Read Bloody Valentine Online

Authors: Lucy Swing

Bloody Valentine

Bloody Valentine
Lucy Swing
Copyright © 2012 Lucy Swing All rights reserved.
ISBN: 1470094339 ISBN-13: 978-1470094331

 

DEDICATION

 

To my Parents, for believing in me when I wouldn‘t..

 

CONTENTS

 

Acknowledgments
1 Disappearances 1
2 Rescue Mission 26
3 Sweet Death 43 4 New Beginnings 60

 

ACKNOWLEDGMENTS

A big Thank You to my family for not throwing the laptop over my head every time something needed to be done but my muse was speaking to me.
To my ‗Death by Chocolate‘ ladies, you are all amazingly talented and it has been an honor to work with you all. Kira Saito, you rock my socks! Thank you for always letting me vent when my muse was MIA, you are truly the best. Keren Kiesslinger, my first fan! She gave me the strength to keep going, even when I thought it was worthless

1 DISAPPEARANCES

“Not again,” I mumbled under my breath and shook my head. As so many times before, I was surrounded by a damp darkness that made it almost impossible to breathe. I searched around me. Pure blackness. I tugged at the lace nightgown, and it pulled on my skin uncomfortably. Unable to see a thing or to distinguish any shapes, I stretched out my arms and took a couple of tentative steps forward.

I felt nothing.
“Hello?” Although my voice was low and careful, unsure of who may be lurking in the darkness, it echoed fiercely. I stood still, scared of the effect my disturbance could cause. There was nothing but silence, and the stillness all around me was unsettling. With my arms outstretched, I began to make my way around, knowing from the strength of the echo I was in an enclosed space. There were cold and soft walls about ten feet apart from each other. Keeping one hand on a wall, I walked endlessly, never once stumbling upon anything.
My breaths became erratic and my eyes began to burn. I knew it wouldn’t make a difference if I kept them open or not, as the results would be the same. Frustrated of being unable to find a way out of the darkness, I kneeled down on the hard ground and wept. Both hands covered my face as the tears pooled in them and then streamed down with force. There was nowhere for me to go. Nothing for me to do.
The dreams had never been like this before, and the sudden change troubled me vastly. I would usually appear in an open space, a field of some sort. I would be surrounded by strange people I do not know practicing. What they practiced was the strangest part, as if that were possible! They battled against each other, but instead of weapons they used their hands, and from them balls of fire or ice would come out, knocking each other onto the ground. I had spent what would seem like endless hours watching them, studying the way they moved with the uttermost care around their opponent.
Tick. Tick. Tick.
My head shot up like a deer on headlights at the sound of the trickling water, and my attention was back into the present. I listened intently to the faint noise coming from up ahead. The sound of dripping water brought an unsettling feeling and the hair in the back of my neck stood on end.
Sewer. I am probably in a sewer.
An abrupt humming noise caught my attention at the same time that the emergency floodlights hanging above me flickered to life, temporarily blinding me. It was a dim, yellowy light that barely lit the place up, yet it made my eyes hurt. I realized I wasn’t in a sewer but in some kind of a cave, a tunnel maybe. The walls and ceiling were made of a mix of dirt and rocks. A few overgrown roots hung out of the walls on my left. The floor underneath me seemed out of place, newer maybe. It almost looked like a cobble street road. I looked forward and it took all of my strength not to scream. I sucked in a big breath along with the scream and covered my mouth as I took in the source of the dripping.
It was Carly.
She was suspended in the air by thick chains that wrapped around her wrists and legs.
“Carly?” It was a mere whisper, but it was enough for her to hear me. She slowly lifted her head, locking her widened eyes on me. They had lost their fiery blue and were now a dull red color. Their shapes seemed wrong, too. Its round shape looked much larger than a human eye, and the irises were cat-like. I took a step back and noticed the way her tongue slithered restlessly. A large wound on her forehead continuously bled down onto her face and lips, where her tongue met it with passion. A weird looking symbol was carved onto her arm, and her clothes were torn, cuts and bruises throughout her body. I took a glance around, we were completely alone.
“What, what happened? Who did this to you?” I tugged on the chains as I examined them, noticing that they were bolted to the ceiling and there was no way of getting her out, at least not by myself. I yanked on the rusting chains again to no avail; instead, all she did was wince in pain.
A door slammed shut not too far away, and soft splashing footsteps filled the air. Carly sneered as she cocked her head to the side. It was then that I noticed her distinct sharp teeth. I retreated back into the shadows as the footsteps approached rapidly. My heart thumped against my chest as a person joined us in the dimly lit cave. From its height and built I figured it to be a man. He was wearing a dark oversized hoodie that masked his face. He stood in front of Carly, dangling some kind of rodent by its tail as it squealed to get free.
Carly hissed at him, but her eyes were still locked on me. The cloaked man turned sharply and looked in my direction as he removed the fabric from his head. I let out a yelp and ran away the second I saw his distorted face.

