Do you need, desire or crave a new challenge? Are you open to sharing your dark side? Then read on.
Do you have a dark side?
Or, think you may have one. Or indeed worry that you might have one. Or, for that matter, worry that you don’t and would like one? If so, join me here each week for dark | side | thursday.
Over a period of 52 weeks, I am writing a story. A dark story that will unfold as the weeks pass. Each Thursday, at 13:00 UTC, I will post a new chapter. Each chapter will be exactly 500 words long, and will be accompanied by a photograph. You can catch up on the story so far by clicking here on dark | side | thursday
Share your dark side?
I invite you to join me either by writing your own dark story, week by week, or, if that is too much, by dropping by, now and then, perhaps when the mood suits you or, perhaps, when it doesn’t, and by sharing a photograph, poem or a suitably dark piece of prose. To cross over to dark | side | thursday create your post, tag it dark side thursday and link to it by clicking on the dark | side | thursday badge below, where you can also find all the contributions so far. Or you can simply share your link in the comments section of my weekly post. And, should the mood take you, you can add the badge to your post.
dark | side | thursday | nine
Acrid, clinical, her senses recoiled.
Nothing. She could see nothing. That smell, filled her nostrils, her mind, her body. She could feel nothing.
Time, space, began to re-form around her. Feelings, sensations trickling, burning, along fingers, arms.
Her body heavy, throat burning, the sickly sweet taste filled her mouth. A terrible headache, eyes struggling to open.
A light flickered, beyond her closed eyes, heavy eyes she could not open.
Fragments bubbled to the surface of her struggling consciousness, falling, she had been falling, into the dark, she had screamed but no sound came. She had fallen, he had not been there. Where was she? Where was he? Panic churned inside her, she struggled to think, to remember.
The sweet cloying, burning taste in her mouth, in her throat made her gag. Her throat dry, aching, sore, violated.
She lifted her arm, felt searing pain as the needle embedded in it pulled. Opening one eye, the light blistering her mind, she saw the tube attached to the needle in her arm, snaking up and into the humming machine next to the metal bed on which she lay.
What the hell had happened to her? Where was she? Panic bloomed like a toxic flower in her mind, she fought to breathe, to stay calm. Turning her head, she saw the tiled walls. The square room empty save for the metal bed, the metal door closed, no windows, a single cold fluorescent light in the ceiling, the humming machine next to her, connected to her.
She lay still, closed her eyes, tried to breathe, to fight off the nausea from the sickly sweet taste in her throat. Tried to breathe, to be calm. And waited.
He screamed and screamed.
The rain poured over him, sat on the kerb, head in hands, he held the key in front of him, turned it over and over, what had happened? Why had he not been able to return to the blackened wood? He had thought the time had come, had left the room, his desk, the journal, taken the key, walked into the corridor, expecting to slip through, to find her. And now, here in the street, soaking in the dark rain, feeling hopeless, lost, fearful.
He stood, looked back at the building, walked back through the doors. He could not walk those stairs, had no energy. Walking to the end of the corridor where an ancient lift waited, he pushed open the battered wooden door, pulled it behind him, pressed the brass button. The lift shuddered, creaked and, slowly, ascended. He leaned back, heavily, against the graffiti covered wall.
Again, she opened an eye, slowly. Lifted her hand, the right one, the one not attached to the tube, the machine. She slid her hand over her belly, the terror filled her again as the pain hit her, the pain snaking out of the darkness, the pain in her belly. The pain from her empty belly.
She knew then, they had taken it. From her.
The portal to dark | side | thursday opened on the twenty first day of may in the year twenty hundred and fifteen and will remain open for fifty two weeks.
nine | fiftytwo