Life is hella weird [Episode 1 – Chapter 1]
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Chapter 1: Hellas with an occasional gun
Main Universe – Monday 10/07. Noon.
“How are you?”
Broken. Useless. Alone. Clueless. Confused. Betrayed. Fragile. On the verge of tears. Depressed. Anxious. About to break down. Ready to give up. Pathetic. Annoying. I’m just a burden. Distant. Lonely. Bitter. Heartbroken. Rejected. Crushed. I feel like I’m going to just fall apart at any moment. Empty. Defeated.
Never. Good. Enough.
She woke up sweating cold, her heart pounding in her chest so fast that she could have been running just a second ago. A hand raised in the air, as she was about to reach something. Or someone.
Her arm fell down at her side with a deaf sound as she let scape a growl of anger through her clenched teeth. It wasn’t the first time Chloe Price dreamed about herself chasing a ghost through the forest. She had been dreaming that for six months now, more or less. And maybe that’s what she’s been doing in real life too.
Her eyes rested for a moment on the missing posters, stacked up in a disorderly pile over a nearby box. What was the point? She wrapped almost every inch of Arcadia Bay with them and nothing changed. Nobody had seen Rachel, like the girl had vanished in the air. Where was she now? Why she left? Did something happen to her? Why did she abandoned her like that? She was her friend, her angel, the girl that saved her in more ways than one; when everything seemed out of control, when she felt her life had reached a dead end…
Chloe clenched her jaw to avoid the tears that never came. It’s been awhile since the last time her eyes were wet. She was over that kind of pain at this point.
A buzz from her phone cut dry her depressing line of thought. She rolled over and took the device from the pillow beside her and checked her messages. Reading the name of the sender made her feel uneasy and gross. And utterly angry.
[Received – Monday 10/07 12:42]
[From: N. Prickscott]
What do u want now?
She tried not to think about the last time she actually saw the guy. She didn’t remember the facts very well to be honest, and that creeped the hell out of her in a way that wasn’t easy to describe. She was at that bar, sitting with him on the counter, trying to figure out how to steal the greens in his wallet. She faked laughs and smiles, even tried to flirt a little with the guy she knew was the son of the biggest bastard this side of Oregon. The kid was too wasted and kept flashing bills like there was no tomorrow and she had dealt with danger before… she just had to push her luck a little, maybe that way she could just pay her debts and be over with the town she always hated.
Or at least, the town she hated for the last five years.
And just when things seemed to be looking up a little, everything became a blur. She woke up in a room she didn’t recognize, dark and creepy, with the guy literally over her with a camera between his hands and an evil grin of satisfaction on his face.
The memory made her shiver. Ugh.
[Sent: Monday 10/07 12:45]
[To: N. Prickscott]
We have business to discuss. You’ll have to give me something in exchange for my silence, at least if you are still interested in keeping the good rich kid act for this shithole of a town.
[Received: Monday 10/07 12:46]
[From: N. Prickscott]
Don’t mess with me, bitch. Where?
The girl ran her trembling fingers through her short blue hair while thinking. She needed to be sure she’d be more or less safe, but at the same time, meeting with Nathan Prescott in a public place to blackmail him wasn’t an option.
She sighed and she knew there was only one place that would do. Even if it was weird.
[Sent: Monday 10/07 12:47]
[To: N. Prickscott]
I’ll meet you at Blackhell’s this afternoon. Girls bathroom, main building, at four o’clock. You better show up.
[Received: Monday 10/07 12:47]
[From: N. Prickscott]
She let her phone fall again over the pillow and hid her face behind her hands as she growled deeply.
“You can do this.” She said to herself, trying to sound confident. “You can fucking do this.”
And with those words still ringing in her head, she got up and finally started to move.
She couldn’t deny the lump in her throat and the awful feeling in her chest that something was not right. Not that she didn’t feel it all the time, but this was different. It wasn’t pain, anger or despair like she usually felt every day. There was more to it, like something ominous was going on, but she couldn’t identify what it was.
“Keep it together, Chloe.” She said to herself, trying to steady her breath as she walked from the parking lot to the main building of the school she knew so well.
Classes were over at this point. She crossed paths with various students leaving the campus, some of them smiling, others were worried about stupid things, no doubt. She knew too well that teenage drama never gets old at Blackwell Academy.
Chloe entered the building and approached the girl’s bathroom on the lower floor. Her hand was kind of shaky when she took the handle of the door. She took another deep breath, trying to wipe away that awful feeling that grew bigger and bigger with every step she took.
“You got this.” She thought. “You fucking got this…”
She opened the door and stepped in, her eyes alert and every single one of her nerves on fire.
