An In Between

Serafina Hollows was never considered as someone normal. Much less when she starts hearing voices. Talking to herself, or him. She starts blacking out and appearing in abandoned chapels covered in blood and bruises. She's starting to suspect the blood wasn't even hers. She knows this weird thoughts aren't hers, their his. Its not her its him.

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           "...how I wonder where you are...up...up...up, up...the sky. Twinkle, twinkle--ow!" I sit up wide eyed regretting immensely as a searing pain travels through my body.

"Hold your reins there. Don't want this stitches to come off." For a moment all I could see were black spots. I was confused. After a few moans and blinks, I rub my eyes as they finally focus. I'm in a room. Not my messy room. There was a fire, I could hear the flames crackling. When I finally fin the ability to move my limbs, my hand slowly reaches for my stomach. I try to look down as good as possible but my head feels like its made of lead. Someone had bandaged my wounds, I also heard something about stitches. I randomly think of Shawn Mendes...I don't even know why. Damn, my mind feels fuzzy wuzzy.

"I didn't think you would wake up so soon." the same voice from before says. It was an unfamiliar voice. "Had to drug you up like a horse. Wouldn't sty still miss, but don't worry I stitched you up good miss 

I could feel my brows knitting together as my eyes land on the skinny of a stranger. Besides the bed I was in, a petite girl with olive ski and almond eyes smiles down at me. Her dark hair was styled up in a bun, she was wearing a tiny green dress with a white apron, that fitted her small figure perfectly. "Who are you?" I ask suddenly aware that I'm in a stranger's room, with a stranger.

"My name is Bri miss. Master Calous ordered me to take care of you miss." Miss, miss, miss, its getting quite annoying. Wait, Calous? Why does that name sound familiar? I grab a fistful of my hair shutting my eyes. Head hurts. Where's Alek? How could he leave me just like that?

"Where am I? I need to go back home, my family must be worried."

"Sorry miss but you should rest now." she pulled the covers up my chin, is then that I notice I'm wearing only my  underwear. I feel my face heat up embarrassed. I never liked being exposed like this. Not even Mother sees me like this.

The whispers tickle the back of my mind. Maybe Alek is here after all. I force my eyes closed and swallow . Where am I? Several whispers claw at my thoughts, manipulating and alerting me. Stay alert. Don't trust her, don't trust them. Them? But this whispers are different . They aren't like the ones before. Not Alek. They're me I think. Or maybe not. Why do I feel like I'm losing my mind all over again. They claw and knag, I feel like my mind will explode any second now. Too many. Voices, whispers, yells, lies.

I grip my hair as if my life depended on it, until I feel the burn in my scalp. I hear nothing and yet everything. Its too loud I realize. I think I'm yelling but everything goes silent, real silence as someone grabs my wrists. "Ms. Hollows." I find myself staring wide eyed at the pale irises of Dr. Olsen "You need to calm down."

I'm breathing hard, my lungs scream for air as if I had been suffocating all this time. Maybe I was. Suffocated by the whispers. "W-what? What was that?" I stammer out of breath. "The voices, the voices kept saying. But they weren't Him, not Him."

Once I calm down he lets go and sits on the bed. "I don't think I'm the proper person to tell you that." He's referring to Him. Cant he see he wont tell me. He never tells me. I huff. "Aren't you going to ask how I know who you are?" I settle down rubbing my eyes. It's not like he said he knew. Although now he dd. Hmph. "I know who you are also." I say narrowing my eyes "Aren't you supposed to be evil? Aren't va--Cold Ones! Evil?"

His eyes glint with amusement and he throws his head back laughing "Not all of us are evil, like Scarlet." Goosebumps crawl my skin at the mention of her name. Why am I still scared of her? "Some of us know our boundaries." I look at him still wary if I should trust him. "Where are we?"

"Don't worry you're safe here." I frown. He totally avoided that question. Maybe I'm just being paranoid. Not paranoid, cautious.

"Where's Alek? I really want to give him a piece of my mind." Dr. Olson opens his mouth to answer but the annoying voice barges in first.

"Don't worry love, I'm all ears." he's holding what looks like a millennium old book, that hasn't, surprisingly fallen apart. He doesn't bother to look up at me as he walks nearer, his footsteps make no sound.

"Will people stop saying don't worry! I have a right to be worried! My life is a disaster! I almost died yesterday."  I emphasize the word died. "And its all, your, fault." I groan into the pillow and whine "Could this get any worse?"

