Silent Hill: SALVATION

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un jour je serai de retour près de toi
Original poster


I can smell her, even though I refuse to open my eyes and look upon what she's become.

The smell of blood melded with gasoline and burnt tires, and a hint of rusted metal. She doesn't walk anymore, instead scraping and straining towards me, the sound an assault upon my ears.

"Look at me."

I clench my eyes tighter, willing them to remain shut no matter what she says. The scraping draws closer, and the smell all the more overpowering. She's so close now, I know, so close it's almost killing me. But I can't open my eyes. I just can't.

"Look at me, Frank."
"" I stammer, a tear now running from my eye and my face contorted in pain and the effort of forcing my eyes shut, "...I can't... I just can't!" The scraping stops, and I know she's right in front of me, so close we could touch. I can hear her ragged breath, somehow still going despite everything trying to make it stop.

"Open your eyes and look at me, Frank."

Her words grow shorter and sharper, now. She's losing patience, growing more and more agitated. Won't be long before she's shouting now, I know all too well. Yet still, I will my eyes to remain shut.

I won't look at her, I won't. I won't behold what--


Winding back-roads in the black of night.

A bad idea however you try and make it sound.

The sedan grumbles up the hills and around the bends, unused to this sort of treatment. The radio's long gone; there's no stations to be found this far out in the ass-end of nowhere.

Fucking Sarah. Throws another one of her shit-fits and runs off for weeks, then phones me up and demands I come pick her up in some shithole of a small town in the middle of nowhere. Now, I love my wife, always have, but one cannot help but describe her as 'highly strung' with her constant meltdowns and disappearances.

One cannot help but describe her as 'a lady pushing her fucking luck', too.

I round another bend, cursing the world, my wife, and this shitty fucking car Michael's loaned me... only to curse and wrench at the steering wheel in a desperate attempt to avoid the car wreck lying right around the corner. I avoid the ruined vehicle, but am suddenly on a direct course towards the barrier that separates the road from the ominous dark void that is the mountainside.

Once again, I make a desperate attempt to drag the vehicle away from a collision course with the empty sky, but gravity and physics have other ideas; the sedan collides with the barrier and punches through it, hurling itself out into the open air and into the darkness.

My last thought it something to the tune of 'fucking Isaac Newton and his theories' before I plunge down into darkness... first thoughts upon regaining consciousness are those of surprise.

Surprise at the fact that despite that fall, I'm not a crumpled mush of flesh inside a ruined car at the bottom of a valley.

My head's pounding and lies at the centre of the airbag that has burst from the steering wheel. Groaning, I attempt to push myself up from it. Bad call; suffice to say that my everything hurts, and objects to being made to move after experiencing that accident. Yet I force myself to sit up, to fumble at the door handle and shove the door open, and finally to fall out of the drivers seat and onto the cold asphalt of the road.

Not my most glorified moment, but fuck it; I just survived one hell of an accident, so I'm not complaining.

Focusing on my surroundings is difficult, as my eyes remain blurred and out of focus. Concussion, perhaps? I start to notice the fog that seems to pervade the area, limiting my vision even further. I grab the side of the sedan and pull myself up. The vehicle's dented, but doing far too well for a car that's just taken a nose dive of the side of a mountain. Already I'm getting the sense that something isn't right here. My hand reaches into my pocket and pulls it out.

No signal, failing battery. Big fucking surprise.

Cursing, I move round to the back of the car and open the trunk. Inside, I withdraw the heavy flashlight I packed along with some spare batteries and slam it shut again. Gonna need to figure out where the fuck I am, and I'm not gonna be able to see very far without some sort of light, what with all this goddamn fog.

My vision's starting to come back into focus as I move away from my damaged car, clicking on the flashlight so it's powerful beam might punch through the fog and let me know where I'm going a little easier. My footsteps seem to echo ominously upon the asphalt, each step like a gunshot in the silence.

And it's as I've taken my first few steps away from the car that my flashlight catches the sign sitting to the right of the road, it's paint fading with age and yet still legible.

A sign that makes me stop in my tracks, because it's the name of the town my wife's at.

Stephen placed the bottle in his coat, calmly walking around as the outside world became dark and deathly quiet. He breathed deeply and continue to walk around the old pharmacy, the dim glow of his flashlight showing him the dusty and ash-covered counters and shelves. He walked to the pharmacy door and tried the knob but the door was locked. Seeing that the door was made of wood, he tried his luck with kicking it open. With every kick he grew weaker and with each strike a pain seared through his leg until he could stand no longer.

He collapsed and fell to the ground, holding his leg in pain breathing deeply and slowly. He felt weaker and more useless than he ever had before, tossing his glasses aside and pulling his knees to his chin. He leaned his head down and began to weep softly, knowing that nothing could be done.

"I never should have left you..."

