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The Telephone

By Michael Berry All Rights Reserved ©

Other

Chapter 19

William Blake awoke with a splitting headache some time later lying across a dusty old wooden floor. He held his head in his hand as he slowly sat upright. His head throbbed with pain, he could feel a stinging sensation in the back of his eyes. It took him a moment to figure out what happened, and most importantly, where the girl was.

Jesus, what hit me? Where is she, god I hope she’s okay. Wait, I remember, someone hit me on the head with something. Oswald, it must be him, that asshole, piece of shit.
The memory of what the girl had told him slowly began to pour back into his mind.
She told me she was seeing things in her apartment, she wanted my help. They must have heard her . . .shit, they must be doing something to her.
He quickly rose to his feet and looked all around him. He deduced that he was in some kind of store room, one of the many abandoned rooms in the Town Hall that they never used. He could see old wooden chairs with dusty white sheets draped across them. Great white drapes covered most of the tiny walls surrounding him. Old wooden cupboards were stacked in a corner along with dusty candlesticks and cutlery. He looked around from top to bottom but could see no sign of a door.
There must be a goddamn door around here, somewhere. They brought me in here through something.
He looked at the white drapes that covered the walls when a thought came to him. Most of the doors in the building had locking mechanisms, but none of the scientists could ever lock them as no keys for any of them were ever found. Clearly, they didn’t want him to get out of here and wanted him to think that he couldn’t leave by blocking the door with something.
He turned around and noticed the tall white sheet draped across the wall, held in place by two rusty nails. He pulled back the sheet and found the wooden panelled door behind it. He tore the sheet from the wall and threw it to the floor. He opened the door and went outside, quietly closing it behind himself. His instinct told him to slam the door the door, but he knew that they’d probably hear him.
He looked around his present location and saw that he stood in one of the many seemingly endless corridors in the Town Hall. He didn’t recognise this section, but he knew that he was lucky with them leaving him in a room in the same building as them and not in a room on the other side of the city. Obviously, they had wanted to get the girl in the main hall as quickly as possible and had to compromise where they left him. They could even have killed him and dumped his body somewhere. He felt his body shake a little as the realisation dawned
He looked at the opposite ends of the corridor, seeing only an endless blackness that intensified as far as the eye could see. Countless doors that led to other rooms were on either side of the corridor. Where the hell do I start, I have to get to the ground floor. With no clear indication of either direction, he decided to take a gamble and chose the left and started to walk. Hopefully, whichever direction he chose, it would lead to a stairway to the ground floor.
A burning feeling of hate against Oswald and an apprehension to kill him roared inside him. If he had done anything to the girl, he would regret it.
He gave thought to the other scientists and where they were in his feelings. They were nowhere near as cold and unfeeling as Oswald, but they were rapidly coming nearer to it. He could often see signs of the lack of feeling in their faces, just the same cold drive of the scientist in them, pushing further and further to their ultimate goal. He didn’t particularly have any negative feelings toward them, but he knew they had and were now helping Oswald with his selfish experiment and were willingly going along with whatever they were doing to the girl they had.
He clenched his fists tight. They had disowned their humanity. This experiment had once been for everyone that was left to have some piece of mind or something ever greater. Now, it had simply become a drive, something to strive toward with no feelings of what it would give them at all. They were just hollow husks of what had once been human beings.
He looked at his hands, imagining the blood that clung to his skin. It was a symbol, marking him as one of the others that went along with abandoning their morals and humanity. It made him feel like them., But, at the same time, he knew he was different. He felt a strange kind of gratitude towards the symbol and the guilt inside him. That was the one thing that had rescued him from the inevitable path that the others had already walked. It brought his humanity and morals back from the edge of the pit, and for that he was thankful.
He carried on down the blackened corridor.
He felt a little light headed as he walked, his footsteps stumbled as they struggled to walk in a straight line, his vision was uneven, like the look of being dizzy. He decided to stop before he fell down and supported himself on the wall with his hand. He held his stomach in his other hand as he felt a sickness inside him.
