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View Full Version : S.Paralysis Chapter 2; 2718 words (language)



Tbird0000
August 20th, 2015, 01:51 PM
Replies are always welcome! I'd like to know what is liked/disliked. I am trying to create a narrative that gives the feeling of the story unfolding as you read it. the reason for so many semi colons is because when we think and talk to ourselves internally, we don't really say things in fully correct sentences. most of what's being said is internal, hence the broken sentences. Lemme know what you think! I'm excited for this idea. it's my first mystery thriller. so if you read, please comment. Thank you!!


2.

The feeling; its back. The pressure, the voices, the stiffness. Can’t move; barely breathing. Wiggle my fingers; do something to come out of it; Ineffective. Relax; go through the motions like all those times before. Another wave of pressure coming. If I could feel anything, I’m sure it would be the gritting of teeth and tightening of eyelids.

The words; muffled; inaudible. But they are there, just outside my capacity to comprehend. I think I am moving my fingers; I think I’m calling to Susie to shake me awake. But I know from an onlooker’s perspective; I’m perfectly still. I can barely make out the words. I’m beginning to hear it more clearly. They flow through my mind; slurring; faint; and now, clear.

FREE. ME.

Before my eyes, the bedroom materializes. The blackness recedes. I’m staring at the ceiling from my bed. My torso; rigid. Only seconds in my mind; maybe hours to my body. It’s hard to tell when it happens. The drapes are still closed; the lights from passing cars on the road streak across the ceiling. Susie; she is there, on my right, facing me. Maybe she is leering; hard to tell, my eyes haven’t adjusted yet. A creaking of wood.

I roll my neck left, to the bedroom door. There, in the hallway; Max; peering at me with his eyes gleaming in the darkness. My skin rises; shortness of breath; engulfing dread. His face; blank; ominous. He walks into his room and stands behind his door. He closes it slowly and stares at me until it delicately and without a sound, seals shut. Shit; can’t sleep; wide awake; disturbed.

I lay there until morning, watching the hallway intently. I notice the birds chirping at first; the rays of the sun bleeding through the curtains. Susie’s alarm clock sounds loudly. She rolls from bed; presses the buzzer and is on her feet within seconds. Her sudden energy is… peculiar. Was she awake the whole time? She uses the toilet and is back in the room quickly. She sees me then.

“Good morning! Did you sleep well? I feel so rested, you have no idea.”

“Yeah… me too. I slept better than I thought I would.”

“Tell me about your dream.”

“Dream?”

“Yeah, you were talking in your sleep.”

The words; I remember.

“Hmph. I guess I don’t recall. You know how it is.”

“Yeah, I guess so… Hey, I’ll whip something up for breakfast. We have to be at the doctor’s office in an hour. Up and at’em.”

She leans on the bed, hovering over me, and kisses my forehead, then gazes deep into my eyes.

“I’m so happy you decided to comeback.”

She used the word ‘decided’; giving the impression that I made the conscious decision to leave; perplexing. Now, the only question; why?

She skips lightly to Max’s room in her red bikini cut underwear and sends an adoring look over her shoulder to me. Stunning; she really is the true definition of beauty. Long blonde hair; piercing green eyes; dimples on her lower back; and tall, oh her legs are so very long. Get it together; nothing more than tools at her disposal.

I rise from bed, concealing my virility as Max bolts from his room and down the stairs.

“Guess he’s in a good mood today.” She’s says with a smile and casual shrug of her shoulders.

She walks heavy footed down the stairs; alone again. I walk to the closet and slide the door open. Left side; dresses and fashionable woman clothing. Right side; long sleeve collared shirts in various colors and ties to match. At the bottom of the closet are tens of pairs of heels and pumps; only one pair of men’s shoes. Casual; chic; sleek black dress shoes to undoubtedly go with the numerous suits. I dress with what is available and stroll into the kitchen.

“Sorry, we don’t have eggs. I hope that’s ok, I haven’t had a chance for grocery shopping yet.” She winces inapprehension.

“I’ll have what he’s having then.”

“What, cocoa puffs? You’re not usually a cereal person.”

“I dunno, maybe something has come over me. Maybe I’m an alien nestled within the skin of your dearly departed husband. Or an evil twin whose only sole purpose is to eat all the cocoa puffs in the world!” A laugh from the boy, Max; a smile from Susie. Trying to fit in; hope it’s working.

“Well, watch Max while I get ready. Leaving in ten, got it?”

