Survivor's Guilt - Page 8

“We made it to the opening in no time,” I said, my voice still husky from my crying jag. “Johnny and Jenny were right on our heels, and this thick metal door slammed shut behind us as lights came on showing us we were in some kind of bunker. I think there was an elevator, but the doors were shut and I didn't see any way to get them open.”

“'Stay where you are and do not touch anything!' the Raven's voice thundered from everywhere. 'Someone will get you as soon as we can spare the personnel.'”

At this point I didn't know why I was telling her all this; it was all just gushing out of me and I couldn't stop it even though I wanted to. “So we sat there with our ears ringing and not knowing what was going on or when it would end. Mark kept cradling me and murmuring things to me that I couldn't understand.” Until now, I thought, and I had to take a few moments to get myself back under control before I could go on. “He was trying to comfort me, I guess. Jenny just kept crying, and Johnny kept telling her over and over to shut up, just shut the hell up!” I shook my head. “It was like we were stuck in a loop of a bad Internet video, 'How idiots about to die react.' None of us wanted to act like that, but . . .” I shuddered a breath. “We just couldn't help ourselves. We were that scared!”

As bad as telling her that made us all look, what I had to tell her next was worse. “Then the whole mountain felt like it shook, and everything went dark, dark like I've never seen before, a total absence of light and hope kind of dark. Jenny stopped crying and just . . . screamed, a haunted house kind of scream, but for real.” I didn't know how to say the next part, but like I said, I just couldn't stop. “I think . . . I think Johnny only meant to slap her once, but after he hit her once, I could hear that he just kept hitting her; he couldn't stop any more than she could, I guess.” My eyes fell to the floor and I felt my face burning with shame. “And the worst part is I can't blame him because I wanted to do the same thing, anything to make her stop making that noise . . . and that's when Mark . . .”

Even just saying his name started me tearing up again, but I kept going. “That's when he sat me down with a . . . a growl of some sort, but not at me, at Johnny, and I knew he was about to. . . to . . . do something bad to Johnny as soon as he could get his hands on him on the dark.”

She just nodded for me to continue, still no judgment.

Page 8

Previous ~ Index ~ Next