Jesus, what the hell did they hit me with, I can hardly walk. He wondered whether he would get to the girl in time or even at all. He wasn’t sure he could make it, but he knew he had to. He would have to bite his lip and force his will to carry him.
He recovered himself as best as he could and started again down the corridor. His mind flooded with pleasing thoughts of revenge against the scientists, that helped him a little in forcing himself to continue.
After a long half hour of stumbling down corridors and feeding what he saw with his memory of the place, he finally found himself on the ground floor. He remembered the spiral staircase that led down to the ground floor. It had been hell when he couldn’t find another way down and had to force himself to remember a way. It had been even worse trying to make it down without falling over and over and breaking his neck. The realisation made him realise that their was only this one staircase that still existed, the others had rotted to dust.
He reached the bottom of the staircase and in his vague vision saw that he faced the main corridor in the building that led to the Main Hall. He could almost hear the voices of the scientists echoing down the silent hallway. He could also hear the sound of Oswald Richardson’s voice, instantly recognisable with its cold and unfeeling sound. He couldn’t tell what he was saying, but he knew it was him. He felt afraid of going there with what he had already said to him, and also a little excited. Whatever things he was doing to the girl would finally give him an excuse to punch him in the face, very hard.
He shook himself to try and shake off the drowsiness and sickness that consumed him. He had to have a clear head for getting in easily, hopefully without them knowing. While it made him feel slightly disappointed at not being able to get his revenge, he knew it was the best solution, not just for him, but for the girl, too.
He walked slowly up toward the doorway and nestled his body as close as he could get to it without being seen. He very slowly and timidly moved his hand out of the doorway to the other side. Quickly drawing a breath and keeping it locked inside his throat, he began to peer around in the corridor, keeping one whole side of his face in the room he stood. He could see the Main Hall from here, the dead leaves still incessantly being blown around by the wind. He could see the Telephone device, very small from where he stood, but it was instantly recognisable. Before now, he had merely regarded the Telephone as a machine, a very powerful and special machine, but nothing more than that. But now, with what the girl had told him, burning like a well kept fire in his mind, he regarded now as something a whole lot more than a machine. This thing seemed alive somehow, buzzing with spiritual energy, beckoning for ignorant people to lift the receiver.
He focused his attention on the task at hand, listening harder for the voices. They seemed muffled now and he couldn’t tell what they were saying. He knew they couldn’t be in the observation area as he wouldn’t be able to hear them at all. He guessed that they were still in the Main Hall, probably on the other side of the room near to the observation area.
While he fought the idea to prevent from getting his hopes up, he wondered if they had only just put him in the store room and were preparing to test the girl right now. Hopefully, if that were true, she wouldn’t have to face whatever they were going to do to her.
He moved silently into the main corridor, trying his best to mask his approach as his feet moved amongst the sea of rotted furniture. He hugged the wall with his back and shuffled along, his face turned to the right as he came closer.
At the end of the corridor now, he could still hear the voices muffled and totally non-understandable. His eyes glanced at the Telephone and became glued to it. Its great entanglement of wiring and plastic tubes and recording devices stuck into it made it look like a monster. A creature that wasn’t human, its sentient “mind” made from the endless collection of deceased souls that constantly came through. It seemed like Frankenstein’s monster, an inhuman thing made from various body parts.
It began to make him feel a little afraid of it. Then, a sudden disquieting thought overwhelmed him. What if the voices he was hearing were coming from this thing, the voices of the dead being fed through the device to him. The other scientists might have done the testing long ago and the girl might be dead. But, then, he could hear Oswald’s voice, he was sure. It couldn’t be his voice from the grave, that didn’t work, plus it seemed to good to be true.
