I'll keep this simple. Bottom line is you can't sleep, no matter what you try your eyes refuse to stay closed. You're more tired than you have ever been in your life and yet there no rest to be had. Thats when you started noticing things. Things other people didn't seem to see. I window suspended in the middle of nowhere showing a city that couldn't possibly exists in any sane world. Sometimes it feels like you're being watched, sometimes you know you are. You're hallucinating from too little sleep right? Wrong! You're just waking up.
The Bottles had smashed against its face, drenching it in alcohol and glass shards, it had been hit with pipes and bricks, shrugging off the blows with ease.
More importantly, it had torn his friends to ribbons as they had all tried to flee, one by one, until only he was left, alone, the darkness of the construction site and the silence that surrounded him like tidal waves slamming against the shore of his sanity.
a growl and thumping footsteps heralded the things arrival on the sixth floor, and Mick ran, heart pouding so hard he thought it would smash its way out of his ribcage, but as he came skidding to a halt, he realized there was no where for him to run, and no where to hide.
The creature growled and stalked closer, it's blood red eyes locked on the small, portly young man before it, its long serpentine tongue slathering thick, disgusting drool across its the serrated teeth that lined its gaping maw.
Mick fumbled and searched for something, anything nearby, when his hands flew into his pockets, each finding a small squarish hunk of metal, with a feral grin mick drew the two zippo lighters from his pockets, and flicked the lids open
The monster, still drenched in alcohol, moved closer to the boy, who despite his impending demise was smiling, a strange thing, but the beast disregarded it as the snapping of sanity, which was not an all too unusual occurrence.
The beast extended its neck, slowly, intimidating its prey was one of its favorite pastimes.
Mick jammed the lighters under its chin, and flame sprung into life, spreading quickly until it covered the creatures entire face, and most of its back.
It screeched in pain and reeled back, behind it Mick saw the ledge of the construction site, and felt a surge of adrenaline and emotion fill his entire body with another kind of burning heat, that of uncontrollable fury.
the creature, now blinded, stumbled backwards, still howling, when it felt something small and fleshy slam into its stomach, it flailed its claws and even as it felt itself tipping over a precipice, it heard a cry of pain, and made to strike again, but this time its claws slammed through concrete.
All of a sudden, the strange sensation it had felt moments before was understood.
It was falling.
As he watched the flaming thing smack into the ground with a bloody crack, Mick, one hand holding his neck where the creature's talons had cut into him, shambled off, the sound of sirens getting closer and closer.
A few hours later, he had bandaged his wound, and upon checkiong the news, discovered he was considered missing/dead, and that whilst the debris of his battle had been found, there was no sign or mention of the creature.
The TV flickers at me, all images and movement and sound, but I'm not paying one bit of attention. Outside, I can hear the other tenants shouting, screaming, crying; this is a fucking rough neighbourhood, after all. But yet again I find myself not caring.
Once again, my attention is focused upon my own hands. I can still feel the weight of that gun, still remember the sensation the recoil sent up my arm, and the smell of gunpowder that hovered in the air after.
Most of all, I can still remember that police officer, dying on the asphalt.
Dying for being a good cop, for just doing his fucking job.
My bosses refuse to contact me back; they know exactly what sorta shit I'm in, and want nothing to do with it. Talk about honour amongst thieves. Though I suppose honour amongst junkies would be a more accurate description.
So I'm holed up at Jackie's place, this sensation of regret never leaving me, never letting me focus upon anything much else.
And most of all, never letting me sleep.
It's been days now since I closed my eyes for any length of time decent enough to be called sleep, and I'm exhausted. Yet still, I can't settle my mind, can't lose this feeling of regret and self-hatred that's been building.
I'm a fucking wreck, in short.
“Sandwich, man?” calls Jackie from the door of his kitchen. “Nah, I'm okay,” I reply quietly, at which point I hear him approach me.
“Andy, my man, you haven't eaten all day. You haven't fucking slept in even longer. You gotta eat something, dude, or you're gonna kill yourself.” I look up and smile at my friend. “Well, alright. If you fuckin' insist.” He slaps me on the back and moves to the kitchen.
“I do. I don't care if you're eating yourself alive with regret, a man's still gotta have something more solid than self-hatred in his stomach.”
Jackie's always had a bizarre sense of humour.
He's also probably the only friend I have in the world right now, so I'm fine with this.
The sound doesn't hit me immediately. I'm too focused upon my own problems, and frankly, such a sound is so common in this city that initially I pay it no heed. But suddenly, just as it has grown so loud I know there's several of them and they're all around the building, I recognise the sound.
Sirens. And lots of them.
Oh, fuck. They've found me.
It'll have been one of those fucking drug dealers who snitched me out. Hell, it could just be good policework on their part. Doesn't matter right now, really; I'm looking out the window to see the flashing lights of at least a dozen police cars surrounding the apartment block, and there'll be just as many on the other side, too.
