Wednesday, March 23, 2011
I held a book tightly in my arms, afraid that if I left it alone for a second, it would disappear at any time. It had a reputation for doing that. I walked slowly and wearily through the empty halls, the howls of many people who had lost their minds long ago made chills run down my spine and my hairs stand on end. Still, I padded silently down the corridor, repeating to myself that there was nothing that could hurt me.
I stopped in front of a door, a door no different than all of the others that I had passed through on my way here. My fingers started trembling, and I reached for a key that was inside my dress pocket. I inserted the key into its designated hole, and turned it. The sound of rusty locks clanged and the vibrations felt like they were coursing through my body, only to add to my fear-caused adrenaline.
Slowly, carefully, I opened the door. The room was completely empty and unadorned except for a small window and a woman lying in the corner.
This woman looked up, examined me, and her eyes fell on the book I still held tightly to my chest. She grinned, displaying her cracked teeth. Her eyes were wild, black against the darkness, but they seemed to be... Empty. "You came!" She cried, filled with glee.
She stood up slowly, her legs thin and wobbly. She leaned against the wall, never taking her eyes off me. She started walking towards me, her eagerness to reach the book tangible.
I took a step backwards.
"Now, hand me the book, dear," she whispered to me. She held her feeble hands out, and I reluctantly handed her the book.
She grabbed it eagerly, her hands trailing over the ancient leather binding and the single ruby encrusted in the center. She slowly opened it, and then she dropped it as if she had been burned by the book. As the book hit the floor with a resounding thud, she screamed. She screamed with all her might, a shrill and terrifying scream, possibly the most bloodcurdling, haunting sound of fear and despair I had ever witnessed in my life.
I stepped backwards, my legs leaden with mortification. I turned around, ready to flee, but something grabbed my arm from behind. I cried out in pain as something punctured my skin, and I looked down. The woman had grabbed my arm. Something on her hand looked wrong, and then I noticed it. There were nails coming out of her fingertips. My eyes opened wide, and I took in the rest of her body. My eyes trailed up to her arms, where it looked like there were giant stakes protruding from the elbows. I would have screamed, but the feeling of dread and hopelessness strangled the cry from my throat. And then I had the courage to look at her face. There was blood everywhere. There were nails sticking out of her skull as well, and her eyes were bloodshot and black. The woman held her hands up, and screamed one last time, the veins sticking out on her neck. And then she collapsed. I choked up a sob, and grasped for logic as I swooped down and grabbed the book. By some miraculous reason, I managed to stumble out of the chamber and ran.
There was no doubt about it now-- Only I could open the book. Dread ripped through my conscious thoughts, and I knew that I had to get out of this place somehow. I should have never come here. There were so many things that had warned me. But now that this book had caused someone's death, there were much more evil forces that would come after it.
I swear I heard footsteps behind me. But I was too afraid to look back. I kept on running down those dreary, dark corridors, looking for the exit. But I was lost. I had never been through this passage before. I didn't dare give up though, so I ran and hoped that whatever was following behind me would soon tire before I did.
I was gaining confidence that I would find my way out, but I had hoped too quickly. I tripped over a rock that was sticking out slightly more than the others, and my knees gave in from underneath me. As I hit the ground, I did nothing to get back up. The book was still in my hands, crimson drops of blood still hanging off of it. The footsteps grew louder, and I just lay there, defenseless, weak, tired, and was actually hoping for the end to come. This book had become my life, it had become me, and it also tore my entire identity apart. I was ready for this to end.
The heavy stomps slowed down, and eventually came to a stop, right behind me. I closed my eyes, and didn't dare to open them again. I had experienced so much in the past few hours I felt like it had worn all my years out of me.
I sensed whatever was behind me kneel, and they put their hand gently on my shoulder. I did not expect this. None of us moved for what seemed like an eternity, and I finally decided to open my eyes. The room was still dark and made of stone, the book was still in my hands. I turned my head slowly to face the person behind me, and then I gasped.
What I saw was an angel. Or maybe I imagined him to be an angel.
"You're alright," he whispered silently, and helped me up off the stone floor. "No one is going to hurt you, I promise."
I stood there, looking at him, and I believed him. Peace flowed through me, and I leaned into him for support. I closed my eyes again as he embraced me. Everything was okay.
And then he disappeared, leaving me alone. But this time I knew how to get out.
I closed my eyes one more time, and then I woke up.
It was only a nightmare.
Based on a nightmare I had a while ago. I just wrote this to try and find some logic behind it.