Kategori: Spänning noveller
Gravity of you
She limped through the empty field. Her black shirt was torn and the dark pants were covered in dirt. Blood dripped from a wound on her chin and the crimson liquid was smeared all over her pale face. Her dark eyes were wide open, filled to the brim with terror. Her bare feets were covered in both mud and blood. Her left ankle was swollen, a mess of blue, purple and black surrounded the shin but the woman didn’t seem to care. All she did was to run. She wasn’t going to let the pain stop her. This was the apocalypse and she wasn’t going to let the big smoke tear her apart, limb by limb.
She was approaching the horizon. The dead grass grew darker and darker, the cold air surrounded her body, making her shudder under the thin shirt. The night was unnaturally quiet. The birds were all gone by now and the trees didn’t have any leaves to make a rustling sound in the wind. The only sound that she could focus on was the sound from the machine in front of her. The space vessels loud engines was everything she could hear. She could almost feel it pulling her, hear it beckoning for her to come. She had to leave this place. She had come such a long way and if it wasn’t worth it in the end she lost so many lives for nothing. The only reason she kept trying to reach it after everyone she lost was because two people waited for her. One person was connected to the golden ring on her finger and the other person was connected to both of them. Her husband and daughter were in the space vessel, they had faith in her. As long as they were there she had to keep going.
She was almost there when the unthinkable happened. She heard the engine start up. The ground shook with energy and she stumbled forward, falling onto the grass. Her already injured ankle twisted and she could hear the cracking sound when the bone snapped. The pain shot up her leg like fire. She cringed. It exploded in her head with a blinding brightness. It made her dizzy. The pain was like needles that had been dipped in alcohol had been jammed through her skin, like her ankle had been replaced with ice and electricity that went straight into her head. She felt herself let out a scream of agony but her ears couldn’t hear the noise. All she could hear was the sound of the engine. Bile rose in her throat but she forced herself to swallow it down.
She slowly sat up again. Her long dark hair clung to her head. It could’ve been both from blood and sweat at this point. The vessel still hadn’t lifted off the ground but the wind were coming hard from the engines. Suddenly she noticed something that made a new wave of hope rush through her body. The gate was still open. She still had a chance to board the machine. She slowly stood up from the ground. She tried to put a little bit of weight on her injured foot and it didn’t even take a second before pain exploded in her entire body once again. She had no way to reach the machine in time. She was so close but yet so far away. Her knees buckled under her weight and once again she collapsed to the ground, her back against the grass. Her shoulders shook with suppressed frustration. She was going to die here, outside of the one thing that was supposed to save her. The smoke would take her away from this world, only leaving a broken body.
When she felt her mind give up on all hope, she started hearing more things. She still heard the vessel, she heard the grass around her move in the small breeze. But she heard something else too. A voice was calling her from far away. She didn’t think of it too much though. It could’ve just been her mind playing tricks on her. She stared up at the sky. The clouds had finally departed and space stared down at her. She saw the stars, they hung comfortably over her. She focused on them. She was falling into them. It felt like falling into a nothingness. She escaped into the darkness, emptied her hole body in the shining bright light. When she died, she wanted the last thing that she saw to be the sky. The beautiful stars. The beauty was worth it.
The voice calling her name got closer though. It echoed in the dark night, dragging her away from the waiting numbness in front of her. She slowly raised her head. The vessel was still standing on the ground and a silhouette was running towards her. The closer the person came, the more she recognized him. It was a man, the dark brown hair and dark eyes were just as comforting as the stars. She knew him.
“ We have to get on now!” he yelled at her. She felt a wave of emotions spread through her body. The man crouched down in front of her. The golden ring on her finger seemed to have a copy on his. “Come on!” He grabbed her cold hands and she felt the heat from his own comforting her freezing skin.
“Dustin…” she whispered. A part of her wanted to throw herself against his neck and embrace him in a hug and never let go. But the other part wanted to scream at him to leave her. She was sick, she was hurt. There was no chance that she would make it even if she got on the vessel. She could feel her brain slowly starting to give up. “You...you can’t be here,” her voice was weak, barely even audible. And yet in the man's ears, he heard it just as much as if she had screamed it .
