Pg 554

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Other  |  House: Booksie Classic
This is part of a book I'm starting. It is about the thoughts of a woman for she can't speak. She hears the words of a dying woman "pg 554... the red moon" and reflects upon it when strange things starts happening. Could the words be the solution to the mystery?
Please comment wither I should continue writing this book or not. Thank you :).

Submitted: December 16, 2011

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Submitted: December 16, 2011

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Pg. 554

Chapter One

Death. A breeze blew my hair back and I felt the cold seawater at my toes. A tear dropped down as I watched the sun set. The waves were getting stronger, faster, the sea now becoming a dangerous place. My fingers were numb and I was stiff. I could hear my breathing and see my breath. The sky became a dark orange as the seagulls squawked above. The moon appears as clouds covering it drift away. The moon is like a bright red Christmas light, glowing. I lifted my head slightly, the tears already dried. My feet have sunk into the sand, the tide bringing water over them. My hands are still hanging by my cold, numb body. A scarf, a short sleeved t-shirt, a wool sweater and jeans were the only clothing I am wearing in negative 3oC temperature. I don’t care about my frozen body, my numb fingers and toes. My gaze was set affixed on the bright red moon. Darkness swept over as the remaining lights of cottages flicked off. The only source of light was the moon, but the moon did not give its calming silver-white glow of light. Instead the moon gave a sharp, red color, almost like a warning. In the distance a few seconds of bird’s cries filled the air. My hair was flowing around me. One or two stars penetrated the sky glowing the familiar warming yellow. I closed my eyes and listen to the tides coming in and going out. The seawater surrounds my ankles for a moment, then retreats back into the ocean. The fresh scent of the sea comes rolling at me and I breathe in deeply. I’m imagining myself, beautiful and gracefully, dancing on water with my scarf as a ribbon. My knees buckled and I shivered. My eyes flew opened and I was back in the real world. The reflection of the moon brought an uneasy feeling. My eyes closed halfway, sleepily. I blinked real slowly and strained to stay awake. The cold water that splashed at my ankles was helping. I shivered again. All of a sudden, my loud, barking cough sliced though the silence. The sudden, loud sound scared me, but the wind blowing into my eyes made them dry and impossible to produce tears. I stood there for a longtime. Finally, I slowly lifted one hand up to my mouth and coughed in it. I rubbed my stinging dry eyes and water flowed out of them. Like a rag doll, my hand dropped to my side once more. The sand covering my feet and ankles prevented me from falling, or moving. I stared at the moon again. Red, like blood. I bit my frozen lip as the tears blurred my vision. I tried to lift one foot up, but it was buried too deep into the sand and I didn’t have enough strength. I slowly began to rock side to side, loosening the sand that imprisoned my feet. One came free, than the other. My toes curled up as the cold salt water hit it. The sand had kept them warm. I shifted one leg, than another, the stiffness made it hard to walk. I splashed my way up till I got to some dry sand. I shivered and fell down to my knees. My never-ending coughs pierced the silence. I started to crawl towards my car. My coughs only made it harder. I could see the parking spot in the distance. I could also see that the area was empty. My car had been towed away. I laid on the sand, tears coming down and coughs erupting. I wrapped my arms around me and shivered. It was one of those times when people know they’re going to die, but they don’t want to. I remembered my cousin. She swallowed a whole bottle of pills, but in the hospital, she was crying and praying that she didn’t want to die. God took her anyways. I unwrapped myself and crawled again, this time towards a cottage. My coughs disrupted the silence once more as the tears made my eyes hurt. Sobbing and coughing uncontrollably, I pulled myself over the old, wooden stairs and knocked on the cabin door. My fist pounded on the wood over and over again. I curled up into a ball as soon as I heard voices. I pounded once more when the voiced died down and a light flickered on. An elderly woman opened the door and gapped. My eyes felt heavy for I haven’t slept for two days in a row. I felt strong hands pick me up and carry me into the cabin. I fell into a troubled sleep as I was being carried up the stairs.

