Chapter 2:

Chapter 2

Fate of Yggdrasil

Part 1

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I can’t move…Bookmark here

I can’t breathe…Bookmark here

I can’t see anything…Bookmark here

I can’t hear anything…Everything…is slipping away. I’m going to die…Bookmark here

Not yet…No, I don’t want to die…I don’t want to leave Mom all alone…I don’t want to leave Gabby with that jerk…We’ve still got to…explore the world…I still want to be with my friends…I can’t…I won’t die!Something…there has to be something that I can reach for. I’ll stay alive no matter what! I can’t just die now!Bookmark here

Part 2Bookmark here

My eyes sprung open to the painted white ceiling of my bedroom. For a minute, I thought I’d passed over the brink of death’s door, until a small piece of dust drifted down onto my forehead, leaving a fuzzy sensation; finally, I could feel again! I was laying in my bed, under the covers, like nothing had happened; it was inconceivable! In through the blinds came the warm and bright rays of the sun. They blared into my face, worsening my quickly growing headache.(W-what the hell? Why am I...?) Trying to recall the events from the night before worsened my headache. The sound of my phone buzzing startled me, with the screen reading out: Mom, I scurried to answer. “Hello…?”“Hey honey, I’m sorry I didn’t wake you up when I got in last night, but you looked so tired. I thought you could use some sleep.”“…”“Fate, honey, you there?”“Y-yeah! Mom, when you came in…did you notice anything weird?”“Weird? Weird how?”“Like…was I sleeping weird…or maybe the windows were…I don’t know…” I eased into the question while moving toward the window. Pins and needles ran through my legs, but the sensation of my bare feet on the carpeted floor as I went about inspecting the glass was a reminder that I was alive. Not a single crack ran through the window’s glass.“No…why? Fate, did something happen?”“Huh, no. I…I just had a bad dream is all.”“Are you sure you’re okay? I’ll be home earlier today if you need something.”“Nah, it’s cool. Thanks, Mom.”“Okay…bye.”“Later.” The phone call ended.My mind still racing, I staggered into the bathroom. (What the hell happened last night? I swear I wa…) My mind went blank when my gaze met the mirror. A huge scar, spreading outward across my neck as if it were tree roots, extended all the way across and around to my back. “Huh? What’s this…?” Under my long hair, the scar only reached just short of my spine. A greasy and rough film felt as though it were placed atop the throat, laminating my neck. I poked at the wound, stupidly.An intensely sharp pain shot through my throat as I vomited a thick, purple and brown colored slush around the brim of my sink. It was like someone had mixed dirt and hair dye into a soup, pouring it everywhere.“I need…to go and…see a doctor….”Bookmark here

Part 3Bookmark here

(This turtle neck will cover the scar.) The warmth of that black wool turtleneck was appreciated, because the instant I stepped outside a frosty winter like breeze crept onto my shoulders. Though it was still spring, the temperature had dropped dramatically from the day before. (The doctor said that if I come down, he'll at least checkout what's up with this thing. Got to keep Mom from knowing; she has enough on her plate.)From cold to frigid, I was starting to wish I couldn’t feel anything again, especially with the subway seats feeling like giant ice cubes beneath me. In the cart were some young highschool girls and an old homeless man. The constant bickering of the adolescent school girls annoyed me to no end. As I got ready to move away, I caught a whiff of the homeless man a bit further down in the cart and returned to my seat.(I really need to get a car.) The train slowly crept into the station, but I was already by the doors waiting for them to open. As soon as they did, I rushed out and over to the doctor’s office.A few people sat in the waiting room ahead of me, but the line went fast. After some time, the doctor’s assistant called me into the examination room. I took off my sweater to show the doctor my scar. His eyes nearly bulged out of their sockets when he saw the wound. I allowed him to run his ice-cold fingers across it, then shoved him aside and threw up all over the floor.“S…sorry…” That purple and brownish ooze spilled across the floor, burning my throat as I vomited.“No…it’s alright, Mister Isley. Nurse!” The doctor called for a nurse to deal with the bile. I apologized profusely to the nurse who glared at me with disgust, anger and bafflement as to the color, while we moved to another examination room “How exactly did you get that scar?”“I…” (What the heck am I supposed to say? ‘I got it when some monster showed up at my window last night and blasted me in my throat with some weird red light’?)“This isn’t drug related, is it?”“No way, of course not!”“Calm down. I’m a doctor, I will keep your secrets. It’s best you tell me exactly what happened if you want me to be able to help.”“Doc’ I’m telling you the truth. It’s definitely not drugs.”“Then what is it? Because in all my years I’ve never once seen anything like that.”“I don’t know what it is, honestly. I just…can you try feeling it again? I promise I won’t throw up this time.”“Okay. I didn’t really get to feel it very much the first time. Just promise me you won’t push me out of the way this time too.”He once again placed those icy digits on the scar. A bit gentler that time, but I could still feel the pain welling up. I held back as much as possible, but it felt so gross surging up inside of my mouth and throat.“Alright, go ahead.” He handed me a trash can, which I proceeded to fill with puke made up of whatever was left in my stomach.“Thanks…again…”“Alright then, now I definitely need to know what’s going on with you.”“Why?”“Too many things to count. First, how long have you had that wound?”“…Only a few hours…I guess.”“Hours? Impossible. If you got cut like that, first off, you’d be dead within seconds. That scar is totally closed up.”“I just…! Look, okay…this monster came to my window last night and…shot me in the throat! I don’t know anything other than that, but it’s definitely true!” The doctor narrowed his eyes.“Mr.Isley…”“Please, wait! I know what you must think, but I’m not on drugs, I’m not crazy and I know what I saw!”The doctor sighed and sat back in his chair, polishing his small glasses and continued. “Alright, let’s try and get some blood work done.”“Sir, I’m not on drugs!”“I’ll be honest, I don’t believe you. The problem here is that I’ve got no idea what this could be, so I want to run some tests. If you’re willing of course; I’m not going to force you.”“Ok…I’ll do anything.” After my blood was drawn, a few other tests were taken, then I was sent on my way.Bookmark here

