The beginning

May 31, 2010

The wind blew and swirled my neat shaggy dark brown hair as I waited for her to

come. She left a note on my seventh period desk to meet her here. There wasn’t much to look at as I rocked back and fourth on the heels of my black dress shoes. I started to wonder why she would want to meet here, near the woods. Stacy always seems more like the down with trees up with malls type.

I growled under my breath getting frustrated with her for being so late. I really shouldn’t mind since if not for her I would be at the library pretending to go over homework I have weeks done before it‘s actually due.

Maybe the colds just getting to me, I guess I should have worn a heavier jacket because this black v-neck sweater and olive green polo is not helping me against this harsh wind and cold. In addition, my black scarf is not doing much either. I tried turning my back against the wind to stop it from blowing my bangs out of place over my eye.

However, it seemed as if the wind was following my every move. I tapped my foot as I became more impatient.

I looked down and turned around trying to find my book bag. I guess I have been walking. I found it a yard away from where I was standing. I crouched down and moved the shoulder strap away from the opening flap of my bag. Before I flipped it open, I could not help but trace the design on it with my ring finger. The silver skull and ivy colored vines memorized me. The design was somewhat simple but still held quite some charm. To any other person it just looked like a skull forgotten in time but to me it had more meaning. I had no clue to what the meaning was but as I looked at it everyday it was as if it was proclaiming a challenge to me. So of course, as like any other noble man I had to accept. I stared into the empty dark eyes of the skull as it began to hypnotize me.

As I became deep in thought, it startled me as I leaf brushed against my bare hands. I shook my head back and fourth bringing myself back to reality. I tossed the flap over and unzipped the main pocket. I dug around my binder and few books I had inside until a touched something soft like wool.

I tugged it out trying not to drag everything out along with it. As it became untangled from the mess of my backpack, I found the exact thing I was looking for, my knit hat. I am not too sure, what to call it but it is like a black wool cap but with a brim. I slipped it over my head and sighed as it made the weather more bearable.

The wind began to pick up as I continued to wait for Stacy. I was getting kind of tired of standing so I backed up until I ran into a something. I reached my hand back to feel the texture of the thing I ran into. It was rough and scraped my hand, a tree. I slide down against it and pulled one of my legs up.

My stomach started to grumble and I became light headed. “I should have eaten lunch.” I told myself aloud. I laid my head on leg to ease my headache, hoping it would go away.

My pocket started to vibrate. I forgot I even had my phone with me. I pulled it out of my pocket and slid my thumb against the touch screen. I got a text message from Stacy.

Sry I’m late ill be ther in like 5 min. see ya soon.” she wrote. I really wish Dakota had not given her my phone number.

Most of the time I try to find the good in people and forget about their imperfections but I cannot do that with Stacy. Sometime I just wish she would just go fall in a hole. However, this thought only crosses my mind rarely. She is just not really worth my attention.

Ugh, this is not helping my head. I turned to my preferred resort. I pulled my Ipod out of my large pockets, stuck the buds in my ears, and turned my music as loud as it would go to drown out my thoughts.

I barley heard my name as I looked up to see her looking at me. I pulled my buds out and turned my Ipod off.

Carter! I’m so sorry please I hope you’re not mad.” she begged. She pulled her arms close and made a puppy dog face that I guess was supposed to attractive.

I lifted my lips up into a smile and pulled my self off the ground. “Of course not, I’m sure you tired your best to get here soon.” I said gently.

She bounced on her heels in excitement. I really wish she would just ask me already. My patience is growing quite thin as she hesitates to ask me the question that I am asked daily. She turned her head to the side slightly and looked down.

Carter I was wondering if you might….” she began.

Yes?” I said with enough flirtation to make her melt. My stomach churned in displeasure at what these girls had done to me. I have become a sinful player of a game.

Would you go to Kevin’s party with me?” she asked in a rush of words. Her face looked so anxious and nervous.

I turned my lips down slightly to make it look like I was full of sorrow. I really hope she will not cry.

I wish I could but I already have plans.”

She turned her head so I could only see a sliver of her face that was covered by her hair. “Oh, I’m sorry I bothered you and wasted your time.” her voice broke.

Please don’t, I’m so sorry.” I whispered. Her arms dropped to her side as she began to full on cry. “I’m so sorry….” I repeated.