I feel the bed dip to one side and a pat to the head "Do--" I glance at him before he continues "Fine, worry all you want. But that's not going to solve anything."

I sit up careful with my stitches "You know what would help? Answers Alek. That would be really useful. Who are you, really? No lies this time." I cross my hands staring him down. His lips were a thin line now, pressed together, his brows were furrowed as his eyes stared me down. I just stared back, not backing away. He's going to tell me, one way or another.

"I think I'll leave you two alone now." I totally forgot Dr. Olson was here. He quietly exits the room leaving us alone. I turn back to Alek frowning.

He lets out a long sigh, "Why do you have to be so stubborn?" he looks up at the ceiling for a moment and then says, "Okay...Okay." he looks back at me and I could see hesitation. "Deathwalker. I didn't lie about that. I am a Deathwalker. My task should be to do Death's bidding, but I, don't like Death's bidding." he stops, looking for the words. He opens his mouth a few more times and finally continues, "Death is not evil, not really, its not someone, well it is someone but I guess that's something for another day. He mostly wants souls, we give them to him. At first everything was okay, I guess. But he changed, kept wanting more. He knows when its their time. He still knows but it was  too long a wait and he grew impatient. Death is supposed to guard them until they reach their destination. We guide them toward Death. Death guides them to Heaven, Hell...Purgatory, whatever." He huffs squinting his eyes. I think I'm getting more confused than I was before. More questions than answers.

"Souls are power. More souls he guided the more powerful he, it....became. But he discovered that by keeping them his power doubled. I didn't like that. No one should have that much a power. I knew it wasn't right. Not that I'm such a righteous person. Besides I actually used that as an excuse to rebel. I never worked good under authority." He smirked a glint of mischief in his eyes. "Still I didn't say anything yet, he decided Deathwalkers weren't enough. He found a spell to collect this souls but only a being from this world could cast it. Some Deathwalkers refused. He got mad. I didn't even know Death could get mad, so, he punished them. We're already dead so that wasn't an option."

I could see a shiver run through his body. He must b remembering. He let his guard down for a bit, like he knows how I feel, I did now also. Even if its a fragment of it, the memory made me wince. A memory that wasn't even mine, it sure felt like it was though.

Alek noticed what he did and as fast as it came he closed up, placing walls between us. A slight frown still on his face, I thought for a moment he wouldn't continue but he cleared his throat, "I found a way out. I was settled on escaping and hiding. Saving my own skin. Of course he wouldn't give up that easily. By beings it meant anyone. Humans weren't an option though. Cold Ones were the most willing to cooperate. I don't really know what he promised in exchange but I heard a rumor that he promised them their souls back.

"Cold Ones don't have souls. If you don't have a soul...that means a VIP ticket toward Purgatory. I think anyone would prefer Hell to Purgatory. Anyway, like I told you before, Deathwalkers cant walk the earth without a proper body. That's the tricky part, I cant just choose anyone. There's certain people. After my last host I spent an awful lot of time without being able to do anything. Death would direct us toward our bonding soul, piece of cake. But I had to do it on my own if I wanted to do something, I wanted to fix things. What Death was doing wasn't right and I had been a coward for so long, Then, I found you...to be honest I was wondering if I made a mistake at first." I punch him frowning while he lets out a small laugh. 

He stared at me with a small smile on his lips. His constant gaze was a bit uncomfortable. I look down at my folded hands "Clumsy, sad, little, stubborn Serafina. You were actually my first girl. It was a bit awkward at first but I got the hang of it. You were eleven. I didn't want to bond with you, not yet. You were too young and with enough problems as it was." he made himself comfortable, laying down and propping himself on an elbow still looking at me. He seems more at ease now, more trusting. "Sometimes I so wanted to help you. Even when we weren't bonded I felt some of your feelings and it angered me that not even your mother could understand, but I told myself to wait. If it was up to me I would have made them suffer until they begged for mercy." I roll my eyes. Of course he would. That is so Alek. Still, knowing that someone watched me as I grew up unsettles me. He probably knows things of myself that even I don't know.

"In the meantime I also watched as Death kept snatching souls away before their time. I just couldn't stand by and do nothing Serafina. Scarlet's herd took so many innocents that I finally bonded with you. At first I didn't want you to know so the bonding wasn't exactly complete. It worked splendid at first, if I could keep it up, luckily you wouldn't have to ever know what the real world is like. Then the nightmares started, you wouldn't even smile and I was working your body too much. Hallucinations. You were going mad. You still are, a little. The voices in your head, they're not really me. Its an echo, how your mind, erm, copes with what's happening. You started being aware of me...so you know the rest of the story..."  he looks away with a sigh. He looks lighter. Like he took something that was bothering him off his chest.

