The heat, it was all over. Why was it so hot in here, it felt like it was consuming my whole body! Sweat was pouring down my face, my hair sticking to my forehead. My clothes were molding to me like a second skin. I was gasping for air but the heat was sucking out all the oxygen. It was like a furnace in my room. I swept my hand over my face trying to wipe off some of the sweat off.
‘This isn’t right.’ I thought. Slowly I opened my eyes and uttered a scream and scrambling back up against my head board. I was surrounded by bright red flames; it was roaring in my ears the sound that wasn’t there a moment ago.
“Help!” I screamed. The heat felt like it was eating at my skin but I had no burn marks. Cowering I huddled closer to the head board, bringing my knees up to my chest and covered my head with my arms. How is this happening? Doesn’t anyone know I’m in here?
I was going to burn alive.
Tears were streaming down my face, no one would come. Why would they, they all hated me.
I was alone…. Always alone!
I peeked up and saw the flames were slowly seeping on the bed covers. There was nowhere to run, I was trapped. All I could do was sit there and wait. My throat was raw from coughing, I began to sway as the bright flickering room blurred and start to fade.
“Help” I rasped before everything went dark but somehow I watched myself fall towards the flames…..
‘Help me! Take it away, please!’
Was that me?
‘I can’t take it anymore!’ A deep voice cried hysterically.
That couldn’t be me.
It was frantic, pleading for me to help but how? Wasn’t I burning alive? No, I was… just… warm? How was that possible?
‘I don’t want to be here’ it was said in a shuttering whisper.
“How can I help you, I don’t even know where you are” I said into the blackness.
‘Help me please’ the voice was weak as it began to fade away.
And just like that it was gone.
“Hey!” I called out but got no answer, no voice, no sound, nothing.
“Conner get up!” I was shook hard as I opened my eyes. Asher stood over me with a concerned look.
“Dude are ok?” I sat up slowly realizing I was panting and my clothes were damp with sweat. I blinked in confusion and shot up, sitting in my bed.
“Hey?” Asher said again and I looked in every corner of my room for signs of scorch marks. I reached up and rubbed my arms, I could still feel the heat on my skin, the siring fire out to burn me alive. I shivered,
“So hot” I mumbled under the panting I was doing.
“What?” Asher asked in confusion.
“I hurt but then I didn’t” I look up at him with a frown. “Where is he?” I reached out in sudden panic and grabbed his shirt in my hands when he gave me no answer.
“Where is he?!” I exclaimed. Asher widened his eyes and grabbed my wrist in a tight hold.
“Who, who are you talking about Connor? No one’s here! It was just a dream mate.” I looked up at him blinking in confusion.
“A-a dream?” I repeated.
“Yeah, it was nothing but a dream” I glanced down at my trembling hands; it was too real to be a dream, right?
“Hey, come on, I bet your hungry.” Asher said forcing a smile on his face and pulling me up from my bed. Right when I was out of the covers I noticed the cold air hit my body in a sharp way; I was drenched in sweat.
Asher seemed to notice as well and let go of my arm,
“Why don’t you take a shower and I’ll meet you down at the breakfast table.” I nodded mutely standing there is a daze as he closed the door behind him.
Shaking my head I went straight to my bathroom and turned the water on till steam fogged the mirrors. Climbing in after discarding my clothes I just stood and let the hot water hit my skin with my head tilled back under the spray.
I gasped in surprise and nearly slipped backwards in the tub as the memory of those desperate words came back. It was such a distressed voice that it was almost real. Why in the world would someone want my help anyway? Maybe my subconscious was just wanted to make me feel useful somehow, even in my dreams.
With a sigh I continued my shower before stepping out and wrapping a towel around my body. I opened my door and reached out to my right to flip my iPod dock on letting the room fill with Imagine Dragons- Who We Are. I rummaged through my things pulling out a pair of dark wash jeans and a white tank with a checkered button up. I slowly put them on and grabbed my brush combing out the few tangles I had in the front and gelled it upwards in a twist on the side, which was unusual for me. Once I was done I grabbed my iPod from the dock and head phones along with a jacket and headed down stairs to meet Asher for breakfast.
The second I entered the kitchen I noticed a few younger members of the pack standing around talking with him. Sluggishly I continued in and took a seat. The moment I sat down I felt everyone’s gaze on me and the hostile air filled the room instantly.
“We’ll talk with you later Asher, Something suddenly stinks and my stomachs already turning.” I glanced at them with a raise brow and an eye roll,
‘Will they ever get over themselves?’
With that the group walked out making annoyed tisking sounds as they went. A plate suddenly appeared in front of me and I glanced up to see Asher smiled down at me with a slight grimace.
“I made us breakfast” the plate was filled with scrambled eggs bacon and toast.
“Thank you” I picked up my fork and ate silently.
We said nothing the whole time and I knew it was sort of awkward for him… well both of us. We weren’t all that close besides the occasional small talk and breakfasts like this one; we barley hung out. Asher had his own circle of friends where I had none. We were only aquatinted by our parents. The only one I was truly friends with was Avery’s sister, Delilah, who was off in a new pack with her mate.
“So what do you have planned for the day?” Asher decided to break the silence.
“I’m going by the school today” I told him picking up a piece of bacon.
“Oh you mean that Elder school”
“Yeah” he frowned.
“What for?” I glanced up at him and shrugged.
“Just because” he laughed putting his for down.
“It’s amazing that they even let you study there when you’re not even an Elder” I looked down at my food, well that was all Caleb’s doing, I thought quietly.