The adrenaline was already running through her system when her eyes stumbled on the guy, leaning over one of the sinks on the wall. Her anxiousness evaporated in half a second, leaving in it’s place an almost unbearable anger.
“So, what do you want?” Growled Nathan, looking at her through the mirror.
She shut the door behind her and looked around. She walked near the stalls and checked inside some of them, with the odd feeling that someone was watching them. A chill ran over her neck.
“I hope you checked the perimeter, as my step-ass would say.” The girl snapped in anger. “Now, let’s talk bidness.”
She looked away from Nathan’s back when she saw at the corner of her eye, a subtle movement at the back of the room. A single blue butterfly flew from behind a stall and landed softly over the last sink, moving its wings lazily.
“I’ve got nothing for you.” Nathan said, coldly.
Those words only made Chloe’s anger worse.
“Wrong. You got hella cash.” She said, fixing her piercing blue eyes full of hate on Nathan’s reflection in the mirror.
She could see him looking back at her, his eyes reddish and also hateful. There was a spark on them that she couldn’t place. Anger maybe? Not knowing how to decypher Nathan’s blank expression gave her the creeps for a moment.
“That’s my family, not me.” He answered.
“Oh boo hoo, poor little rich kid.” Chloe mocked him. “I know you’ve been pumpin’ drugs n’ shit to the kids around here…”
She walked towards him and leaned over the same sink the guy was grabbing with both hands, his knuckles white. Their faces were just inches apart.
“I bet your respectable family would help me out if I went to them. Man, I can see the headlines now…”
Those words made that unidentified spark in Nathan’s eyes intensify as he breathed in sharply. Chloe could see his hands trembling over the sink.
“Leave them out of this, bitch.” He said, her voice drenched in anger.
“Let’s see who’s the fucking bitch, asshole.”
“I can tell everybody Nathan Prescott is a punk ass who begs like a little girl and talks to himself…”
Chloe’s anger dissipated the very moment she pushed Nathan by the arm and the guy, standing up, took something from his jacket. Her confusion became fear when she recognized the silhouette of a gun. Nathan pointed it right to her face.
“You don’t know who the fuck I am or who you’re messing around with!”
She raised her hands, looking around for an escape route that she never found. The awful feeling in her chest, the very same that had been tormenting her all the way to Blackwell, came back stronger than ever. But just for a little second, and maybe it was just the adrenaline flowing wildly through her system; the inappropiate feeling of a deja vu struck her.
“Where’d you get that ? What are you doing ? Come on, put that thing down”!
Seconds later, her fear became actual panic when Nathan pinned her down against the wall, with the gun resting over her stomach. She grabbed his wrist, fighting in vain to draw the weapon away from her.
“Don’t EVER tell me what to do.” Nathan said, his face inches away from hers, and his wild eyes fixed on her own. That spark made sense now. It wasn’t anger or hate not even fear. It was madness. “I’m so SICK of people trying to control me”!
“You’re going to get in hella more trouble for this than drugs…”
“Nobody would ever even miss your “punk ass” would they?”
“That’s it” She thought in panic. “This is the end of the line. Oh, god, what the hell was I thinking getting myself into this fucking mess!”
She heard a lot of people say that when you’re about to die, your entire life flashes in front of your eyes. But it wasn’t true, at least not for her. She didn’t see her life going backwards, she didn’t see her father or her childhood playing again in her mind.
The only thing she could think of was a person. And that made something in Chloe’s mind snap, because it didn’t make any sense. She could have thought about her father, her mother, Rachel… but her mind only brought the little thirteen year old Max Caulfield to the scene.
“She’s never leaving me!”
“Get that gun away from me, psycho!”
She lost control, the adrenaline making her body work to free herself and escape the danger. She pushed Nathan away with all her strength… and for a moment it was like time itself stopped.
A deafening sound, a burning sensation in her stomach… and pain. So much pain…
“I’m gonna die like this?” A fast succession of thoughts ran through her mind on her way down. “That’s it? I’m gonna die here alone… and nobody cares about it. Nobody. Life is… so not fair…”
Her knees failed and she collapsed in what seemed like slow motion when her eyes caught movement behind her attacker.
A girl stepped out from behind the last stall and her voice reached Chloe’s ears just before she finally hit the ground.
Her thoughts were slow and heavy, her sight was a blur… but she recognized her. She wanted to scream her name but her voice never came to her aid.
The blue butterfly flew away and everything went black and finally painless.
Chrysalis Start from the beginning
Here? I’m the punk queen of Arcadia Bay, of course.
In real life, I’m an artist, gamer, crappy musician, game dev and a wannabe writer. Oh, and I’m always running late. MaiQueti in a nutshell.