Awakening by Jason Darrell

'That sumptuous satin, cushioning my head, caressing my neck; it's divine. The slow tick…tock of a watch, portentous against the silence, tranquil in the darkness. Why does time amuse me so?

Hang about; darkness? Why is everything so black? Am I blind?

Memories struggle to form. They're there, glowing softly like lanterns in a pea-souper. But those persistent amorphous blobs drift like a flotilla of jellyfish across my mind, refusing to become descript.

I close my eyes, reopen them. No, it's pitch, so complete that not even shadows can form.

And what is that rumbling? Oh; it's me. My stomach's whining echoes like groans bouncing about the void between distant mountain peaks.

That attribution: specific, tangible, as if recalled from memory rather than metaphoric. How can I know of such things?

I lurch forward to sit upright. Whack! My head and marble collide; back down horizontal I go.

No pain invades, but the smack is a catalyst. A flickering kaleidoscope of fleeting violent memories starts playing, raining like a Tommy gun's bullets; images flash, then die: shadows whorl around a red-lit room; Victorian street lights struggle to penetrate cobbled alleyways; rats swarm the docks in their thousands; fangs gnash, closer, CLOSER, until…

…a sweeping cloak, its shady folds hiding infinite depths, obliterates every trace of light from my mind.

But my memories have rebooted. I am — I own — the night. It calls to me from beyond this ancient sarcophagus. My stomach, throat, fangs — every fibre of my undead being — answer.

The awakening (every night, the awakening) is the worst; I hate tight spaces.

My ice-cold hands lift away the equally frigid coffin lid, its weight as nothing to this iron-fortified corporeal shell.

Mountains, I hear you; death walks tonight! Don't you dare disappoint me.'


Selected - Weekly Write - Week 11

Published in Issue #27

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