Shadow at night

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Fantasy  |  House: Booksie Classic
The room was dark, but beside me, I could see the shadow of an unknown person.

Submitted: August 01, 2010

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Submitted: August 01, 2010

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1, Dreamer
 
The room was dark, but beside me, I could see the shadow of an unknown person. It looked at me with blinking eyes as the train’s whistle blew from behind the freeway. Then, silence came upon me and the shadow. I didn’t sleep and neither did the shadow. From time to time, we turned to each other, to examine each other.
The shadow’s cold atmosphere that surrounded its body was chilling. It saw me shiver once, and cringed. It must have seen my silky, black hair in the dull light there was because it reached a finger out to touch the ends. A shock of cold was sent to my brain and it shot down my whole body to my feet. In my mind, stars and blue lions passed the river that I remembered from the past.
I called it: Decca River. The water was always a perfect pool in the
summer and a perfect skating rink in the winter. But all that bliss changed when my parents were killed in a fire.
The shadow reminded me of the setter of the fire. And in a way, that was the reason I didn’t touch it.
 
 
I didn’t know if it could talk, or accrue more memories of the past, or even use logic to figure out who I was. I only knew that it was cold and could feel.
It would be too much of a cliché to say that the shadow was real. It had a paroxysm for me; I could tell by the way it came closer to me through the night.
The shadow did bring in more memories, for outside, I heard the wind from the valley behind Decca River. It made the soft night’s trees rustle lightly, that’s how I knew it was Amaranth Valley’s wind.
 
 
The train’s whistle had started back up. Close to early morning it became louder and soon, the whole room was locked with the sound of the whistle. The high hums that it made helped me close my eyes a few times, but the shadow’s cold atmosphere opened them every time. It seemed like the shadow tried to allay it’s attraction to me by increasing the space between us and holding my hand. This chivalrous move then told me that the shadow was intelligent, and could use logic. It also told me that the shadow was not a sociopath, like many of the other people that were in my life. They had all kept at least one person hostage in their homes. Some never got outside like I did. And they never saw Decca River and Amaranth Valley as I did.
“Vallies and rivers are wastes of time,” Aunt Paris said to me when I was seven. She had gone to a bar earlier that morning.
“Real time… is money.”
But it was the other way around. Aunt Paris, if not drunk, would have definitely changed her words to agree with mine.
And sometimes, people lie. But I, who is the dreamer, knows what Decca River and Amaranth Valley really are. They are all I have left of the past.
 
The past where I was the killer.
The killer of strife.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
2, speaker
 
I woke to the shadow after a few minutes of deep sleep and crawled out of bed. It looked like it had finally fallen asleep, as I did. On the clock,
7: 00 beamed across the room. I bustled to get dressed and ready for the day. After I entered the salon to do my hair, I stepped into the hall.
As I passed the kitchen, I was thinking that I’d find hangover- Aunt Paris, on account of all the memories that the shadow had brought in, but instead, nothing. The ceiling light wasn’t on, no windows were open. It was bare.
My hopes were crushed in an instant. I hadn’t seen Aunt Paris in years and… My hopes of seeing her were high. I continued on to the living room to gather my keys and head out the door. But instead of my keys, on the counter was a note. I read in awe.
 
I am sorry for the fire.
I hope we can see each other again,
and I hope that you will love me once more,
as I love you.
 
I truly could not believe the words in front of me. I sprinted down the hall, thrust the door of my room open, and threw the comforter from the face of the bed… The shadow was gone. I fell to my knees.
“Speak to me, shadow!” I wailed. “Tell me why!” Tears poured out of my eyes like a heavy, April shower. I didn’t go to work, even though my colleagues needed me.
I felt that finding out who killed my parents was more important than my job. My feelings were wrong.
 
 
 
At work the next day, my boss was in a fix. Since I didn’t come to work the day before, many costumers were lost. The boss was short of money and she wouldn’t be able to fill out my colleagues’ paychecks.
As I set my laptop case down into a chair, Ms. Triton spoke directly to me.
“Why didn’t you come to work yesterday?” I didn’t look at her.
“I had… more important things to do, Vertonica.”
“More important than making money for my company?” I hesitated.
“As a matter of fact, Vertonica, yes. It is much more important.”
“If it’s so important, why don’t you tell me what it is?” My heart pounded in my chest.
“I—I don’t suppose I should, Vertonica; it’s… it’s rather personal.”
“Oooh, well isn’t that just so sad.” I nodded. “Get back to work, Cereise,” Vertonica snapped. I ran behind the sales counter and tended to costumers’ needs. My peers were looking at me strangely.
Don’t be a wuss, I thought. Stand up to your colleagues! And that was the beginning of my Cubi Kill.
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
3, numbers
 
The next day, I grabbed a pistol and stuffed it in my laptop case. Where did I get the pistol?
It was when I was eleven. Aunt Paris and Uncle London had come over my house to visit my mother and father. It was also a week before the fire. Aunt Paris and mom were talking while I hung out with dad and Uncle London in the living room. Uncle London and dad were discussing paintball at the paintball rally the following week. Uncle London mentioned the real gun that he had gotten from dad’s father.
“A pistol. Black, sleek; it was like the killer of my nightmares,” he had said. Dad laughed.
“Too bad dad didn’t get me one. You had caused all the trouble with it,” dad added.
“I want a pistol! Just like yours, Uncle London,” I cheered. Dad looked from his brother, to me. He shrugged.
“I…” I couldn’t hold my excitement.
“Please, daddy!”
“I’m thinking!” he laughed.
“… Well… why not? Cereise, you could use some protection for your following years.”
“YES!”
“Why doesn’t she have mine?” Uncle London suggested.
“Are you sure, Jonathan?” Dad asked.
“Of course! I have no need for it now. I could just buy a BB gun.” And with that, I had my first pistol.
 
I grabbed my keys and headed out the door. There was no need for hesitation, and absolutely no need to think about what I was doing. I had to stand up to my colleagues, and this was the way. When I got to my office, I unpacked my laptop and the gun. I slid it under the leg of my pants and it sat on my inner foot. Then, I stepped carefully out of my office and into the hall where my colleagues were working and taking calls. I snickered evilly. I won’t be a wuss. I will stand up to all my colleagues!


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