I can feel it breathing beneath me. Its warm breath goes up through the frame, through my thin mattress, and through my sheets. I feel my back getting moist even though I am already sweaty. But this moisture is different. It forms a warm film over my ice-cold sweat.
I am lying as still as possible. Stiff as a plank. I feel safer stretched out instead of curled up in a ball. It must be that incident from years ago. “Stretch yourself out like when you make a snow angel and try to slide over here!” In a flash I see the firefighter lying on his belly on a ladder that his colleagues gently push my way. He has his right hand stretched, ready to grab mine as soon as our fingers touch.
There is movement under the bed now. I feel warmth moving from where my neck is to the small of my back. There is a shift in the mattress. I swear I hear a metal sound, very soft but clearly, metal hitting metal. My eyes bulge as I imagine being handcuffed. Subconsciously my hands slowly move underneath my back until my body rests on my palms.
A sound comes from the end of the bed. Still stiff as a plank and with my hands behind my back, I stretch even further and raise my chin up. I stretch my throat and look upside down at the headboard. I close my eyes and in my mind I see myself sliding off the plank. My head hits the ice-cold water. At first, it is a welcoming feeling that cools down my heated head. I turn my neck a little so that the cold water reaches my temples and the base of my neck. It is so soothing that for a moment I forget where I am. Then I feel my head being dunked into a bucket with ice water! My fingers try to stop my body from sliding down the plank. My imaginary handcuffs scrape the plank. My flexed feet press down but my heels cannot stop the downward movement. Then the heat is back.
I feel heat at my feet. My ice-cold feet warm up with its moist air. Then I feel a firm yet soft grip. Sharp edges. More moisture. And scraping.
I look up. My arms are still behind my back, but I am again lying flat on my bed. My breathing is so shallow that I feel the tingling hyperventilation spread from across my nose to my temples. I am dizzy. I shake my head and imagine grabbing the firefighter’s hand. I yank one of my hands from underneath my back. I know that my handcuffs will tear my flesh apart but I need to grab his hand.
My fingers feel around his hand. Sharp edges in between cushioned parts. His hand must be covered with a glove that has cushioned parts protecting his knuckles. And I feel hair. Hair that shouldn’t be on the outside of a glove. Unless it is from another victim. Her hair stuck in her own dry blood on the outside of his glove.
Foul breath comes near my face. I know the monster is now near the side of the bed. I turn my head away to avoid that smell but at the same time it makes my neck vulnerable. I know it is only a matter of time before it gets slashed, and I will feel my warm blood flow and mingle with my ice-cold sweat. I see myself sliding away from the firefighter. His eyes terrified, he screams at me to stretch and grab his hand but I move into the opposite direction. I slip under…
Something sharp scrapes over the soft, thin, skin of my neck. Then an ice-cold wet piece presses itself underneath my ear near my jaw. Is that an alcohol wipe? A needle? My mind races as I decide that I will face the monster. I yank my head back and look at him.
He sits next to the bed. I squint and try to shake away the fog in my brain. I feel sweat in my eyes. I sit up and wipe my face on the pillow case. Last night’s mascara leaves horrible black stains on the fabric. I look up and now I see the monster clearly.
“Good morning, Fido.”
Reminder: I write flash fiction usually within one to two hours after inspiration hits me. I do use the spell checker but then I post it on my blog so yes, you will always find grammar mistakes.
English is not my first language so expect punctuation chaos.
Perfection is impossible. It means that I have to be perfect. Perfect is predictable and therefore boring. And I do not like anything boring.
My creative writing here on my personal blog is a way for me to relax in between the human rights cases and unsolved murders I cover on my professional blog. It is a great way to distract my brain for a few moments and to see where my imagination takes me when I give it a chance.