CROSSED: Karma Crusades — Chapter 3

614
  0%
  0

Tags

Nothing this beautiful belonged here and in this storm. In the view of the boat, that structure she'd seen through the dark gray mist, Bette knew she wouldn't last.

Chapter 3 of Crossed: The Karma Crusades

The leaves swirled and the wind blew harder. The black clouds moved in the heavy winds to gather above her head and flashes lightning and booming thunder stole the sky. She was on an old wooden dock, with greying and rotting cracked panels and large gaping holes revealed the water beneath. At the end of the dock was a beautiful small white boat.

Nothing this beautiful belonged here and in this storm. In the view of the boat, that structure she'd seen through the dark gray mist, Bette knew she wouldn't last.

While stuck in this dream that small white boat with one sail torn slightly having been battered from the storm, would have to be her shelter through the persistent storm. Bette struggled to walk towards it as the wind blew harder, causing the rain to obscure the fancily written words that were already too difficult to read without the rain.

I turned around in my hidden vantage point to find the source of the hard footsteps approaching. Bette heard them too. She sped up her pace towards the little boat that would be her safe haven. Then she was running...running for all the life she had in her as the heavy clunking boots made chase. For every one step the boots took Bette had to take almost two. A clear disadvantage.

Her tears were hidden by the rain and her screams by the clapping and rolling thunder.

She stumbled on a broken plank, blinded by her tears.  I looked on as she caught her toe and fell hard, crashing face first to the wood. She left small blood droplets behind from the cut on her chin. She was now trapped and bleeding between the broken planks and the man on a mission. He was dressed in black from his top hat to his rubber goulashes.

"Are you Lana Fier?" the larger than life figure asked in a husky dry voice that reminded Bette of cigars and bourbon in a lounge with swanky waitresses. She couldn't see him clearly as the rain and her tears masked his face with the help of the shadow cast by the oversized brim of his hat, concealing his eyes.

"No, no. I am not Lana Fier! And what concern is it of yours?" she asked belligerently despite her vulnerable position.

You are Lana Fier!" he boomed. His eyes grew wide and angry as he disregarded her question. He reached down, his fingers clasping the collar of her thin yellow rain jacket, and he yanked her up towards him. Her feet dangled inches above the ground as she was forced to see him intimately. His eyes were haunting and the thick black brows pulled in making lines above the bridge of his small narrow nose. But those weren't the eyes that haunted her dreams. Similar but not the same.

"No. I'm not. And even if I were you still don't have the right to scare me like that and practically threaten my life. Who is Lana Fier?" Bette tried to remind herself that she must be dreaming. It had to just be a dream. He couldn't hurt her in a dream, not really. Scare her. Yes. But she'd wake up. Soon she hoped. Very soon.

"You should know you conniving vixen. You seduced and killed my only brother and you shall pay dearly for her deadly mistake," the words oozed out of his mouth like venom and Bette could taste the poison on her tongue.

Bette's body began to quiver as shivers went up and down her spine. I looked on curiously at how he would handle this. She'd denied being Lana Fier. Would he accept it?

Lana Fier. The name sounded familiar to Bette but it didn't connect with anything she could readily recall in her moment of terror. Out the corner of her eye, she saw me again. I was just a figure lurking in the distance, just beyond her clear view, watching as she was tortured by this crusader. I turned away, not wanting to see the pleading eyes that sought out my salvation.

"Yes, you shall pay Lana Fier. For all the life of you for his, you shall pay!" This shattering statement woke her up, drops of sweats dripping from her brow, her pillow damp, yet a chill still running through her bones. Bette began to weep.

 

 ***

Clara was near tears as she sat still on the edge of the bed watching as her sister slowly adjusted her eyes. "What's wrong Bette? Please tell me what's wrong. Please Bette, please." Lana looked at her through a glaze of sleep filled eyes. Who was this strange woman and why was she sitting on her bed in the middle of the night?

In the dark she favored one of her dorm-mates from down the hall but why would Kathy be in her room at...she looked to the right to check the time...who moved the alarm clock? How was she supposed to wake up for her classes on time?

