Saturday, March 22, 2014

The Missing Stair: Well or tower.

LJ Idol second week! Which means I made it through the first round! I still find it incredible but I have no time to rest on my laurels. Second topics has been posted.

The topic for the Second week is The Missing Stair.

Let's continue the story with my LJ Idol special characters.

At least they let me sleep on the first night, I guess they had enough to laugh about for the moment. I spent the next day with Mike, almost didn't see anyone else except at family lunch and diner. I only heard them whispering behind closed doors, stopping every time I came around.
"I'm telling you, they really like you," Mike laughed out when I told him about my worries.
He didn't understand how I felt, he didn't even try. It was like being back in high school, with everyone avoiding me for a reason I couldn't imagine. The kids back then called me V, not because I told stories about coming from another planet as I first thought, but because I wore trousers making a V shape between my legs. I could almost hear Mike's family call me the fart, or something alike, these sort of things stuck with you. Four brothers and three sisters, it was like a small classroom, no way they would keep secret what had happened in the bathroom.

It was around midnight. I was in my pyjama, reading the book Mike had offered me for my birthday few weeks earlier. Ringu. We went to the cinema to see the movie, American version, it gave me nightmares for three weeks. I had the same black hair as Sadako, walking out of the shower, it was her I could see in the mirror. But the fact is, I pledged that I would read the book before watching the movie whenever possible, so I had to read this one, even afterwards. It was scary. I was scared and grateful that Mike was reachable, working at his computer, letting me hold his hand every time I felt I was going to collapse in Suzuki's horror.

I heard three knocks at the door. Mike left his computer to open it. It was really unlike him. He had this grin on his face, the one he only wore when he was to talk in public as if he wanted to show everyone that he was going to blow their mind. It wasn't really reassuring.
"It's time," his brother said.
It was the only one with red hair, the older. I wondered for a second where his red hair was coming from.
"Everything is ready?" Mike asked.
"Trust me," his brother answered looking at me over Mike's shoulder.
He smiled, I smiled back. He walked away and Mike turned toward me.
"Ok, get dressed, we are going out," he said.
"Where?" I asked.
"You'll see, they are waiting."

It was pitch dark outside. In the country side, there is no lights, only the sound of the wind and wild animals, a owl, cats fighting, cicadas. I always thought cicadas would go quiet at night, apparently here they aren't.
"Where are they?" I asked.
Mike took my hand and didn't bother to answer. It was making me nervous. I could see shapes growing in the darkness, behind the trees. I wonder if they had a well somewhere hiding and a girl fallen in there waiting for me.
We walked down the road for a bit, going further away from the village, toward the wheat fields. Lights were coming from far away, moving like ghosts, flash lights.
"What are we doing here?" I asked.
"It's a game," Mike answered.
"A game in the middle of the night," I said getting even more confused.
"I can't tell you about it, you'll see."
Once again that was not reassuring. I knew Mike, I trusted him, somehow, but the rest of his family, they were just strangers.
We reached a stone tower half in ruins. His brothers and sisters where forming a circle in front of the entrance. The younger one was dancing on her feet and hugging herself as if she was cold. She was still wearing her pyjama. I smiled at her, at least I wasn't the only one uncomfortable.
"Hum, hum," the older one started. "All you have to do is climb on the roof," he said.
I didn't realise he was talking to me. Everybody was staring at me, Mike let go of my hand. Suddenly, I felt alone. I looked at him blankly, then at each of them.
"Can we get going? I'm freezing here," Mike's younger sister said impatiently looking straight at me as if I was responsible.
She liked me, right.
"It's your initiation," Mike said. "You climbed to the roof and you pass."
Initiation for what I wanted to ask. It was high school all over again. I thought I had finally escaped. I turned around to leave but I didn't know where to go, it was Mike's place, his family, we came with his car. I didn't even know if I could call anyone to come pick me up, especially at this time of the night, that would take hours.
"She's not gonna do it, I told you, she is not gonna do it," one of the boy who had stood laughing at me in the bathroom said in my back.
I stopped and walked back in front of him. I wanted to slap him. I wanted to slap Mike for dragging me into this but I wasn't going to back down in front of them. I took his flash light away from him and entered the tower. That was stupid, I was stupid. When I was younger I had always walked away and let people laugh at me, it didn't work, it didn't make me feel better. I decided that now that I entered university I was going to do things differently, accept the challenges in my life. This was different.
It smelled like dust and wet earth. There were probably bats so I directed the light toward the ground. I found stairs, I took a careful step, slowly, expecting the wood to break under my feet but it didn't. It cracked at each step. The tower was round, I couldn't help but look at the centre, expecting Sadako to come out, wondering how she had felt locked all alone in the well. Terrible, I was becoming her. I had thoughts of revenge on Mike, on all of them but especially on Mike. How could he do that to me? I was fulminating, trying not to freak out, clenching my teeth so hard together not to yell at them, that my jaws were becoming painful. The stairs was slippery. I climbed one step at a time until my next step didn't find a plank to stood on. I fell. The back of my head hit something sharp. Red shapes came dancing in front of my eyes. All I could think about was that I failed their stupid initiation. All went black.

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