Roll up, Roll up, for Snippet Sunday!
Keep Your Eyes Peeled and Your Senses Sharp.
Dive into the Stress-Induced Coma that is Evylia Wilde’s Life.
A Snippet of Foresight
Author: Daccari Buchelli | Genre: Thriller (Ages 14+ )|Due out: Halloween 2018
I shot up from my bed with an ear-splitting shriek. My chest heaved as I sucked in the first ragged breaths of the day.
‘It was just a dream’, I whispered, ‘Nothing more.’
I glanced down to find sweat-soaked covers clinging to my flesh.
‘Perfect.’ I rolled my eyes, peeling the sheets from my body. ‘Just what I needed.’
Fragments of my dreams danced behind my eyes. Had I stood up too fast? I shook my head. Still, the dancing images persisted. I saw myself strolling through a dingy field, its dry grass forming a maze of sorts. It was always the same- silent, deserted. Fog would roll in, obscuring my surroundings. But that scream- the scream said it all.
I felt trapped, half-way between the dream world and reality. In the corner of my vision- shadows. Lots of them. They crawled along my bedroom walls, with their curved claws and cold, withered flesh. They made me want to-
‘Evy?’ Samuel’s voice echoed up the stairs.
I swept down the stairs, stumbling the last few steps in shoes one size too big. I’d managed to throw an outfit together: faded jeans, tank top, hoodie- it’d do.
‘Morning sunshine.’ The scent of fresh buttered toast drew me into the kitchen: Samuel had already begun to dig in, having left my share on the opposite side of our folding table.
‘Sleep well?’ A sarcastic remark slipped through my mind.
‘Yeah, fine.’ I had to admit- I hated lying to him, but if he knee the nightmares were back, then it would be back to square one, with another condescending shrink.
I slid into one of the high backed chairs, my eyes focused on the toast’s golden sheen. Hunger pains danced in my stomach. I was surprised I had an appetite at all: the dreams were masters of spiriting it away.
‘Sweetheart, are you sure you’re okay?’
My knee jolted, smacking into the table leg. Samuel was staring at me, his expression thoughtful, with a slice of toast raised half-way to his lips.
‘Of course.’ I gave him my most reassuring smile. ‘I was just taking my time.’
‘For what, genius?’ came a voice in my mind. Samuel eyed me, his toast hand frozen half way to his lips.
‘To savour the smell of the toast,’ I answered. Snatching up a slice, I crammed in as much as I could, turning my mouth into a taste-bud extravaganza. I felt the buttered bread slide down my throat, filling the hole inside my stomach.
‘Anyway,’ I mouthed through a shower of crumbs, ‘I better go or I’ll be late for the bus.’ Only now did I notice the tall glass of milk set in front of me. I lifted it to my parched lips, where I drained it dry in a matter of seconds. ‘Gotta go,’ I cried as I rushed from the table.
I was half way to the front door when I paused and turned. Samuel stood in the kitchen doorway. My red and black checked rucksack hung from his arm.
‘Thanks.’ Hurrying over, I grabbed the pack and slung it across both shoulders. I daren’t go in for a hug- not now. Those dreams were still fresh in my mind.
It was agony racing for the bus stop each morning. The closest one was down the end of our street- have I failed to mention our street is the longest in the frickin’ galaxy? Well, now you know.
Forcing my nightmares from my mind has always been hard- try near impossible. Every attempt to stifle them takes its toll. That damn field just didn’t quit. The myriad colours of the dream burned bright in my mind: they danced within a veil of darkness, drawing my eyes to their surreal beauty.
‘No- must resist,’ I thought.
The darkness faded, disappearing in a haze of smoke. It was a great comfort to be free of it, yet it never truly went away. I could feel it. Always. It felt like it was always watching, awaiting the perfect opportunity to strike. It was a thing possessed, hunting me- needing me for some unknown purpose.
I sprinted the final few yards to the bus stop, but it was no longer there. A towering maze of grass surrounded me, rustling in the chill breeze. A low whine sounded behind me. What was that- machinery?
‘Of course not,’ snapped my brain, ‘In a field?’
My thoughts were wrenched out from under me, my legs quick to follow. Long tendrils of grass coiled around me: they bound my ankles, forcing my bare legs to slide through the mud. My head pounded as I fought to free myself. With sharp talons, I severed my bonds, clawing my way back onto my feet.
The whining grew sharp. My hands flew to protect my ears. I willed it to stop, to release me from this cruel trance.
‘Not real,’ I chanted, ‘You’re not real.’
‘Hey! Wilde!’ A voice as cold as steel rang out. I blinked to find the sun peeking out its head, blinding me to the world at large.
A flash of yellow whipped past.
‘Hey, wait!’ My feet tore across the pavement. Having blinked a few more times, I found myself level with the school bus, not a hundred yards from my desired stop. Stray strands of hair whipped at my eyes, working to blind me.
‘Crap.’ I twisted the loose fibers away from my face, charging the rest of the way to the stop. I was going to make it, God damn it, no matter what the jeering faces in the windows said.
I noticed the bus beginning to slow.
‘I’m gonna make it,’ I told myself. With a deep breath, I forced an extra spurt of speed into my run. The stop sign was within my grasp: I could practically feel my fingers grasping the cool metal pole when something struck my forehead, doubling me back.
My breathing stalled, stolen by the sudden shock of the impact. Cool air rushed past my face, followed by the slap of concrete at my back. A groan forced its way past my lips as my fingers flexed, groping for a hand-hold.
‘What was that?’
A crimson blur formed to my right. I reached up, pressing two fingers to the centre of my forehead. When I pulled them back, I saw no blood.
‘Good.’ At least I hadn’t been injured in the fall.
My fingers returned to my side, where they brushed against cool steel. A can of cola winked back in the sunlight- not an empty shell, but a full, throthing body. I thanked the skies that whoever threw it hadn’t depressed the tab: the last thing I needed was to be late, AND drenched in a sticky brown substance.
With a new pain throbbing away in my forehead, I somehow summoned the strength to stand. I glared at the yellow rear of the bus, my eyes flicking to the drink in my hand. I shrugged and dug my nail under the tab, unleashing a tsk and a small rise of fizz. At least I’d have something cool to drink.
I relished the feel of the cola passing down my throat, its fizz soothing the brunt of my stress.
‘Okay, what to do.’ My eyes swept over the narrow street before me. There was no use returning home: Samuel would already be on his way to work. I knew no other buses passed this way.
Drawing my bottom lip between my teeth, I relented.
‘I guess I’m walking to school today.’
Thank you so much for being the very first individuals to read this excerpt.
Foresight has been one of those long time coming projects. There have been gruelling late nights, early mornings, and a lot of stress and exhaustion piled on top.
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I really do appreciate each and every one of you, and I can’t think of anybody I’d rather share my writing experience with.
Stay humble fellow bookworms.