Chapter 8

Written by: Rosemary Wakelin

It was dark now, except for a feeble glow from a distant light.


Diandra welcomed her friends, the murky shadows curling and swaying along the walls of her prison-like room. She held the pin the orderly gave her and grinned. Winning over the orderly had been too easy. As for that horrible Nurse Madeline, she would get her dues soon enough.


The sad wails and incessant babbles of other patients echoed through the halls. Perhaps Diandra could do something kind for them and put them out of their misery. Or perhaps, she could leave them alone to their miserable suffering.


She, Diandra, had that power. To decide who would die and who would live.


Diandra lifted her arms and laughed. An incredible surge of energy charged through her body until her fingers quivered and her toes were warm and tingly. How she loved the sensation. Another minute of indulgence and she sighed.


It was time to retrieve the doll.


She dropped to her knees and searched beneath the bed but it wasn't there. Had she kicked it further than she expected? She delved deeper, until the bed almost swallowed her. Still no sign of the doll.


Sweat, born from pure fear, began dribbling down her face as she explored every section of the small room. 


The doll was gone. How was that possible?  An icy cold soon melted the warmth inside her and she shuddered. Had the doll abandoned her? Had Adorna?


But why? Hadn’t Diandra done all that Adorna wanted? Violent cramps began savagely stabbing her insides. She buckled over clutching her stomach and cried out. With each passing second, the cramps worsened until she vomited many times. 


With the stench unbearable, she crawled to the corner furthest away. There in that dark space, she huddled alone, without her comforting shadows or her doll to soothe her. Tears, real ones this time, tumbled down her face. 


The spasms grew so fierce she began convulsing. Air became short, her chest shrieking from the lack of it. She wished death on, anything to end the excruciating pain. But she didn’t die, leaving her alone to ‘her miserable suffering’.  


You wanted to be like, Sarah,” a voice whispered nearby. “Now you are.”  Diandra’s eyes shot wide. Who was that? Adorna?  It was then that Diandra let out a long, ear-splitting howl.


Sarah heard the scream, the sound like no other. The woman with the white hair and translucent face snapped her head in the direction of the scream. When she looked back at Sarah, it was with a chilling sneer. Yellow spit drooled from her mouth. 


Sarah slammed her eyes shut. She prayed for a quick, painless death. Whooshing sounds followed, and then nothing but silence. Sarah opened one eye. To her surprise, her hospital room was empty, peaceful again. 


But for how long this time?


“Not long.” 


Nigel appeared. In his hand, was Diandra’s doll. “The peace will never last, Sarah,” he said, “not until you fight back”.


Rosemary, what a breathtaking chapter from start to right down to the final line. You captured the ambience of the room that echoed the off balance characters and situation. It was all there, out of kilter and believable, then the flash to normal but then the reminder that 'normals' are temporary. Fabulous!
An amazing chapter, it had me gripped from the first word till the last. An economy of words conveying meanings with intensity. Wonderful. Congratulations!