Flambeaux & Staug Ch. 01byDiaperedSiouxsie©
Nick's head hurt. His eyes opened to a somewhat disheveled scene, not remembering how he got there. He was lying on a stained and damp bed in a cold and dark room. He sat up and further observed his dank surroundings, Noting the cobwebs covering a good portion of the walls that encased the room. There was a bleak ray of light poking in from a boarded up window across the room. Rubbing his aching head, Nick apprehensively walked toward it. He peered through to see it raining outside. There was something eerie about the environment, namely the absence of any other humans. No people, cars, animals, even litter could be found outside. Struggling to remember how he had ended up in this small and dark room, he turned and saw a streaked mirror. His black hair was unkempt, his green eyes were bloodshot, and he wore what appeared to be a good two or three day beard. Shaking his head, he sat back on the soiled bed.
Nick looked over by the door and saw a man sitting on the floor leaning against the wall. Nick sighed with relief. "Hey, are you awake?"
He walked over to the man, hoping he could shed some light on what had happened to them. As he neared him, however, He saw the bullet hole in his head. A pang of fear rushed through Nick; he had no idea how he had gotten here, but he had to get out. And soon. He opened the door to find an old and battered staircase and quickly walked down them. Looking around, Nick found a living room filled only with a couch, coffee table, and a television propped on an otherwise empty wall unit. Adjacent to it was an equally abandoned kitchen, with a refridgerator and another boarded window, this one without light seeping through. Nick suddenly remembered walking across the street from his home the previous night when a bright light had confronted him. He had then lost consciousness, and woke up here next to that cadaver. A wave of nausea came over Nick and he promptly rushed over to the sink and vomited.
Wiping off his mouth, Nick steadily walked toward the door at the front of the house. With each step he grew more terrified, and he noticed that he was sweating somewhat heavily as he neared the door. With no idea of what to expect, he gingerly placed his damp palm on the doorknob and turned it. Nick took a deep breath and pulled.
As the door opened, Nick fell forward past the porch and down the street. It was very cold and dark, and the raindrops splashing on his head and shoulders were even colder. Nick, thankful that he was wearing a coat, looked over the empty environment with awe. The entire street was deserted. He continued walking down the cracked street, the events of the prior night still a mystery. Soon the street came to a turn with a non functioning street light. Looking further down the avenue, he noticed what appeared to be a liquor store with the front doors open. Adorned with broken neon lights and ripped advertisement posters, the store offered little inspiration. It did, however, present the possibility of sustenence. Intrigued, Nick walked in.
Immediately he noticed the smashed counter with dried blood sprayed across the wall behind it. Looking past the counter, he saw the sliced up body laying on the floor. It appeared as though it had been sliced and stabbed repeatedly, one leg and both arms barely hanging on to the torso. The blood, by now brown, covered the corpse's shreds of clothing and flesh. Nick felt himself getting sick again. "What the hell is going on?!"
Remembering why he had entered this establishment in the first place, he rummaged thoroughly for food of any kind, coming across a couple bottles of water and a plethora of chips and cookies. Filling his pockets, Nick fearfully prepared his departure. He had no idea what was going on or how he was involved, but he was determined to get out. Standing out in front of the store and looking down the desolate street, lightning came to the rain's aid. Nick didn't notice the sinister shadows that appeared and disappeared with the lightning.
Standing in the street, Nick noticed electrical currents covering the cracked open street light. He really had no idea where he should go. There were four options, each pathway looking equally desolate. Looking sharply down one street, he saw a dark figure moving very quickly out of sight. "Hey," Nick called, to no avail. Shit, he thought. He rushed down the street in hopes of catching whatever it was that he saw. As he neared the empty intersection where he'd seen the figure, a chill ran down his back. What if it was responsible for the horrors he'd seen? And what if it intended for him to become another one? Stopping in his tracks, Nick looked fearfully around him but his surroundings were empty. Pulling a bag of chips out of his coat, he sat tensely and began to eat. Looking up, he read the signs on the line of buildings across the street. "Ricks' Records"...."Adult Books & Videos"..and a Starbucks. He chuckled at the store neighboring the coffee shop, and began to loosen up a little, despite his ominous surroundings. The rain was beginning to wane, except for some drizzling below a lamp post in front of an alley between a Burger King and a Rite Aid. Looking up, he saw that it was not rain. A disemboweled body was hanging with minimal movement from the top of the lamp post, bleeding out what little blood was left. The head was swollen and the entire opened up body was discolored. The fear possessed Nick once again, and the rain resumed.
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