Fifth Avenue - The Replacements

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Chapter Eighteen

A baby lay in a crib staring up at the mobile over it with amazement, a large hand reaches for the child and the baby grabs one of its fingers “Hartley” a male voice coos and Hartley’s eyes widen as she realizes the baby was her.

When the baby Hartley released the hand the man picked her up and held her to his chest “she’s perfect Catherine” the male voice mutters playing with the babies hands, the woman laughs and wraps her arms around the man’s waist.

“We did this” she whispers, Hartley goes to step forward, so she could see her parents faces once again but before she could the man with red eyes, from her other dreams, stepped in her way.

The room dims until it was pitch black, the only thing Hartley could see was the mans glowing red eyes, “Sweet memory” the man speaks in a groveled tone before chuckling “What a perfect family you would have been” the man clicks his fingers and around them grew a room which appeared to be a kitchen and dining room, a woman stood in front of the stove humming a happy tune as a man had the paper in front of his face, appearing as he was reading it.

“How many nights do you dream of what could have been?” he asks and Hartley steps towards the woman “wishing that you were all normal”

The woman at the stove turns towards the doorway behind Hartley and smiles, Hartley’s eyes teared up as she saw her mother smile “Hartley I’m so happy you’re home” the woman says opening her arms, Hartley eagerly ran into them, hugging her tight “Shhh sweetie there is no need to cry” the woman soothes.

Hartley’s mum, Catherine, smiles before her body morphs into the man with red eyes “Pathetic” he snarls and Hartley jumps back.

“How are you doing this?” she asks confused, the man with red eyes steps towards her “Who are you?”

The man chuckles loudly “Join me and find out” he says extending his hand “trust me, I can show you things you will never believe” Hartley looks to the man’s hand back to his eyes but does nothing “Fine” he says drawing his hand back “We will talk soon” the man lifts his hands “Sweet dreams” he says before clicking his fingers.

Hartley sat up panting, sweat poured off her body and tears ran down her cheeks. It took her six minutes before she finally calmed herself enough to go out to the team, she walked as fast as she could towards Doc’s office but stopped before she knocked on the door.

“Why do you have to be so different?” a familiar voice says and she turns slowly to see Gretchen standing behind her, Gretchen’s skin was pasty white, her eyes dark and bloodshot, blood stains coated her chin and her hair was knotted and messy.

“Not now” Hartley mutters to herself “Leave me alone, do you not think I suffered enough” Gretchen chuckles cruelly and steps forward allowing Hartley to notice the slight scorch marks which covered her neck and chest.

Hartley backs up into the wall behind her “You’ve not nearly suffered enough Hartley, and I will be sure that your suffering will not end until the day you take your very last breath” she says in an angered tone, Hartley’s chest began to fall and rise in a fast manner, her breathing becoming faster.

“I-I didn’t do this to you, why can’t you leave me alone?” Hartley exclaims loudly before storming forwards and passing straight through Gretchen, but when she turns around Gretchen was still standing in the same spot.

Gretchen sighs “You forget Hartley, I’m inside your head, lie to me all you want but I know the truth” tears begin to pool in Hartley’s eyes “I know you think you killed the orphanage and all of us innocent orphans, you think yourself a monster and I can tell you Hartley you’re right, you are a monster and you are the reason all of us died”

Hartley turns away from her in anger, her hands balling in her hair as she tries to keep it from turning red “Stop it, go away!!” she screams.

“Hartley?” Flicker asks in a worried tone “is everything okay, who are you talking to?” he asks curiously, his eyes scanning the otherwise empty hall.

She slides down the wall sobbing, Gretchen had disappeared and Flicker runs to Docs office grabbing him, when they returned Hartley hadn’t moved but had instead began to rock herself back and forward, her hands tangled in her dark blue hair as the walls surrounding them began to groan.

Doc kneels in front of her, he tilts her head so she is looking into his eyes “Breathe” he whispers lightly “please, come on Miss Faye, just take in a deep breath of air” Hartley blinks and closes her eyes breathing in deeply “good girl, now breathe out” she releases her breath and open her eyes to look into Docs “are you okay?” he says lightly and she nods “do you wish to talk about it?” he asks and she shakes her head “that’s okay, come on” Doc stands pulling Hartley up along with him “now you must control your emotions better or I will be forced to put in the cell block” he reminds and she nods.

“I’m sorry” she whispers before becoming light headed and falling into Docs arms “my head” she mutters, gripping it tightly “I feel so” her eyes flutter closed “so tired...”

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