So I've has this concept for a book in my mind for ages but like always, I haven't found a way of getting myself to actually write it down and get it on paper.
Usually, I have time and inspiration to write things out in the weekend, and if I don't write it down when the idea is fresh I tend to get bored by it and forget about it. So I wanted to try to write a piece every saturday without exceptions.
The book is called "Mark of Mephisto" and I won't spoil anything, but I will say it has turned out better than I expected so far and I really recommend you to give it a chance, even though it's a lot of text.
So without further due~
(any form of contstructive criticism would be greatly appreciated)
Chapter 1- A letter from a freind
There’s no address, sender or post stamps on the letter. Apparently someone took the time to deliver the letter in person, but not to write his name on it or make it at all clear what contained. I flip the envelope over to it’s back and find that this person didn’t care to apply the glue on the fold of the paper to close it off neatly either. Not that I mind, that just makes it easier for me to see what’s inside.
For a second I re-examine the outsides of the letter, making sure I didn’t actually miss anything. Then, after having taken a bite from the juicy orange resting in my left hand, I flip the letter open dexterous with my remaining hand and shake it up and down to let the contents slide out. After having tried for a few seconds I realize that the what’s in there, if there’s anything in there at all, is probably too small for me to slide out like this. I take another bite from my orange and lay it down tenderly, as if I were parting with my most valuable possession, and join forces with my right hand to get the job done. A small, rectangular card lies at the bottom and the shape and texture feel oddly familiar in my hand. When I finally have the card in front of my eyes I realize it is, in fact, a playing card. I can just make out the curvy ‘ 7 ‘ at the top right and bottom left of the card, followed by an awkwardly shaped, red heart symbol.
“That’s it…?” I mumble, not sure whether I should make it sound confused, disappointed, or relieved. I sigh and walk up to the light switch, reduce my eyes to splits and turn it on.
I strongly prefer having the lights turned off when I’m sitting here at night, normally. It allows me to break down the barrier between dream and reality just a little bit more, and indulge in some fantasies before I enter my sleep. A stack of dull bank statements and letters alike lies unattended to my right- normally I wouldn’t even think about reading any of them right now, but I figured this might be a message from a distant friend of mine (I don’t have any close ones) since it didn’t have a corporate logo on it. I guess I was wrong… or was I? “Now I’m really curious…”
I check the envelope once more- It’s really empty. I toss it aside, getting slightly aggravated now, and give the mysterious Seven of Heats my full attention. The symbols covering it’s front size are trivial, yet something about their shape seems to be just a little bit different than any other playing card I’ve seen. The ink that has been used for the hearts is a deep, dark, unequally distributed tint of red and I can’t help but to compare it with blood. Flipping it over, I find that the back has a strange, asymmetrical shape painted on it with the same bloody ink used for the hearts, that doesn’t seem to represent anything at all and doesn’t make any sense either- unless you’d consider perfect randomness to make sense.
I notice an uncomfortable sensation crawling up from my chest and decide to put the card and down and try to force myself to stop thinking about it. Stupid pranking kids, a mistake, someone trying out some sort of special card trick (although I think I would know about it myself, having been a part-time magician)- more than enough reasons someone would drop this card in my mail box, none of which are worth my time. I turn the lights back off as quickly as the need for them is gone.
As I desperately try to reach my dream world again, I hear the sound of little footsteps creeping down the stairs. It slowly gets louder and louder and then turns completely silent for a few moments. With a few soft cracks the door opens to a creek and a I feel a set of eyes emerging from behind it, staring at me obscured by the darkness and lurking from behind thick locks of fair hair. I stay quit and patiently wait for her to initiate the conversation for a while.
“Daddy, I can’t sleep…”
“Oh…” I reply softly and sympathetically, leaving it at that. I have an idea as to what is keeping her from sleeping, but I don’t want to draw attention to it if not absolutely necessary.
“My back hurts…” she mutters after another moment of complete silence. I know she’s waiting for me to say something relieving but at the same time I can feel my throat running dry and getting stuck as I look for the correct thing to say. I’m about to finally reply when she opens the door completely and takes a step forward “I’m scared. Can I sit here with you for a while, dad?”
“It’s cold and dark in here, you’d be much better in a soft, warm bed. I can join you, if you want”
“It doesn’t feel good when I’m laying down. I get strange nightmares and my back hurts more and more.”
“That doesn’t mean you should stay up all night and stand around in the cold. I’ll get you something to relief the pain and I’ll sit next to you to protect you against those dreams.”
She complies silently.
“I’ll clean up these dumb papers over here and bring you some pain killers and some hot chocolate. You go ahead and wait for me up there, ok?”
“Okay…” In the same, stealthy fashion she dissapears behind the door again and pulls it with her, but right before it comes a close she stops and looks at me one more time.
“Daddy, I’m not sick, are I?” The sound of her asking it sends a cold, painful shiver down my spine and I would have been close to vomiting if I hadn’t had just half an orange on my stomach.
“Of course not, you silly.” I say with the most comforting voice I can create without sounding fake or overly enthusiastic “You probably just stretched a bit too far during PE classes, it can happen without you noticing if you get too fanatic about it.”
She nods, letting me have the last word for whatever reason, and finally leaves the room.
“Let’s see… Hot chocolate milk, a few painkillers, a glass of water…” I start listing the things I need to do before I go upstairs one by one so I don’t forget anything. My eye falls on the lonesome card in front of me and I decide get it out of sight before it catches Astrea’s attention.
She’s such a clever girl for her age, it kind of reminds me of myself when I was a little boy. I was way too advanced for my age group mentally. Hopefully she doesn’t turn out like me, I had a horrible childhood.
Hopefully she won’t find out that I’m lying to her… about the disease… She could have discovered it already and I wouldn’t know about it. Maybe she’s just trying to make me admit it to her myself, but I can’t risk shocking her like that.
Think about it… How would I react if I was nine and my parents told my I only had a few m-
My thoughts are interupted by a wrinkling noise inside of the envelope as I attempt to stick the card back in there. There must be another piece of paper in there… I feel it.
How is that possible…? I checked for it 10 minutes ago and it was clearly empty!
I jerk the think piece of paper out firmly, unfold it and smash it down on the table in front of me like a predator throwing down its prey.
… as I read the note my heart rate escalates in crescendo, my jaw lifelessly drops open and my eyes stare at it horrified.
“SHE HAS 94 DAYS LEFT
WE HAVE THE CURE
SIGN THE CARD IN BLOOD AND KEEP IT WITH YOU AT ALL TIMES AND I WILL CONTACT YOU, 7 OF HEARTS
(thanks for reading, I hope you enjoyed the first bit so far. I will be very serious about having a chapter up every week if some people like this)