I quivered on the floor as the faces of my dead family haunted my head. I had screamed and cried so much as it played and played repeating the same images of a vampire sucking the blood and life out of each and every one of them. My mum, dad, boyfriend, my sister and my brother was left for last. I watched as tears streamed down his eyes and as he took his last breath he whispered my name.
I had hurt my hands trying to claw my way out of the shackles, first trying to pull the metal cuffs off, trying to generate spit in my mouth to lubricate my wrists but my mouth was so dry nothing came then I had banged the metal on the stone floor in sheer hysteria. I had bashed so much that the metal had succumbed slightly to the impact but bent inwards into my skin, the uneven edges piercing the delicate material that held everything in.
It all felt so real, I was there being held down not being able to move, not being able to save them. I had cried so much with the mental and real pain that was being inflicted upon me that I had gone into a state of desperation calmness. Tears trickling down my face, I didn’t bother to wipe them away as I enjoyed the feel of something, anything other than the repetitive pain in my head.
It had subsided slightly and the images had been gone for a while however I did not move. The door cackled open and someone stepped in. I lifted my head and saw the master staring at me. I jumped up ready to punch the living shit out of him. I lunged towards him but the chains repelled my back with inches separating us.
“You bastard” I spat in his face “Why? Why my family? You have me, why did you take them?” I tried to claw at his resigned form.
“Lacey, they are gone. We are all you have left. I tried to save them but it was too late. I promise I will look after you, I am your family now”.
His words left me reeling with more anger than I had ever felt in my life. This was all his fault. It was like it was bubbling under my skin, trying to explode only to be made worse by the frustration of not being able to get to him, not being able to connect my fist with his jaw.
He left quietly and the stinging turned into a shattering sound that pierced its way from ear to ear. I pulled my hands up to cover them “Ahhhhhhh” I screamed out again as I felt a warm liquid trickle from the sides of my head. I pulled my hands to my face as I took in the sight of blood smeared all down me. Suddenly a knife appeared in my hand and as the noise grew dim as I laid my eyes over a pile of dead bodies in front of me, the dead bodies of my friends.
I threw the knife away and stared at the hand that wielded it. I scrubbed my hands against one another roughly trying to get rid of the blood that stained my skin.
After a while of more searing pain the bodies disappeared. I was growing restless but with the sight of the now empty space threw my hands to my head and started pulling at my hair. “Get out of my head” I sobbed and then shot up at the sound of footsteps once again.
“You are not alone Lacey, your family is here, I am here for you” The master shuffled over taking only small cautious steps as to not get too close. “Here,” He put a glass of water and a small plate of food on the floor and nudged it closer with his foot.
I grabbed it like a starved beast and scoffed it down, all table manners forgotten.
“See, I will provide for you. It is your fault that your friends are dead but I forgive you”.
He left again and over my time in the hole he visited me maybe 6 or 7 times, torturing me. He filled my head with all sorts of horrors then consoled me afterwards. After the third visit he stopped bringing food.
I was starved, thirsty, bloody and exhausted. Every time I came close to closing my eyes and succumbing to the night the stab of pain thrusted through my brain again keeping me in a zombified state.
He started to get cockier with each visit, risking closer proximity to me. He once spoke of my dead family again and I’d snapped mustering the last amount of energy I had in me. Despite his vampiric speed, I caught him by surprise and managed to throw a slap in his direction but despite being off guard he still was able to side step out of the way.
He had huffed and after the door had shut the images in my head changed from my family dying to me being pulled apart by ravenous demons, clawing at every part of my body. Their faces were disfigured, parts of the skin missing showing veins and some even bone that had turned green with mould. Every time one of the demons was about to demolish the side of my face with its wide teeth baring snarl the image would stop.
I really couldn’t track time at all, the light that was spearing in never faded, never changing. It all blurred into one, into one long nightmare, a never ending nightmare. Sometimes when I was spared of the nagging groans in my brain I would sit and just stare into the light that never faded. Watching the dust dance I allowed my imagination to wonder.
I walked into a huge room, the ceiling was so high and full of beautiful swirls of angels and demons. The room was perfectly round and as I entered all eyes turned to stare at me. The people were dressed so grand that I panicked and looked down at myself, thankfully I too was dressed in a gorgeous red gown that touched the floor gracefully.
I looked back up and in the middle of the floor my father was stood holding his hand out to me. I all but ran over trying not to fall as I moved in the floor length gown. ‘Dad, you’re here? Oh thank god your alive’ I hugged him fiercely.