He rocked himself back and forth, counting down from 100. Her face was all he could see, her cries were all he could hear, he wished he could touch her, hold her hand and feel her. He cried harder as he came to the realization that he might never again. Shuddering with anger and sadness, he clutched himself tighter and his breaths became shorter and more shallow. It became apparent to him that he may never leave this place, and he simply couldn't accept that fate.

Hearing a soft crunch he shot his attention to the rear door, his eyes widening with fear. He fumbled for his glasses and held his flashlight higher so he could see, but there was nothing but a blurry shadow. As he put his glasses on, the figure formed and when he saw it he dropped the flashlight and it clattered on the floor, the light extinguishing and the room going dark once again. He tried to stand and his hurt leg gave way underneath him, causing him to collapse again and land face-down on the floor. Once his head hit the hard ground everything went white and he stopped moving. His breaths became regular, his heartbeat no longer racing, finally able to rest his head, even if it wasn't by choice.

'It is the part of the many to suffer and the few to salve. You were a friend and a foil to me. And as you saved me then I shall save you now. Have hope.'

'Never were such things within me. Do you think to remake this flesh?'

'If I must.'

'Then set your face to a laughing god, and think no more of fathers.'

'Oh Lord, grant thy servant the power to continue through Purgatory.'

A car lay slumped in a ditch beside the highway. In the crash the windscreen had fractured and across the crumpled dashboard little shards of glass were twinkling in moonlight. Soil had swollen around the driver's side whilst the passenger window was rolled down.

Further on was another wreck, a mass of twisted metal and upturned soil. The second car lay on its roof at the very bottom of the trench. It seemed vertically crushed, with the hood and hubcaps rusted over. And the same decay had claimed the number plate and left only __DREW visible. Damp had rotted the back seats away.

The third car was crashed at a right angle and pointing into the ditch. The number plate showed only _ENE__CT and there was a tiny handprint smudged on the rear window.

The fourth car was like the first, tilted to one side with its right section crumpled. The number plate showed __RIA and the driver's door hung open, its stillness proving how little breeze there was.

It was only the fifth wreck that caused Jonathan to stop. He came to one knee beside the corroded remains of an old bicycle, lain dead centre in the road. His coat merged him with the darkness and only a moonlit face kept him apart from night. Jonathan's hand felt the rust sharpness of the metal. Then his finger hooked the strand of hair, lifting it from between the spokes.

The eyes of Jonathan Karova had never shown remorse nor heartache. So to any who saw him it would be nought but the image of a man, crouching and staring at a single blonde hair. Behind the coarse beard and the wrinkled skin there was a story, but as it had died in the hearts of the dozens before him, so did it die tonight, and none would know of how he really felt.


His finger twitched and let the hair float away into the fog. Then with only the slightest grunt, as an old man may make from time to time, he straightened once more.

Up ahead, the rest of the ditch became a sheer drop while the cliffs rose from the opposite roadside, like the bow of some great ship looming from the fog. The town sign welcomed him and the first jagged struts of houses could be seen.

He was back.

And again... his eyes betrayed nothing.

He inhaled a large smoke before exhaling. Ah, nicotine, the pleasure of a cigarette. John smiled and put a large thing of whisky up to his mouth and gulped some of it down, almost like candy. To him, drugs and alcohol were candy. Perhaps why he acted like he never had any troubles in the world, but the fact was, he had troubles, many troubles. Not only being an addict to drugs and alcohol, but being a criminal for one thing; not to mention, he was close to raping a little girl once as well. This though, this made him sick to his stomach just to think about it. Sometimes though, you had to do it for the pleasure.

He had many more troubles than this though, but he wasn't going to admit it. Not even to himself, although, one was right in front of him, and he was in the middle of it, literally.

Before him, stood a vast, thick low fog, almost playing as a ghost trying to block his way. Through the fog, John could barely make out a few buildings and a road. Some how, he had gotten off road the night before and ended up in some strange town, and so far, he hadn't seen anyone running around. "Probably because of all this damn fog." He muttered to himself, flicking on the headlights of his car, which didn't help much either. "Fuck this." He mumbled as he opened his car door and got out.
His car wasn't that great, so he didn't really think twice about leaving it, besides, it wasn't like he hadn't stolen it to begin with. John pulled out a little flashlight on a keychain, but as he guessed, it didn't work worth a damn in this thickness. He would have to feel his way, he guessed.

And so, slowly, but moving on, for once, he walked what he could of the road in front of him. He thought many times that he was probably going in circles, because this seemed to him to take forever. He passed up a small bank earlier, that read something of, "Silent Hill…," but he couldn't make out any other words. So, he guessed the town was called Silent Hill, though he wasn't quite sure.
He didn't remember passing any signs reading, "Welcome to Silent Hill" the night before, but he was probably also drunk, which happened quite often, so it wouldn't have surprised him if he missed reading such a sign.