I woke up in a puddle of sweat. The pillows were on the floor, and the sheets had been crumpled by my feet. My heart was still racing as I tried to put together the memories of the nightmare. I looked around. A sigh of relief escaped my lips at the scene in front of me. It felt good being back in the safety of my own house.

The room was still dark, and shadows casted by the trees outside danced carelessly along the floor. I sat on my bed, watching the rhythmic pace of my chest rise and fall until my lids started to become too heavy. I fell backwards onto the mattress and once again drifted into sleep.

The morning alarm brought me out of the haziness I‘d fallen into. A thin tendril of light emerged from behind the closed curtains. I slid my hand over the nightstand until I found my cell phone. I flipped it open and turned it off; it was five past six. Only ten more minutes until my next alarm would go off, yet I couldn‘t stay in bed any longer. I needed to fully rid myself from the ill smelling nightgown I had on and most importantly, from the sickening feeling growing in the pit of my stomach.

The temperature in the room was colder than usual, making the semi-sweat-infested nightgown feel like prickly ice on my skin. I took it off and threw it into the hamper, goose bumps rose throughout my body. I played with the knobs in the shower until it was warm enough and got in.

The hot water splashed onto my back, massaging the tense muscles and easing my mind. It wasn‘t long until the nightmare crept back. I tried to piece it all together- but when it came to the face of the boy in the cave, it was all a blur. I hit the tiled wall as aggravation took over me. Irritated, I rinsed the last of my hair conditioner off and got out of the shower.

―Ahh,‖ I squealed. ―It‘s freaking freezing!‖

I dried myself as fast as I could and wrapped the towel around me. I raided my closet, seeking for something to wear that would brighten my mood. As if! My usual black on black attire would not do me any good today. I pulled a red long-sleeved sweater dress off its hanger and slid my feet onto my favorite pair of converses.

My phone beeped on the bed and I rushed to pick it up, it read one missed call. The number was not saved into my contacts, but they had left a voicemail. I looked at the time on the phone, 6:20 in the morning.

―What kind of genius calls this early?‖

I pressed the play button. It was quiet for a moment. There was the echoing of steps and then came a voice that made every hair in my body stand on end. ―You shouldn‘t be meddling in someone else‘s business. I would suggest you stay away from now on if you know what‘s good for you.‖

I stood there frozen; Jude Bargle‘s voice still echoing in my head. There was a definite threat to his words. It was him in the dream. It must have been, right? But, what did I ever do to him to be calling me out of the blue like this?

It didn‘t make any sense. Yet, a small voice in my head told me it made
perfect
sense. He couldn‘t be referring to the dream. It was impossible. If it was just a dream, how would he know about it?

My legs threatened to give up, and I sat on my bed until it felt like I had regained my strength. There was no way he could be referring to the nightmare, right? But if he were, what would that mean? What would it mean about Carly? Was she really tide up somewhere?

