A cold breeze whispered past my naked body, curdling around me with a caress. My eyes fluttered open, suddenly awake. I took a moment to collect my bearings, my mind still hazy from the endless sleep. It was a strange feeling, awakening on the cold, cement floor like that. I couldn’t quite get my mind to focus on what was going on around me. The air was suffocating in the tight room and held a strange smell of something I couldn’t quite place. My head felt awfully heavy, my body weak.
I jerked upwards, instinctively covering myself with my arms and curling into a ball, as I realised the lack of clothes on my body. I chill ran through me, tickling my spine and teasing at my nerves. It was black. Pitch black. My eyes were wide open, raking at the darkness, willing for something, anything to appear. I still hadn’t quite gotten my head around the situation and a wave of thoughts washed over me, flooding my mind.
You would think it to be my first, but it was my second thought that I stopped to contemplate further. Where am I? My first thought was natural though, of course. It was only human. I’m cold. Which I was, at the time. Suddenly waking up stark naked in darkness and all I could think was how cold I was. My teeth began chattering and too quickly my whole body was engulfed in shivers.
Where am I? The clouds in my mind where reluctant to clear and I fell scared. Fear began to churn in the pit of my stomach, making me clutch at it. I couldn’t see a thing, that was for certain. Noting my rapid breathing and the sweat quickly forming of worry, despite the cold, I calmed myself down. I paused, taking an inventory of my senses. All I could feel was the hard cement beneath my skin – which also happened to be slightly damp – and the cold air that was unforgiving all around. That strange smell that I was yet to place still lingered strongly in the air and I could hear a faint buzzing sound similar to that of a cooler room.
My mouth tasted metallic, like blood.
And that’s the moment I realised my entire body felt numb from head to toe. I looked down at myself for reassurance my limbs were still intact, but that was of no use as I couldn’t see. Tight pins and needles strangled my body, turning me stiff. I was panicking. How was I supposed to figure out where I was if I couldn’t see? Still not used to the black before my eyes, I blinked repeatedly, as if it would rid the dark specks and reveal some glint of sight. Then a thought struck me.
Maybe I was blind.
I was shaking violently and my body was sprawled across the floor, flipping over like a fish out of water. My sight was my most trusted sense, the one I relied on. I didn’t know if there was a life for me without sight. What was there to do? Fear had struck me to the bone. I was cold and naked in pitch black darkness. It crossed my mind to yell, to scream for help, but all that came out was a painfully dry hoarse sound that it wasn’t even worth the bother.
Fears raced through my mind like a bolt of lightning, flashing behind my eyelids. Subtly, I noticed how blank I felt. Numb and blank. Like a book filled with thousands of adventures in writing suddenly wiped clean, each page a fresh, glistening one of white. I couldn’t wrap my mind around the feeling. It was as if there was something there, in the back of my mind, but each time I tried to grab at it, it fluttered away with a delightful smirk. That feeling. That is what scared me the most.
I sharply averted my gaze to the left, towards a sudden sound. I had been so caught up in my worrying thoughts that I never noticed the barely audible whimpers. My guard went up instantly, conflicting emotions brewing. Could this person be another victim like myself – confused and alone? Or was it whoever put me here – the enemy. A trick of sorts. Just vaguely I could make out the whimpering to be female and I gave in. “Hello?” I whispered, but it came out as a faint rasp. After a few moments I was sure she hadn’t heard me. “Hello?” I said again, mustering enough energy to get my voice across.
The whimpering stopped, cut off in shock. It fell silent until I noticed the sound of breathing. It didn’t even cross my mind that the breathing sound was probably just my own ragged breaths. I twisted myself around, getting onto all-fours to crawl towards the person. The instant I was up, I collapsed back down into a muddle; my limbs weak. I ended up dragging myself across the cold floor.