Mask!

The distorted memory becomes a masquerade. Everyone hides behind a mask and performs the wildest acts with no consequence. But, life is not a masquerade but reality.
The main character is a girl who suffers daily from what she accidentally witnessed 10 years ago. She has lived on the edge of illusion and reality until she sees the photo of 4 successful people in a magazine.
A photo is all she needs to confirm what her flashbacks tell her. Now, with the help of a young man she is ready to get even.

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1. Black Cat

                                                                                Prologue

That summer day, I chased after a black cat into the deep, deep forest.

My name, my memory, my happiness… I lost everything in my ninth summer.

Walking by the deep forest, I felt as if the cat wanted me to follow. I couldn’t shake off the feeling. –me in the forest of my 15th birthday, I was lost in it.

 

                                                                               Chapter 1

 

“Wait, kitty. Don’t run away. I want to keep you. Where are you going?”

 

Through the dark valley, I went inside a place where giant cat statue stool up like pillars. It felt like a castle of dark people.

“Where am I?”

 

I couldn’t see the kitty anywhere. Up front there was a door. Going close, the door was not locked but rather open by 1 inch, enough to peek inside. What was inside was beyond my minor mind and knowledge. Blurry as I see, there were 3 men along with 1 women in between. They were engaged enough for my eyes couldn’t keep up to it. By the time I would run, the kitty notified them of my presence. The next what I heard was the Women hissed and the men ran toward me,

 

“Who? I see somebody.”  

“We’ve got you.”

They ran toward me at full speed. I ran as fast as I could. I ran until my breadth stuck. But my mama and papa fell off the cliff. They attacked me. And then…

 

*Tring *Tring - *Click.

 

Jumping of the bed I realized I was dreaming the same nightmare again. But, I don’t know why I keep seeing the nightmare again and again.

Caught in the clutches of the dream, I can’t bring myself to leave the old hospital where I was bought when I fainted as a kid. Since then I have worked in here. Giving a hand in there every day work. Somehow I became a voluntary nurse as well.

 

“Sumie-san, Good morning. Is it okey if we come to your room later? These guys are always asking.”

“Sure, I need help of some extra hand in the work anyway.”

“Sumie, Ida in the room 204 of B said he wanted a multiplug.”

“I’ll bring him one later, Mark.”

“Isn’t Sumie great? Such a cute hard working girl.”

“Is she one of the stuff of the medical center? She seems to be awfully helpful.”

“Nop, she’s also a patient here or so I heard.”

“Is she sick? Though she seems very healthy.”

“That is, she’s been here for the last ten years.”

“Ehh, WHAT?! Is it true Dr. Admus?”

“Yes, because ten years ago her parents died. They were in an accident, but it seems she survived. At that time she lost her Memory and became an inpatient here.”

“Lost her memory? Why?”

“Well, maybe because of the shock. Though would you want to remember something like that?”

“But she’s been here for ten years here. Isn’t she cured? And staying here isn’t cheap either.”

“Because of the trauma she fails to recover her old life. And I heard she has a benefactor who giving her money.”

“Ah, Dr. Morgana.”

“Hello, Admus. Ah! Is Sumie standing in the hot midday sun again? She’ll faint later.”

“Sumie! Come inside right now.”

“Hi, Morgana.”

“Haven’t I told you to be careful of the midday sun already? Couldn’t you ask someone else to air the laundry?”

“Opps, sorry didn’t notice. It is a beautiful weather after all.”

“It’s okay. Now go drink some water and cool off.”

 

Dr. Morgana’s been like an older sister to me since I came here ten years ago. I don’t remember anything about before. All I know about my life is this medical center, the nurses and the doctors. I don’t even know who is playing my fees either. I just hope he is a good person.

 

“Sumie! Sumie!”

“I am in the cafeteria. What is it?”

“Miwa wanted your special massage of yours for her rehab.”

“Tell her to get ready. I’ll be right there.”

 

“Miwa-chan, is it here?”

“Mmm…a little lower. Ah! There.”

“You’re getting better at moving your shoulder every day. You’ll be out in no time.”

“Nah, It’s your messages that are good. Everyone wants one from you.”

“Miwa-chan, you seem be stiff today. You shouldn’t be stressed, it’ll affect your body.”

“Sumie, everyone seems to be like ‘When you are worried, you can count on Sumie’. I guess you are already stable to start on your own. Maybe you can take up to the Beauty refresher or reflexology etc.”

“I’m fine the way I am now until my benefactor stops sending money. My parents aren’t allowed to help me and it’ll be very expensive for me to pay for myself. I can’t even find a place for myself either. This is my home where everyone is my family”

“…Sumie…, How long are you going to stay? You should get out of here too.”

“too?!”

“After five years, I’m being discharged next month.”

“…that’s great, Miwa-chan.”

“Sumie, I’m also getting married to the nurse Unal.”

“Unal-san?!”

“Um..Sumie. Hey, I am sorry for not telling you sooner.”

“Unal-chan! Are you guys serious?”

“We all became such good friends and I wanted to tell you.”

“Unal is supposed to be transferred to the Hospital in New York by next month. And he asked me to come with him. I couldn’t refuse him.”

“You guys are going really far huh?!”

