I Wonder What The Baby's Thinking
After destroying my mind with only the images of the fine print: PREGNANT. PREGNANT. PREGNANT. and the confusing complex terrifying thoughts that stung after it; I fell to the floor. I didn't care one bit that tons of old-people feet had slopped their germs onto it, or that I was probably smelling the pipe that tunneled poop; I had just sobbed. Before, obviously, bending over the toilet seat to vomit.
I covered my head with arms. Shame was gutting me everywhere. All I could see was my drunken blurry vision of one too many parties in Europe. I had never even known the guy's name. And now…I had his child? It was too…frightening. Fear took me over. Fear and shame. I would watch the developments of an unwanted entity unless…. My thoughts stopped. Don't go there.
And then there was the entire whole issue concerning Bella. Damn, it wasn't an issue but a sociopathic terror. And she had looked me directly in the eyes and said it was my fault. And Lewis was cheating on Cleo. And Rikki had been raped…I couldn't handle of this hysteria-ridden torture.
What had happened? Just four days ago; I was relaxing in Paris wondering where my free ride of the world and life would take me next. And now…now I was in my own living Hell, with terrors so real they should only exist in nightmares. Sociopath's Nightmares.
Had it been so wrong for me to thing about the possibility of saving myself from all that hideous wrathful torture? For the first time in my life, I thought about getting myself away from my life. It didn't seem useful or helpful to anyone…and all that came with it was dark magic, secretive friends, and an…unwanted…baby.
Maybe, as my eyelids fell, I pretended to be falling into death…all just for a moment of pure bliss where I could believe….maybe, just maybe, it could all be over. But it had just begun.
The following events resulted in the horrific burning of our Hotel Suite. Looking at it after, I found out the suite was titled Home Suite Home. I wish I could say it was ironically correct; but it had been a long time since knowing what a real home felt like.
Would I ever have guessed this room would be a pre-cell for torture? No, it had looked so possibly peaceful. But no, maybe that was the sounds of Will's voice. My eyes had only slivered open for him. I planned to just lie there, until someone carry me away from the life I feared, shamed, and lived. But then the closest soul to an angel's voice serenaded my name.
It was ironic, knowing that Lewis had been slutted up in the Hotel's Club, and that all three boys arrived at the same time. I had heard the door click, because honestly, you should be able to guess there was an odd tension of silence. Lewis, who should have been guilting it up in his mind wars, Zane who was probably still in his screwed brain of porn, cars, and cigarettes, but thinking how he might change so miraculously again for Rikki, and Will, who's mind was a mystery considering his girlfriend disappeared in insanitized frenzy.
I hopped from the floor. I never noticed nor checked how frizzy my hair started to stress, or how not dark, but red circles from crying surrounded my eyes. I just ran out. I hoped that maybe I could find him…and it would just be better. That was what his mumbling voice had done to me. But my footsteps shattered when I noticed the two tightly closed and locked doors of two former friends. All three of us, Cleo, Rikki, and I had closeted ourselves in different rooms, hiding away all our pasts, passions, and mostly lies.
I heard the slight sob of a world perhaps even more whacked up than mine. If I had been Normal Emma…or really just an Emma Long Forgotten, I would have rushed in to the sounds of a friend crying; and Rikki to be exact. Rikki didn't cry. And if she did…something truly terrible was on the horizon.
And then through the other secretive door, I heard the rather revolving sounds of thumping and moaning. I closed my eyes and pretended I had never heard such a disgusting thought come to life…and for Cleo. I had followed my instincts to the kitchen, only to be gutted with a coward's stance.
Will reached my eyes, as did Lewis. But their emotions compelled different. Lewis's begged; "You-can't-tell-Cleo-what-I've-done-but-not-because-I-don't-want-hurt-her-but-because-I-can't-be-seen-as-that-guy". And Will's gave an odd aura of "My-heart-is-breaking-and-I'm-scared-because-you-give-me-hope." At least…I hoped.
Zane gave me a glance with nodding knowledge. We were still the two family friends that could say we knew each other since toddlerhood. And then his eyes went in odd panic. "Where's Rikki?"
My mind fumbled, but I answered with exasperation. "She's, erm, in that bathroom." And then he was off. My heart leaped. One step closer to being alone with-What was I thinking about? This was Will. Boy I had just met, Boyfriend of Bella, the physco-maniac murderer who I had yet to tell anyone about. Yes, that was what I was going to talk to Will about. Nothing…nothing else. Not…even it.