She rushes up the stairs; alone, with the boy. I sit across from him and watch silently as he chews and crunches the cereal in his mouth. He chews with his mouth open; annoying.

“Hey buddy. You sleep well? No monsters in the closet?”

Hardly an upward glance from him.

“Do you remember when you were standing in the hallway last night?”

“No.” His fortitude to avoid eye contact is aggravating.

“No? You were standing in the hallway, looking at me for a long time. You sure you don’t remember that?”

“I said no daddy!”

Daddy; the first time he’s called me that since I’ve been here. If he wasn’t such a bothersome prick, I might actually grow fond of him. He stands from his seat and walks to the sink; placing his bowl inside, then grabs the keys to the car from the counter and walks to the front door.

“Mommy! Hurry up, Daddy is going to be late!”

He sends me a paltry look, opens the front door and runs to the car. Susie comes from the stairs a moment later.

“Ready?” she asks.

Green tank top; short white shorts; matching sandals. Her standing there, gazing at me; mentally voluptuous. A marvel among women; such tan skin. Stop it; contain yourself.

“Uh, ye, yeah. I’m ready when you are.”

“Well giddy up, cowboy.” Remarkable smile.

She drives; Max is in the backseat thoughtlessly mashing at some handheld game. The drive is mostly silent; uncomfortable. We arrive at an intersection and stop at a red light. Taking notice of the black sedan two cars back; they have been following us for blocks. It’s impossible to avert my eyes from the mirror.

Then, a homeless man suddenly slams himself on the hood of the car. He is spraying the windshield with water or cleaner; furiously wiping it away with a dirty rag. He’s filthy from head to toe; his clothes barely hanging on at the seams.

“Come on man, anything helps. One dollar, two dollars, I’ll take anything. Help a fellow citizen out. I got mouths to feed, ya hear me?”

He comes around to my window and leans down to look inside the car. His stare lingers over my face. And he places his index finger against the glass, pointing at me.

“Hey man, I know you. I know you!”

The car accelerates with a slight squeal of the tires. In the mirror, the homeless man jumps and screams and points as we drive down the street. I look to Susie.

“Someone really has to do something with the homeless people around here. You know Rachel said that…”

Her voice trails off; I ignore her purposely. ‘I know you’ repeating in my mind like a record on a repeat. I look at the mirror again. No homeless man; no black sedan. I conceal my rising heart rate and elevated breathing. Clandestinely rub the sweat from my forehead. Too much; this is beginning to be too much.

We arrive at the hospital parking lot before my ears trickle in the words Susie’s been spouting since the intersection.

“… and that’s when she called the cops! Honey, you there? Hello?”

I snap out of it.

“Oh… sounds like she’s had a tough time, huh?… Sorry, just a little nervous about what the doc might find.”

“Don’t worry, you’ll be fine. It’s not the first time you’ve seen him.”

“No?”

“Nope. We started using him a few months ago. Max seems to like him.”

Coincidence? Unlikely. I have a ‘new’ doctor and then suddenly without explanation, I lose my memory and wake up stranded on the side of a road somewhere. It’s highly implausible. Play it cool; find out what I can.

The examination room was on the third floor. An older gentleman walks to us, hand extended.

“Good morning Mr. and Mrs. Thomison. Been awhile huh?”

We shake hands; his fingers are cold. His voice; high pitched and nasally.

“Max, my boy. How’s it been? You ever beat that game you were talking about?”

Max smiles and positions himself closer to Susie, shyly. Personable; friendly; you can’t fool me.

“So Susie tells me you’ve been in quite the predicament. Can’t seem to remember much of anything.”

“Yeah, it’s slowly coming back tome. But there are gaps. I thought it considerate of her to schedule this appointment with you.” Pretending a caring smile towards her.

“Ok, seems we’re all on the same page. So you know about the MRI then?”

“Yes.”

“Well good. I guess we should get started then. My associate Lindsay will show you to the room where you’ll change into your hospital gown.”

“Thank you.”

A woman standing in the back; I didn’t notice her before. She extends her arm out and to the right.

“Right this way Mr. Thomison. Pleasure seeing you again.”

We leave the room and I’m led to a smaller room. A gown is dangling from a hook.

“Don’t worry about your belongings, they will remain safely inside.” She smiles big; so many teeth.

****

Strapped to the MRI stretcher; can barely move my arms or legs. My head is held in place firmly with a strap across my forehead and jaw. The doctor is at the foot of the gurney ready to push me into the machine.

