Welcome again to YAFF Muse: blog rounds. The ladies of YA Fiction Fanatics have come together for YAFF Muse. To have a little fun, explore different styles of writing and to give you some kick-butt shorts to read. Enjoy!
Photo by: phypet
The ground shook as a train zoomed by on the tracks. My hands grew slimy with sweat and I wiped them on my jeans.
Shit! Why did I tell them I’d do it?
“Hey, Bailey,” Carson Lewiston said, coming up beside me.
His smile made my stomach drop. Those trusting mocha colored eyes, shaggy blonde hair. A completely nice guy.
“Are you sure you want to come to Chicago with me?” I asked, my suede boot connecting with a stone.
“Yes.” He laughed, reaching for my hand. “You know how long I’ve waited to go out with you?”
I chewed my lip. They always wanted to date me. And they got hurt. Today, I didn’t want to have another bad thing on my conscience. Not Carson.
“Trust me, I’m not that great of a person,” I said.
From within the shadows, they watched and listened. Waiting for me to hand him over like I had the rest.
“You’re perfect.” Carson’s fingers entwined with mine. “And nice.”
I swallowed the lump in my throat and held tight to him. A homeless man came up to us, holding out a cup.
“Spare some change for the train?” he asked. Coins clinked together, the scent of alcohol clinging to the man like fabric softener sheets.
No one would miss him.
“How about I buy you a ticket.” I dug into my purse for some cash.
Carson caught my arm. “That might not be a good idea.”
“It’ll be fine. He can sit back by us.” I smiled, handing the attendant enough cash for both mine and the homeless man’s ticket. “Two please.”
Once Carson paid we headed down the platform. In one hand, I held tight to him, and with the other, I dragged the homeless man behind.
Carson picked a seat and I slid in next to him, gesturing for the other man to sit in front of us.
Moments later the doors shut and the train slowly crawled forward, picking up speed the further down the track we went.
The tunnel was getting close. I could feel it. The shadows, the dampness—everything cold, dark, and lurking.
Scooting closer to Carson, I touched his cheek, then his lips. “Whatever you do, keep your eyes closed when we go in the tunnel.”
His gaze met mine. “Why?”
“I want to keep you safe.”
I pulled his head toward me, lips parted. My lips captured his, pleading he’d listen. Then he was kissing me back, his hands tangling in my long hair. I slipped my arms around his neck, drawing him closer.
Then came the screams from the seat in front of us. The homeless man hadn’t shut his eyes. I knew he wouldn’t.
Carson shifted, but I held him tight, deepening our kiss. After a moment, the yells stopped and I pulled back, tears spilling from my eyes.
Daylight spilled in the windows, the tunnel nothing but a black dot behind us.
Carson stood and glanced into the seat in front of us. His face drained of color. I didn’t need to look to know what he saw. There would be blood. There always was. Claw marks, missing body, and a pile of shredded clothes.
“You knew this would happen?” he said, voice even.
“It was either him or you,” I whispered. “And I didn’t want them to have you.”
“Beings you don’t want to meet.” My gaze shifted to the windows. I wondered if they’d punish me? My parents didn’t understand my desire to be amongst humans.
“Is that why you invited me along?” His eyes were intense.
“They told me to,” I said. “Thing is, I don’t always listen.”
“So they make you do this? Drag people onto the train?” He touched my face, making me look at him.
I pulled away. “Yes. And I’m not proud of that.”
“Why did you save me?”
“Because I love you.”
“Will you be punished?”
My head drooped on his shoulder. “Yes.”
“Then let me help you bring people for them,” he said in a rush.
“You’d do that for me?”
“Yes. Anything you want.” His lips covered mine.
“No.” I backed away. “You’re just like them. I have enough darkness in my life.” My eyes welled up. He was supposed to be different.
Another tunnel loomed ahead. I closed my eyes. And this time he didn’t. Screams of pain echoed in the blackness. But it was better to let him go. To let the shadows have him. Dark thoughts, meant dark deeds, and dark deeds led to bloodshed.
When I got to Chicago, I hurried from the train and headed for the nearest building with lights. Everything would be okay, as long as I stayed out of the shadows.