Joann B.S. Witz

Joann B.S. Witz was a world famous author, a fictional J.K. Rowling, for her widely popular YA series The Nordic Signs. She was living her dream until the shocking death of her husband, Benedict, caused her to rethink everything, and eventually lead her to attempt suicide. Read as she goes through what she believes is Purgatory, Heaven, and Hell as she insists that she was murdered by the characters that she brought to life. These short stories will go through her life as she comes to term with what really happened, and the realization that she has the illness she never thought she would inherit.

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1. Part 1- Purgatory

Joann B.S. Witz: Part 1 - Purgatory

I have been killed by my own characters. Slaughtered by the people who I made up. The people who I thought I knew. They stabbed me, shot me, and left me soaking in my own blood. After all I’ve done for them- after all the things I sacrificed-this is the thanks I get. I gave them luxurys they wouldn’t have dreamed of. Yes, I put them through some hardships, but that’s the price to pay for the glory they now bathe in every night. I made them beautiful. I made them desirable. They became loved by millions because of me.

Little do their fans know that the characters they love are monsters.

;;

    Heaven is not what I thought it would be like. My first day I woke up in a bed hooked up to pristine looking systems, the steady beeping was like a metronome keeping time with the beat of my heart. The walls were white and there were angels in blue outfits. Some were dark blue and others a shade lighter. It must’ve been for some merit system.  It was weird lying there, staring at the ceiling. I thought that I must’ve been in a waiting area. They must put you there while they clear a place for you in Heaven, as they’re getting everything ready.

    “How are you feeling Joann?” One of the angels in light blue asked while checking things off on a clipboard.

    “I feel great,” I croaked even though I truthfully felt like utter shit. When they’re ready for me in Heaven, I know I’ll feel much better.

    “You’re looking great,” he smiled as he looked at some monitors. Are all angels as handsome as this one?

    “Thanks, good looking,” I giggled. I then tried to move my hands, but some kind of cuffs permitted me from doing so. I looked at them, perplexed. “What are these?”

    “Um. . .” He seemed uncomfortable. “They’re restraints. To restrain you.”

    “Why?”

    He stared at nothing for a while. When he looked up to finally answer me a slightly older angel in dark blue entered.

    “Hello, Joann. I'm Doctor Campbell,” the older angel smiled. That's a weird name for an angel, I thought. “Your vitals look good.” Vitals? Why were they looking at my vitals?  “Do you have any questions?”

I tried to move my hands again. I looked at my wrists, and suddenly hot rage rose from my chest to my head. I felt as if I was boiling. “Yes, I was wondering why I have to be restrained.” I looked at the younger angel harshly. He gulped in visible fear. “I asked this imbecile here, but he was too fearful to answer.” He opened his mouth to protest, but my stare kept him in a cold sweat.   

Doctor Campbell sighed, crossing his arms. “You are restrained, Ms. Witz, because when you woke up the first time you attacked one of our nurses and two of our interns. We wanted to insure that it didn't happen again.”

“I did? I don’t remember anything.” I closed my eyes, trying to recollect what I could. Nothing. I could bring back nothing but the thing that got me to this place.

“You don’t remember anything?” The younger angel asked, moving closer to my bedside. He was visibly shaking. He really was scared of me, and was terrible at hiding it.

“Why do you sound surprised?” I huffed. “Obviously I don’t remember attacking anyone. If I did I certainly wouldn’t have asked why I was restrained.” I glowered at him. He backed away.

“Joann,” Angel Campbell (this title seemed more appropriate) said in his sonorous voice. “What is the last thing you remember?”

“The attack,” I said clearly, confidently, without hesitation. Saying it seemed to lift tons off my chest, but at the same time it brought back paranoia and the feeling of being betrayed by the people I thought I knew so well. I remembered what they did. I remembered how horrid I felt. I remembered when my neighbor showed up and the fact that she was too late, that they were already gone. The people who were still on earth would never be able to catch them. I made them too perfect to be caught by mere mortals. “I’m such an idiot,” I whispered to myself. Why couldn’t they just send me to heaven and get me out of this purgatory. I desperately needed to be in my very own Valhalla.

“So when you attacked our staff?” The younger angel asked. I eyeballed him wishing I could strangle him. Why would he have the notion that I would’ve attacked someone? That’s crazy.

“The attack? What attack, Joann?” Angel Campbell’s eyebrows furrowed in question and confusion. Benedict’s brows used to do that when he was confused or deep in thought. I gave Alvir that same trait when I created him. That’s why it hurt the most when Alvir struck me. I made him like my husband. Exactly like my husband . Having Alvir was like having Benedict after he died. I missed Benedict. He was my rock and maybe I’ll see him soon. He had to be sent to heaven. He was too good a person to be sent to hell.

“The attack that put me in this state. How else would I end up here?”

“Joann you weren’t attacked. You attempted suicide. You’ve been here for two months.”  Two months? Alvir and the gang are untraceable now.

“I didn’t try to kill myself.” I chuckled. “Alvir and everyone else killed me. They planned a successful coup. It’s a shame, they let their fans down.”

“Joann there was no attack.” He moved closer to me, a frown on his face. “Are you sure you don’t remember something else?”

“No! I was attacked!” I shot my hands upward in aggravation only for them to be blocked by metal. It hurt.

“Doctor, what’s going on? Joann’s awake?” Someone came in through the door.

“Kendall?” I sucked in a breath so quickly I nearly choked. “What is my brother doing here? Why is he here in purgatory with me? He’s not dead! He can’t be dead!” Kendall stood there, suctioned to the door. I looked at him frantically. My bangs covered my eyes; the rest of my hair went astray. “What are you doing here Kendall? How did you die? Did Alvir get you, too? That bastard! He’s going for our entire family!”

Kendall hurried toward me and Angel Campbell tried to stop him. “Joann what are you talking about?” Kendall put his hands on my hands. He was trying to calm me down the only way he knew how.

“Alvir killed me, and he killed you too. We need to warn the rest of the family. I know we’re dead, but you need to find a way! I’m chained up right now! You NEED to do it!”

Kendall studied my eyes as if he was trying to find my sanity. Why would he need to do that? “Joann what are you talking about?” Kendall kept searching until he was pulled away by an angel. More of them had entered the room. “What are you doing?” Kendall yelled.

“You need to go. She’s having an anxiety attack. Her heart rate has spiked and we need to sedate her.” Angel Campbell dragged my resisting brother out. “You’ll be able to see her later.”

“KENDALL!” I yelled. Where is he going? Where are they taking him? My heart was racing, I couldn’t breathe. My palms were sweaty and my chest felt constricted. What was going on? “KENDALL! FIND A WAY TO WARN OUR FAMILY! ALVIR CAN’T GET THEM TOO!” An angel walked briskly to something, a syringe in her hand. “KENDALL! KENDALL DON’T FORGET! PLEASE! WE NEED TO SAVE THEM!” I felt myself start to evaporate. The edges of my screen of sight started to fade to black. “Kendall,” I said calmly. I felt calm. I felt sleepy. The last thing I saw was Kendall standing in the doorway, his eyes were sad. He seemed like he was about to cry. I’d never made him cry before. How did this happen?

“Joann,” Angel Campbell's deep voice whispered. “Everything is gonna be okay.”

“Angel Campbell?” I whispered back. All I was seeing was fuzzy, blurred black.

“Yes, Joann.”

“At what point in Heaven do I get to pick my job?”

And I completely faded away.     

 

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