“Come on, you’re coming too right. I am sure we can get a job and pay up everything together.”

“Sumie, you are like my little sister. And I’ll do everything to help you out too. Miwa can help you even to get into a collage.”

“I ….I …Can’t! I don’t have the courage to leave. I don’t feel anything even though mama and papa died. Maybe it was my fault or else why was it only me who survived? I always just wanted to go home.”

“…..Sumie….”

“…We cant’t leave her alone like this.”

“You’re right. We have to do something.”

 

*TONG *TONG – Bell ringing.

 

“….Congratulation, Miwa-chan.”

“Sumie…, I somehow feel like I let you down somehow.”

“Unal and I have a present for you. I’ll show you later. Okay?”

*CLAP…*CLAP…

“Isn’t it vary pretty today, Sumie?

“Yes, she is very pretty.”

“I meant you Sumie. You’re like a dim witted flower.”

“Huh? Alf!”

“Ah, the bride is throwing the Bouquet.”

*ECHO, *ECHO – Throw it at me, Throw it at me.

“SUMIE!!”

“Huh!”

‘Unal and I have a present for you.’ Ah! The flowers flew at my direction.

 

*CLICK, *CLICK, *CLICK – Photo being taken.

 

When I noticed it, I was quite shocked. But it was more astonishing for who was behind the lens. A man about the age around 27 to 30. Black hair, dark eyes and a tall young man. But somewhere inside I felt as if I knew him from somewhere. I wonder why I felt so. As I noticed he was just a wedding photographer.

While everyone was laughing, dancing and smiling. I couldn’t seem to enjoy even at my friend’s wedding. Why am I like this… why…

 

“You poor thing. You shouldn’t be sad. Even if they are all gone, you’ll still have friends.”

“Alf! You scared me!”

“I’m not leaving soon you know.”

“I don’t know why you are even staying. Heart problem or so?”

“Maybe a heart condition or love?!”

“Please don’t make fun of me. You should also hurry up and get discharged.”

 

I somehow felt a bad omen. His way of walking and staring was not favorable to me. And so I started walking fast and he followed me soon. Then I ran as fast as my feet could hold. I ran till my breadth stopped. He was catching me. He will get me. Papa!… Mama!

“NO!”

“Hah! I just thought I’ll get to know you better. Your over-reacting. This is unexpected.”

“Let me go!”

“Why? I would rather excite you as you excite me!”

“No, stop!”

…Papa!!... Mamaa!!...I can’t move. I can’t see. I’ll die. It hurts. My head…

 

*FLASH! *FLASH!

 

“Huh...Wha..Who are you?!”

“…help me…”

“Wait, you’re the wedding photographer, aren’t you? You took the photo without permission. I’ll denounce you! Give me the film!”

“Which is more serious? Violating a women - a crime or stealing a man’s photo?”

“QUITE! Give me the camera!”

 

Their shouting woke me up for good and as I turned. Alf tried to snatch the camera from his hand. But he instantly flipped him over on the ground with one hand.

“I …. I have a chest condition. I need medical help!”

The camera man pulled the camera film and said “Now, we’re even.”

 

Then I saw him walking toward me and it was getting blurry. I wanted to go home to Papa and Mama.

Later I heard the sound of river, water. There was a lot of light. Suddenly everything came to me like a lightning. I was here. Before following the kitty. I was celebrating my birthday. Papa and Mama bought a cake for me and a gift. Yes, it was a camera. It was like a magic box to me. I took everyone’s picture with it along with mom and dad. Then I saw a kitty, I follows it to take a picture. I got inside a villa beside our guest-house. It was our neighbor’s and it was huge. But I saw the kitty and just wanted a picture and followed it to the stairs. I was some people by the balcony. They were all beautiful. I’ve seen her somewhere. I got their picture but I wanted the kitty’s picture and followed it to the first floor. When I got the chance for clicking the kitty’s picture. Beside the kitty I could see the beautiful people doing something weird. Now if I think about it they were having sex. I somehow clicked their picture. The women shouted, ‘Who’s there? She got a camera! Get her!’ The men almost caught me but I jumped and fell from the stairs. They screamed for the camera. I didn’t even notice where the camera was and I just ran. I couldn’t understand anything. Had I seen something I shouldn’t have. I didn’t know. I called for papa and mama. They told me to run as fast I could. Someone asked me by the river where I fell, ‘What’s wrong? You got cuts, you should wash it. Let me help you. ’. He washed the cuts and helped me up. Then kept asking, ‘What happened? Where do you live?’.

I blinked and the man who was standing in front of me was similar to that boy.

 

“Hey, you’re awake? Do you remember?”

“You help me back then.”

“You seem to remember.”

“I always thought that it was a dream but the camera my parents gave me was the cause of all the trouble. And then..”

“The camera they gave, is it this one? You left it by the river side ten years ago. I kept it with me till now.”

“You are the person who helped me that time and I gave you the camera.”

“Yes. By the way I’m Raymen Adnul. Your friend, the bride and groom looked for me and called me here to meet you. They said that; ‘Ten years ago the girl you saved lost her memories and is in great pain and if she see’s you she’ll remember something.’ That’s what they said to me and so I came. Sumien Alicya.”

 

He saved my life back then?!

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