“I couldn’t leave you,” his voice shook almost as much as hers. “We have to get out of here, the vessel won’t stay here forever and we’re running out of time.” he let go of her hans and she felt the heat leave her body in a matter of seconds. Instead he grabbed her under the arms and pulled her up from the ground. Her injured leg touched the grass and her body once again exploded with pain. She screamed and her breathing got more and more forced. She wanted the numbness from the stars again. She looked up but her face darkened. The clouds had once again appeared, leaving the stars hidden. She wanted to go back to before. When she could feel the emptiness of the stars pulling her towards them. She didn’t want to feel the pain rushing through her veins like knives.
Dustin wrapped an arm around her torso and threw her arm around his neck.
“Stay with me, okay?” He held her tight and started to run. She didn’t want to keep going. The pain was overwhelming her, ripping her body into pieces.
“NO!” She yelled into the cold air. Her body was shaking from both pain and coldness. Dustin stopped before even thinking about what she actually had said. He felt her body shudder with each breath she took and he felt a warm liquid coming from her on him. He couldn’t dare to look down.
“What?” He didn’t sound angry or annoyed, just scared. His voice were shaking almost as badly as her was. He couldn’t leave her alone. She looked up at him, her eyes watery with tears and a black abyss seemed to pull her further and further down into the void. He knew what she meant, he knew what she wanted him to do.
“No,” he choked on his own words. “I’m not leaving you. Not again, not after last time!”
“We both will die here if you try to save me….” She felt a teardrop slide down her bloodied cheek. “Do you really want Cyn to grow up without both of her parents?” She felt a lump in her throat when she thought back to her daughter. The five year old girl needed her parents and they would only be selfish if they left her alone. “Dustin..please,” she looked up at the man again. Her eyes shimmered with unspilled tears. “You have to leave me…” her voice cracked at the end of the sentence, the wetness in her eyes finally spilling over.
“NO!” Dustin hadn’t intended to scream but the sudden terror that passed through his body made him not being able to think straight. “I’m not leaving you, okay?” He lowered his voice.” I love you and I just...I can’t leave my wife to die,” he tried to blink away his own tears but there was no use. They spilled over and soon both of their cheeks were wet. “I just...we have to keep going,” Once again he hauled her towards his body and started walking forward. The vessel couldn’t have been more than a hundred metres away but in their condition it could’ve been a mile.
Suddenly a static sound came from Dustin's pocket. He had forgotten about the walkie talkie. A voice came from it, a woman's voice. She sounded desperate and on the edge of tears.
“Dustin...we can’t keep the gate open any longer, you have two minutes to board or else we won’t be able to make it through the stratosphere before it’s too late. You have to come here fast...We can’t wait for you,” The static stopped and an emptiness filled the two lovers chests. There was no way that they were going to make it. Dustin's body was frozen in place. His shallow breaths made a ghost in front of his face every time he exhaled.
“Dustin…” The woman in his arms wasn’t shaking anymore. “Leave me here...then run to the machine and don’t...look...back,” her voice was steady but her breathing got more and more forced and irregular. She was hurt, she was in pain. It felt like her leg was on fire and she just wanted everything to disappear. She had accepted her fate. She just wanted to see the stars again. Dustin stared helplessly down at her. He had tried to make her whole, he had tried to save her. But he couldn’t stop the bleeding but he couldn’t let her go. There was almost nothing left of her. She was already dead in a way and he couldn’t bring a dead person back to life.
“I’m not leaving you…” he whispered. “You’re all I know and if you die...I die,” another teardrop made its way down his cheek. The girl looked deep into his eyes and her body had started to shudder again. She felt her knees buckled for what felt like the hundred time and she fell down on top of the ground. But this time Dustin was there for her, he grabbed her torso and slowly sunk both her and him down on the dead grass. She was lying in his lap, her body almost spasming with pain. She grabbed his black shirt and intertwined her fingers with the soft material. “You shouldn’t have come for me,”
Dustin embraced her body and held it close to his own chest. “Maybe not..” he mumbled. “But I couldn’t leave you here. I couldn’t let you die alone,” He stroke a few string sof hair away from her face. She smiled slightly, it wasn’t a happy one, it just looked broken. “There is no place for you inside the solitude,” He whispered.
“Dustin…” The radio turned on again, it was the same woman on the line. “Please brother, they’re going to close the gate!” Her voice quivered even more than before. Dustin reached in his pocket and hauled the small radio up to his mouth.