His eyes moved across the room in one quick sharp movement as he heard something, his body quickly shuffled a few inches back down the corridor. He ran the sound through his mind again, registering that it was a door closing. Gathering his nerves again, he moved back towards the Main Hall and forced himself to peek round. He could see the observation area from here, its large glass windows reflecting the cold whiteness of the sky outside. He looked closer as he saw movement inside. Relief washed over him as he saw the scientists busily moving around inside the little room, carefully studying their notes and pressing switch after switch. It was certain then that the voices were from them, not from the beyond.
From here, he could also see Oswald, his typical angered face seemed to stand out from the others around him. William fought the desire to go over there and beat the crap out of him, knowing it was suicide.
He watched the scientists for a moment engaging in their constant work of the E.V.P. messages they constantly worked over, looking for an answer to it all. Their faces were cold unfeeling, no joy over what they were looking for in this entanglement of data around them, spurred on by the same shared and single drive; to find out the truth to it all. Seeing it here in front of him, it made him feel very lucky to be himself, to still retain his humanity and feelings and not have it burned out by the fact gatherer inside him. He felt his heart beating in his chest, glad at what it represented in his mind.
He watched the scientists intently as a few of them began to move through a door into another room and close it behind them. Oswald went with them, leaving only two in the observation area.
William knew they were moving into the next hall. A hall that was empty and a lot smaller than this one, he and others had used it in the early part of the experiment by playing the collection of tapes they recovered in the hall in total darkness, hoping that it would encourage spiritual activity. While they recorded a few voices on their own machines, nothing else happened.
William kept his gaze fixed on the door they passed through. They couldn’t still be using that hall for the experiment, they had decided long ago that it was pointless to continue after receiving poor results.
They’ve gotta’ be keeping her in there, its big enough to keep her somewhere inside and to keep their . . .testing equipment.
He looked at where the door was, where the two scientists were sitting and his current position. It was obvious that he couldn’t just walk into the observation area, say hy and go into the Hall. He couldn’t possibly go in and hit them until they fell unconscious. He was a scientist, not a goddamn mercenary. He suddenly remembered that there was a door in the wall to his right that led into the second Hall. But, there was no way he could get in there unseen, however, that his best and safest route.
He gave a passing thought as to what he would do once he got into the Hall. The rest of the scientists would be there and would certainly put up a good fight, as well as Oswald with something special in mind. He decided to think of that later and focus on what he was doing now.
His mouth opened suddenly and his eyes opened wide as a bright spark of memory entered his mind. He remembered that they had all run wires through certain rooms in the building that were connected to generators. They provided the power to the whole place, the lights, the computer equipment and the Telephone. If he could get to these wires and generators, he could knock out the power to the whole place and force them out into the abandoned rooms looking for the cause. He could walk quietly into the Hall and get the girl out of here without them knowing anything. Perfect. Hopefully, once this was all over, she would tell him her name.
Where the hell are the wires and generators? Wait, that’s it. The wires are in the rooms, the generators are in the cellar. I’ll start there.
As quietly as he could manage it, he raced down the corridor toward the cellar entrance.
The entrance to the cellar was located inside a small back room in the main corridor, just a few feet away from the main doors. Except for the occasional repair done on a faulty generator, no one ever came in here. The door was close to being completely rotted away and would be hanging off the hinges if they weren’t made of metal. The door creaked very loudly as William opened it, gradually becoming louder as he pushed it further and further. The air inside was extremely cold, a lot colder than anywhere else in the building. William held his chest tight in his arms as he felt the cold race through his bloodstream.
He looked around the room, his body shaking. The room was empty, apart from two empty shelving units and a small unused iron radiator. Pieces of card and paper were scattered across the floor. A large dark brown pipe was fixed to the wall and ran through the floor and into the cellar. William’s eyes scanned the floor as he looked for the entrance. Using his feet, he dragged away the card and paper. He preferred not to use his hands, he continually blew hot breath into them as he struggled to stay warm.
After a few moments of digging, he found what he was looking for. The cellar entrance was a large wooden shutter with a small metal handle. He could smell the wood preserver that the scientists constantly spread across it to prevent it from sharing the same fate as every other wooden object. They always preferred to do this rather than leave it to rot. They all knew about the half-crazy survivors that incessantly walked the streets, and they didn’t want them sniffing around the Town Hall and screwing things up. William had always agreed with this idea in the past, but now, he regarded it as the ramblings of morons.