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The rest of my time that day, I sat around trying to find answers on the internet, which turned out to be a pointless jaunt. My mind was still hazy, and anxiety started to cloud my ability to reason; with millions of guesses in online forms, and nothing definitive, I gave up, resolved to just wait it out. The next week, up to my appointment, I stayed inside and didn’t bother to go to classes or the clubroom. College work could be done online, and I’d given my friends a bunch of excuses. The only problem was Mom. I had to wear turtlenecks all day to keep her from seeing the scar, which wasn’t fun as I only owned 2 of the sweaters.“Fate!” She called, awakening me from my nap. With her hair pulled into a wavy red bun, neatly dressed in a button-up and slacks, Mom leaned over me with a frown. I’d drifted off on the front room’s couch while playing some crappy fighting game, one of many that I’d amassed.“Yeah?” Groggy still, I responded while feeling the imprint left on my cheek by the controller.“What’s with this hermit routine? You’ve been sitting at home for the past few days.”“Relax, I’m fine, Mom. Just taking a little break.”“Is everything alright with you and your little club?”“Yeah, of course.”Mom pushed my legs off the couch and sat down next to me. “I’m worried…” I could tell where the conversation was headed. My mother always attempted to be the ‘cool mom’ type. “Not only are you staying inside all day, but lately you’ve been distant. Also, why are you always wearing turtlenecks now?”“It’s the new style.”“And you’re wearing them around inside? Why not go out, show off this new style to some of the girls?”“Oh…well…”“Fate, you’re really bad at lying. Whatever it is that’s bothering you, just tell me.”“It’s really nothing. Everything is fine, Mom. You worry too much.”“Fine then. Take off the turtle neck and show me everything is fine!”“What? No way, Mom, weird! I don’t want to be half naked in front of my Mother.”“I saw you naked before you saw yourself.”“Mom, stop. I promise that next time I get into some type of huge life destroying predicament, you’ll be the first to know.”“…” She left me in a huff, silently storming to her room which sat adjacent to mine.(She’ll be fine. Once I confirm what is going on isn’t going to kill me, I’ll let her know.) With my back laid against the couch I went back to sleep.My ears started buzzing, waking me up…sort of. I could feel the couch beneath me but couldn’t move. It was as if my body slept while my mind and senses were wide awake. I tried to force open my eyes and was barely able to crack them. (Not again!) It was marginally different from the night I almost died, but the similar sensation of being enfeebled sunk in immediately.Just out of the corner of my eye, Mom walked into view. She looked down at me with her pale, freckled face, and said something I couldn’t as her voice sounded muffled. Watching mom leave the room, closing the front door behind her as I could only scream in my own head was maddening! (Mom! Mom, come back!) There was nothing I could do. I couldn’t move an inch!Again, out of the corner of my vision I could just barely make out something. A blurry black figure with a wide smile on what seemed to be its face was leering at me from the corner of the front room. As the monster approached me, I tried desperately to move again, with all my might, but my body remained motionless. It stood in front of me, obscuring my view with a curved and human like physique. The apparition was wrapped in some type of black fabric stitched together with weird luminescent purple threads radiating some unknown purple energy.A burning sensation, like a sharp, hot knife started cutting its way into the side of my neck! (Stopstopstopstopstop!!) Every part of me screamed, but my mouth remained still. It felt like my flesh was slowly being seared and peeled away. (Anyone! Someone please, make it stop!!!) The pain felt as if it would never end. Through my skin, then my muscles, and into the deepest part of my throat, the scorching edge reached my esophagus and hen almost as fast as it started, the pain left me, and I could move again.(What?) Awe struck, I felt the side of my neck where I’d previously felt the intense pain. Not even a scrape. I franticly ran to check every inch of the apartment. “Where are you!? I know you’re here! Get the hell out here!” Yelling at the top of my lungs, with no regard for anyone who could hear me, I barked at the creature. “I know you’re here! What the hell do you want with me!?” At last I made my way to the front window, opened it all the way and yelled… “Leave me alone!!!” My voice echoed across the streets; people walking down below looked up at me with confusion. They must’ve thought I was crazy…and at that point I wasn’t sure how sane I was myself.I sat on the couch rubbing my neck. (Am I crazy?) Then chuckled to myself. (No way…) My phone started buzzing, which signaled that it was time for the appointment with the doctor, clearly far more time had passed than I realized, hours even. (Answers…please let this yield some answers.)Bookmark here

