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New Years Day

Death is only the beginning

By Leah DeweyPublished about a year ago 4 min read
New Years Day
Photo by Erwan Hesry on Unsplash

"Death is only the beginning," she muttered before slipping away into madness. I stared at her a little longer as the bell tolled. I listened to the chimes: one, two, three... until they hit twelve, ringing in the new year with a hollow, eerie feeling. I kept my eyes locked on hers. She stared back but there was nothing behind her eyes now. She could no longer see into this reality or beyond the nightmares created in her mind. I shuttered at the thought. I knew what it was like to be afraid of your own mind.

"I'm so sorry, Nova, but visiting hours are over. I think it's best we let her rest," the nurse whispered behind me. His sudden words in the cold silence sent a shiver up my spine. I knew it wouldn't make a difference. She would sleep, she would wake, she would eat but she would never come back to me.

As I stood up to go, she suddenly reached out and grabbed my hand with more strength than I would have imagined from such a frail body. Her eyes alive - fighting against the madness - for just a moment.

"It's coming for you! Get out, and run for your life!" she screamed out in a dry and crackling voice. Her thin hair shook with vibrant intensity, like greying feathers. I felt a rush of panic and wanted to urge the nurse to help her, to fix this. Maybe she could still be saved. The nurse rushed over and took her hand off of my arm. He adjusted the medicine seeping into her arm and I lost her all over again. I hardly realized my eyes were wet until the nurse turned to look at me with an intense expression.

"Nova, are you alright?"

"What was that? Is she okay? She looked like she snapped out of it!" I didn't mean to scream as the nurse put his hands on my shoulder and started guiding me out of the room. I was hardly aware that I was resisting him. Despite it being New Years the hospital halls were quiet, dark and seemingly abandoned. I didn't want to leave her here.

"I know it seemed like that but it's just a reaction to the drugs and her sleepy state. Believe me, we are doing all we can, her condition is stable and that's the best we can hope for."

They had been telling me this for weeks but somehow now, it brought forth a different sense of rage. I didn't want to accept this as the answer. For just a moment I saw something flicker across the face of the nurse - something that made me feel more convicted in my anger. It was a flash of something, something else... something unhuman with a sickly smile. My anger turned to panic when I remembered her stories and worries started out like this. I nodded quickly to the nurse and sprinted towards the exit.

The snow was falling lightly on the ground, trying desperately to stick to it. The howling wind made it impossible, however, for the snow to find a secure landing. I wrapped my jacket tighter around me as I stepped into the noisy street. In drastic contrast to the building behind me: there were fireworks everywhere, people singing and laughing together, celebrating the holiday. I smiled softly at their jubilee before moving down the street towards my apartment building.

As I walked, I saw shadows, whispers of something more following me and surrounding me. My anxiety and panic grew. Perhaps her speaking wasn't delusions of her distorted mind. Suddenly the shadows turned into strange faces, demonic faces that smiling at me. I picked up my pace. Death is only the beginning, she had said. I remained haunted thinking about what she could have possibly meant.

I stepped quickly, pulling out my keyes from my pocket. I moved up to the apartment building and jammed the key into the lock. I turned quickly and felt relief in the warm, stuffy air. I let myself relax and tried to sooth myself with rational explanations as I walked up the two flights of stairs.

Once inside my apartment, I took off my jacket and shoes. I grabbed a beer from the fridge and threw myself down on the couch. I closed my eyes for a moment and tried to believe that the nurse had been right.

My eyes shot open with I heard a strange chuckle coming from behind me. I sat up slowly as the laughter seemed to move.

"You humans and your 'rationality'. Also so quick to dismiss what's right in front of you. Was it easier for you to believe she was just crazy? Even know you'd rather thing I'm part of some delusion than really here."

I turned around and looked all around the dimly lit room but I saw nothing else, no other presence in the space. But the voice was clear, sharp and seemingly right next to my ear. I could feel my body quivering and sweat was building up on my brow.

"You should have taken her warning. You should have known I'd find you here."


About the Creator

Leah Dewey

Hello. Welcome to my page. I have been writing for over ten years & have been published in several different formats including magazine articles, poems & full length novels. I have a BA in English Literature & a Masters in Psychology.

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