In a quick movement, she looked up at me with the most hateful eyes. I reached out my hand to try to comfort her but she only looked at it. She traced my hand with her eyes before she looked down.

Goodbye…” she chocked out. She was off running before I could say anything. It was as if life suddenly slowed down. It slowed down and made me watch and hear as she ran away crying.

My own eyes started to water as I fell to the ground. I sat there on my knees and let the salt water run down my face. When I say her cry, I could not help but feel her emotions too.

I must have looked pathetic as I just sat there. I knew I had to get control of myself before I could go home. If my dad saw me like this, there would be hell to pay. “Be a man Carter, stop crying you disgust me.” I quoted in a whisper. Why do I have to live like this? What kind of god would hate his own creation enough to put me through this?

I am worthless…. I have no worth” I barley chocked out as I got to my feet.

My teeth started to clench and my tears warmed as my sadness dissolved into anger. I felt inside my pockets for the first thing I could find and threw it at the ground. I screamed out releasing my rage.

My mind started to think logically again. My eyes were closed probably too scared to see what I threw. I sighed as I realized I had better find out now. I opened them slowly and groaned as I saw what was on the ground.

My phone was lying on the ground with the black and white checkered cover broke into three pieces. I bent my knees and reached down to pick my phone up. I looked it over twice. There were a few scratches on the back but nothing major.

I turned my phone on and shut my eyes tight not wanting to see the result of my stupid actions. There was suddenly a jingle coming from my phone. I opened one eye to find my phone on thank god. I bent down again and picked up the remains of my phone cover. Oh well it was about time I got a new one.

I gathered myself and covered any signs of my break down. If someone found out, I would be on deaths list. I stuffed the cover in my bag and put my phone back in my pocket.

I breathed deeply as I prepared myself for what was coming my way.

I woke up to my body belly down on the cold, damp ground. The smell of the ground is almost sickly smelling to my fresh awakening. The dirty, musty smell was burning and twisting my stomach in an odd way.

I put my palms against the ground. As twigs and leaves crackled and snapped under the pressure my arms, my arms began to shake. The shaking became violent. A few seconds later my arms collapse under my own weight.

As my nose hit the ground and filled with the earthy smell, I started to dry heave as my body tried to push anything possible out of my stomach. My body just felt so weak.

I curled my legs into my chest and put my head slowly atop my arms. I felt helpless, as I laid there vulnerable to my surroundings.

Suddenly the world started to spin and my eyes seemed to be fogged over with a black mist. As I was dragged deeper into darkness, it felt familiar but oh so different at the same time.

It was like this time I was at fault instead of those around me. The sea was back and this time it seemed to be a black hole. It sucked me in, but I fought back. I did not want to give in but it was just so tempting. It made it even more tempting because I was alone.

As the mist turned into a cloud, I knew I had to give up. I rather give into this darkness than go through more of this pain.

My head started to pound and throb in response to my effort. My eyes went completely black as I was finally sucked inside the black hole.

Like they say, a black hole destroys all light and sound or I hope because I cannot hear anything or see anything anymore. I can barely hear my own thoughts as I slowly disappear into nothing it self.

Is he dead?” a girl spoke, her voice light and mature, as my hearing came back. “No, he just passed out it’s a normal thing for our kind.” a man spoke in a deep Tom Cruise-ish Hollywood voice.

I wanted to open my eyes so bad to see the people who spoke of such strange things.

That kind of sucks, well when he wakes ill be there to comfort him.” the girl’s voice spoke again with a little too much enthusiasm.

The sense of touch started to come back. I could feel as someone lifted me off the ground. I could hear them talking some more but I was too busy screaming in my head to make my body work.

Suddenly, it felt like a bolt of energy jolted up my spine. My eyes fluttered open and I was able to lift my head up. I could not tell if it was a dream or illusion. The world around me was going by in a flash of brown and green. My eyes enlarged with fear, I yelled out for whoever was carrying me to stop. In addition, my wish was granted. An autumn forest scene was now surrounding me.

My mind started to wander off to other questions I suddenly had. However, I have to know first who these people are and how I got here in the forest. For some reason I could not talk, my voice seemed to be lost in my throat.

