hair that she had most of her life and the very short hair that she sported during her stay with mom and dad. Time had surely passed and many things had to change. The two long locks of hair that she had in the front still remained. There was no getting rid of them.
 
She sat on the concrete circular bench in the center of the courtyard and watched the rest of the students go about their day. Large crowds were never to the woman’s liking. The heavy masses presented a feeling of overwhelming pressure. To be fair, it is more tolerable now than it used to be. Jack was no longer part of her life. His constant sexual acts against her might have been what brought it on. Sage could never forget it, of course, nor has much of the trauma slipped from her mind. Instead, it is countered by the pleasurable memory of his torn body still clinging to life as the fire engulfed him. He deserved it. So did Peter, the next rapist to come into her life. Christine and Edison, Jack’s wife and son? Did they deserve it? She did. That young kid though. Killing a child is something that sticks in a person’s memory forever. He died for many reasons. There could be no witnesses, but after observing his parents’ demise, it saved him from the emotional pain that he would endure later on.  Ironically, Sage herself would go on to experience the same type of situation later on. Now that she was doing very well, it only made her wonder if she made the right choice that night.  
 
Did he really need to die? Did she truly regret killing him? Sage wasn’t sure.
 
“I miss you mom. I just hope that you are proud of me”, she says to herself while sitting alone. All that Sage wanted was to be successful in life. If she could do that, then maybe her mother’s death would have been for a good cause. When Andrew raised his gun and fired, he was not aiming for his wife. It was Sage who was the intended target.
 
Her purse is pulled onto her lap and Sage digs through it. Finally after a little searching around, she can feel the laminated edge of the photo kept inside. It is pulled out and her eyes fixate on the image that it held. Sarah Bellman, her dearly departed mother. It was taken not long before Sage had arrived to find her parents. She looked just like the way that her daughter had seen her. Her hair was vibrant as well as her skin. Ascended in age but still young and youthful, with beautiful eyes and a wide smile. Sage had a strong attachment to this particular photograph. Even though this was before they met, and even if the smile was not completely genuine, it was a reminder of the true happiness that Sage was able to give her.
 
“I am trying mom. I am trying. Forgive me for what I have done. It hasn’t been easy. I can still feel it inside me but I know that is not what you want. Sometimes I draw closer but at other times I couldn’t be further away”, Sage rubs her thumb across the image of her mom’s hair, “No more blood. No more”, she finishes. Sage could feel that she was starting to get choked up the more these old memories came to mind. It was time to put the picture away for now.
 
A YEAR AND A HALF AGO. The night Sage killed her parents.
 
Sage’s crying had lasted for almost fifteen minutes straight. The blood on the carpet had already seeped in and any that was coated on her skin had dried and became brittle. She could not even make eye contact with the stab wound inflicted in the center of Sarah’s chest. It was a horrid act that Sage wanted to take back, but it was better than watching her suffer a slow and painful demise from the gunshot that was administered earlier by Andrew. 
 
The anger towards her deceased father was still pumping throughout her body. Sage turned around to glare at his bloodied corpse. She had done a big number on him. A red curtain of former life was splashed all down his face. The other stab marks drew their own fair share of fluid. The smashed lamp laid in bits on the floor after it was used to strike Andrew in the head. Not too far away was his rifle, which was used to fire the shot that changed everything that night. While her final stab under his eye and into the brain was slow and painful, Sage wished that she could have done more.
 
“Why did you have to do this? Why?”, she screamed at him. Sage looks back down at her mother and places her hand alongside the dead woman’s face. Tears fall from her eyes and land upon Sarah’s forehead and nose. “I am so sorry. I should have done it differently. You’d still be here.”
 
Sage knew that someday someone would notice that they were dead. Maybe it would be sooner than later or quite the opposite. Either way, something had to be done. A claim of self defense would not work here. She voluntarily chose to end his life once he was incapacitated. That alone would send her into prison. The defense of her mother’s mercy killing was inexcusable too. There was no normalcy left in this place. Sage would need to slip away again and this time cover all of her tracks. It was not going to be easy. None of this was easy on her.
 
PRESENT DAY.
 
Her friend Allen soon appeared in the courtyard after what seemed like an eternity. Sage waved her arm in the air to signal him over. He was such entertaining person. Six feet tall with maybe an inch or two to spare and very chubby. To be honest, the guy was obese but his height cut him some slack. His gut still resembled a n inflatable pool ring though, nothing much he could do about that besides exercise. Messy hair that was a dark brown and about five inches long that sat on top of his head, which also contained his rounded cheeks. As much of a giant that he was, Allen was a very nice person and one of the college’s class clowns. Sage didn’t think much of him when she first met him in class, or anyone else for that matter. After hearing his jokes and laughing all the time to them, she decided to finally indulge in socializing while assigned to a group project. They went from small amounts of conversations to walking around the campus together to go to class. 
 
The image of the two of them was very unusual. He was a tall and heavy set man, and Sage was a foot shorter than him and very thin. Some figured them for a couple which was not true. As much as she enjoyed his company, Sage had no romantic feelings toward him. He knew that and understood, letting her know that they were just good friends. Love was not something that she was looking for just yet in this school. The idea of emotional and physical intimacy with someone else was desirable, but there was always something holding her back, most notably her past. A simple old saying comes to mind every time she thinks about what was in store for her.
 
“When the time is right, you will be ready.”
 
All she had to do was just wait. There was no need to rush fate.
 
Allen sat next to her on the bench and shakes his head back and forth. Sage looked confused and decides to ask about what was on his mind. “Allen, what are you so negative about?”, she says.
 
“I know I failed that test. I just know it.”
 
“Well like I said, I would have helped you study but you always told me that you were busy every time I would text you about it”, Sage reminded him.
 
“I was. I had to complete the story of Dead on Arrival.”
 
“Was that a book for one of your other classes?”
 
“No. It’s this new video game that I bought last week. Shit is real, I’ll tell you that. Massive weaponry, huge map, bloody gunplay”, Allen tells her with a chuckle and a smile. Sage laughs and looks away from him. He stands up and continued his description.
 
“4k graphics and unlimited FPS on my system. Runs like a dream. Customization options through the roof -”, he says as Sage jumps off the bench and pretends to walk away. He calls out to her as she goes.
 
“Sage! Come on. I’ll let you play if you want”, he laughs.
 
She turns around and crosses her arms. On her face too was a smile. “Keep laughing, but when your dumbass fails more tests and you get kicked out of here, you won’t even have enough money to buy more of those video games. I swear Allen, if you ever drag my grades down because you’re such a slacker you’ll be ‘dead on arrival’ too”, she said.
 
“Oh my God, I so had you on that. You really thought that I was actually doing something productive. Oh Sage, for a smart person you are so gullible. Bet you don’t feel smart now do you?”, he continues to laugh. His cackle is so deliberate and loud that people around him began to look on. Sage could feel their eyes bearing down on her as well.
 
“I feel cold Allen. I’m going to the cafeteria to sit down. It’s warm in there”, she says before walking back off. Allen catches his breath before trotting over to reach her.
 
“Not fair Sage. You know my fat ass sucks at running. Just because you weigh five pounds and float in the wind like a feather doesn’t mean you need to walk so fast”, he says while trying to close the distance between them. Sage slows down enough so that he doesn’t pass out before getting to her. 
 
“I’m still gonna kill you someday Allen. Don’t mistake my kindness for actual care. Just keep making jokes and see what happens”, Sage said while the two walked together towards where she wanted to go. 
 
“Either that smile on your face means that you are so full of shit, or my friend is really good at putting on a mask”, Allen jokes.
 
“If you only knew.”


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