He then felt something crunch under his foot, perhaps a twig, because it was hard, yet cold through the soles of his shoes. He shrugged it off, drank some whiskey, and kept feeling his way through the fog, if he ever got out.
I think it's the silence of this place that disturbs me the most.

Moving down the road towards the town, I attempt to figure out what time of day it is. No luck, however; the fog prevents me from telling whether the light spilling through is from the sun or the moon. Could be either, and my watch has been so thoroughly mangled by the crash that I'm not gonna be getting any answers from it.

The fog seems to encompass wherever I walk; there's no escaping from it... and I'm starting to think that maybe there's no hiding from it, either. Weird thoughts, those. Why would I be wanting to hide? I'm here to get my wife and get the hell out of this place.

Maybe there's a gas station or something up ahead. I'll get a coffee, use the phone and relax. I mean, hell, I've just been in the car accident to end all car accidents. No wonder I'm so on edge.

The road leads me up-hill, finally curving to the left, and I spot a car park and a wooden observation deck. Curiosity gets the better of me, and I figure that I might as well get a better look at the town along with it's surrounding area, so I move off the road and towards the deck.

Before me, the fog permits me to view the huge lake that seems to dominate this valley. The town seems to be spread around it; from it's south shore the buildings wrap up along the west coast and finally stop at the north-west. Looks more or less how I imagined it to be, a small town situated in the ass-end of nowhere.

There's... no street-lights on, though, nor are there any lights in the buildings despite the absence of any natural sources at whatever the hell time it is. Maybe there's a power-cut, or something?

But that doesn't explain the silence. That's what's disturbing me the most.

Silent Hill, huh? They sure as hell named it appropriately, at least.

A sound shatters the silence, and almost makes me drop the flashlight in shock. To my left, a telephone built into a pylon is ringing, an archaic bell sound that sounds like a cannon compared to the silence that came before it. I stare for a moment, wondering just what the fuck is going on, but even after at least half a minute, it keeps ringing.

Oh, what the hell. It's probably not gonna kill me.

Moving over to the phone, I lift the handset off and press my ear to it.
"Uh, hello?" I speak into the device, unsure of what the hell to expect. Initially, all I get back is static, so loud it makes my ear ring a little. Then a voice starts to come through, the words jumbled and only barely recognisable.

But the voice itself most certainly is.

Sarah, my runaway wife.
"FRANK... TO GET OU... UN... WHILE YOU STILL CA... TOWN NOW HAS... LAKEVIEW HOTEL... YOU... ESCAPE." While she babbles this out, I keep trying to talk to her, get her to listen, repeating her name over and over. But no luck; either she can't hear me, or she doesn't want to. The static comes back, drowning out anything else she might have to say, and I slam the handset back down, swearing furiously.

Fuck this town. I hate it already.

I'm gonna go find a coffee store in town, and see if I can find out where the fuck Sarah's got herself to this time.

And quite possibly what sort of trouble she's got herself into, as well.
<style type="text/css">p { margin-bottom: 0.08in; }</style> Joe woke to the sound of steadily dripping water. He picked his head up off the counter and looked around; his surroundings were pitch black, save for a faint pink neon sign flickering on and off in a corner. Carefully, he stood up and felt his way over to a wall. There had to be a light switch somewhere. He fumbled his way along the wall, feeling around for a glimmer of hope.

There. A dim glow illuminated the room. Broken bottles littered the bar, half-eaten plates of food were strewn about, a stream of dirty water was slowly inching out from under a door and the lone pool table was cracked in half. Joe had no recollection of this place; this was not the bar he had passed out in earlier. Despite his headache, he tried to remember how he had gotten here.

He had been driving for hours on a deserted road, heading for...well, he didn't quite know where he was going, only that he had felt compelled to drive down that road. Eventually he saw a place to stop to grab a drink, and had had a few too many before falling unconscious on the counter. But that bar had been well lit and was full of people. This bar was devoid of life and had a cold, almost oppressive feeling to it. He needed to get out.

Joe looked for an exit, and saw an open door along one of the far walls. As he drew closer to the door, it appeared to be opening slightly with every step that he took towards it, almost as if it was inviting him outside. Anywhere is better than in here, he thought, and stepped out in to a thick, dense fog.

He looked back at the building. The sign above the door said Annie's Bar. He didn't know the bar, but that didn't surprise him. What surprised him was how quiet it was; he was surrounded by complete and utter silence.
As he slowly opened his eyes, a pain shot through his head causing him to close them again. He grunted softly as he held his hand to his head, pressing against it and breathing deeply. He sat up and opened his eyes again, slower this time, the blinding white fog flowing into the room. He tried to stand up and gently kicked the flashlight, the memory of the night before rushing to him and causing him to turn to the back door again. He stared for a moment before reaching down to grab the light, although it wasn't needed at the moment. He placed the flashlight in his pocket and fumbled for the pill bottle he had placed there the night before.

