• Flux Magazine

"Nyktos Xenos Autos" by Shelby Liddicoey

Drip….Drip…drip…the blood fell into the puddled pool on the graphite-colored cement floor. It flowed, filling in the stained cracks along its way to the drain in the middle of the room.

The girl, kneeling in the dark corner hugged herself and screamed into the void as more blood trailed down her face. The once lovely, white dress still clung to her frame as it continued to collect dark crimson stains.

She took a deep breath.. it didn't work. She only cried harder, her body shaking vigorously. She had no control of her situation and that frightened her more than the dark stains on the floor and the chains on the walls.

She wiped the blood from her face and her wailing started to grow softer. She needed to be smarter than the situation and to do that she couldn't be screaming. Noe one was going to help her. She had to help herself. She stood up cautiously and forced herself unto the wall. She caressed every inch of every wall, feeling, searching, for anything...anything to help her survive.

Her thumb grazed a nick in the wall that felt out of place against the flawlessness of the surface she was inspecting. Her hopefulness got the better of her, she shoved her thumb into the flawed spot.

The spot on the wall fave in and sunk in a little. Thwink! A sharp pain surged through her thumb forcing her to leap back towards the center of the room. Blood seeped out from the small hole and dripped onto the remaining white spots of her dress. She began thinking this was all for naught until the room shuttered in excitement and a narrow passageway slid open, flooding in even more darkness into her room.

She dove under the bed almost instinctually and curled into a ball in the back corner where she, again, began to cry. Each rapid breath caused the bed to shake, exaggerating the essence of her fear. She closed her eyes and saw all the monsters she could possibly imagine lurking inside the passage: yellowed fangs sunk into soft flesh, ripping, tearing, as the victim thrashed in pain. Sewn together creatures that should've stayed dead. Lifeless faces following, stalking, haunting her...

Her eyes flew open. She was still her. Still trapped. Still alone. Gathering up the courage she had left she pulled herself out from underneath the bed heaved herself into a standing position by the metallic bedframe. She stumbled to the passage, took a deep breath, and entered the darkness

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