I woke up to a sharp, blinding light that shot into my eyes and filled my head in pain. I could not remember anything. I hear footsteps and murmuring. I am in a bed with a nightgown on. I look to see where that light came from. My eyes wandered towards the light and spotted a crack on the wall. I clutched the fluffy white pillow as my memory floods back all of a sudden. I stick my head into the pillow, muffling the sobs. I hear the door open, then close again after a few seconds. My cries into the pillow muffles out their conversation. I shook with each sob and pull the covers up tighter. My eyes ran out of tears before I finally fell into another troubled sleep. The nightmare I feared would come, came. It was the day, October the 9th. I would always remember it and it would always haunt me. It was just John and me sitting by the fire with our mugs of hot chocolate. He had to have 6 marshmallows in his drink, I liked to have 4. With a tint of mint, everyone always praised my drink. We chattered about the snowman we just made. He wanted to name it Sebastian. I wanted to name it Sally. Our conversation soon turned from the snowman’s name to our future kid’s name. The next day, John was called to go to war. On November the 23rd the war stopped. I flew to visit him. I still see the scene clearly in my head. A scream suddenly erupted from John as we were walking past the street. 6 bullets were shot into his stomach and he fell down dead. I wake up, drenched in sweat and sadness, grieving, unable to sleep, drink or eat. Now my stomach lurched as I try desperately to forget the scene that haunted me. A volley of coughs shot out from me and I quickly muffle them with the pillow. I was sore all over. I clenched the pillow tighter. It was almost like if I let go of it, it would suffer the same fate as John. I bit down on the pillow to stop myself from screaming hysterically. Another flashback came to me. It was when John and I first met…

It was a stormy day and I was out in the middle of the sea with my family. My youngest sister slipped while trying to put her life jacket on. We all stared, mesmerized as the bright orange jacket flew overboard. The seawaters were getting rougher and she started to cry. I quickly took mine off and gave it to her ignoring my parent’s request for my sister to wear theirs instead. I convinced them I was a strong swimmer and it was unlikely the ship would be in any danger. They were finally convinced, but a few minutes after the boat flipped and with screams, we all went overboard. I treaded water watching my family member’s heads pop up. Images of sharks and fish were not helping. My family bobbed away in different directions. Just as I felt powerless, I saw a boat and started to wave my hands. They felt like lead and I dropped them once the boat came my way. A beam of light caught me and they quickly hauled me out. For the rest of the journey, it was John that took care of me. Each month we would go back to the sea. When I was on a business trip, or he was, if we went to the sea it was almost like we were together again…