The girls face unexpectedly brightened up as I stared at her. I was star struck as I looked at her. She looked like she was right out of a teen’s weekly magazine. Her skin was tanned and her hair looked like it belonged to a blonde angel. Her clothes looked like they were designed just for her. They fit her so well and made her look like supermodel at every angle. The only problem was that she looked about my age. That kind of beauty is unnatural for people our age.

What are you looking at?” she said through a few giggles. I was too busy gazing at her that I jumped when the man tapped my shoulder.

It’s ok I mean no harm.” he said warmly. He could not be older than thirty-seven. He too was model like. He looked like he was out of the Sears catalog. Unlike the girl, his skin was pale like a ghost or someone who has never seen the sun. The olive tone of his skin made his almond colored eyes pop along with his light brown hair.

It just seems so weird that two extraordinary looking people would be the ones to find me in this forest. It did not look like they were hiking or camping because their clothes were casual fall outerwear.

The girl had light blue jeans, turquoise boots that matched her turquoise hoody.

The man well, literally looked like he just walked out of a men’s fall clothesline in a sears catalog. His sweater was different shades of brown in a horizontal stripe pattern and his pants were a simple pair of dark blue jeans. Around his neck was a dark brown scarf that matched his shoes.

As my mind continued to examine these two strange people in the back of my head reality started to sink in. I had to ask them the two questions that are haunting me.

Who are you people? How did you know I was here? Where are you taking me?” questions just started to leak out of my mouth.

I’ll answer you in time but we have to get home first,” the man answered. “What? No….no I’m not going anywhere with you till you at least tell me who you are!” I argued back. I had no clue who these people were and they want to take me home, where ever that may be.

My head started to throb again. It was not as bad as before though, but still very uncomfortable. I looked around for the nearest stable tree. A minute later, I found the closest one, two or three feet behind me.

I still was not exactly feeling fantastic at the moment. My body was still a little frail to actually walk. All I wanted to do was crawl to the tree so I could rest upon it. However, at the same time I did not want to alert the strange man and girl.

I inhaled as much air as possible trying to find some kind of lost strength inside it. I held my breath as I slowly made my way toward the tree.

My steps were slow but the distance I took each time was like taking two stair steps at a time. When I finally made it to the tree, it seemed like it took an eternity.

It probably seemed that way because the whole time I was trying to divert the stares from the back of my head. The stares felt more worried rather than mad.

I grasped the rough bark of the tree to stop the wobbling in my legs. As my fingers grounded harder into the bark, it punctured my soft skin. My air started to come out in fast jagged breaths. I could not find any more strength in my hands or legs. As my legs finally gave in, I heard a gasp behind me.

An unnatural breeze suddenly brushed my hair. I turned toward the air drift to see the angelic girl knelt beside me on her knees. “Are you ok? Are you hurt? Poor thing!” she questioned, her eyes worried. I could feel my eyebrows pull together into a confused look as I questioned my common sense.

I started to rack my brain for answers but it became too difficult with my head still pounding. Suddenly, in a flash of movement thought to be impossible, my hands were palm side up in the strange girl’s hands.

She leaned in toward my hands to examine them. I am not sure why but I tried my best to hold still as she slowly twisted and turned my hand. Her actions were slow and gentle. She turned her head toward where she was standing before. I too, turned my head to see what or who she was looking at.

There was nothing there but the various leaves and twigs. When I turned my head back to her I was shocked, literally I went into shock. None of this is logically explainable. He could not have moved that fast. I am sure; no, I am definite that he was nowhere close enough to get that close to me in a matter of seconds.

On the other hand, I could be just going insane. “Are you ok? You seem a little out of It.” he spoke slowly, thank goodness.

Right now, I am even having trouble decoding my very own thoughts. I thought through his question repeatedly in my head trying to think of a true, but none alarming answer. I didn’t want to say something like oh I don’t know Oh I’m perfectly fine this happens all the time, but at the same time I didn’t want to say No I feel like I’m about to drop dead. I put extra thought into what I said.

I’ll live; I’m just a little woozy.” I nodded to myself. He looked at me a little spectacle, as if I was trying to lead him off. “I promise. I won’t die on you.” I said glad my natural charm is kicking in.

His facial expression changed to a more believing look. I did not notice until then that the girl was rubbing my arm like a worried friend. She smiled at me shyly, which made it all the more awkward.

Julia,” the girl looked up at him “did Margaret tell the others about the new addition?” he spoke in a monotone voice. She, well I guess Julia, nodded once in response.

