Monday, November 14, 2005

Footsteps, Part 3 (Fiction)

(Just joining us? Go back to Part 1)

       Pure morning sun blazed on Melissa's blankets and warmed them. At least, she believed it warmed them. She remembered the pleasure of sunlight. So many delicious sensations. Lost. Her face could still experience them, but a face was different. Too fine. Too protected. Melissa hated when things touched her face.
       She basked in the sun for an eternity that morning. She forgot about the curious footprints. The block of brilliant light crept across the cloth patterns while she watched. Perhaps, she even dozed.
       And in the midst of a dream, something changed. A fog came. And confusion. She stirred and lifted a heavy lid from her eye. No sun. Misty light hung in the room.
       Odd. The window was closed.
       Melissa blinked, but the blur smeared worse.
       Chill air and moisture sprinkled down. Her jaw quivered with cold. Without the respirator filling her mouth, the teeth would've been clicking. Melissa's gaze wandered the room, but her brain lagged. She saw but didn't comprehend. Fear stirred, and disorientation, but the soup smothered them.
       Voices broke through. Her mother. Crying. Screaming. At the nurse.
       Melissa saw the nurse's eyes. Disembodied. The face bled away in the mist, but the eyes hovered overhead like horrible, glistening suns. They beamed judgment over her white, frigid world.
       More yelling. Someone holding her hand.
       Her hand?
       Melissa gazed down. A shape. Not a person. Like a person. She swam through recollections, which threatened to freeze.
       An infusion pump. Yes. Doctors scurrying with no eyes. Only coats and the tips of pens. They were working with the pump. Attacking the infection. More medicines. Coursing down the clear line to her hand. Such a nice hand. A lovely hand.
       More crying. More barking voices.
       And all while the grotesque suns were blazing.

On to Part 4
Back to Part 2

12 comments:

Farzad said...

J,
Keep going. Don’t stop. It’s getting better and better.
"It's already became a piece of art!"
Thanx & cheers :)

Beanie said...

I'm liking this. :) I appreciate real psychological fear, not this blood and guts crap they try to pass off as "horror" or "suspense" these days. That's a cop out - it takes true talent to pull off psychological fear, and, for me at least, there are two main components of that: the unknown and helplessness. This takes care of both. A healthy dose of helplessness (like with this girl and like in Stephen King's Gerald's Game) can do amazing things to the mind of the reader. Not only does it frighten you with the basic, unpleasant thought of not being able to help yourself in the face of danger, it subtly eases you into a much more intimate connection with the character because you find yourself trying to mentally get them out of their bind, to will them into some kind of action. And it also makes you think - what would I do if it was me? Would I be able to handle this? Enough rambling. *LOL* Can't wait for Part IV.

anne said...

Oh heaven. I agree with beanie's helplessness statement. Now I want to help her.

. : A : . said...

Nice. Don't stop. Keep it going.

jason evans said...

Farzad, this is all your fault! :) You keep nudging me when I've found a comfortable seat and flipped on the TV. Thanks!

Beanie, what a great insight! Helplessness. Yes. Melissa is helplessness personified. And I share your nostalgia for good, eerie, psychological horror/suspense.

Anne, get in there! She needs you!

.:A:., I'll try very hard to post Part 4 more quickly.

Kelly Parra said...

Ugh, poor Melissa. Very good read! =D

Jeff said...

jason- I'm following along, good so far. :)

Kara Alison said...

Jason - I really like this. The first thought in my head after reading this part is, "Has Jason been in a coma? Is this what it's like?" Horrifying.

What's interesting is that she's feeling no apparent pain. She can see (vaguely) and hear that people around her are distressed, but she can perceive almost nothing about herself. I wonder if I were in this situation...would I prefer the pain to the absolute ignorance? Is ignorance bliss?

jason evans said...

Kelly and Jeff, thanks for letting me know you're staying tuned!

Kara, I dare say for me ignorance would be bliss. Pain can drag a person into a hole so deep they can't climb out. I've never been in a coma, thankfully. But as a health care lawyer, I'm around health care issues all the time.

Luke said...

Oh yes. Builds up to a wonderful crescendo. I love this bit:
"The face bled away in the mist, but the eyes hovered overhead like horrible, glistening suns."

Bernita said...

Beanie is right, and the objective description combined with the psycological adds to it.

jason evans said...

Luke, my favorite part too! Once I imagined it, I couldn't shake the bizarre image.

Bernita, thanks! The interplay between the objective reality and Melissa's subjective reality will continue to be important.