Chapter 7

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Doctor Briar's office was awfully bright, just like the rest of the mental institution. Mr. and Mrs. Jonah were sitting in his comfy leather couch, listening as he spoke about their daughter.

Doctor Briar insisted they called him Brandon, but neither of the two parents could bring themselves to get personal with the man who forbade them to see their daughter. He was a forty-six-year-old man. He didn't have a single hair left on his head, yet he rubbed it every five seconds, as if removing stray locks from his eyes.

He was pacing around the room, once again explaining how only isolation can help their little girl.

"Belle is an extraordinary patient. She sees and hears thigs that aren't really happening, and she has absolutely no connection with reality. I've concluded that she knows where she is, but she can't see anyone from the real world. After that car hit her, you said that she went to your friend's house by herself, correct?" he said, asking the same question for the millionth time.

Mrs. Jonah sighed.

"Yes, doctor. Our friend is an old lady, and after the car hit her, Belle just stood up and ran away. Our friend found her screaming in her late daughter's room." She replied, feeling a tear swell up in her eyes. Her husband put a hand around her shoulders in reassurance. Dr. Briar looked at them with a smile.

"I've had a patient like this a few years ago. He kept whispering that he has to find a bear. Later on, he ended up killing himself. I believe that Belle is looking for something." He concluded, and the parents silently agreed that the doctor was the crazy one.

***

We've all had dreams where we are running away from something. But what happens if we get caught?

We wake up.

But Belle did not wake up when a big, cold hand placed itself on her shoulder.

She was too terrified to scream, to do anything except listen to her beating heart. She could no longer feel the cold floor underneath her feet, or hear the tapping of the monster.

It was just her beating heart and a stranger's hand.

"Girl..." a quiet, rough voice spoke from behind her. It sounded like a voice of a male smoker. Belle's aunt was a smoker, and the fact that this man was a smoker too gave her a small sense of comfort.

She forced herself to turn around, trying not to let a single tear fall from her face. Once she was facing the stranger, she had to look up to see his face.

It was an older man, dressed in dirty, ripped clothing with a beanie on his greasy, silver curls. He had a smaller beard and a big nose, above which stood light, brown eyes. His expression was that of deep sadness, and a hint of surprise.

"Y-yes, sir?" She asked quietly, trying to fight the urge to start running again.

"What the hell are you doing here? I've never seen a kid in the Nightmare Land before. That's sick. Anyhow, I hear' news that the monster is awaken, and I found you. Whatever you're looking for, you better hurry. If you don't find it in time, you'll be stuck here forever. I managed to stun the monster, so go. I'll keep it busy." He said, speaking faster as the darkness seemed to get thicker. Belle wanted to thank him, but he pushed her towards the door, making all of her senses return back to normal.

"Thank you!" She whispered to the man who was now facing the direction she came from. She opened the exit door, and got blinded by sharp, yellow light almost instantly. She closed her eyes tightly and took a step outside, into the light.

Then her other foot followed.

She heard the sharp sound of the door slamming shut behind her, and then she started falling.

//Boom! What do you think about the Nightmare Land? Why is Belle there? Who's that man?

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