Great, more of the strange talk. They almost made it sound like they were hiding something from me. Even though I just met these people, it offended me.

I groaned unwillingly as I grew more frustrated. My head seemed to grow hot as I grew angrier.

I felt like Hades, a blue flame sprouting from my hair. “Dear, oops I mean Carter, you look a little frazzled are you ok?” Julia stuttered out.

Oh, no, no this cannot be happening again. I cannot believe I cannot go one little day without girls doing this. They think automatically that I am expected to go with them. What the hell! I know it seems that I am overreacting but this happens excessively. I am tired of having to be mister nice heartbreaker.

It does not bother me being nice because well it just comes naturally to me. Oh but when it comes to breaking up with people I cannot help but want to scream and yell at them. However, I will not because I cannot. I am not cold hearted; I will not make a girl cry or anyone in fact. It is not that I am weak or afraid it is just because it would not feel right.

I breathed in and out deeply to calm myself. I felt my face relax along with my shoulders. I grabbed I low branch and pulled my self up. I brushed the back of my pants off of any debris.

I turned my head slightly and looked at Julia through the corner of my eye. Her face was a mixture of frustrated, worried and sad. I could not tell which emotion dominated her face; it was a three-way tie.

Carter as I said before, if you would come with us I’ll answer all of your questions.” the man said softly.

I thought about this question this time instead of jumping out with an answer. He seemed trust worthy. His eyes seemed excessively soft to hold any trace of evil.

I turned my head to look more directly at Julia. She smiled encouragingly. I was not too sure about her, she seemed like she would tell me what I want to hear not the truth.

I sighed and looked back at the man. “Ok, but at least tell me your name so I know whom I am with.” I said firmly so that it made no room to negotiate. I small smile spread across his face that reached his eyes, a genuine smile.

How rude of me of not formally introducing myself, I’m Alexander.”

As I followed behind Alexander Julia seemed to trail behind.

Every time I turned around, she diverted here eyes from me. I was not sure if she was trying to make me look like a jerk or if she was just that sad, that it hurt to look into my eyes. To me this was worse than her crying.

Thinking about this only made me more frustrated than I already was. I decided that it would better if I simply just kept looking forward instead of torturing her.

I kept my mind empty and my pace steady as the forest began to lighten. We seemed to be on a path now near a road maybe.

I continued to push back all of my worries trying to keep my face calm, as near to emotionless as possible. Nevertheless, I could not help but try to guess why I am following these people. For all I know they could be planning to sacrificing me.

The only answer my mind seemed to come up with is Alexander’s face as he asked once again for me to come with him. “Alexander…” I almost whispered. I had let a question slip from the vault I had held it in.

Yes, Carter?” he asked warmly. I quickly changed my question.

You’re not going to sacrifice me, right?” I questioned with a hint of playfulness. He chuckled lightly and answered, “Of course not, the others and me strictly have only good intentions for you. So there is no need for worry Carter.” I know this sounds weird but I liked how he said my name.

He gave it elegance that I thought it had no potential to carry. Carter is too much of an American tool kind of name rather than a ballroom waltzing kind of name. It pleased me and comforted me.

Julia please quicken your pace. It is important to get home soon. I have things to do.” Alexander said with authority.

Sure” she whispered.

My stomach started to twist again but not in an ill kind of way. I clinched my hands tight into fists. I had to hold myself together at least until I was alone.

Julia show Carter the rest of the way, I must go.” Alexander rushed out. “I’m so sorry Carter I know I promised I would explain I will when I get back so please forgive my disappearance. “

I only nodded because I did understand and I know that he will keep his promise. I turned and looked back at Julia.

She smiled slightly and I smiled back. I turned back around to say something to Alexander but he was gone.

Oh!” I gasped as something touched my hand.

Sorry I did not mean to frighten you. I indented to gesture that I’m sorry.” she said in a small voice.

It’s ok I’m just still a little frazzled. By the way why are you sorry I should be the one hoping for your forgiveness?” I answered.

I was silly and immature getting so hurt that you don’t like me. I mean how stupid could I be I just met you.” She rambled out. I took her face with my fingertips and made her face me.

I was rude Julia please forgive me.” I asked.