Carly.
The thought of her brought the images of her battered body and the way her teeth bared themselves flashing through my head. Pushing them aside as best I could, I got up and walked out of the room. I held on to the wooden rail on the staircase on my way down and into the kitchen.
―Morning, Dad.‖ It was the best fake cheerful tone I could come up with as I walked over to the refrigerator, pulling out the glass jug of orange juice. Dad was sitting on the other side of the island with his ‗Do not make me use my therapist voice‘ coffee mug a patient had gotten him for Christmas. He held the newspaper in both of his hands. The usual. ―Why don‘t I make you some eggs before I leave?‖ I knew he wouldn‘t take me up on my offer, he never did.
He put the paper down and looked at me, his big hazel eyes studying me.
―What‘s up?‖ I asked.
―Nightmare?‖
Of course he had noticed. I wondered if I had been screaming last night, too. I nodded and got busy preparing my breakfast, not up to delve into any details. It was something I really didn‘t want to talk about.
―Was it the same as usual?‖ I could feel his gaze still on me. As the town‘s shrink he was wonderful, but it could become really trying when he used his tactics on me.
I sighed knowing there would be no getting out of it now. ―It was a new one, nothing to worry about.‖ I shrugged my shoulders as I sat next to him, shoving a big spoonful of cereal into my mouth. I looked out the window, the sky was gray.
Another beautiful day,
I thought.
He looked at me a moment longer and then picked up the paper. We sat in silence for a while, thoughts of the nightmare fresh in my mind.
Happier thoughts
, I told myself. Dad had taught me that trick when I began having the nightmares and it seemed to help.
I thought of Chance Merrick, my boyfriend.
The dance.
―Dad?‖
―Yes?‖ He didn‘t look at me this time; the paper created a wall between us
―Chance has asked me to go to the Sweet Valentine dance with him.‖
―Okay,‖ He pulled the paper down just enough to peek over it and stared at me. When I didn‘t continue, his right eyebrow shot up, his usual move. ―Bailey!‖
―Well, it‘s just that I don‘t have anything formal to wear. Maggie and I were hoping to go to the mall after school.‖
He rolled his eyes, knowing all too well where this was headed. ―How much do you need?‖ he asked as he pulled his dark brown leather wallet from the back pocket of his slacks. ―Is two hundred all right?‖
―I suppose that would be fine,‖ I said nonchalantly, knowing I would be able to get a dress, shoes and accessories with that money. I grabbed the money and shoved it into the inside pocket of my book bag. I heard Maggie‘s tires on the gravel and gave Dad a kiss on the forehead, propping my bag onto my shoulder, where it pulled on my skin uncomfortably. ―Have a good day at work, Daddy.‖ It made me feel childish to call him that, but I loved the feeling it brought and the way he couldn‘t help but blush every time I said it.
The morning was gray and cold. There was a faint fog that hovered over the grass, giving the yard an eerie look. A crimson heart-shaped box with a purple bow on top sat on the outside swing. I turned it over, looking for a card, but there was nothing. I lifted the lid, and the sweet aroma hit my nose, awakening my senses. There were chocolates in all sizes and shapes, all waiting to be picked up.
Although it was too early for sweets, I picked a white chocolate square adorned with dark chocolate stripes. It looked delicious and felt heavenly between my fingertips. My heart started racing the closer it got to my mouth. The cold chocolate grazed my lips, and my head began to spin.
Maggie glued her hand to the horn and made the chocolate in my hand jump up and away, straight into a puddle of mud at the bottom of the steps. I had completely forgotten Maggie was there.
I didn‘t need to say anything to my best friend. One look and she would know exactly how I felt. I went up the steps and opened the door to the house. I put the box on top of the black table in the entrance, and then picked up the pace as I made my way down to my ride to school.
There were only a few miles between our houses and school, so I jumped right into the voicemail, leaving out the creepy nightmare. Although I have always been able to confide in her, something told me to keep it to myself. Something about this whole ordeal made me want to keep it to myself. Afraid maybe she wouldn‘t believe me? After all, I couldn‘t believe it myself.
―That is so creepy, Bai,‖ Maggie said as she handed me back the cell phone. ―And that was this morning?‖
I looked at the time in the voicemail window again and nodded.
―It is pretty weird, but whatever. I mean, who are we kidding? Jude is plenty weird himself. It shouldn‘t be such a surprise, you know? After that little scene he pulled in the cafeteria a few months ago, nothing shocks me.‖