We just lay down staring at the ceiling. No wonder my life is miserable. Of all the people in this damn world, why me? Okay yes I have always wanted to have something exciting happen in my life but certainly not this! I'm going to end up dead! I don't want to end up dead...If there's anything in the world that I'm certainly afraid of, is dying. The sudden move of Alek startles me. He holds my hand tightly "Hey. I seriously mean it when I say I'm not going to let you die. Okay? Just...trust me on this one..." he stares at my face, with something I cant quite pin down. Sincerity and...something else. I'm scared, so scared. But he makes me want to believe his words.

Words don't mean nothing. They certainly weren't enough for my father. I cant trust him. Not yet. I barely know him. Stars! He's not even human anymore!

Alek's gaze hardens and he lets go of my hand harshly. Stars I forgot he knows how and what I think. "I didn't mean as an insult..." I mumble under my breath. I always say and think in the most inappropriate moments. He stood up "Whatever. I still have to take you to your house. Your mother must be dead worried, again."

I sigh, since I'm the biggest idiot in all  history and bob my head not daring to look at his piercing eyes because I know that somehow he'll see right through my soul. Is it always going to be like this? Is he always going to know? I hate it. I hate me and him. Because I can. And I'm stupid. Am still crazy? I think so.

I follow Alek out of the room silently. I don't think we're in talking terms right now. We go through a series of corridors. They're all candle lit, with old but nice wallpaper, there were even some old-fashion portraits of people I didn't recognize and that weren't probably alive. The house looked out of era but it was well kept. We reach a big sitting room where Dr. Olson is drinking tea, coffee, I dunno. The maid, Bri, walks in smiling with a tray in hand.

"Thought you should eat something before we leave." Alek mumbles as he leans against a wall looking outside a window. Its day. Alek is in a mood.

The scent of cooked meat hits my nose and I hurry to grab my plate. I hadn't notice how hungry I was until now. I cut a piece of the steak and chew slowly. I've never tasted something so perfect, I let out a little moan. As hard as I try to swallow slowly I almost choke at how quickly I'm chewing. The food was delicious. I could eat like this every day.

From the corner of my eye I could see Dr. Olson watching me with an amused expression while Bri stands by the doorway with a small smile on her lips. "Thank you." I manage to say, trying to chew and swallow without chocking. Alek is ignoring us, well, me.

"You somehow look better." Dr. Olson comments crossing his legs. He always looks so poised and graceful, perfect.

I do feel better. Down the halls we had passed a mirror, I managed t catch a glimpse of my reflection. My cheeks look fuller now, not bony. Some color came back to my skin and I've put on some weight. Nightmares didn't come so much now, that's a relief. It has something to do with Alek, I guess. The bond.

I place my plate aside and fold my hands on my lap awkwardly. Cold fingers wrap on my left arm "Don't get comfortable, lets go." he yanks me up and drags me toward the door. The rough movement makes me hiss "Ow!" he lets go quickly as if I had burnt him "Sorry." he says apologetically and I know he means it but I'm still pissed off at him. "Lets just get out of here."

We reach the door and I'm surprised to see Bri had already arrived there. She smiles "Just remember not to tire much, you need to rest." Right, like I get much rest this days. I just nod and smile at her. She seems like the kind of person you would want to have caring for you.

It's day. When I turn around to wave good bye I almost gasp. I knew the house had to be big but I didn't imagine it would be this big. It was almost a castle. An old-fashioned Victorian castle.

Someone clears his throat behind me, "Close your mouth or flies will bug in.. Come on mate, I don't have all day." I roll my eyes, like he has anything better to do.

There's no car out here. "How are we getting home?" I ask following him out the gates of the mansion.

"Bus."

"Don't you have a car?"

"I cant drive you bloody moron."

I clench my jaw "Will you stop the naming?" I have feelings you know. But I keep that part to myself, then I remember he knows either way. I huff and change the subject. "Why cant you drive?" he lets out a long breath, sounding annoyed and turns full on me. He places his hands on his hips. "You're kidding right?"

I stand my ground raising an eyebrow. He sighs, again. "Serafina I'm not corporal. I cant touch things. Much less drive a car. At least not yet. I'm not strong yet."

"Still, someday you will?"  

He turns and keeps walking, ignoring me once again.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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