Threats Hereafter Book 1: Nemo

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After a mysterious misadventure abroad, Aiden returns home to find his bed lived in and his housemates clueless as to who he is. Indeed the whole town has seemingly never known him and his own family seem to have dropped off the face of the earth entirely! Homeless and desperately searching for any recognition at all, Aiden soon runs low on resources as murder victims begin to appear. With a mysterious killer stalking the streets, Aiden must use all his ingenuity to evade this monster and search for answers! Those answers will only raise more questions as Aiden's world begins to seep into the kind of madness where otherworldly horrors dwell...

Horror / Fantasy
Stuart Lancaster
Age Rating:

Chapter 1 - Ressurection

The light pierced his eyes, not that he didn’t trust it mind. The girl holding it, howerer, maybe.

“Why am I being checked over again?”

The nurse moved the light, finally satisfied that his eyeballs, whilst now possibly singed, were still in his head. Would she now do the one with the little wooden stick to check his tongue was still attatched?

“It’s usual routine, given your recent travel history. We’ll be done in a second.”

Usual routine? He had spent last night on an IV drip, and the flight, and God knows what was in any of it. Pee is not supposed to be that colour!

The nurse picked up another ingenious medical tool, another light. This one was shone into his ear. Yep, it was still there, all of him was. When he put ‘Injuries: None’ on the form he had hoped they would read that as ‘He wasn’t injured.’ The scratches, cuts, bruises and scrapes that littered his body told a different story, none of them were serious though.

“There’s a bit of swelling in your ear…”

“Yeah,” Aiden grumbles, “Gun shots.” His ears had rang since he was a teen, not that he was going to mention that now lest another light be shone somewhere. Plus the cause of this swelling was much more recent.

“Any hearing loss?”

“You what?”

It was an innocent enough question but Aiden hadn’t the patience. He was a perfectly healthy twenty one year old, his hair was still brown, his eyes still pale blue, and he had all the teeth he had left the country with. He was fine. He had survived and the sooner he could put that horrific place behind the memory blocking magic of two or three bottles of whisky, the better.

The nurse seemed to sigh as she went back to her tool tray, or whatever they’re called, and scribbled out the last of her prognosis with a blunt pencil. It seemed she had finally accepted that he was fine. After all, the dead don’t rise from the grave.

“Okay, well, it seems you’re perfectly healthy, minus the cuts and scuffs. Take care of those, drink plenty water and talk to your doctor if any infection occurs”

She took a small business card out from under her form, handing it to him.

“And for the trauma, if you need to speak to anyone…”

A shrink. Aiden forced a smile and took the card.

“You’re free to go. I’ll give you the room to get dressed.”

And with that she left. Aiden dropped the card in the bin. Mental health was important, sure, but after that he didn’t need a shrink, he needed out. He was happy to bury it and never let it crawl its way out of its grave again.

Finally alone he stood from the bed he’d been sat on. The tiled floor was cold under his feet. In fact, all of him was cold, standing there in his underwear with bandages and bruises all over. His hand throbbed. He rubbed it and a small trickle of blood leaked from where his cannular had been, removed by that wonderful nurse. He grabbed some of the medical tape from her worktop and wrapped it around his hand, putting pressure on the bandage there, only to then halt in his tracks as he caught a glimpse of himself in the full length mirror. He was pale, much paler that usual, and skinny. He probably stank too. He looked just like…

He shook his head, grabbing his clothes and throwing them on as quickly as he could. Still, he looked better than this place. The ‘bed’ or examination table he’d been sat on looked medevil, some of the screws even looked rusted. The walls may have been painted a nice cream colour once, but they must have used actual cream as it was now just dark and rotten with damp spots, mold and chipped paint all around. The door opened with an obnoxious creak.

“Oh, y-you’re up”

Aiden looked over. Some ‘Assistant’ or whatever was stood there, a man, balding with a pointed chin, podgy stomach, in the usual hospital scrubs looked dumbfounded, almost shocked.

“Yeah, I’m done here” Aiden explained, his confused stare wandered over this odd man as he just looked almost insulted and upset.

“I-I need to just give you something, in your IV”

He looked to his clipboard, jaw hanging open.

“No, I’m done.” Aiden’s voice was perhaps more stern than he had meant but he’d ran out of patience long before now. He almost knocked this stupid man over as he strode out of the room. Down the corridor Aiden shook his head in disbelief after casting a look back at the room to see the assistant walking out with his head hanging down, cursing something. This really was an outstandingly bad hospital.

Outside, the air was magnificent. Aiden stopped a few steps from the door, stretching his arms upwards into the light, feeling his back, shoulders and neck click as he did and he drank in deep wonderful cool breaths. The wind rustled through the trees, all tall and thin, probably pines for all he knew. He was just overjoyed to see them again, to breathe their air again. One more breath as he walked to the car park, this air always soothed him.

The home air was a nice comfort, but could never compare to home itself. Aiden’s bruised face spread into the widest smile as he approached it again, his car. Dark grey, with plenty dirt, sat smiling back at him beneath its old world angular shape. In truth Aiden was amazed that this thing still ran, even though there were often times he was under it more than in it, fixing one part only to find problems with several more. For now, it ran. The door opened at least, always a good start.

The interior, grey seats of what might be leather, no, probably not, the back one could be blue for all Aiden knew, and it was always covered with various bits, jackets, bags and general rubbish. On the centre console a receptacle sat waiting. Aiden slipped his phone from his pocket and connected it. This part was probably the most high-tech part of the whole vehicle, nicely juxtaposed with the windows you wound up and down by hand. Aiden picked some music on his phone with one hand as he wound his window down with the other, anything to get more of that intoxicating air in.

The music started. There was one more thing though, one more thing to check. He cast a quick glance around the car park, it was tiny for this tiny little hospital, “Medical centre”, it barely qualified as that. There were a few cars, a van or two and one motorbike but that was all. He was alone. He reached across and opened the glove compartment. Wrapped in a black cloth, it was still there. He took it out and unwrapped it on his lap. Cold black metal glinted up at him, he smiled all the more. Fingers wrapping around just as comfortably as they always did. Its familiar weight rested in his palm. His wet eyes closed, this could have helped so much back there. He exhaled deeply, clinging to the grip.

Never again.

Wrapping it back up and stashing it away in the glove compartment, finally he slid his keys into the ignition. With a slight screech that he really should look into, the engine started. Clutch down, into first, a manual transition, of course, Aiden always loved old machines, and the car rolled out of the car park and away. His music, dark, gloomy and probably extremely embarrassing if he cared serenaded the countryside as he rolled by. The wind through the window rustled his hair and filled his nostrils. The calm was a nice contrast to the crap in his head, those recent memories, those impossible things, they drifted out of the window and floated away with the car’s exhaust fumes. Still he turned the music up a notch as the road rolled away infront of him.

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