Maggie shrugged as she pulled her car into her usual spot. It was a mystery how we were able to get the same spot right next to the entrance every day. ―It is still odd. And that has to mean something when it concerns him.‖
We were now walking up the gray stone steps that led to the entrance of the school. Hollow High sat atop a greencovered hill and gave the impression of a marvelous old castle than what it really was, a simple old High School.
Large stones similar to those on the steps covered its outside. There were vines that wrapped themselves around the four pillars that led to the large heavy oak front door. Before Hollow High was turned into a school, over fifty years ago, it had actually been a house. A mansion, to be more exact.
Eventually, the last remaining successor passed away, and the county officials decided, against most of the town‘s votes, to turn it into a school. There was history within these walls, and nobody had wanted to see that change. But the county didn‘t care. It would have been an expense for them to keep it unoccupied.
The West side still held its historic charm, with dark marble floors, high ceilings and outdated wooden staircases that creaked under the lightest weight. The East side was only a few years old. Its outside appearance was a little fresher, but they worked really hard to keep its inside with the same old charm.
Maggie and I walked through the crowded hallway toward our lockers. Right up ahead to the left we could see Jude loading books onto his messenger bag. I sure didn‘t want to be spotted by him, so we hid behind a group of students and ran the rest of the way to our lockers.
My mind wandered to the first time I saw Jude.
It was the beginning of senior year when word got around that there was a new student in Hollow High. As it has always been, it was rather habitual to treat any new student as if they had some kind of incurable disease. Everyone had already settled into their own assigned groups, a new student was an inconvenience, someone not wanted anywhere.
Girls would carefully move around Jude when walking past, as if the mere touch of him would make them turn into ashes. The boys would make comments that made me cringe, wondering how people could be so cruel towards someone they never held a conversation with.
Jealousy
, I had told myself. Jude was drop dead gorgeous. ―Out of a Vogue magazine,‖ I had told Maggie the first time we walked past him on the hallway. His shaggy black hair fell over his deep green eyes, almost as if they needed hiding. His tall and well-built body would have been perfect for playing sports, but that would have never been allowed by the teams. Who would ever dare allow someone new in?
I had walked past him in the hallway every day, and he never noticed me, his gaze always glued to the floor. I would know, I stared at him incessantly. A couple weeks after school had begun, to my astonishment, our eyes finally met.
As I had dreamt for so many days and nights, there had been an undeniable spark. Some sort of recognition t had crossed his eyes, sending shivers through my body. I had been right; the mere looking into those eyes had been a lifechanging experience.
The person I had been was immediately eradicated, and in its place a newbeing was born. I couldn‘t explain how, but my whole world had changed in that one simple look. Something deep in me had been awakened, and the fire in my soul begun to soar. I
needed
to be close to him.
The moment was short-lived as his eyes moved from mine to the black marble under his feet and he rapidly walked away. Since then there had been a few awkward smiles here and there, but he seemed to go out of his way to be as far from me as possible, as if I were the one with the incurable disease.
One day I was sitting on our cafeteria table, nodding at whatever Maggie was babbling about and just staring off at Jude. He was always nose deep reading his old leather journals. Time and time again I had wished I could get a small glimpse inside. To see what kept him so hypnotized.
I had never felt this way before. All I could think of was him. At night I would dream of being in his arms and being his, yet when morning came and reality dawned on me, all that lingered on was the hollow emptiness. It had become almost painful, being so happy in my dreams and waking up to face reality.
It had been well over a month now, and kids were still treating him like the plague. I was afraid since we had never spoken that he would think I was like the rest of them, spiteful and rude.
His eyes found mine from across the cafeteria. Without thinking about what I was doing, I got up and walked toward the table tucked onto the far corner of the cafeteria, where he sat. He was, as it was expected, alone.
