Chapter 31

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REMEMBER.

ARCHER'S POV

My fingers gripped the handle of my briefcase tightly as I feel my chest tighten. I focused on the tapping of my feet as my legs carried me into the lecture theatre. 




"You're going to be okay," I tell myself, but I wasn't convinced.





I placed my things by my desk and finally scan through the students, fixating my eyes on a particular one.




She stared at me, wide eyed the moment she realised I was her professor. I gave out an unintentional smirk as I studied her features. All I wanted to do was take her in my arms and shower her with kisses.




The memory of her lifeless form in my arms still haunted me and I just wanted to feel her in my embrace again. To assure myself that she's okay.





But I don't know for how long.





I went through class as per normal, with her fumbling with her bag trying to find her book.




After class, I called her to me, trying to keep things the same way. I leaned on my desk, so that we'd be able to see eye to eye. I passed her my book and told her to have it. I wanted to end it there, but the moment her fingers brushed against mine, I broke.






Feeling the littlest bit of her touch made me insane. I stared at her, without saying a thing.






"Mr Kane?" She squeaked, probably confused.





Without saying a word, I swing my arms around her and pull her into my embrace. I hear her gasp but she doesn't try to fight it. I tightened my hold on her, pressing my head into her chest.






I feel a damp sensation on my cheeks and realised I was sobbing into her chest, clutching at her clothes. Her hands slowly made its way around my body and I instantly feel at ease, but that didn't last too long.






"Archer." She started, "I remember everything." She said and my body stiffened.





I pulled away slowly, "What?" Craning my neck up as I stared at her, mind blank yet chaotic.





"I-I don't how." She shook her head. "But last night, I had this dream and when I woke up, I still felt it?" She frowned, her hand over her chest as she clasped it.





"I don't understand," I said as she reached out her hands and cupped my face, her warm fingers wiping my tear-stained cheeks.





"Something's wrong." I shook my head, snatching the book back from her as I flipped to the end.





Eyes widening as my expression drops, "Shit." I breathed out and she peeps a tiny "what?"


I showed her the blank pages and she stared at me, "Is it supposed to be blank?" She asked me.






"No." I looked at her, not sure what to do.





"We should go." I grabbed her arm and her fingers instantly intertwined with mine.





"Where?" She asked, looking up at me.





"The cabin."

• • •

We got out the car hastily, running into the cabin, hand in hand.






I reached into my pocket, trying to find the key but grabbed a handful of ash instead.






"What-" I stared at it, the dust falling between my fingers. I looked in front of me and the door had no lock on it.






"What's going on?" I hear Red ask from behind me.






"I-I don't know." Eye twitching lightly as I shook my head. I pushed against the door, standing in an empty room.






"It's empty." Red lets out, confusion evident in her voice.






"I don't get it." I stared at the room. Did I do it? Is it balanced? 



A spark of hope ignites at that thought but dies out the moment everything starts fading.





"Archer." I hear her voice once more, but this time it's different. It's a soft whimper.





"Red?" I looked at her as she stared at her shivering hands, gulping down hard on the air.





"Something's wrong." She looked at me and rush to her as she collapses in my arms.





"Wait-wait," I shout out as though Time could hear me. As though it was going to come rushing to my aid and just halt.





"Archer." She whimpers, gripping onto her chest. "It hurts." Red let out crouching into a little ball on the ground. I laid in front of her, my heart breaking with each second she's in pain.






"I don't know what to do." I let out holding onto her form as tears flood my eyes. I brought her into my embrace, hugging her tight. Helpless.






After a moment, I feel her muscles relax and she exhaled. "Red?" I loosened my grip around her as she looked up at me, a certain sadness tainting her brown eyes as though she already knew what was coming.





"This was in my dream too." She lets out, weakly.





"What-what do you mean?" My eyes searching hers as I tried comprehending her.





"I love you," She whispered.






"Red, what's going on?" My chest heaving hard, heart thundering against my chest as I tried understanding the situation.





She looked up at me, her lips stretching into a smile that doesn't quite reach her eyes. Her eyes looked different. A little hollow, almost lost.






It broke me. Having her in my arms, at her worst but not being able to do anything.






And then it happened. I feel her turning to dust. "No, no." I tried gripping onto her, trying to get her to stay but everything turned to dust.






"Please-" I let out, gripping onto nothing but ash, tears pouring out of my eyes. I feel my stomach churn and chest tighten. "I love you." It barely escapes my lips as a cry strains my throat.





My knees and head on the ground, my hands grabbing onto what's left of her. And then slowly everything around me fades.






I looked back up, weakly. Head bobbing as I looked around, not having enough strength to keep it still. I looked at the trees that surrounded me as I laid on the grassy floor.






Everything was gone. The room, the cabin, Red.






Everything.

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