He knelt down on the floor slowly, allowing the cold to slowly attack the rest of his body and ensure that he would be used to it quicker, rather than meet the cold head on. He lay his hands open palmed over the cellar entrance, goose pimples quickly appeared on his skin as the death-like cold shot through his hands. He shuddered at the incredible unnatural feeling, quickly exhaling a breath as the sudden cold shock reached his brain.
He shook himself again, forcing the coldness to leave his body, or at least dissipate enough to allow him to continue. He tried his best to ignore the cold coming from underneath the shutter and quickly took hold of the handle and lifted the shutter, before the intense cold from the metal caused him to scream.
Beneath the shutter was a metal ladder descending into darkness. The powerful cold air from the cellar was now at its height, no longer being suppressed by the shutter and now coming through into the room above with great power. He could hear the escaping air rush out from its prison, as though it had been trapped there for years. To William, it felt like the patient slow breathing of some powerful and hideous creature, waiting below for him to come down.
Come on, you asshole, get it together. There’s nothing down there. The girl is your main concern, you have to help her.
Tightening his body to give him inner strength and to combat the cold, he started his descent down the ladder. He took hold of his lab coat in his hands before touching the bare metal. He had already touched the handle of the shutter and it felt as though he had just put his hand in liquid Nitrogen. He sure as hell didn’t want to do it again.
The rungs of the ladder echoed with a loud metallic clang as his feet touched them. He hoped the scientists wouldn’t hear him, there was nowhere to hide anywhere here and they wouldn’t give up searching until they found something.
The steadily growing colder air beneath him rushed past him as he descended, rushing underneath his lab and brushing past the bare skin on his face causing him to wince. While he tried to ignore it, the cold felt like a presence, an invisible entity rushing by him. The whole present experience felt like descending into a tomb.
After what seemed like a gruelling long amount of time forcing back the cold and fighting his growing irrational fears, William had finally reached the bottom of the ladder into the cellar.
The air felt damp down here and somehow escalated the cold. William could hear dripping water, he hoped it hadn’t dripped onto the generators, he didn’t want everything to plunge into blackness. He suddenly realised that he didn’t actually need to disable the lights all over the building, he would just need to disable the ones in the Main Hall. Hopefully, that would knock out the Telephone device itself and have them scrambling around looking for the cause and give him enough light to still see what he was doing.
He paid attention to the sounds around him and immediately heard the incessant droning of the generators as they continually fed electricity to the building. He was surprised that he didn’t hear it sooner, then realised that his fears of what his mind imagined was down here blocked out the sound of the generators.
He felt around the wall to his right and found the light switch. He switched it on, the large overhanging lights fizzled as they struggled to brighten up. Finally, only one half of the twin set of lights came on fully, the other half barely shone.
William looked round the cellar. Here too were large shelving units positioned against the walls, holding only small empty boxes and old worn vases. The generators took up most of the floor, the entanglement of wires and circuits running from them and in-between them ran to large circuit boxes on the walls that ran to the rest of the building.
William knelt down on the floor and studied each of the generators. They were only very simple things, each holding a small wind up core that droned loudly with activity. Each generator had a small piece of white paper attached to them, each with a specific name written on them. He saw that the first was labelled: SECOND FLOOR WEST SIDE. He moved to the next one. It read: TTHIRD FLOOR WEST AND EAST SIDE. Moving to the third, the paper read: GROUND FLOOR WEST SIDE AND MAIN HALL.
That’s it, this is the one.
He thought better about simply tearing the wires from the generator and risk electrocution and decided to shut off the main switch. It was hard to make out is smaller details what with the poor lighting and had to feel around for anything he recognised. After a few moments, he felt a small metal switch pointing at an angle. He pressed down on the switch until it dropped downward in one movement with a click, the sound from the generator slowly began to grind down to a halt, a slight squeaking sound was heard as it did.
