Orange streaks of light were streaming across the dull grey sky when Brandon finally felt comfortable enough to fall asleep. Jack remained bundled in his sleeping bag staring off into the middle distance. Clare sat there wrapped in her own bag, staring at the rising sun. And Matt finally got some semblance of peaceful sleep after a dreadful night full of nightmares he couldn't shake off.
The driver's dismembered eye haunted him. The clammy wetness of blood petrified him. He woke up with dread several times in the darkness, drenched in sweat, and shivering.
"Matt?" Jack nervously reached his hand out to Matt, who suddenly shot up in fright. "Are you alright? He asked, unsettled by Matt's reaction.
Matt looked at Jack then slowly backed away. Jack, having little idea of what Matt was seeing, stepped closer.
"Stop, please," Matt begged, "stop".
"Stop what, Matt?" Jack halted in his tracks.
"The blood...it's everywhere...make it stop," he screamed.
By now Brandon had woken up. "What's all the commotion about?"
Matt glared at Brandon, his vision clouded by hallucinations of blood.
"Look what you've done!" Jack snapped at Brandon.
"What?" was all Brandon could say.
Clare looked at him with a hint of accusation in her eyes. "You should have thought twice before asking him to go in and get the keys."
"Whoa, wait a minute. You two are blaming me for something he couldn't handle?" Brandon took a step back. Jack looked like he was ready to jump him any minute.
"It's not about whether he can handle it or not" Clare knelt down next to Matt.
"He volunteered. You two were right there listening to it all." Brandon shook his head. "I'm not going to stand here and let you attack me because you are frustrated." He shook his head in disbelief and walked away.
Jack ran his hand through his short blond hair, staring at Brandon's retreating back. Clare watched him walk towards the outskirts of the clearing, beyond the shadow of the bus, and stand in the sunlight.
She saw Jack drop down on the snow, exhausted. She sat down, unable to drag her eyes away from Brandon. She watched his stoic frame standing against the orange dawn sky. Unexpectedly, she felt her heart skip a beat. She was slightly astounded by the fact that she was beginning to like the guy, despite his solitary nature.
She heard Jack mumbling something over and over under his breath. She forced herself to stare him, occasionally looking up towards the road, listening intently for any sound. She directed her gaze skywards before asking Jack what he was doing.
"Listening for any sign of vehicles," he whispered. "So we can yell out for help".
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YOU ARE READING
In Strange Company (**Complete**)Teen Fiction
Clare Peterson is rich, confident and beautiful, but even she knows money can't rescue her from her loneliness. As an unremarkable year draws to an end, she is shipped off to a ski trip in the company of strangers; her father's idea of love, but tor...