Write Now Prompt: March 21st
He snapped awake to the sound of their hushed voices coming from the kitchen. He felt his belly flip over, like the time he rode the roller coaster and heaved his lunch everywhere. They were arguing and trying to be quiet about it so they didn’t wake him. He didn’t know why they bothered, he’d hear them regardless. He’d had to have been deaf not to, living as they were, in a house less than 700 sq ft.
Everything had gone bad the day they’d moved here, into this moldering dump. The whole place suffered from a bad case of “a little more’s.” As in; it was a little more damp, a little more dark, and a little more cold than anywhere else he’d known. And he hated it.
“I told you, I paid the bill. I have no idea why they turned it off!”
His Mom’s voice rose slightly. He heard the lower pitched rumble in reply and the creaking protests from the old linoleum flooring as his Mom paced. Why in the world did they wait to argue over something they couldn’t change during the night-time anyway? Grown ups were so weird.
Happiness had been in short supply lately. Not since Mom got so sad and his big best friend so quiet. Not since the word money had become a bad word. It was this place that was doing it to them, he felt sure of that. Sometimes it felt as though the house were alive. In his most imaginative moments, he’d almost swear that he could see the walls move, as if they were breathing.
He screwed his eyes shut tight and wished as hard as he could to make them stop, make them hug, make them remember to just…love each other. He heard his name being called faintly, as if from a far distance. And again. The light was on inside his closet, though he distinctly remembered turning it off.
A strange blue glow illuminated the door frame and the door itself seemed to be bulging outward slightly. He had to find out what was in his closet and who was calling his name. He got up cautiously and tiptoed over to stand in front of the closet door. He trembled, called himself a wussy for acting like a baby and flung open the door.
“Oh…honey, I’m sorry. Did we wake you up? Let’s get you tucked back in bed.”
Mom’s face glimmered with guilt and regret.
The child said nothing. Silent tears welled up over his lashes and spilled down his face.
“C’mon champ, let’s go to bed. It’s really late.”
This from Mom’s significant other and his big best friend. He put a gentle hand on the boy’s shoulder to guide him.
The boy shrugged off the hand, grabbed both of them and held tight.
“I stayed with you guys instead of going on, like I was supposed to. I tried to get you to remember what happened. But you didn’t! You don’t remember anything from when we were alive. They marked you for rehabilition so you can learn how to love each other again and they said it wouldn’t take long. But my time is up and I can’t stay with you anymore. I don’t want to go!”
“What? Who? Who told you this babe? Did you have a bad dream? What are you taling about?”
Mom felt his forehead, checking for fever.
The boy gestured behind him, towards his room and the dark shadows moving within.
“The Trainers, Mom. They told me. They’ve lived at this way station for long time. They’re going to take me to where I have to go. Please hurry, I’ll be so lonely without you. I love you both so much.”