// Seventeen //

238 38 36

"Check his pulse."

"He's still breathing..."

Words flew around me in darkness. I smelled blood, and my head throbbed with nauseating pain.

Where am I?

Hands pulled at my body, and a dark vacuum swallowed my mind, severing the two from one another. The voices around me faded in and out. Sirens screeched and pulsed, searing the frozen air like searchlights.

"Can you hear me?" a voice called. "What's your name?"

Something in the back of my mind pounded against my consciousness, warning me. They are going to take you to the hospital. What do you think they will do to you when they find out what you are? When they discover that you are a monster?

"What's your name?"

My head spun, and a shot of fire surged through my veins like adrenaline. I tried to move my mouth to respond to the question, but nothing was working.

"You're going to be okay." A hand grabbed me tightly by the arm.

I felt like I was falling. My mind spun. I imagined a small room, and a thick carpet soaked in blood. I tried to hold on to the image—to any image—but my consciousness faded further and further away. The ground disappeared out from under me, and I fell through, soundless, empty space.

/ / /

I blinked my eyes. Darkness greeted me. It felt like there was blood in my mouth. My eyes watered as I stared into a void. I wanted so badly to be able to see where I was.

A high pitched beeping cut through the air, subdued but shrill. The smell of Lysol bleach and chemicals stung my nose. Distant, muffled voices echoed through the atmosphere, like they were coming from the other side of a wall.

"Did you see his teeth?" a woman's voice asked.

"Yeah, weird," a second woman whispered. "Some sort of implants, you think?"

"Seems like it," the first woman replied. "I don't know why anyone would put something like that in their skull, though." There was a pause, and the voices faded. Footsteps dragged them away. I strained to continue listening.

"So what was it, car accident?" The second woman again.

"Yeah, apparently he ran out into the middle of the road. The doctors said there was something wrong with his eyes. Blood on his face. Around his mouth. Really fucking creepy..."

I tried to continue listening, but all I heard were distant footsteps traveling down a hall. The slow, rhythmic beeping like a metronome took over again.

Hospital. I was in a hospital. How long had I been here? How long had I been unconscious?

Suddenly, a door creak open, and footsteps paced towards me. The sharp, hollow sound echoed through the space, bouncing off the walls and revealing the shape of the small room. It developed slowly, like a black and white image on a Polaroid photo.

"Do you know where you are?" a woman's voice asked.

What do you think they'll do to you? The question repeated itself in my head, only this time, there was no voice whispering it, only my own mind tormenting me.

"I'm in a hospital." My voice came out cracked and dry. I coughed, trying to regain my breath.

"Yes," the woman replied. "You were in a car accident last night. You've been unconscious for the past sixteen hours."

Beneath the Vaults ✔️Where stories live. Discover now