I have never been on a train before—never had the opportunity. So, I’m extremely surprised when I wake up on one with a massive headache.
“Son of a…” I whisper, touching the back of my head.
Feeling a dry clumpy mass, I bring my hand back and there’s dry cracked blood covering my palm.
“What the hell?” I mutter under my breath, my voice raspy and dry.
With a sigh, I notice my legs are wobbly and my knees are splayed awkwardly against the chair in front of me. I pull myself into a seated position, dizziness making the world seem to spin around me. It stops all at once as the pain begins to recede, and I can finally get my bearings.
The train car is dark, as is the sky outside the large rectangular window to my left. It has to be around midnight, judging by how high the moon is positioned in the black sky. It’s full, gleaming brightly without a cloud to block it. An overhead light shines dully onto me. Each seat has one. There’s a soft snoring coming from somewhere behind me.
Lifting myself up, I look around to see that there are three other heads scattered about sleeping in the compartment with me. A woman sits at the front of the car on the other side of the aisle, a male couple are seated at the end of the row. The slightly younger looking of the two has his head on the other man’s shoulder.
I check my pockets for any clue about why I’m on a train. They are empty. My navy blazer and matching pants suit are the same outfit I left work wearing, but that doesn’t tell me anything about what day it is. I could have been out for days before being placed on the train—I just don’t know.
Not wanting to disturb anyone, I get up and go to the front of the car. I’m hoping I can find someone who can help me figure out where I am and where I’m headed. I don’t see a button anywhere on the side to open the door, so I press on it and it slides to the right, allowing me to walk through it. I’m immediately hit with the scent of fresh leaves from the forest the train is speeding through.
There’s a short bridge between the two cars and I can see the ground racing past us from between the metal planks. I can’t even see the tracks below us, the train is whizzing by way too quickly. The train hits a curve and the smooth ride jolts with it, sending me stumbling to the railing on my left.
With a deep breath, I right myself, holding tightly to the railing. The bridge only has a thin chain protecting me from the ground below. Not trusting the bridge, I take a step back and jump, launching myself the two feet across. I fall to my knees on the other side, breathing heavily. The fear the gripped my heart through the jump slowly dissipates as I sit waiting for it to pass.
Inhaling again, I right myself. I press my hand against the door in front of me, but it doesn’t open. It tries to, but it sounds like hits something inside the door’s shaft and goes back to the closed position.
Leaning against the door’s window, I place my hand on my brow to get a better look inside the car. It’s the engineering car. There are six bodies strewn about, pools of blood forming around each one. They are all dead with no sign of the train slowing down any time soon.