The knock on the door jolted me back to reality, after almost an hour of thinking about why my life sucks. Well it’s not like my life sucks, it’s just too ordinary. A regular life if one must say so. I finished my studies half a year back and still haven’t landed a job. I do a part time job at the restaurant a block away which earned me enough to keep me fed and have a roof over my head. But still my life was almost the same as millions of people out there, just blant.
I walked over to the door hearing the person outside knock a second time. Well, a little patience won’t hurt anyone. I opened the door to find that no one was there. Probably the children downstairs, I must complain to their parents since this wasn’t the first time. This had been happening for almost a week and that too exactly at the same time, a quarter past eight in the morning.
No time to think about these silly things, I have an interview at half past nine. I bathed and got ready praying that the company would recruit me. I walked out of the room, and turned to lock the door before finding a letter of sorts on the ground. Well no time to read it, I kicked it into the room and hurriedly closed the door.
The day was pretty warm, with the sun shining brightly overhead, children yelling to each other, vehicles honking. I started to walk and soon picked up a brisk pace. I was always a fast walker, it was after I slipped and fell from the first floor of a building when I was ten or so and broke my leg. After that i couldn’t bend my right leg at the knee comfortably, sitting down was itself a pain for me which i tried to hide almost always from others, running was out of the question. So I practiced walking fast enough so it almost seemed like I was running. I could even beat someone running at a normal pace.
After a grueling hour of waiting in the lobby, I got called upon. Well anyone could guess how it went, they asked questions about me, my personality and the things I studied about. I am not the most friendly guy around, my voice was rough so it almost seemed threatening when I tried to speak politely. The scar I got from the accident twelve years ago, which made an ugly line on my right temple did not help matters as it made me look more like a ruffian and less like a reliable, educated guy.
‘’We will call you back Mr.Eustass Forger’’ one of the panel members said. Even as they said that, I knew that I would not get the job. All cause of this stupid face, why did it have to look like this? I haven’t seen my parents as I am an orphan. Maybe one of them was an actual thug and the genes carried over to me.
I went back home at three in the afternoon or so. I made myself comfortable on the couch and switched the TV on. Normally this would be the time for my afternoon nap, but today of all days, sleep didn’t come to me quickly so I proceeded to stare at the TV, which played a fantasy movie of some sort with dragons, wizards and whatnot. I’ve always wished for something like that in reality, an evil witch or a dragon slaying hero or something more grounded to reality, like a thrilling crime case in which I can be involved in. But reality is often disappointing.
Soon after thinking about my wishful dreams I woke up in the land of dreams. I dreamt of a girl, eighteen or so, whom I had never ever seen before in my life, running in the pitch black darkness, crying out for help, but her voice was inaudible. She kept on reaching out to me but I couldn’t move an inch. It seemed like something was chasing her, something malicious and evil. Its presence sent a chill in my spine even if it was only a dream. She slipped and fell on apparently nothing and cowered in fear of something appearing from behind her. She turned towards me and crawled, crying out, her face scrunched with fear her once beautiful dress now in tatters. A hand, covered in blisters and…is it fur? Or was it excess hair? I couldn’t make out properly, grabbed her legs and pulled her into the eternal darkness and then I heard it, the screaming of the girl.
I woke up in cold sweat, panting and gasping for air. The final rays of the sun were falling inside the room through the almost closed window. The room smelled a faint smell of rotting flesh with a hint of fruitiness. Maybe a rat died in the sewers, not my problem is it? I drank from the bottle near the couch, reducing my fear by a little bit. Well it was just a dream right, it ain’t gonna happen in reality. That was when I noticed the letter from morning, piqued by curiosity I tore open the letter, to find an address with time and date in it. It was dated today at eleven, in the middle of night. The address was of the town outskirts, making it a long walk. But one cannot control one’s curiosity, I forgot all about the dream and started getting ready for one long journey.
It was 10:57 and I was thinking on the lines that the letter must be a prank by the kids. I should give an earful to them the next time I meet them. I looked at my surroundings, it was a barren plain with a few tufts of grass and some lonely trees. The air was dry but carried a chill along with it making it quite enjoyable. There was not a soul, as far as the eyes can see. It was a sharp eleven, still no one in sight.
‘Well I was fooled by a silly hoax. How crazy I must be to trust a strange message’ I scolded myself out aloud, well why not? No one was here to hear me scolding myself like a lunatic.
‘Well it is the trust that brought you here’ A voice replied, a feminine one at that.
My heart picked up pace and rammed against my ribs, it was the same voice of the girl who was from my dreams and to make matters worse, it came from right below me. I looked down, and my faint shadow cast by the moonlight, started getting darked and bubbled up. A hand shot upwards from my shadow, and another popped up. It was the same hand, all blistered and furry with each hand having ten fingers grafted in between where the normal fingers would be placed. I fell on my back and tried to get away from the hands, but unsurprisingly, my shadow wouldn’t leave me alone. The creature pulled itself out from the ground, making me hold my breath.
It was too hideous to be even considered a creature. Half of its face was covered by excess fur, with a short scraggly beard and devious eyes which burned with hatred and the other half was that of the women from my dream. As it pulled itself out, I was horrified to find that the face was not the only thing that was grafted, the whole body was a mix of both the creature and the woman. I tried to scream but no voice came out from my throat.
‘No use in screaming Eustass. I am the Goddess of Silence, Quindelia, no sound can be produced when I am present’ The creature said, partly in a raspy snaky undertone, partly in a high feminine voice. It was too creepy to watch both the mouths move in unison but produce different voices. But what she said seemed to be true since even the sound of air was inaudible but I could still feel it.
After that everything felt almost unreal, I couldn’t hear most of it as my mind went overdrive to work all this new information and keep out the fear. I heard something about going with her but couldn’t process why I should. After a couple minutes, I fell unconscious and landed with a thud on the hard ground. If this was all a dream, this would be a nice time to end it, I thought as I felt my soul slipping away from me.
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