Well, shit. This is bad.
Jackie's staring at me with a look of mute horror as I stride through to the room he gave me and grab my messenger bag, slinging it over my shoulder and moving for the door. “You're not going down for helping me out, man,” I say to him as I steel myself to open the door, “This is my problem; I gotta deal with it.”
“Andrew, wait!” Jackie yells, but too late; I've hauled the door open and am sprinting down the corridor.
I don't know where I'm running to, but I know what I'm running from.
Mostly though, I'm just running. Like the gates of Hell have just opened behind me.
Which is a good thing, because they're probably about to.
The sirens were defining and through every window the flashing of lights and the screeching of tires signal the building is surrounded. As you approach the stairwell two men in body armour and wielding smg's round the corner.
"Stop right there and lie facedown with your hands behind you head." the one in front shouts leveling his weapon, though his finger rests on the trigger guard it obvious he means business.
Brianna wanted so badly to get some sleep! As she locked the library doors behind her, she huffed and adjusted the messenger bag she had slung across her shoulder. Insomnia was bad and she began to list off the reasons why. Sleep enabled the brain's neurons to rest and energize themselves. Sleep allowed you to rest your eyes and body. Sleep ... sleep was natural, instinctual ... Sleep was the reason the human race had survived so long! Not sleeping was ... it was just wrong!
"Goodnight, library. Goodnight, books. Wish me luck." She hated feeling like this. She was restless and she was beginning to see things. A door she had never noticed before that was locked. A book that hadn't been on that cart but she could have sworn she'd put all the books away. And every time she tried to point it out to someone, they gave her a weird look and quickly hurried away. At this rate, they might throw her into the mental hospital and throw away the key! The sad part was, that was beginning to seem like a really good idea.
The city was awfully quiet--or as quiet as the city got, as she made her way down to the subway. She purchased her ticket, kept her eyes out for anyone slinking around in the shadows. Although as she waited for the train, she was certain she saw ... she squinted at a pillar on the other end of the station. She could have sworn she'd just seen someone ... No, no it couldn't be. But damnit, now she felt someone watching her. She glanced from one side to another, still staring ahead. Then suddenly whipped around!
... No one.
Brianna huffed and clasped her hands behind her head. Yeah, she was sssooo going insane. Either that or she had stumbled onto the set of a horror film in the making ... No, wait. Back up. Think of something else. Happy thoughts. Happy thoughts. Damnit, why was it so quiet?!
She was pretty sure she jumped! Then she glanced to her right. What the hell?! Where had this tall guy come from? Was he a homeless bum? He was wearing a trench coat, a beanie. He looked and smelled like he hadn't showered or shaved in ages. But there was something ... odd about him, although she couldn't put a finger on it. Holy crap, was she going to be mugged?!
Okay, be calm, Brianna. "Hi." She wet her lips, casually glanced around. Where was that blasted train?
"... Your train's here."
She glanced from the side to the front of her and looked--really looked--at the train. It didn't look the subway car she was used to seeing! It looked like one of those old fashioned western steam trains. But that ... that couldn't be right. "Um ... That doesn't look like my train." But when she turned to look at the guy--he was gone! Okay, now it was really getting freaky! She waited for the train to disappear, folding her arms and tapping her foot. Yeah, it was going to disappear or move on eventually and then the subway car that was scheduled to come would be here, she would go home. Home. Somewhere safe, somewhere secure, somewhere that didn't have homeless freaks and obsolete trains that belonged in a museum!
How many days it had been since the construction site it was impossible to tell. Though thanks to the graces of a shady dive the days didn't matter. There was only closing time and happy hour.
"Micky you old dog you! Still here?"
Through the smoke-clogged air an ever cheerful Jeff dressed out of place in an open collar shirt and dress pants make his was to sit in the bar chair next to Mick before taking the bottle from Micks hand and taking a sip, grimacing and handing it back. "Yuck is this what they call beer here.?" he faced Mick before getting down to why he came.
"Look I know you and your boys were tight, but look at yourself, have you even slept?" behind him on the other side of the torn up pool table the door between the toilets opened. Only yesterday there hadn't been a door between the toilets, and definitely not one that was in the shape of a star. The door rested slightly ajar as what looked like a needle peeked out from behind it. Then the needle was followed by the body of a large dog the needle forming the dog's head.
"Hey Mick Can you hear me? I was just saying that you should move this party somewhere decent. My friends are waiting for me in Castle Valentia if you want to come along."
There was something to be said about waiting and paranoia. The former did not soothe the latter, nor the latter the former. This was a lesson Brianna was learning as she waited and waited for the train to leave. But it did not. And she didn't hear the roar of another train coming, either. She shifted her weight to the other foot, tapped it, slowly exhaled. Hummed softly to herself which failed to fill the thick silence wrapped around her.