I felt a pair of eyes on me and I zoned back in. “You’re finally awake” he said. I nodded. “Come down and eat something.” He offered. I shook my head no. “I think you want to eat. You should eat.” He encouraged. I shook my head harder. “Why not?” he asked. I shook my head again. He shrugged and left the room. I opened my mouth. No sound came out. I had lost my voice light after he died. I opened my mouth again and forced air out, trying to make sound of something. It came out a hoarse cough that harmed my throat. That’s what I deserved for crying on bed swallowing pills and hardly eating for many days. The old woman came into my room and spoke, but I blocked out what she said. She looked at me. I stared back blankly and shook my head. “You look starving honey. Come down and eat.” She said. I rolled out of bed, surprised how hard and solid the wooden boards felt compared to the soft, grainy sand. I trotted down the stairs. The man smiled at me and I managed a weak smile back. He nodded towards the chair at the small round table and I sat down. I felt helpless as he served me. A glass of water, a stack of pancakes buttered and drenched in syrup, cup of milk and even some blueberries and strawberries which he drizzled on my dish. I smiled and took a bite. Suddenly, I realized how hungry I was as I wolfed down the meal in a matter of minutes. They stared at me with wide eyes and a teasing smile. I liked this family already. I took the dishes to the sink and started to wash them. Immediately, the man was at my side tugging the washcloth away. I gave him a stern stare till he laughed and finally let go. Soon, we all sat by the fire in the living room and he asked my questions. “What’s your name?” he started. “I’m John.” I inhaled sharply, and stared at him, my mouth slightly opened, gapping. I blinked several times then shivered. I opened my mouth then ran out the room. They were murmuring on how impolite I was when I came back with a pencil and paper and wrote ‘Hi. My name is Gabby’. I help up the paper and they suddenly understood. My handwriting was shaking. His name was John. The name echoed through my head endlessly. John, John, John, John, John. I picked up the pencil and wrote ‘I could talk before, but the shock of my husband’s death’, I stopped writing. John came over to see what I wrote and didn’t say anything. He whispered in who I believed was his mother’s ear. The silence was defeating. “What was your husband’s name?” He asked, then quickly looked down at his leg as he realized how inappropriate that question was at the time. I stared at him till he lifted his head to see if I was ok. “I’m sorry.” He said. I continued to stare at him. My eyes drilling into his. John, John, John, John, John. My breathing became heavy. “Let her be.” The mother replied. “You foolish boy, asking foolish questions.” I opened my mouth and they both froze in their spot. My eyes scanned my paper and pen. I lifted my hand and slowly wrote ‘J’. I lifted my hand once more as I wrote ‘o’.  That letter was followed by ‘h’. I ended with a shaky ‘n’. John, John, John, John, John. The unending echo of that name filled my head. They stood up and took one step forward. Which shaking hands, I help up the paper. The mother and boy froze, once more, in their spot. “Is that…?” John asked, unable or scared to say the word ‘husband’. I nodded, the paper slipping out of my hand. We all watched as the paper gracefully floated and skidded under the chair I was sitting on. The falling paper reminded me of John falling. My screams blended in with everyone else’s. John, John, John, John, John. Suddenly, a question popped into my head. ‘The moon was red yesterday night’ I wrote. A look of confusion crossed the man’s face but a look of pure horror crossed the woman’s face. All of a suddenly, the woman fell to the ground choking. I rushed towards her and John dropped to his knees. Her eyes were wide opened as she muttered “Red moon… pg 554…” and died. She looked so peaceful, her eyes closed, her mouth curved up in a smile. I reached over a patted her hair. We carried her into her room and placed her on the bed. Then I folded John in my arms and he cried.