Part 5Bookmark here

The subway again…and almost as if the universe were mocking me, the same group of people from before rode alongside me in the same cart. The bickering girls and homeless old man joined me again for my ride. My mind was still frayed. Whatever demon that’d been tormenting me wasn’t going to stop.(I’m feeling so damn nervous.) All of the forms, and articles I brought up on my phone about monsters, cryptids and demons didn’t help. My tormentor could’ve been anything from a succubus to a ghost! My chest was cramping due to anxiety, as I drummed my heel on the subway cart’s floor. The noise I was making must’ve woke the old man as he turned and looked at me. I tried to ignore him and control my nervous tick. (When the hell is my stop?) The man got up and ambled in my direction. He reeked of body odor even more up close.“Hey bub, you got some food on you?” His missing teeth and matted beard were so close to me when he spoke, that I could see every uncleaned part of each tooth.“No. Sorry.” I tried to blow him off.“You sure? I smell something on ya’.”(He’s going to be persistent?!) “N-No. Seriously, I don’t have anything.” He was only a bit taller than me so if I had to, I could push him away, but I was still seated, and he was towering over me. The girls in the cart and I made eye contact, but they just pulled out their phones and started filming without reservation. (Do something you brats!) The man began closing in on me. Just when I prepared to shove him away, the train stopped causing him to fall to the floor. It was my stop so, I took that perfect opportunity to run past him and off the subway.After jogging for a few minutes, I made it to the doctor’s office. Totally out of breath, I spoke with the receptionist about my appointment while huffing and puffing. She told me to wait to be called so I took a seat and attempted to calm myself. People walked back and forth, running in and out of offices working with the many patients.(I know I’m not a priority, but crap…no one is even looking in my direction.) Just as I thought that a female nurse stopped right in front of me.“Uh…hello.” She smiled sweetly.“Hi…” I responded.“Are you here to see the doctor?”“Yes. I think my appointment is at two…”“Oh, don’t worry. Come in to the examination room. I’m sure the doctor won’t mind.” The nurse hurriedly pushed me into a room and sat me in an operating chair.“Are you sure this is okay?” I asked, but as a response I got the door to the room being slammed shut, and the nurse taking a very close and intimate seat next to me. “U-Uh…”“Don’t worry. It’s fine. What’s your name again?”“I-I never gave it in the first place!” She started leaning in close, with her hand drawing closer to my scar.“What the hell is going on in here!?” The doctor opened the door with his face full of disgust. “Amanda, go to my office! I’ll talk with you once this is done.” He pointed the nurse out of the room as she left, hanging her head in shame.“Thank God! What the heck was all of that?”“She’s normally not like that. Mr.Isley, do you know Amanda?”“No. I’ve never met her before.”“Hm…” The doctor closed the door behind him as he entered the room which made me flinch a bit. “Oh, sorry.”“…So…what did the tests say?”“You just want to jump into it?”“Absolutely! Things…seem like they’re getting worse.”“I can tell something is wrong. You look like you haven’t slept, and your face is flushed.”“That’s…probably because of before…things have been keeping me up.”“By ‘things’ do you mean this ‘monster’ that attacked you last week?”“Well…”“…I don’t believe that I can help you, Fate.”“What!?”“Not even one of the tests we ran came up with anything out of the ordinary.”“But this scar…!”“I know. It is in fact strange, but I can’t see it as anything other than an old wound. All the tests that we ran came back negative. If you’d like further assistance, I can recommend a psychotherapist with whom I’m acquainted.”“…” I was so frustrated I couldn’t even think of anything to say in response.“…It…It…” He began stuttering which caught my attention.“Are you alright?”“Do you…have something on you? Were you smoking something before you came in here?”“No…”“Lord all mighty!” The doctor pulled open the door. “Mr.Isley…speak with the receptionist! I can’t stay in this room any longer!” The doctor rushed out of the room, leaving me befuddled as to why. I got up and grabbed the paperwork from the receptionist at the front desk and left, dejected but not totally defeated yet.Bookmark here