But then somehow I found myself glaring at Lewis with hatred. This was to be expected. He was the all loveable science geek that went through the Hollywood changes and ended up cheating on my best friend; and I was the only person important in knowledge of it. Sharp and twisted words were on the tip of my tongue when he looked to the floor, personally tsked, and mumbled something about finding Cleo and Drake.
Were my glares that intimidating? Was I wreaking of havoc of carrying the stress and freak outs of carrying an unwanted baby due to a random drunken hook-up as well as knowing the deep dark sinister side of a girl my ex-best friends had believed to be their cheerful lovely best friend. Where would any normal person go from this point?
Oh, shit. Will now stared with a pained expression. A numb messed up expression. An expression of unknowing. He referred to the couch, and we both sat pondering the deafening silence.
"…You didn't find her?" I asked in a squeamish worried attempt. For moments that seemed to drag on in agony, all was silent.
"No…" He glanced at me with a buffet of feelings. "I don't know…how I'm supposed to feel… I keep asking myself, my conscience…any type of…emotion what I'm supposed to be feeling…but all I get is this uncontrollable numbness…and it…" His eyes caught mine. "You know, I want to feel…heartbroken, scared, or at the very least angry. But…I just…don't. I don't feel anything except fear…because I don't feel anything and I should. Because emotions give us instincts, and instincts tell us what to do. And I don't know what to do." Will muttered down. He had just revealed a boiling point from his chest.
I licked my lips, searching for a past experience that could help me understand. Was I feeling numbness about my…baby? Did Will still care, or was he too knocked up into his own problems to remember he had been the one to buy the test? Was he going to ask? Why was he so quiet? Wasn't he supposed to be the golden boy that never loses his light? Oh yeah, the light can dim when your girlfriend goes mental. Did he know how crazy she truly was? Would I ever stop asking these uncontrollably unknown questions?
"I think we all never know exactly what's certain in our instincts…but I think…it's how we react to situations that decides our fate…what actions represent us… Feelings can be lost in the tide." I tried to remember a time I had developed such deep thoughts and cursed them out loud. But old Emma Gilbert wasn't old soul-like. She didn't know problems, but the present Emma did. But she didn't know anything about what to do with them.
After this came the silence. Not one of awkward passion, but one of twisted complex thoughts wondering where'd we end up, and why we were mumbling off quotes that should only be found in soppy totally unrealistic soap operas. Then, once again, he took me by complete utter surprise.
"Did the test work?" I shivered with a gasp. I suppose in my mind, I had been willing him to forget as well as willing him to bring it up. I was stunned speechless.
"I'm sorry. That's an idiotic question; I reckon…I mean…did you take it?" I looked at his charming admirable intensely passionate eyes. And I fumbled with the English language.
"Yes." I answered in fear. He nodded. Could he see through me? Did he already know? Oh shit, I wanted to vomit again… Even I, Miss Intelligent Emma didn't know why an unwanted baby could cause the worst vomit sessions I have ever encountered.
"Do you want to talk about it?" No. Yes. No. Yes. Why didn't he understand?
"Um…there's nothing to talk about…It was…It was negative." The words just flew out of my mouth. They were lies, agonizing complicated lies. Why did we all add our own lies to this terrifying nightmare of crazies?
"Really?" His eyes shone relief. Did he honestly care so much about a girl he just met's sexual being? "That's…good." He added with an attempt of a grin. His beautiful flaws were still so obviously there.
"Yeah…" I muttered. In movies, I never understood how the pregnant-fallen girls could [A] be so irresponsible to get themselves in that position but mostly [B] after finding out the dreaded news; carry on as if it never happened. Until they started showing. That was the time when their best friend or another screamed at them they needed to take responsibility for their actions. Would their fate be the same as mine?
I still felt foreign. Which was ironic because ever since I had left Australia; I had always been foreign. But here I was, back with the souls I had so adoringly called friends; and I had never felt anymore outsiderish. So alone. So scared. So broken. And the brokenness led to Will's description of numbness.