The sound echoed and made her jump before her mind had a chance to tell her body to "be cool". It was a sharp sound. Like someone had thrown a coin into the station and it had bounced against the tiles. "Is ... Is anyone there ...?" she asked out loud. Her voice sounded nervous, high-pitched, squeaky. She would have pinched herself for sounding that way had she the energy to spare to worry of trivial things like that. Her heart was beating fast, her throat was dry. She took a few steps back, not realizing the train's doors had opened for her slowly. She had just come to the edge of the platform when she found herself tipping backwards!
Arms flailing and fighting to regain her balance, the last thing she saw just as the doors closed in front of her and the ground rose to meet her were something out of a nightmare! She hit the ground with a thud! and for what seemed like an eternity lay on the red carpet. Nice, soft carpet. "I bet stuff like this doesn't happen at Paris," she muttered under her breath. She could see herself sitting at a table outside of a cafe, sipping cappucino and watching the tourists walk by. Ah, that would be bliss. She sat up and looked around. The train was moving. The seats were lovely. Just as antique as the train. Everything was red with some golden embroidering. The seats were empty. Where was everyone?
She didn't know how long she lay there. She suddenly didn't feel like rushing off. It was nice here ... The train suddenly stopped and she sat up. That was quick. Had they come to her stop already? She certainly hoped they hadn't passed it by and were a thousand miles away from their intended destination. Then she'd never return home.
There was still no sign of anyone else on the train as she dusted herself off. The doors opened for her but what she saw as she stood in the doorway made her jaw drop open! Right in front of her, with the sun shining down at it, right in front of her was ... the Eiffel Tower!?
Brianna took one step, then another out of the train. She shook her head, put a hand to her temple. This couldn't be right! This just couldn't be!
Mick slid clumsily off the Barstool, heading towards the toilet
"shit yeah, sounds good man, just gotta take a piss, gimme a sec" he mumbled, eyes locked on the syringe headed dog, and just as he made to pass it, he flipped it the bird
"can i help you prick head?" he whispered bumping into and opening the door to the mens restroom.
a minute or two passed and Mick emerged from the toilet and strode for the exit to the bar.
"lets get this fucking show on the road then" he said, indicating for Jeff to lead the way.
Both dog and door where gone when Mich came out of the toilets. Gone as it they never existed, n one in the bar seemed to even notice they were ever there, even Jeff who hadn't appeared to have had anything to drink yet. What people had seemed to notice was Jeff's expensive attire and the glittering watch on his arm that looked well looked after enough to be genuine.
Several of them were exiting the bar glancing at the still smiling Jeff as he turned to lead the way towards the door the atmosphere of the bar suddenly turning foreboding and dark, the idle bar talk all but ceasing completely.
Outside, in the narrow alley that lead to the bar five figures waited blocking the path ahead, menace in their stance and eyes.
The sun was high in Paris as Brianna stared at its most famous monument. Then out of nowhere her purse was pulled from her shoulders and a man dashed away. Brianna almost didn't notice and when she did the thief was already disappearing into the crowd, right where the train had been, and there wasn't even a trace of tracks in the road.
The leader of the muggers moved out of the shadows, a lead pipe gripped tightly in his gloved hands
"give me your wallet" he growled as the others closed in, though they were unarmed, they made a menacing sight and Jeff instinctively stepped away from them
"Eat a dick cunt" Mick replied, moving to walk past when the pipe struck his arm, the sound of the lead pipe slamming onto steel shocking all
"the fuck?" mick said looking to his now armored arm, yelling with surprise and alarm as he realized his arm was covered in thick spiky plate armor, but the series of fists that thumped into him forced his consciousness out replaced by black oblivion as he passed out.
"Urgh fuck shitting thunder faggot fuck dick fuck" the stream of obscenities spilt from cracked lips as Mick forced himself to his knees, both arms now normal but his left sleeve, the one he had thought covered in platemail, was torn and stretched.
"Mick, you alright?" Jeff asked, dragging the still groggy Mick to his feet
"Cuntstookmewalletandmademearmsteel" he gurgled in reply wiping at the feeling of stickyness that covered most of the right half of his face.
"Christ they must have hit your head hard." Jeff said as they exited the alley into the into the small parking lot. Though to Mick's eyes something was off. It was no more deserted than usually this time of young night. Someone or something was following them. Couldn't be the muggers they already got what they came for, even down to Jeff's wedding ring. No there was some other presence drawn to the pair. Ans without having to see it lurking Mick knew it had to be the dog from the bar.
One moment, she was admiring the view and the next ... someone had ripped off of her bag! She stood there in shock and watched him run! Then she snapped out of it and ran after him! "Hey, get back here! Stop, thief!" She jumped over objects and pushed through people!