William had no way of knowing if it had worked, but he was sure that it would have done the trick. He got up to his feet and stood right underneath the ladder, listening as hard as he could for the frantic and desperate voices from above. He could hear nothing but the constant grinding of the other generators around him. He slowly started to ascend the ladder, his concentration focused on the sounds he was looking for. He emerged again into the small room on the ground floor and immediately noticed the blanket of darkness that covered everything, and from a distance, he could just hear the nervous voices of the scientists running around as they sought out the problem.
Yes, I did it. Hopefully, they’ll be running round like headless chickens to much to notice me. I hope the girl’s okay.
The perfect white light that streamed in through the open windows in the Main Hall allowed him to see where exactly the Hall was from where he stood. He slowly started to walk back up the main corridor, keeping his eyes fixed on any movement that could dart across. He didn’t want to meet them in the dark.
He wondered whether they thought that the electricity failure might have been caused by him and if they were going to check up on him where they left him. He hoped that their desperate efforts of restoring power before they lost any important data made them forget that and focus their attention on restoring power and continuing the experiment.
He could feel the great draft of air around him as he neared the Main Hall, surrounding him like an ominous presence. He took cover by standing against the wall as he heard the erratic voices of the scientists, they were arguing with each other of how best to repair the problem quickly, as well as blaming each other for the loss of power. William could also hear Oswald’s voice, its same low yet fearful sound echoing across the Hall. The rest of the scientists remained silent and listened as his voice broke through theirs, all of them knowing the consequences if they didn’t.
William turned his head and looked into the Hall. He could see them in the grainy whiteness coming from outside stood at the Telephone, their heads darting from one direction to another at the machine as they looked for a possible cause. They looked almost like spirits in the dim light, their frantic movements like ethereal movements.
Oswald’s figure was the easiest to see amongst the others. He was tall and loomed over the others. His mere presence by their sides was enough for him to give his orders without question. After shouting his feelings of their incompetence of letting this happen, he told one of them to check the circuits in the observation room and then check the generators. William’s body immediately froze.
Jesus, their gonna’ come down here. They’ll find me. What the hell do I do?
Frozen by sudden shock and fear, his body and mind refused to operate. He pushed his brain to figure out an answer, even a simple one, but his concentration was focused on the hurried movements of the scientists.
Oh, God, come on, think of something!
The scientist was in the observation room, carefully checking each individual switch and circuit. They checked the recording and wave machines for a possible system surge. It gave William some time to think as they struggled to find the cause using knocked out machines. Realising it was pointless to check here, the scientist walked out and headed towards the corridor to the generators. William was still frozen to the spot, his mind was chaotic as it swam with imagined scenario’s of when they discovered the cause and found him, shaking with fear in the corridor, as well as what they would do with the girl.
Nervously shifting slowly back down the corridor, his arm fell sharply backwards, almost knocking him to the ground. He immediately turned and saw that he had fallen through an open door. He quickly looked back to ensure he wasn’t seen, then his mind worked the idea through his brain.
The door, that’s it, yes. I’ll hide in here!
He quickly moved inside the empty room and quietly closed the door, leaving an inch open for him to look through.
The scientist approached, their hurried footsteps increased in volume as they echoed along the tiled floor and added to the growing fear of William, each footstep sounded like the seconds dwindling away to a horrible situation. William quickly closed his eyes as the footsteps were mere feet away from his hiding place. He was terrified to close them, but he so wanted to. He held tightly to the brass door handle, hoping to god that it wouldn’t rattle as his body began to shake. His mind was attacked by his own condemning accusations at himself.
You shouldn’t have done this, you asshole. You should have let them have her, do what they want with her. You don’t know each other, you haven’t needed anybody, you’ve done fine on your own. But, you had to have the girl didn’t you, you had to have this one, the one they’re all testing and experimenting on.