I conjured my strength knowing there wouldn‘t be a better time to make a move. I kept telling myself I was just trying to be nice and I was doing this for him. I had repeated that so much in my head, part of me truly believed it. I couldn‘t deny the yearning for him, though, no matter how hard I tried to hide it. A need so divine I had no explanation for.
I swallowed nervously and slid onto the bench across from him, setting my tray on the table softly. His eyes looked up at the disturbance. His black hair fell down, casting shadows onto his slightly amused eyes.
―You shouldn‘t be here.‖ His voice was soft, but he meant what he said. I stared at him in surprise.
―That is really for me to decide, don‘t you think?‖ I defied him as I picked the pepperoni off my slice of pizza.
When he didn‘t respond, it prompted me to look up. ―So how do you like Hollow High?‖
Way to go Bai, great dialogue
, I thought to myself.
―You really should just leave me alone. You don‘t belong here.‖ His eyes dug into mine. The shivers were back, but this time it was like a hundred spiders running up and down my spine. Terror enveloped every single one of my bones.
What the hell!
My mouth fell open. I was about to say something; to tell him he was being a rude prick, when he shook his head and stood up, slamming his hands onto the table. The table shook, making my soda fall down and spill all over my brand new jeans. A look of regret seemed to cross his face before he was back to his little temper tantrum. ―I am trying to be nice; stay away from me. You understand?‖ He glowered down at me. ―Don‘t ever talk to me again.‖
My mind was still trying to process what had just happened.
He began to gather his things and I did the same; setting my food and empty can on my tray.
Ben and Chance, two of the dreamiest kids in school, walked over. Ben shot me a questioning look and rested his hand on my shoulder. I slightly nodded, letting him know I was okay. He then proceeded to walk over to Jude, who had now gone stiff.
―Do we have a problem here, Freak?‖
I cringed at the word, wondering after the little scene he just pulled off why I still felt like defending him. I slapped myself in my mind, why did I want to throw my arms around him and tell him it would all be all right?
Jude didn‘t move. It seemed as if he had been frozen in place.
Ben‘s gaze moved from Jude, to me, and then to the outdated leather journals. He looked at the one closest to the edge of the table and pushed it over, making its yellow pages scatter everywhere.
The whole cafeteria burst out laughing, but I had kept my eyes glued to Jude, wondering why he was acting this way. After the way he had reacted to my simply trying to make conversation, I didn‘t know what he‘d do now. I saw his eyes turn into a charcoal color and his face distort into a grim smile. Faster than I could have warned Ben, Jude had one hand clasped around Ben‘s throat, pulling him up until his feet weren‘t touching the ground.
Chance, who had taken the tray from my hands and stayed beside me through the altercation, set the tray down and moved towards them. His eyes deepened as he singlehandedly grabbed Jude‘s grip on Ben‘s neck and twisted him off. It didn‘t even look like he was using any strength at all.
Ben‘s heavy body hit the ground, and Karl, the security guy, picked him up. Jude and Chance‘s eyes were locked in their own death match. Neither one of them moved until Mr. Robins, our short bald history teacher, snapped them out of the weird trance they had fallen into.
Once Mr. Robins and Jude left, I walked over to Ben, who was now sitting on a bench. I sat beside him.
―Thank you.‖ I said as I put my hand on his knee. There was nothing else to say. He had tried to defend me and instead he had ended up being embarrassed in front of the whole school. My eyes searched his face and then noticed the already darkening purple bruises on either side of his neck. Ben would carry Jude‘s handprint on his neck for at least a few days.
Jude didn‘t come back to school after the incident. It was rumored he had been suspended, and some even hoped he had been expelled. If he had been treated badly before, his fate had now been sealed. He was all the school could talk about; people were genuinely scared of him.
Since then he had been avoided by everyone, even the teachers. That was why, when Jude came back to school and Carly was mysteriously all over him, I knew something was terribly wrong.
―Okay, what is up with this picture?‖ Maggie motioned across the hall towards Carly Tucker‘s locker. Carly was, by far, one of the most popular girls in school, hell, even in town. She had golden blond hair with large, sleek curls that reached almost to her waist. Her eyes were a deep ocean blue that, if I didn‘t know any better, I would say they had all the boys hypnotized. As Captain of the cheerleading squad, she always made sure her skirts were well above the allowed length in our Hollow High Handbook. Today was no exception.

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