“Now remember. Just relax, try to be as still as possible. This will all be done soon. Typically, the process can take up to an hour but at least a minimum of ten minutes is required. This is a completely painless procedure. There’s a microphone attached. So you can hear us and we can hear you.”

I don’t like this; feeling helpless.

“Guess it’s a good thing I went pee already, huh?” Faking a laugh.

“See you soon.” He says with a smile.

He slides me slowly into the machine; feeling cramped already. It’s a long hollow tube just big enough for me to fit. He then walks into a separate room with the controls and computer monitors and shuts the door behind him. I can see Susie. She’s standing there with Max in her arms in front of her. And then I hear her voiceover the microphone.

“Honey, Max and I are going to take a look around, maybe grab something to drink. We’ll be back soon. Love you.”

“Ok, I’ll… be here I guess.”

I look down as hard as I can to just barely see Susie leave the room. And then; she’s gone. The machine whirs to life. There’s a loud spinning of mechanical parts moving just on the other side of the plastic shell, followed my random loud clicks. I imagine this is the MRI monitoring my brain for abnormalities. Just relax, do as the doctor says; remain still. I look down again; I can see the doctor staring at the screens most likely filled with images of my mind on display.

“You’re doing good Mr. Thomison. Just hang in there.” He says over the mic.

“Ok.”

I hear a door open; then a moment later; it’s closed. Footsteps on the linoleum; getting closer. Staring down; the doc examining the screen attentively; unaware. The footsteps are louder, just outside the machine; rhythmic; heavy; they stop. Damn I wish I could move my head; defenseless.

“Doc?!”

Not even a stir from him. Lost in the scans.

“Doc?!” I yell again.

Nothing; breathing heavy.

“It’s no use, Mr. Thomison.”

I look down at the end of the cylinder towards my feet; fingers slowly wraparound the opening and then; I see a face appear. He comes from around thecorner on the left side of the tube. It’s him; the ‘seated man’; the man in black. He’s not without his accomplice, who shows face from the right. They stare at me with their impassive expressions; black glasses covering their eyes.

“Help! Someone… Someone help me!”

I scream loudly; they laugh.

“I’ve already told you… It’s a fruitless effort.”

Mind racing; heart bursting through my chest; struggling to move.

“We never had a chance to finish our conversation from before. I’m sure you remember the one I’m referring to.”

“Fuck off!”

“Oh, that’s not very appropriate Mr. Thomison. Have some couth.”

The doctor comes over the speaker.

“Mr. Thomison, I have an important call I have to take, I’ll be back shortly.”

“DOC!?”

I watch as he leaves the room without even glancing in my direction. The ‘seated man’ continues.

“Level Three. What do you know of Level Three Mr. Thomison? If you lie… I will know.”

“I don’t know what you’re talking about!”

I give up on struggling. It’s as he said; fruitless. I stare him in the face. His pale crinkled and course face; eyes hidden behind the glasses.

“Mr.Thomison, I’d really prefer my partner here not get involved. I’m going to ask you just one more time. Level Three?”

Think dammit, think. I can’t say what I don’t know; even if I did, it would take more than questioning to get it from me.

“We don’t have all day Mr.Thomison. Quite the opposite, our time is rather… limited. As is my patience, with you.”

I give him nothing.

“You leave me no choice then.”

He turned gaze to his partner who silently acknowledges some mental decree. Then, he turns to me. Maybe he smirked; maybe he didn’t; maybe he was going to enjoy this. He put his arm in the machine and grabbed my leg. He fingers crawled over the gown. They were to my knees now; slowly sliding their way up to my waist; his arm preternaturally extending to exorbitant length. I could feel his touch on my chest further gliding to my neck. His finger now on the rim of my right ear. There was a crackle; akin to the bending of bone; loudly now; a transformation taking place.

I wrestle against his arm; the straps are tightened unreasonably stiff; Impossible to fight it. There’s a sharp stab in my ear; blood dripping down the back of my head; immense pressure; unimaginable pain like the striking at a bare nerve. My eyes shut; my mouth gaping; I want to scream but nothing comes out… Blackness.

****

I open my eyes. The doctor is hovering above me to the left; Susie crying on my right. Max; Max is in a ball in the corner of the room terrified to look up. They are frantic; their voices garbled; impossible to hear; utter silence. The doctor is mouthing the words ‘Can you hear me’.