I wanted to tell someone. But no one fit the possibility of actually helping and easing my pain ignoring their own burning twisted plots of reality. My best friends from Paris, Naomi and Aimee were too far away and too shallow to ever understand…life. My old, or should I say ex-best friends, Cleo and Rikki were too summoned in their own tragedies…and plus; Rikki had already seen it. And her, who was the one I could expect to be the most calm and possibly, I can't believe I'm saying this, helpful without judging in this situation…had been a mess of "How-should-I=react-to-this-alien-who-I-used-to-call-a-friend-being-pregnant?" written all over her face. Maxxie wasn't the father; that I knew… Why in the world would I tell him? The dad would never even know…I never even knew his name. But considering he filmed porn as a hobby; I didn't want to. I…was completely alone…unless I follow my instincts with Will's…aura. Was it possible he felt the connection as well? But no, he was Bella's. I couldn't help screw up her mind anymore than I already did.
Bella had threatened to kill me. And hell, did I know she had it in her. What was I to do? Hell didn't have an instructional manual.
Now I was crying. And I'm no beautiful-girly-sobber. So the snotty gush came. And Will looked absolutely terrified wondering if he was supposed to ask me what was wrong, take his arms around me and soothe me, or scream "You bloody freak!" and get away from this Hell-tel.
"Emma…it's… Well, it's not okay…but…somehow…I know things will get better." Will tried, but I couldn't listen. I knew the madness of a mental girl and he didn't.
I shook my head. "No… This can't be real. These things just don't…happen. My whole life seems to be a fantasy…and I think it's coming to an end."
"Don't say that!" He was suddenly flickering with fiery passion. "It's not ending…. Everything has to get bad before it gets good."
"Did you think life was good with Bella?" I suddenly asked barely above a whisper.
"I know you can't understand… She's just the freaky missing mermaid who stole your friends." Hell, she was a lot more than that. "But…before…before a couple of weeks ago…everything was amazing. Bella was always…so happy… She never gave any signs that she…she was slowly having a breakdown. I just wonder if this is my fault. The Bella Lewis and his mate were describing…. It wasn't Bella."
"You know…most, erm, serial killers appear to be the nicest person you'd never expect… I still can't believe I never heard once about her… I mean, I know I haven't done such a lovely job on staying in touch but… never mind. I…" I was having word vomit. "It's not your fault." Bella had said herself it was mine.
Will didn't answer but I knew he heard me. For a moment, I wanted to take my lies about the pregnancy test all back. We had these conversations, and in the moment of awakening awkwardness, there just came a sad magical connection. But we both kept quiet about it. Life seemed too complex at this point to even dare think about destroying something more with a mistaken hook-up.
I had to speak again. Hopefully, my courage would shine through.
"…If I had been…pregnant…I mean…put yourself in the most messed up twisted vision," Did I see a smile? "If you were pregnant, as a girl obviously; What would you do?" He looked at me and for a few seconds I swore he knew.
"Depends on the circumstances…but…Em," Who told him he could call me Em? "I still know, obviously by our…conversations…we can talk about things… Are you thinking about what could have happened…if it had not been a scare?" My soul flinched. If only it had been a scare… I suffered through enough of them through my life.
"Yeah… That must be it. It makes me think." My eyes trailed along the carpet. "It makes me think about everything." After a yawn, I secluded my thoughts away. I lay down on the couch, covered my eyes, and whispered; "You're nice…Will."
When I opened my eyes, when we both opened our eyes; Fortunately, and unfortunately enough, we returned to the normal Emma Gilbert and Will Benjamin. And it was sadly right.
"You wanna go to a café then?" Will asked. "It's…expensing dinner time… And, um, food's good for the soul." I got up and smiled.
"I saw this sweet little Brazilian Steakhouse just a mile up over. My Mum's been there, she said it was good." I felt…almost normal now. Once I opened my eyes; it was as if I had erased all the terror of the last days.
"Oh, really? It's because your Mum liked it and not because you want to see if they might show off their just a bit too private Brazilian waxes?" I laughed with a joke.
"Yes, Em." Will chuckled. "If we can find out what the rest of the gang is havocking at this moment; maybe we can…have, oh this sounds shocking, a bit of fun!" I smiled at the thought. Maybe things could turn around. Just maybe.
"Fun sounds good. Fun sounds fantastic, in fact. You find Cleo and Lewis; I'll find Rikki and her oh-so-annoyingly shadow-follower." And there we went. It was a big old bucket of irony; after such destructive heart-to-hearts and after a mob of problems showered on us; You'd think we'd be basking in depression. But life is full of it's sobs and laughter; That's what drives us on.
But the thing was, I never found Rikki. And when Will found Cleo, Lewis, and Drake; it was apparent that they were not in our mellowing hope. They were in relationship hysteria. And what was the status of Rikki and Zane at that moment? I thought I'd never know. Pity was I never noticed the letter folded on the ground directing Cleo, Bella and I to it's wrath.