As the footsteps passed outside the door, his body tensed incredibly as he waited for the inevitable ordeal. After a few moments, he began to relax as the footsteps carried on by without pausing toward the cellar. He opened his eyes fully and released a great exhale of trapped air, his muscles relaxed to a comfortable point.
Its okay, they’ve gone now. They’ll be a while checking it, hopefully they’ll think its wound itself down, or something. I hope the others won’t see me.
He slowly opened the door and checked in both directions to make sure no one was there. He slowly started to make his way into the Main Hall, constantly watching the other scientist stood at the Telephone, deliberating over what could have happened.
His attention was mainly focused on Oswald. He was the last person he wanted that could see him. His ominous words still rang in his head like bells of what he would do to him if he found him, and he believed them, he had no reason not to knowing the type of person he was. His minds eye ceaselessly fed him the image of Oswald seeing him in the dimly lit corners of the Hall, shouting his presence to the others, staring at him with eyes filled with hate and malice.
He half expected, and really wanted him to check the systems himself rather than letting someone else do it. He usually did final checks himself, claiming his personal eye was better than the morons working for him doing it.
William kept careful glances at the door he steadily approached, walking sideways to keep constant glances at that and the people at the other end of the Hall. Finally, after gruelling time and effort and terror filled moments, he finally reached the door, resting his whole body against it and lowering his head, as though embracing the door with the pleasure of arriving there.
He looked once more at the scientists assembled at the Telephone device and pushed open the door and stepped inside the room, quickly closing the door behind him.
He closed his eyes and reassured himself.
Its okay, you here now. You made it past the son of a bitch and got in here.
He opened his eyes again and took a look at the Hall he now stood in. The room was in perfect darkness, not a single object nor shape could be seen. This room was very small compared to the one outside, but the ever present chill around William made it feel just as big and empty as the last one. He tried to imagine it at its true size so as not to scare himself any more.
He hoped that the girl would be lit up like a Christmas tree, then he could get her and himself out of here, hopefully through the door at the opposite end if it wasn’t locked like so many others.
Don’t worry, they were in here, so she must be too. You’ve just got to look around for her.
He felt around the wall beside him for a light switch and found nothing.
Shit, how am I supposed to find her in this?
Realising he had no choice, he slowly started to moved further into the darkness, his steps were slow and timid as he moved, fearful that he would walk into something and knock it over and it would make a loud crash. He quickly tossed that thought into the darkness it came from. He put his hands in front of him and stretched out his arms as far as he could, his fingers twiddled hurriedly.
How the hell do I find her in this, this is insane, I can’t do this.
He fell over suddenly as his legs struck an object, his body bent forwards and he landed heavily on the ground. He controlled his whole brain to force himself not to shout out loud. He rolled over onto his back and took hold of his injured leg to nurse it with his hands.
What the hell was that? He thought to himself, feeling a little concerned.
He got up onto his knees and nervously extended his hands into the thick blackness. He didn’t know what the hell this was, but he hoped it was the girl. He fought his tortured imagination as it reeled to feed him unnatural images of what he would find.
He reached out and found nothing but empty cold air. He breathed in deeply and reached out further. For an instant, his fingertips caught the feel of something, an object. His body shuddered with a cold inner feeling, he exhaled the contained breath. He forced his hands to reach out further still and he again felt the object. His fingers began to reach further and feel more of what he had.
As his hands explored more of what was in front of him, he began to relax, with each passing second with nothing happening, he slowly took control of himself. After a few minutes of literally groping in the dark, he had felt along the object. With the information processed from his fingers and palms, he concluded to himself that this was a human figure.
The girl? God, I hope to god it is. But, how the hell do it know, theirs no lights. They have to have them somewhere, they can’t work in the dark.
He felt along the figure and across from it back into the darkness. He immediately felt something cold and thin which he thought could only be a large electric light. He ran his hands up the cold metal pole until he found a small metal switch. Breathing in slowly before committing himself, he then turned on the light.
William looked down in shock at the seated figure of the girl, her hands were on her lap, her eyes were closed. Wires and tubes hung out of her skin and ran along the floor, a large metallic cap was placed on top of her head running wires out and into large recording machines placed behind her.