"Bette, what's wrong?"

"Kathy, my name is not Bette. It is Lana. Lana Fier! You should know that by now. We've been in the same dorm as next door neighbors all semester. Now what time is it? And who moved my fricking clock?"

"Bette! What is wrong with you? You want to have these nightmares and have me run in every hour to comfort you and then act like you don't know me? Your name is Bette and it has been for the past sixteen years! Snap out of the dream."

"Pardon me. But I have not been sixteen for five years now! Good night Kathy. I'm tired of the games. Go back to your room. I'm going back to sleep." Lana spoke into the dark room, annoyed that her alarm clock was missing and that Kathy felt the need to play games in the middle of the night. She fell back onto the bed and into a listless sleep.

Lana awoke in a frenzied state a few hours later. She panicked as she threw the white duvet covers off of her and snapped her head around to look at the time. The clock was still missing. She'd never make it to her...wait a minute. This was not her dorm room and her roommate Susan was not there.

As I watched her in her state of confusion I wondered if he knew already. Lana was here and he was now looking in the wrong place.

 

 ***

Bette turned her head from one side to the other to avoid the sunlight that made her eyelids light up red from the inside. Brown waves fell over her face helping to block some of the offending light. She wasn't in the mood for school and the math test she'd have in Trigonometry. Despite studying she was too tired to think straight.

She forced herself awake, slowly opening her eyes, rubbing the sleep away, and blinking as she tried to focus. Nothing looked familiar. "Where am I? How'd I get here?" She looked around the cramped room that held a single twin bed with a simple wooden slatted headboard along one wall and another twin bed that matched the one she was in, against the other. Her eyes tried to make sense of what she was seeing before her heart began racing again.

The bed across from her had rumpled turquoise and white floral covers and the pillow had fallen to the side of the bed where it rested, leaning against the mattress. She definitely wasn't in a prison. Maybe she'd been kidnapped by someone really twisted but with a sense of style. Whatever had happened, something was wrong. She promised herself she wasn't going to scream this time as she looked out the window. Below her and around her looked like the dormitories she'd often seen in movies. She hadn't woken up after all, she sighed with relief.

She moaned and wondered how deep asleep she must be. She pinched the skin on the back of her forearm hard and winced in pain. It hurt. She wasn't asleep and she wasn't where she was supposed to be.

Bette began to panic as she wondered if she'd been kidnapped, drugged, and a number of other scenarios that could possibly explain how she wound up here.

It was all unfamiliar. The buildings. The grassy area beneath the window that led to a sidewalk. A park in the distance was already beginning to fill with people carrying their life possessions in bags and baskets. The noises outside and city skyline didn't make sense. She was on some kind of city college campus.

"No, that's ridiculous," I heard her whisper. She thought again that maybe she was still dreaming. Bette heard her own nervous laugh escape her throat for thinking such a scary and stupid thing — her at a city college campus and not in her Valdosta suburb home. It was laughable.

 

Bette's body began to quiver as shivers went up and down her spine. I looked on curiously at how he would handle this. She'd denied being Lana Fier. Would he accept it?

Lana Fier. The name sounded familiar to Bette but it didn't connect with anything she could readily recall in her moment of terror. Out the corner of her eye, she saw me again. I was just a figure lurking in the distance, just beyond her clear view, watching as she was tortured by this crusader. I turned away, not wanting to see the pleading eyes that sought out my salvation.

"Yes, you shall pay Lana Fier. For all the life of you for his, you shall pay!" This shattering statement woke her up, drops of sweats dripping from her brow, her pillow damp, yet a chill still running through her bones. Bette began to weep.

********

Authors Note: 

I would love to hear your feedback on this novella so far.  And if you love it and comment with your thoughts on this piece, I'd be happy to do the same for you (just ask).

The story is available in complete form on Amazon.

Your comments and loves are greatly appreciated.

Global Scriggler.DomainModel.Publication.Visibility
There's more where that came from!