It was in those remaining seconds of confusion; the lights went off, the hotel seemed to shake, and I heard Bella's haunting scream over the intercom that would direct the hotel into it's insanitized madness.
I quote Bella directly. "Charlotte! Please!" They were working together. It had clicked. But for what exactly? They weren't your typical maniacs. They seemed like the sickos that would have a plan. Damn, they did.
But it was Charlotte who lead the malevolence that the intercom followed so directly.
"Poor little unfortunate guests… I have sad news for all of you. The owners and workers who promised you a safe little vacation are dead…well, they will be in a few seconds." Evil laughter escaped her mouth. "And you ask why? You ask who's the blame? Three titles. Emma Gilbert. Rikki Chadwick. Cleo Sertori. Happy Death. It's open season on mermaids, and I'm hunting."
After that, I chose to believe Charlotte and Bella had taken Rikki. And it was basically true. After a trip to a remnant of Paradise. But these thoughts were far from my mind, after puking out what felt to be guts, I scrambled to find my friends and cling together in terrifying fate.
The suite was dark. And as I still heard awful sounds of shouting; from Cleo, Lewis, Drake, and Will. My deepest fear was to be left alone. I raced in the direction of the door to come face to face with a tormented arrange of events. Cleo crying into a pillow in very little but a bra; even her wig was pulled off, Drake, his chest unlashed in nudity, as well as a pillow covering his privates, Lewis looking stunned into the word vomit that seemed to haunt us, and Will standing there with a look of WTF has just happened.
You probably think I'm going to explain to you now how disgusted I felt to know Cleo and Drake had had somewhat of an affair, but no. I had no time to react. And as my memory blurred, Cleo and Drake covered their shamed selves, Lewis started sputtering, and Will just looked at me, and whispered ever so slightly frightened, "Where's Rikki?". But I couldn't answer.
Our first mistake was to launch around the hell-tel searching for them. Because where we left, they would come. And hideousness would take place there.
Somehow, Cleo and I ended up holding hands. No exact words or conversations were remembered except for the distinct call of Rikki and Zane's names. Not even thoughts. We just ran in motion of fear, hate, and the unknown. I remember seeing Will go berserk as his eyes found the girl of my haunting; dirty blonde, spookily in that white dress, now smeared with blood. And he separated from us. I cried his name out. But he wouldn't listen. His heart would always be hers.
Soon enough, we smelled the burning. It was coming from someplace in the hotel.
I can tell you one thing about our frantic cries and running masses; It felt scarier than any horror movie I'd ever witnessed. It felt like Harper's Island + Nightmare on Elm Street + The Craft put on crack multiplied by a thousand. But maybe it was because this was reality. And the worse part was I couldn't even try to mutter that it was just a dream, or that it can't be true.
It's not that you don't know what you have until it's gone. You always knew what you had. You just never thought it would be taken away from you or that certain terrifying situations could ever become real enough to be unlashed of it's beast upon you.
We stopped running. Cleo started sobbing in my arms, and I did too. Our voices were muffled in despair, but I knew that I couldn't leave her. And she couldn't leave me. I remembered what it was like again. To have that inseparable bond. I just needed Rikki to hold my hand and tell me my teeth were grinding in attempt of a smile for it to be complete.
It was right about the time of the lights going back on; that the second intercom message was spread around.
"Ac-hem…Good Evening Sluts and Studs: The wickedness is just beginning. For the poor little mermaids who even with their legs stuck together somehow manage to spread their legs for mortals they've cursed…Stop running. Stop searching. It must suck to be stuck in the Land of Unknown… Well, it must suck to not be an evil genius, period. But, now I have some instructions. Emma, Cleo…We're all waiting… Me in venganence. Bella in insanity. Rikki in agony. Report to the spa. And maybe, just maybe; all the innocent lives of this Hotel are to be saved…but obviously there's no getting out. I've trapped you all, and for my plan. Endgame results in my glory, and all the little slutty mermaids do what I say…and perhaps, just perhaps…I won't kill you one by one. Rikki's begging. You wouldn't want to lead a sister to death…"
Then as the faces of the innocence found in LA's infamous Hell-tel went to stare, as my thoughts spiraled in denouement, Rikki's scream echoed the halls, Cleo screeched recklessly; I was left in my horror.
Cleo and I shared the stare of mermaid-knowledge. We both knew what we had to do. We just didn't know the fatally twisted consequences of it.