Holy Christ, what have they done to her?
William leaned in closer to her face. She appeared to be asleep, totally unaware of what was happening to her. William shook her arm, desperately trying to wake her up. “Come on,” he said in a whispered tone. “Wake up, we have to get out of here, now.”
She wouldn’t wake up, he tried to shake her harder, almost knocking her out of the chair, but still no result.
“Jesus Christ, we haven’t got time for this, they’ll find us.”
Whatever he tried, it didn’t succeed. Her permanently seated figure remained in that posture, unmoving and unfazed.
William knew this wasn’t going to work. There was no way he could wake her up. She was definitely alive judging from the machines behind her that registered her heartbeat and brain functions, but she was comatose. He knew that repeated attempts at waking her would just waste precious time until the scientists came in here and found him. He began to panic, sweat perspired down his forehead, his breathing began to escalate. He looked around the area in front of him for the way out. There was definitely a door in here, he’d seen in hundreds of times, but the darkness and the growing fear clouded his judgement.
Realising it was pointless, he grabbed the large electric lamp and started to pull it away with him. He reached only a few inches before he saw that the long wire connecting it to the machines was too short to take it any further. Still plagued by terror of what could happen if he did it, he violently pulled the lead, pulling the small machine it was connected to with it. The machine made a low scraping sound as he pulled it further. He grunted as he pulled more and more, shining the lamp on the walls as he neared them, scanning every inch for any door like detail. He saw only white bare walls with the occasional cracks and small shelves harbouring small old mechanical equipment.
Oh shit, I’m wrong, there was never a fucking door. How the hell could I be wrong?
When he had almost reached the point when he would throw the lamp on the floor and accept defeat, he shined the lamp on another wall and shuddered with repressed excitement as he saw the crystal clear image of a small grey door.
I knew it, I knew I was right.
He briefly wondered whether fate would play another cruel joke on him and the door would be locked. But, he didn’t really care about that. He was prepared to smash the lock in with the lamp to get it open. Even if they heard him, he would be well away for them to do anything.
Just in case, he pulled the lamp as close as he could get it to the door then left it and walked over to the door. He tried the doorknob and the door opened ajar, the pure uncoloured white light of the sky poured in through the crack, allowing a breath of cold air to wash in and smother him. He had always hated the weather of the day, but right now, it was the best feeling he ever had. He stood still for a moment, forgetting everything that was presently happening and closed his eyes, feeling the perfect coldness of the air embrace him.
Hey, don’t waste any time, you have to get you and her out of here.
He ran for the girl and forcibly extracted the wires and tubes from her body, leaving tiny blood marked holes in her flesh. He knew what her response to seeing them would be when she finally woke up, but he didn’t have the luxury of sitting down and removing them carefully. He took her up in his arms and carried her quietly out through the open door. He placed her arms flat on her stomach and tucked her head snugly in his right arm. He didn’t want her arms and head to bang into anything while he carried her, plus if she did, it would make a loud noise. He didn’t want to take any chances.
When he was almost out of the doorway and into the empty stillness of the outside, he heard the inner door open and the voices of the scientists as they walked into the room, perfect white light busted through the doorway into the small room.
Shit, they must have found the generator. I have to move fast.
He closed the door quietly behind him as he stepped outside into the silent and empty air. Just outside the back door was a small concrete path that ran all along the building. Right in front of William was the back garden of the Town Hall, the hideous trees and overgrown undergrowth possessed no charm or appeal in the harsh light from above.
He knew that being quiet now was pointless, they would obviously see the lamp switched on and the girl missing. He was proved right after he walked a few steps and heard the frantic shouting of the scientists again as they realised what was happening. He heard Oswald’s screams and shouts at those around him to get a move on and get the bastard back here.
Not wasting a moment, William darted as fast as he could along the green grass, through the tightly knitted undergrowth, through a small hole in the fence and into the dead city beyond.

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