Part 6Bookmark here

I did something I normally wouldn’t and walked to the library. The man at the front desk told me that they had books on the occult and supernatural happenings, so my thought process led me to believe that the answer I was searching for could’ve been written about in one of those books. (If nothing is really wrong with me physically, then it has to be…a monster or a ghost, right?) Mr.Russell’s speeches about reading old books if you wanted real knowledge had gotten to me. (I know I’m not crazy…I can’t have just started losing my mind out of nowhere.) There were tons of books all over, so I grabbed two of the biggest and oldest ones I could find on the occult and paranormal activities. The library was crowded, leaving me with only one free table to sit at, far away from most of the other patrons. My spot was near the ‘kids’ area’, which the adults stayed far away from as they watched television, laughing and playing recklessly. Noise like that didn’t bother me, as I’d gotten used to Chester arguing with Demica in the background while working in the clubroom.The books mentioned lots of different creatures, from the jersey devil to Yaga-baba. The problem was, none of them were even remotely what I saw. I had no choice but to seriously start considering my sanity again. I got up and walked through the aisles of the library again, my hope of finding more information in books running thin. (Am I really okay?) The thought of going insane terrified me. If I lost my mind, I could hurt someone, or myself. (When would I even notice that I’d lost my mind? Would just happen all at once? Have I…already lost it? Maybe I took more blows to the head than I thought when Ken and I got into it.) I started rubbing my head, wondering if I had some kind of brain damage, but then I noticed… (Wait…what happened to that cut on my scalp?) The cut on my scalp wasn’t too big, but I didn’t think it would close up so soon.I remembered the beating I’d received, taking note of all the wounds I’d compounded and started checking myself. The bruise was totally gone, my lip had healed up and even my neck felt great! (Is it normal to heal up this fast?) Not being a fighter, I wasn’t sure when I should’ve been done recuperating. As I exited the drab corridor, some people started staring which made me feel self-conscious. A little girl in the ‘kids’ area’ sat next to a doll which caught my eye. It’s glassy, unblinking eyes stared me down with unfeeling silence. Chills ran up my spine and I tried to focus on the books again but couldn’t. The dolls porcelain white skin, blonde hair, and blue eyes were far too life like.(I hope whoever that thing belongs to, moves it soon, or I’ll do it myself.) I saw children start standing up, leaving the ‘kids’ area’, but none of them grabbed the little demonic looking doll. (Did someone forget it?) That thought seemed like a possibility until I noticed that everyone else started getting up. One by one everyone walked out of the library, without a word, without breaking stride. “Uh, hello!?” I attempted to get someone’s attention but failed as they ignored me. The librarians, the other patrons, the children, and even the cleaners…everyone simply walked out of the library; leaving me totally alone.“What…the fuck?” Total silence is something I’d never experienced before. Not the normal silence where there’s still the sounds off in the distance. It was a muted, almost deafness blanketing the library.*Tonk*“Spectacular! To think it would all work out so very well.” A velvety smooth, confident…familiar voice spoke from behind me. I could feel my heart jump in my chest and my blood start to run cold. “Even if this little thing is here, it should not pose an issue for me. My…are you too frightened to even face me?” The voice…that I could clearly identify as a girl by that point, spoke to me. “…That piece of rubbish over there had you so frightened, no? You needn’t worry. I’ll rid us of the little creature now!” A sound akin to music being distorted and played back over and over followed her words. Then suddenly the smell of brim stone and a burst of bright light came.I finally turned around to see…a girl. No older than me standing atop the table and staring at a raging fire in the ‘kid’s area’. The embers turned from a warm orange flame into the visage of an agonized human head. As the fire subsided, where the doll once sat, all that remained were scorch marks and ash. She turned on the heels of her black platform boots to face me with a smirk. A pointed, and almost mechanical looking hat adorning her extremely long, raven black hair, that flowed down far past her knee length skirt. The girl’s clothes were pitch black, woven with glowing purple threads; covering her pale and unblemished white skin. She simply continued to stare at me with her deep brownish red eyes. I was totally horrified…to be finally confronted with what I recognized as the monster that attacked me…End of chapter 2Bookmark here

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