A Shadow In The Night
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The Blue Neighborhood
This is book one in the neighborhood series
I AWOKE in darkness. I sit up, confused as to where I was at. I try to stand, but when I make the sudden attempt to do so, my body is pushed back down to the gravely surface. I'm so tired and weak. How am I going to have the strength to get back up? As I lie on the ground staring up at the black sky covered in gray clouds, I sigh. My body feels heavy. When I bite my lip, I can taste the metallic flavor of blood lingering on the lower part of my mouth. I have no recollection as to how I got here, or how I even made it out alive. It was all a big blur. One minute I was pinned to the wall, the next I was out on the streets. This was all my fault. I groan, mentally telling myself that I had to stand up. If I didn't, I'd have an even bigger risk at dying than living. Once I gain the ability to get up off the ground, I run a hand through my light-brown hair and sigh. When the breath leaves my lips, the weight drops and lingers; almost as if it's saying that the burdens of heartache won't ever leave. I then begin to walk forward. My right foot stings at the sudden pressure. I conclude that not only am I beaten and bruised, but that also my foot is sprained. I walk out of the alleyway with the streetlight being the light source for my blurred vision. I was so tired. Who was I to turn to when I've done nothing but hurt others? No one. I was alone. I continue my agonizing walk up the street. Just up ahead, I see a corner store. Once I get a better view of the building's logo, I jog up to the payphone; not caring if I hissed at the light stings coming from my foot. Placing the earpiece onto my shoulder, I dialed the only number I knew by memory. As I waited for it to dial, my wrists began to tighten from nervousness. I didn't know what to expect. "Hello?" It was Dylan. I let out an inaudible sigh of relief; thankful that he had picked up the phone. I hear light shuffling in the background; indicating that I had woken him up from his slumber. "Hi," I replied shakily. "I'm sorry for waking you at this hour, I'm scared and I--" "Valerie?" he asks, cutting me off. "Where are you at?" "That's the thing," I say, exhaling a breath. "I don't know where I am, and I don't know what to do. I'm just. . ." "Don't do anything," Dylan says, now fully awake. "just stay where you're at. I'm coming to get you." "But, Dylan, you don't even know where I --" "Just trust me on this." With that, the line went dead.