Hello and welcome to Fiction Friday. Every Friday I will post some of my writing.
Here is this Friday’s:
The rain pelted the window as she slept, comforting and unsettling her. There was an odd love-hate relationship she had developed with water. As a young girl she had constantly swam in the lake nearby, or the swimming pool in the next city over. She played water sports with her brothers on those unbearable scorching summer days. Once, she had nearly drowned when they went to the ocean on vacation when she was sixteen. Her Uncle and most of his family had drowned almost four years ago in a freak accident. Since then she hadn’t been able to tolerate being in something as simple as a bath. But she enjoyed the sound of running water and the rain outside, most of the time when it didn’t make her jittery.
She reached over as her alarm went off, blinking a solid 2:50 A.M. Another restless night with sleep that didn’t help shit. Throwing the covers off, she slowly spread out her limbs, her stretching accompanied by a symphony of cracks. As she laid there a few more seconds she heard the rain pick up its tempo. She rolled her eyes, annoyed that she had to do early morning patrol. The only good thing out of it is that she didn’t have to exercise later. Rolling out of bed, she slid over to her closet, pulling out a running suit and some under things.
Within four minutes she was dressed and downstairs. She slipped half a cheese bagel in to the toaster and pulled out some cream cheese and a knife. While her bagel toasted, she went to the alcove next to the door to put her shoes and rain suit on. A few sets of shoes and rain gear were drying in the alcove, no doubt from the earlier shift.
There were eight three-hour shifts, four people on each. We ran a perimeter non-stop around the property, making sure the walls and the wards weren’t damaged or broken. If anything looked or felt out of the ordinary, we were to signal it in, no matter what.The buzzer ding’d, signaling the bagel was done. Quickly, she slathered some cream cheese on it and finished it in three bites. The knife landed in the sink, napkin in the trash, and she was out the door before the clock hit 2:59 A.M.
Running was her favorite thing to do besides fight. All her muscles could stretch and work themselves out, she could push herself farther, go harder, lose herself in the rhythm, multi-task and let her body do the work while her mind raced faster than her body ever could. Power flowed through her veins, was embedded in her muscles, concentrated in her bones. No one was faster or stronger than her, not now, not while her mind was so focused, so alert, her eyes analyzing and cataloging every minute detail.
There were stone paths, dirt paths, brick paths, and hidden paths that we’re suppose to run. Pretty colored bushes and various trees populated the grounds. Ancient brick and stone buildings were located in the center of the grounds, with scattered outposts within the trees. There were even some people stationed a ways outside the wards and walls, also keeping an eye out, which made her patrol that much easier and relaxing. Her route was the closest to the perimeter which meant non-stop running.
The rain continued to come down for the next forty minutes, and, although it did lessen, which made her slightly less uneasy, it didn’t stop. Her only reprieve was the running, which her body and mind was so addicted to that it barely registered the rain. She hadn’t seen something out of the ordinary in so long that she nearly stumbled when her brain recognized it. Immediately, she skidded to a stop and investigated.
Slightly protruding from the middle of the wall was a brick. It only stuck out about a quarter of an inch, but the entire wall was built uniform as instructed. We were looking at the wall so much that even a scratch on the wall from throwing a rock was noticeable and even talked about.
Every hair on her body sizzled as her adrenaline rushed, ears perked, eyes cataloging every detail. Leaves and branches rustled behind the wall where the brick barely stuck out, and she watched the brick slide forward another quarter of an inch.
Protect, destroy, alert, fight, discover. All of these things ran through her as mere milliseconds passed by. She reached in to her rain jacket pocket, pulled out a flare gun, and shot it in to the air. Before the trigger could clicked, the brick shot all the way out and flew at her. She dodged it and reached in to her pocket for another flare, loaded it, and shot it in to the air. The shot illuminated three figures emerging from the wall, cloaked head to toe in gray. They lifted their heads and she saw their eyes glowing, as well as something unique, metallic, and shiny attached to them on various parts of themselves.
Behind her she could hear her fellow classmates and professors scrambling, responsibility, fear, and anger in their movements. Back-up would arrive in seconds, yes, but this threat she sensed was something they had never faced before; nothing in any textbook could prepare her for what her eyes had just seen. The way they swayed, like in sync and linked to each other, and yet separate entities observing, analyzing, and calculating in the same instant. Her body vibrated, and she knew that she couldn’t let them get any farther, even if it meant sacrificing herself.
Who would have known that today would be the last time she would wake up? At least she didn’t have to deal with this water aversion anymore.
A howl ripped through her as her skin itched, her muscles tickled, her bones loosened and began to reposition. Her vision went slightly dark as the animal side of her swung front and center, transforming her body in to a killing machine. Pumping her legs, she shot forward, the hooded three not expecting her to change and attack so quickly.
All too late did she sense her mistake. They hadn’t been trying to get in; they’d been trying to get to her.