Her eyes sparkled and her face lightened. “Oh, of course Carter!” she exclaimed. Goodness, I have done it again. I have become my sinful alter ego once again.

I rushed to change the conversation and my thoughts. “What day is it?” I asked softly.

It’s the eighth of November.“ She replied.

My eyebrows furrowed as I became confused. The last time I checked it was December, December 8. I must have been unconscious for a month.

Julia looked at me worryingly but I just nodded at her reassuringly as I tried to make sense of all this.

We were in silence for what seemed like forever. The silence was broken when I heard a low mumble. “Did you say something, Julia?” I asked trying to keep myself sane.

Oh dear lord…” she whispered so low I could barely hear it.

I started to open my mouth to ask her what was wrong but I could not. There was no air in my lungs, no control of my body.

I was suddenly moving at top speed through the remainder of the forest. My eyes would not shut but I could not turn my head. Suddenly my body was not moving anymore but my head still was.

I am not sure how but I was now on the ground. This must be what it feels like to hung over. My head hurts and I cannot sit up without falling back down. I closed my eyes letting the dizziness pass over.

Carter I’m so sorry I should have been more aware.” she gushed out.

Aware of what, Julia? Please I do not understand just please answer me.“ I begged. It irritates me not to know something but I keep my suffering private.

I always at school have an urge to ask what and why but I do not because it would not be polite. I know I should not be concerned as I am at this age about being polite but that is how I was raised by Jasmine. Suddenly Julia’s hands were on either side of my face.

Carter are you ok? You seem to be responding … strangely.” she asked looking as confused as I feel.

How is acting sane a wrong response?” I threw back as I gritted my teeth. She removed her hands from my face to my shoulders.

This girl is really driving me crazy and not in a good way. One second she is head over heels for me the next moment she is upset with me. The pattern goes repeatedly constantly. It is rude to think but I am starting to believe that this girl is bipolar.

Julia crushed me against her in a flash of movement. It did not like it at all. It was uncomfortable and painful. Each time I tried to move away from her grasp, she only tightened her hold on me.

This was the painful part of it as my throat burned for oxygen and my stomach contracted.

The uncomfortable half is being formed against a girl. Being in a position like this with anyone would be uncomfortable, but with a girl, it is just awkward.

My breath was ragged as I searched for air that could fill my lungs. The noise I was making was quite pitiful but I was thankful it gave Julia the signal to let go. “Oops, I keep forgetting your still well… human-ish.” she said releasing me with a shy smile.

I tilted my head to the side confused. What does she mean by human-ish? Oh my god what is wrong with me? Is this the explanation to… to everything strange that has been happening? I am not human. So many questions left unanswered.

Carter what’s wrong? Are you feeling ill?” Julia asked. Why would she ask this? I looked down and the dirt and grass seemed to be too close to me.

My instinct when I am having a ‘moment’ is to curl up on the floor and that is what I am doing. It seems to have become an involuntary action.

Julia started at me with eyes that cut me deep as she knelt beside me. I do not know what to tell her. I have never been seen like this, so weak and fragile.

She is here to help me I kept telling myself. I should trust her, but it is hard to. Maybe I should take baby steps. I should give her a piece of me at a time to trust her with. Ill start with the truth.

No, I’ll be fine this happens a lot.” I reassured her. I repeated the sentence in my head repeatedly, something felt wrong about it.

It was a lie that is the problem. I will not be fine not even close. I will get through but it will happen repeatedly.

Are you sure? Do you want me to carry you the rest of the way?” she asked. I laughed slightly. How could she carry me…? My head flashed back to when I was paralyzed except for my mind. She was carrying me and running. It seems so impossible but it happened. I am sure of; if it were a dream, I would have woken up after such a surprise.

No, I can make it.” I replied. She nodded and offered me her hand. I took it and she lifted me up without any effort on my part.

As we walked, she did not let go of my hand. I did not try to stop her, I did not mind.

I did not notice it getting dark as we neared a cement road, a real road that lead toward civilization. Its felt as if I have been marooned on a small island covered with nothing but nature.

Carter, see those houses ahead?” Julia asked.

Yeah, you mean the four lined up right there?” I said pointing to them.

Yes, that’s where we are going.” she said with a certain pleasure in her voice.

I walked toward my new life, my destiny. Without anyone telling me I know that the human life of Carter Joshua Fillmore is over, gone without a trace.

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