Snagging a couple pills from it and resealing it, he jerked his head back to swallow them. The bitter taste of the pill brushed against his tongue and he shuddered slightly. He looked up at the entrance to the pharmacy and took a couple steps toward it. The rear door slowly creaked open, causing him to look behind him, but he saw nothing. The door slammed shut and out of nowhere a scream louder than he'd ever heard in his life began to pierce his ears. Holding his hands against his head he screamed for it to stop, collapsing to his knees and placing his head on the floor. It continues to screech and he looked up again, seeing a small figure run in front of the doors.

His eyes widened and he stood up, still covering his ears, calling out a name he hadn't spoken in years and running towards the door. The scream became louder as he reached the threshold but the second his foot passed it, the fog became clearer and the scream stopped as suddenly as it began. He looked around at his surroundings, the decrepit and dead town causing him to remember why he was here in the first place.

"Chloe..." he spoke softly, "how could I have done this to you..."
A boy sat at the side of a street. He was crouching down prodding a small pile of dirt with a stick. His clothes were dirty and torn, his ginger hair was also dirty, but it was also uneven. He looked like he couldn't have been over 10 years old. Near him on the sidewalk sat a radio, it didn't make any noise so the boy ignored it.

He started mumbling as he crouched on the sidewalk, "don't listen to the walls Jimmy, they don't like you listening to the walls." He simply repeated this over and over.

He stopped mumbling when static flared onto the radio. Grabbing it the boy ran down the street. He stopped as he saw someone else on the street by a payphone.

He ran up to Frank, frantically waving for him to follow him. "This way Mister, they're coming!" he nearly yelled, he had learned not to get too loud on the streets. He then ran to an alleyway on the other side of the street. "This way, don't let them find you." he called to Frank, nervously waiting by the alleyway entrance.

'The body of Eleanor Hicks was discovered early this morning . . . . . . . . in an apartment in downtown Brahms . . . . . . . . . . She had been resident there for only three weeks . . . . . . . . . . . . Police have indicated the murder weapon . . . . . . . may have been a common kitchen cleaver . . . . . . . . . . . The investigation is focussing on a neighbour of Mrs Hicks . . . . . . . who has since gone missing . . . . . . . A spokesman for the sherriff's office said . . . . . . . . "The number of wounds . . . . . . . suffered by the victim indicate a crime of passion . . . . . . We think the killer was in the apartment . . . . . . . . for less than a minute before fleeing the scene . . . . . . . . . . The neighbour, Andrew K...'

Karova returned the newspaper cutting to the counter, wondering who had left it there. The fog had seemed to penetrate the Convenience Store, such that even the ends of the aisles were lost to ghostly white. He had gone through the shelves, finding the odd vitamin drink or chocolate bar, all of his which he had devoured. The wrappers and empty bottles lay around his feet, rattling as he moved away. But beyond that there wasn't a sound in this place.

The store was intact except for one shelf that had toppled over, the planks broken by three great gouges. On its slumped side, a photograph had been pinned. Two boys, childhood friends, one larger and with longer hair than the other, smiling as they each held up a burger. The smaller boy had blurs around his arms and legs.

Twitching at a smell of perfume, Karova returned to the door, one hand running compulsively over the grip of his pistol. His foot nudged against a broken, high-heeled shoe stuffed full of cobwebs.

"Where are you, boy?" he muttered, the sound lost almost lost in the strands of his beard.

The door creaked as he moved out again, back towards the ghost streets.
I've barely taken ten steps down the road when I hear the sound of small feet pounding down asphalt. My flashlight swings round to illuminate a child, scruffy and unkempt looking, waving his arms at me as he races past.

"This way Mister, they're coming!" he yells, and I spot a radio emanating static clutched in one of his hands, "This way, don't let them find you." Taken aback by this sudden appearance, I just stop and stare for a moment, but when it becomes clear that he's not hanging around, I yell after him.
"Hey! Hey! Wait a second, kid!" He doesn't stop moving, so I begin to jog after him. "Hold up a goddamn second, I need some directions!" I consider his words for a moment, wondering with a certain level of apprehension who he meant by 'they' and why I shouldn't let 'them' find me. Angry locals? Gangsters? Fuck knows. The answers to my questions are running full pelt down the street with the energy only a kid possesses.

He stops at the alleyway entrance, looking around nervously. Catching up and attempting to catch my breath simultaneously, I begin to notice the fog is thickening rather unnervingly fast. "Kid, what the hell is going on round here?" I ask, hands on my knees in an attempt to get my breathing back to normal.

I'm starting to regret the seven a day. I think I might need my lungs working properly very soon.