Chapter 1:

The Dullness Of Life

Ludicy - Reaching Out

It's just another dull day. The sun is burning. The teacher is babbling away, and Daniel is dozing off, reminiscing about the feel of his bed and the smell of fabric softener. Other students are whispering about something, but he can't force himself to care enough to listen. The bell rings, the class ends, and with it, his will to sleep goes away. He goes to the cafeteria but not to get food. He just likes lurking around the corner, alone. People don't usually talk to him, and he doesn't dislike it. He starts thinking of the past and the only person he ever cared about. It was his childhood friend, Alex. She was kind and sweet, and they used to spend every day together until high school came along. In their freshman year, she fell in love with an upperclassman and started excluding Daniel from her life. It's not even as if he was in love with her. He just wanted a friend he could trust. It's been a whole year since all that went down, and he's still moping around, aimlessly drifting thru life without any ambition or interests. The bell rings again, but Daniel isn't going to class since the art teacher is sick at home, and he doesn't like the substitute. Instead, he decides to take a nap on the grass beside the baseball field. The ground feels nice, and the smell of the grass is relaxing. His eyes close, and he drifts off to another world, where he is happy and doesn't have to worry about responsibilities. At first, it seems to him like summer vacation, but he soon realizes something is off. For one, Alex is next to him, hugging his arm, and they're sitting on a bench in a park that was demolished years ago and replaced with a new shopping mall. The other thing that weirds him out is the cold. He can clearly see the sun burning in the sky, and yet, he is shivering like it's the start of winter. He looks at Alex again, and she whispers something in his ear. At that moment, he wakes up covered in sweat. He looks around and notices that nobody is there. "Huh, so they finished practice," he thinks. He gets up and goes to his classroom but wanders off on the way there. He ends up just walking thru the empty hallways, staring at the depressing walls filled with various posters for school clubs and competitions. He decides to go to the bathroom and fix up his messy hair, but there is somebody in there, vomiting. After a closer look, he sees that the dude is vomiting up blood. It's all over the place. The first thought in his mind was: "What did this guy do, eat razors? Or was he drinking "blood" with the vampire weirdos?" He concludes it is best to leave the guy alone to deal with his own problems but decides to send a supervising teacher his way, just in case. "What a weird fucking day this turned out to be," he utters. He gets back to his classroom, people don't notice him, or they just ignore his presence, except the teacher, who simply comments on his showing up. The class goes on, and Daniel decides to look at the window. At that moment, everything he knew begins to change.