“Well I have to get going, my dad said I’m on portal today” he said picking up his now empty plate and nodding a goodbye to me. I sat there pushing the eggs around on my plate absentmindedly, nothing but silence in the vacant dining room which brought back the dream from last night. It felt so real that I was slightly frightened by it still. The heat on my skin and that distressed and petrified voice that rung in my head; I desperately wanted to help the voice with all my being and it hurt that there was no way to do that. With those thoughts my appetite vanished and I took my unfinished plate to the kitchen.
I pulled up to the school, heading straight towards the door. Once I walked into the building, automatically one of the professors spotted me.
“What are you doing here Connor?” Mr. Falcon asked with a smile as he walked up to me. I shook my head.
“Nothing much” I muttered. Mr. Falcon was a tall lean man with light brown hair and hazel eyes, I had one of his classes back in my sophomore days and he was one of the nicest teachers. He was an Elder like all the rest of the teachers here but I have no idea what kind of power he wields.
“Didn’t you graduate already” I heard the teasing tone in his voice but I didn’t play along.
“Hm” was all I said. There was a light pause before he spoke again,
“I’m pretty sure I seen your dad running around here earlier” he told me looking around like Caleb would pop up just form the mention of him.
“Alright well I’ll see you around” with that Mr. Falcon walked off waving goodbye at me. I wasn’t the best person to talk to, since I was alone most of the time. Really most of my life, my conversation skill suffered for it and I sometime came off as rude but what do you expect from an orphan with an abusive family and pack, who had chosen to go mute for a few years.
I didn’t linger as I started off down the hall at a brisk pace because I didn’t want to bump into anyone else right now so I turned an empty corridor trying to avoid any other encounter.
For some strange reason I felt uneasy the moment I walked into the school and the further I walked down the hallway the stronger it became. I felt suffocated like I did in my dream and hot. Frowning I stopped suddenly trying to get my breath back.
‘What the hell is happening’ I thought in confusion.
Then a sudden chill ran up my spine as I turned to look to my right. And there was the old wood door from yesterday that lead to the old fashion basement prison. Unable to stop myself and just like last time my body moved on its own, I opened the door the large screeching sound attaching my ears again. I walked in cracking the door like last time and tipped toed down the stairs, the air was stuffier than yesterday which was weird. Since this was a basement in an old castle, wasn’t it supposed to be cold and drafty instead of hot and stuffy?
My feet had a mind of their own and took me straight towards the back where the giant metal box was. And just like before the closer I got to it the hotter it became which made me really think it was a heater of some sort but I spotted something I didn’t see yesterday. On the top of the metal box were weird ventilation holes that didn’t fit a heater in the least bit. I walked up to it, looking at it up and down in uncertainty as the uneasiness from earlier got worse and worse. Gulping I reached out and touched the smooth surface with the tip of my fingers and immediately yanked my hand back with a sharp scream at the feeling of scorching hot metal on my fingertips.
I fell back in shock clutching my hand to my chest staring up at the thing.
“Did you hear that?” a distant voice said from all the way in the front of the room. I snapped my head around in distress.
I don’t think I was allowed down here so being caught would not me a good thing. Quickly I pulled myself up from the grimy floor and franticly looked for a place to hide as the sound of footsteps got closer but it was no use everything was left in the open. When the sound of them seconds away reached my ears and I panicked. I spotted a gap behind the metal box, so immediately I raced towards it squeezing in behind it trying to keep myself as close to the wall so not to get burned by the metal again.
“I don’t see anything” that was the deep male voice from earlier but it was mere feet away this time.
“Man it’s hot” another male voice said.
“Yeah it’s pretty miserable down here, I kind of feel bad you know.” the guy said.
“Mm” I took that as an agreement from the other male.
“Well it won’t be long now; it will be all over tomorrow.”
What the hell were they talking about? I frowned as I tried to keep up with their conversation but it was impossible.
“We’ll let go and make the arrangements. The Elder’s Infiltration Division and the head council made their decision and we have no chose but to obey.”
“Yeah, let’s go” I waited till the front door closed before scooting out and falling to my knees gasping for air. I was pouring sweating and my lungs were desperate for fresh air as I collapsed. I didn’t understand why that thing was so damn hot, there wasn’t anything hooked up to the back for it to be a heater and it was unusually quiet.
Sighing I turned over on my back and laid there for a long moment thinking back on that weird conversation. Maybe it has to do with what my dad and Jim were whispering about yesterday, with the counsel being involved and all. But if the Elder’s Infiltration Division was involved it was something serious. I’m pretty sure Avery’s brother James was part of that group. They were the ones who broke into hunter facilities and rescued captured wolves. So what did they decided on?
Ugh, maybe I’m just being nosy and looking too much into something that probably was nothing. I have too much free time on my hands I should start looking for a job or something. Groaning I hopped to my feet ready to get out of this hot basement but right when I made a move to leave, the sound of chains rattling caught my sensitive ears and I jerked to a stop.
My heart began to race as I turned towards the sound and found myself facing the metal box again. I stood there for a whole minute waiting for the sound again but got nothing. Taking a shaking deep breath I stepped closer towards the box making sure I was at a safe distance so I didn’t burn myself.
“Hello” I whispered. There was no way someone was in there, I’m just being stupid. I shook my head ready to leave but my body wouldn’t move.
“Hello” I said much louder. “Is some…one… in there?” it came out as a bewildered question. I got no answer and I huffed at how ridiculous I was being.
“Of course, no one’s in there, why would a school be locking people away in dangerously hot large metal boxes?” I muttered to myself.
The rattling chains came again and I jumped at the sound stepping back but this time the sound of chains slamming against the walls of the box rang loud and clear which caused me to gasp in fright and run.
Someone really was in there!