“No”

Susie silently says ‘Are you ok’. But her words fall on deaf ears. The grogginess passes. My eyes focus and the haze is gone; fully cognizant. Sound; the sounds rush into my ears. I scream without tone.

“What happened? Mr.Thomison, what happened?!”

“Get me off this slab! Get me off this fucking slab!!”

The doctor quickly removes the straps; free to move; free to run from the room and down the hall. Susie, Max, and the doctor follow close behind. I have to get out of here. My ear; what did they do? A feeling of imbalance; I slam into the wall and grab at my ear. Blood upon my hand.

“Jace, where are you going?” Susie yelling from behind me.

“Mr.Thomison, please stop! Tell me what happened. Your scans, there’s something on the scanners!”

I ignore them. I’m outside; blinding light. I rush into the road in an attempt to get away; a car almost rams me. Ahead, a public bus; if I can just make it there in time. Susie and the doctor are still on the other side of the street calling out to me. I limply force myself onto the bus as the doors close. It drives away; Susie and the doctor fading in the distance.

WriterJohnB
August 20th, 2015, 02:08 PM
I enjoyed the first chapter, but this block of text is so hard to read that I couldn't stay in the story and gave up halfway through. The formatting doesn't add anything to the story, either, although I guess you're trying to convey anxiety and confusion. A small nit, would the darkness secede, or should it be recede?

Tbird0000
August 20th, 2015, 02:15 PM
something wrong in the way I pasted it. Re edited for the better.

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No, come back! hahaha. its fixed now.

DATo
August 21st, 2015, 09:34 AM
Still reading. Still enjoying. Please continue.

Per your request for feedback: The story is "unfolding" well and has elements which keep this reader interested in learning what is going to happen next. I think you are succeeding with your strategy to keep the reader involved.

EDIT: ooops, I "liked" the wrong post, but it was still your comment so you will still get the credit for it *LOL*

Tbird0000
August 21st, 2015, 09:54 AM
Thank you for the feedback. Glad to know that I'm reaching someone :)

I really have been thinking about this story a lot. After I got off work (12 hour shift from 7pm-7am), I was showering while my wife and daughter were still sleeping. I was imagining the sense of fear one would get from the men in black that can seemingly come and go without being noticed. And now that its out there that they are more than what meets the eye, its even more terrifying. Anyways, I was thinking of how to add more suspense and fear into the story when my wife opened the shower curtains and scared the S**T out of me. So with that being said, If I can just convey that level of anxiety on paper, this story will be fantastic!

bdcharles
August 21st, 2015, 10:31 AM
Hi,

The premise - otherwise normalish person troubled by strange feelings - is interesting but the first thing I noticed was "The feeling; its back." That should be "it's back" and while it's very minor, it might put readers off if they then expect further errors. Another thing is sentence structure. The first several paragraphs are chock full of short, punchy, urgent sentences conveying a sort of semi-conscious desperation, which is fine in small doses but might benefit from being mixed up a little otherwise it becomes a bit like being stuck in traffic; stop-start, stop-start. Perhaps try and convey the paralysis in word choices and fragmentary, SoC style. I did also think there are too many semi-colons. I see this is intended but I personally think there are better ways.

I have to be honest; I didn't complete this (stopping where max calls him daddy) due to the sentence style as well as it being also a little too tell heavy plus also I did not find myself sympathising with the characters, but then again this is ch 2 so maybe I'd be right in there at ch 1.

Hope this is useful :)

Tbird0000
August 21st, 2015, 11:43 AM
@bdcharles If just starting with Chapter 2 first, then yes, please read chapter 1. I don't want to bring a sense of closeness with the supporting characters. starting from chapter 1 to the end of the second, you will see why. The main character has to remain detached. He doesn't quite know who to trust at this point. But slowly (in chapter 2), he finds himself letting his guard down with Susie, his wife. This will be explored more in the later chapters.

Yeah, I think I will write the paragraphs better (I still want to stick with the internal way of talking) but maybe not so much in a "stop-start" manner. Thank you for the feedback. This style of writing/reading might not be for everyone but when considering the target audience is the people of the world, I'm going to write the story the way I want it to be read. Know what I mean? One of those "you cant win them all" things. I'm rolling the dice on this style.

WriterJohnB
August 21st, 2015, 01:38 PM
Thanks for re-formatting. The story is going along well and I'm looking forward to seeing where it goes from here.

JohnB

Tbird0000
August 21st, 2015, 01:41 PM
@WriterJohnB Glad you came back for a second try. It means a lot to me :)