“Clara…” he said while pressing the button down. “We’re not going to make it,”
“No, you have to come!” The girl - Clara - sounded desperate. “I can’t just be in here with you right outside!”
“Clara you’re going to be okay...and so are we,” Dustin said, he held the radio so tightly that his knuckles turned white. “ Take care of Cyn, will ya´? She needs her auntie,” he swallowed when he thought of his daughter. His beautiful daughter who would lose both of her parents.
“Dustin…”Clara was clearly crying on the other end of the radio. The couple could hear her sobbing. “ I love you brother,” she cried. Dustin swallowed hard and clenched his jaw to not lose control over his own voice. He had to be strong now. At that exact moment that he opened his mouth to speak, the gate closed. The disturbing sound of metal against metal filled the air and the wind from where the vessel was lifting off the ground surrounded them in a matter of seconds. Dustin leaned himself over his wife's body to protect her. The radio ripped from his hand and flew away. The machine lifted higher and higher above the ground and all Dustin could do was to see the space vessel that contained the rest of his family and friends, leaving them behind. When the wind finally died down all that was left from the vessel was a small dot. The woman in his lap looked up, her eyes were darker then before, almost black.
“They’re gonna be okay,” She whispered and looked up at the sky. “They’re gonna be okay and that’s all that matters right now.” Dustin looked down at her. Her dark eyes were filled with such a broken gaze that it broke his heart. “They’re all gonna be okay,” Her eyes wasn’t filled with tears or sorrow. They just looked numb, filled with an empty void. It felt like staring into an abyss of endless darkness.
“I’m...I’m sorry,” Dustin mumbled and bit his lip.”This wasn’t in my plan,” He was scared. More scared than he’d ever been in his life. He didn’t want to die but if he did he would die with the love of his life. He swallowed hard, trying to regain control of his breathing. He could see the dark clouds appearing in the horizon, soon the end would come.
“Dustin…” The woman in his arms whispered. “Don’t be sorry. It’s not your fault,” Her voice was low but in the quiet night it was the only sound that could be heard. “Don’t be scared,” she continued. “Look at the sky,” She was staring up once again at the now cloudfree sky above them. The stars where back, shining brighter than ever. “Focus on the stars. Can’t you feel them pulling you?” Dustin swallowed again and turned his head around, staring at the black clouds that would lead them to the end. “Dustin…” She whispered again. “Stare at the sky, you won’t feel scared,” Her voice was low, filled with both every emotion in the world but still empty. Something was missing. Dustin obeyed and turned his head up, looking up at the shining lights.
“Escape into them,” She continued. “Feel the nothingness surround you until it’s all over,” Her voice wasn’t shaking, it was as steady as ever. The stars comforted her. She could feel her body starting to escape, she was filling up with the emptiness. Some people would probably be scared to feel it but she wasn’t. She and Dustin would fall into the stars until they didn’t exist anymore. Everything they’ve done would be gone in a matter of seconds. They would only still be alive in someone's memory. She wondered if Cyn would remember them when she grew up. Or would they only be a small fragment of her memory that she would forget. She felt herself and Dustin touch the grass, they were laying beside each others, hands intertwined and both staring up at the dark night.
The smoke was coming closer. The dark clouds numbed her whole body. But she didn’t care, she focused on the sky. Her mind was starting to go numb, the only thing that she could feel was the stars pulling her closer and closer into the abyss. She wasn’t scared. She wasn’t alone. Dustin was with her, or maybe not? His hands were laying limp in her own, she couldn’t hear his shallow breaths or feel the heat from his body. But she wasn’t worried. He was with the stars now, and soon she would meet him there.
She saw the stars. She saw their endless lights. She could feel her body breaking into pieces in them. This was her gravity now. She looked up one last time at the sky.
“Wake me when the new day comes,” her last words echoed in the night before the smoke had taken over everything. Everything except the stars.
Skriven av: Lisa
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Inga-Britt IB Gustafsson
Jag heter Inga-Britt IB Gustafsson, författare och konstnär. Har gett ut flera böcker bl.a. en roman om våld i nära relation, en bok med 19 mini-rysare, diktböcker, nyligen en bok med positiva texter…Silverblomma