Chapter Two

I brought the steaming meal up on the table and rang the bell. A few moments later John poked his head in the kitchen and we sat down together. He smiled and I smiled back, but a sad look crosses my face for a few seconds as I remembered my dead husband, John. We were living in John’s apartment, in New York City.  I sold my old house. Many times people asked if we were dating or married. I can’t help but notice the hope in John’s eyes and the sadness each time I shake my head no. It had been two months since we first met. “Gabby.” John set his gaze on me. “I can’t help wondering what my mother meant when she said the words ‘red moon and pg 554’.” I met his gaze. Suddenly, I gasped. The day John died. He tried to tell me something, but I had hushed him and screamed hysterically. I slapped myself in the head, forgetting that John was watching me. “Is anything wrong?” he asked. I shook my head no. ‘Just thinking about old memories’ I wrote. Red moon… pg 554… red moon… pg 554. No. John could have wanted to tell me anything. He probably wanted to say I love you. I loved him too. I love you, John, I thought. I fought the keep the tears in. Still, the words were bothering me. Red moon… pg 554. She died when the moon was red. Red moon… pg 554. “Gabby?” John’s voice floated into my head. The John who was sitting right across from me. I lifted my head. “Are you ok?” He asked. I realized that I had been holding the fork to my mouth for a long time. The piece of egg that was attached to it already fell off. I nodded, stabbed the egg again and threw it in my mouth. A cold, metal taste fill my mouth and I swallowed with difficulty. I noticed that he was still staring at me. I picked up the pen. ‘I’m fine’ I wrote. “Try.” He suddenly said. ‘Try to talk”. I opened my mouth and tried to push out the word ‘hi’. The air got caught in my throat and I coughed and choked. My fork clattered to my plate as I steadied myself. John bit his lip and glanced at me. I picked up the pen. ‘I know. Hopeless. I wish I could talk more than you wish I could’, I wrote. I tried and tried again. No hope. My throat was burning up. “I think it’s fine for today.” John said. Suddenly we both heard it. Deep within my throat came a low growl. His face lit up. “It’s a start!” He exclaimed. ‘Yes. I’m SO happy!’ I wrote, a big grin forming on my face. ‘But I doubt I can do more at the moment.’ I clutch my throat and nodded to be excused. I drank some water and gurgled. Then I went back and finished my breakfast. I nodded as John got his coat for work. “Gabby?” he said suddenly, turning around. I gave him a questioned look. “Never mind.” He shook his head and started to leave. I clamped my hand on his shoulder and nodded, waiting for him to tell me. He took a deep breath. I took a deep breath, waiting. “I am late for work” was what he finally said. I pushed him outside and slammed the door in his face. I gasped as I realized that I had been waiting for him to ask me out. I watched him from the window as he got into his car and zoomed off. I took off my necklace and looked at the picture inside. My husband, John was smiling. I smiled back, tears in my eyes. You had to die didn’t you, I thought. My hands touched the tiny picture. A tear dropped, missing the locket by an inch. I wiped my eyes  and my nose and clipped the necklace back on. The phone rang. I picked it up along with the tape recorder. “Hello?” the speaker asked. “Hello?” I re-played John’s voice. “Gabby?” It was John. Is he stupid? He knows I can’t talk! “Gabby. It’s me, John.” I waited. “Gabby?” The voice continued. “Gabby? Are you there? It’s John.” I froze. This wasn’t John. John knew that I couldn’t speak. The person hung up and I sat there, listening to the dial tone. Quickly, I dialed John’s number. No answer. I dialed it again. No answer. I dialed his work number. No answer. Tired his cell again. No answer. I started to get frantic. The phone rang. “Gabby.” The speaker said. “I know you’re there. Talk to me. It’s John. Why won’t you talk to me?” I opened my mouth. ‘I can’t talk! I can’t speak! Who are you!? You’re not John! He knows I can’t talk!’ I wanted to scream, but, I couldn’t talk. “Gabby. Do you know who I am? I’m John. Gabby? Do you not love me anymore?” At first I was frightened. Now I was steaming mad. I slammed down the phone. John has gone too far on the joke. The door bell rang. I took a deep breath and opened the door. It was John. He opened his mouth but before a word could come out, I reached over and slapped him so hard that my hand shape was imprinted on his face. “What the fuck?!” He yelled in shock. I reached over and grabbed a pen. He slammed the door shut and yanked the pen out of my hand. “I come home to see if you’re ok because you kept calling me and all you wanted to do was slap me? You’re living in my house you know!” I grabbed the pen back and wrote ‘the fuckin joke you played on me wasn’t funny either asshole!’ He read it. Then he re-read the paper again. “What joke?!” he asked, his mood nasty. I scribbled something else and help it up for him to read. “What?!” He yelled. “Calling you? Why would I call you?” Ouch. He kept reading, his eyes ablating with fury. “I know you can’t speak! Why would I do that? I have work! I don’t prank people, let alone you, at work!” Both of us were blinded by anger. I scribbled away whole John screamed away. ‘Oh and by the way, John.’ I wrote. ‘I never loved you in the first place. You don’t have to ask if I loved you anymore!’ He read the paper I held up. My hands were shaking. “I never said that to you! I never call you in the first place!” he screamed. “You… I… You…!” Somewhere behind that anger showed signs of hurt. Then he stomped into his room and slammed the door. I was equally upset as I slammed the paper on the table, ran into my room, closed the door and wiped a few tears while falling onto the soft bed. I sobbed into the pillow as quietly as possible. I lay on bed and didn’t want to get up at all. I thought about my horrible, horrible life. I heard John making himself dinner. He didn’t even bother to call me. Another wave of tears flowed. Some time passed and I glanced at the time. 9 pm in the night. I sighed, stiff from laying in bed for 6 hours, I stretched and yawned. I then yawned again. Soon, I fell asleep.  


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