The sun had just risen outside my window. There was a faint ringing in my ears, but was unlike any kind of ring you hear in complete silence, or from a loud noise. It carried along in a hypnotically melodic way, lulling me into a what I can only call a trance. It increasingly grew louder, that is all I can recall.
I woke up scared, as if from a nightmare. I was cold and a pounding headache was stabbing in my temples, while a haziness clouded my mind, dulling my senses and obstructing my ability to think coherently. The stars shined bright over head, and that is what cleared my mind. How could I see the stars if the sun had just risen? If my last memory had me indoors? I frantically looked towards my wrist, in an attempt to check my watch for the time, only to find my wrist barren except for five tally marks cut into my skin. I began hyperventilating at this point. As shock took over, I faintly noticed I was in a clearing in the woods, and that not to far away there lay another person. As I calmed myself down, the fallen figure began to stir before shakily sitting up and looking about.
She tilted her head back to look towards the stars above, and as her dark hair fell from her face, I recognized her. She was a stranger to me, and I to her, yet we knew each other in the sense we were the friends of friends, and lived in a semi - close proximity to each other. Her name was Emma, if I recalled correctly from the gossip, she was what some would call a slut. Something quite hard to achieve in our town as small as ours. Then again, we are strangers, so who am I to so quickly pass judgement?
Meeting my wide blinking eyes across the moonlit clearing, she realized I too was awake, and crawled towards me. I sat up to meet her, and for a moment we drew comfort in just the simple act of not being alone.
"Emily?" I questioned lightly, my voice hoarse and carrying a slight air of suspicion.
"Evelyn." She stated in an equally suspicious tone, that also conveyed her shared confusion at waking up in such an unfamiliar place.
As I watched her, she shifted and quickly winced, grabbing her wrist. When she drew her hand back, we both stared in slight horror at the dried blood that coated the four tally marks cut into her. Much like my own tallies.
"What the fuck?" She breathed out horrified, before she began screaming.
I recoiled from her as she began to scream, the sharp noise doing nothing to help my headache.
"Hello?" A quivering voice called to us from the tree line. Emily quickly shut up and grabbed at my arm, shaking ever so slightly from her quite reasonable fear.
A lone figure drifted towards us, its long hair in a disarray and gleaming an unnatural silver in the moons light, as if. In that moment I truly believed it was a spirit coming to kill us. Before I could back away, the figure drew closer, and Emily let out a gasp before running toward the apparent spirit.
"Rosalyn!?" Emily called, and the now identified girl came to a stop in front of us. It was my very religious classmate Rosalyn, whom I barely recognized without her thick framed glasses and neatly pleated hair.
"Em?" She whispered, ever shy, before rushing to hug her best friend. The slut and the nun is what everybody called the strange friendship. As they left their embrace, something caught my eye, and I grabbed Rosalyn's wrist. Much like me and Emily, she also had tally like incisions marring her wrist. Only she had three.
After a few minutes of light crying in Rosalyn's case, and just plain what-the-fuck-is-going-on in mine and Emily's, we collectively decided to find a way out of the woods and back to civilization.