He pulled me gently away and looked into my eyes ‘Shhh, its ok’ he cooed. ‘Thank you for coming nibbler’ my father’s nickname for me rolled off of his tongue, given because when I was younger I used to nibble my food. An action I copied off of our rabbit at the time. I stopped after it was ripped apart by foxes but the nickname stuck.
‘Dad, what’s going on, why are we here?’ I looked into his eyes searching for answers but he was wordless as he directed me using a hand on my back towards his side. ‘Luke!’
I practically jumped into my boyfriend’s arms. We held each other so tightly I never wanted to let go.
‘Dance with me?’ he whispered into the small of my neck just below my ear. I forgot where we were as he walked me back to the middle of the room and ignored the faces that were still on me. I took his hand and we waltzed, the basic 1 2 3 steps.
The music slowed and he pulled my close. I nestled within his shoulder and let out a sigh of satisfaction. I balanced my chin against it and finally opened my eyes. As we spun my eyes fell on the faces that surrounded the edge of the circular room.
As we spun the faces started to morph in front of my eyes, their faces became distorted wrinkles the size of crevasses appearing on their foreheads and sharp teeth began to shine out of their prominent mouths. As we spun I looked at Luke’s face only to be greeted by Grey’s growing crooked smile.
I jumped back in surprise ‘What the hell Grey? What did you do with Luke?’ Grey tried to move to my side once again but I dodged his grasp. ‘Who’s Luke?’ he looked genuinely confused. I moved around his out stretched hand searching for my dad.
He was stood next to a man that I was sure I recognised. I shuffled closer, ducking behind a big leafed plant. I couldn’t hear what they were saying but I now had full view of the man. I searched his face and I was taken aback when he turned his face in my direction.
One side of his face was almost completely covered by a scar. Flashes swept across my mind, recalling a feeling of rough skin and translucent light.
My father was shaking the masters hand.
I was slumped at the side of the chair with my head perched on the seat when the door opened. I was startled as you could hear footsteps clearly before anyone entered but was too defeated to care further. Despite my catatonic state I quickly acknowledged the smell of food and snatched the plate that was offered to me with barely an open eye.
It was only when the person leaned into me that the familiar strawberry scent came in wafts over me that I moved my head to look up despite the protesting of my neck. “Sara” I whispered as she leaned over me and fiddled with my chains.
“Remember what I told you, do not give up and never give in” she squirrelled out the door and again I could hear no footsteps as she disappeared.
I stared after her with my mouth full of the flavoursome chicken that she had given me until I bit down on something hard. “Ouch” I said out loud as I spat the object from my mouth onto the plate.
I used my finger to inspect the chipped tooth and only then looked down and as I picked the chicken bit away from the object my heart sped and almost jumped up to my throat. I picked it up and in my hand I held up a key.
Footsteps disturbed my trance and as quickly as humanly possible, which was not very quick due the fact my hands were bleeding and torn I manoeuvred the key into the lock of my chains.
The clasp pinged free but I still had to pull one of the cuffs out from where it had stabbed my skin and the blood that had dried around it that had made it stick inside. I grimaced but still grabbed what I needed off of the ground and moved behind the door.
I knew I had one chance at this and I was not about to mess it up, my heartbeat betrayed me however as it sped faster and faster with anticipation and adrenalin.
The footsteps stopped and I waited for the screech of the door, ready to pounce but it did not come. Footsteps began to echo away from me. No! I thought as I quickly altered my plan of action.
I moved to the centre of the room and picked up the wooden chair that still sat centre stage. With as much force as I could manage I smashed the chair against the stone floor and screamed for dramatic effect. I side stepped back to my position and waited for almost 10 seconds before quicker footsteps began descending towards me.
This was it and I was ready.
The door screeched open and I prayed that that would be the last time I would ever hear that nails on a chalk board scrape. I waited for what seemed like forever for him to step a little further in but once he did I wasted no time.
I stepped out of the shadow of the door with the bucket of my waste by my side and plunged it over him as he turned in my direction. As I ran up the shivering corridor I could hear the echoes of disgust from behind me. I practically barged through the door and collapsed on the other side once again trying to adjust my eyes to the light that burned them.
I scampered to my feet using the office desk to support me and as I grabbed the door handle he grabbed me by the shoulder and pulled my backwards.