The Alternate World
Age Rating: 13 +
“Today, the forecast is rainy and fairly cold. For students out there, I advise you wear a raincoat with wind breaker capabilities. The temperature should reach a low of positive four,”
I sighed and looked at the dreary, cold, place outside. A withered look was received from the note on the fridge.
My parents are the most random people of all; if they decide to go on a vacation for their honeymoon they just do it out of blue. It’s depressing, they’ve done it twice already for this month. Both times they stayed for four days. I bet this one will not be any different. They were saying something yesterday…Something along the lines that they trust me, something or another.
They were laughing and giggling like kids. Anyway, the note says that they’ll be back like I said, four days from today. That’s them, they can’t be any more descriptive. They even left me their credit card. It’s unnerving to think, that I… a selfish teenager wouldn’t even think that I would abuse this kind of maximum responsibility. How unnatural, if I was another kind of daughter, I’d probably spend it on clothes and skip school for four days. But unfortunately I can’t do something like that, I don’t know…It might be my source of integrity or something.
Saying stupid things in my head like, “I can’t do that, it’s so childish,”
Then, another voice would come and say, “It’s their fault for leaving you alone,” After, I would battle with my thoughts of what's right and wrong...only to conclude with a weak solution...I would just indulge myself a little bit and eat somewhere expensive.
I looked at the dreary scene outside, much less livelier than my own brain activity. There were a couple of old Honda cars and Chevy here and there parked behind their houses. A couple of weeds started to spring, finally free from the harsh winter. I sighed and lifted my bag and placed the strap across my shoulder. I took a lollipop from the top of the fridge, a small orange round candy nestled on my palms. Well, at least there’s something positive about this morning.
Hopping off the small stool, I opened the blue back door and locked it. A gust of wind blew harshly and I shivered heavily. Well, damn this raincoat, it didn’t even make me warm. I slugged my way through the street, the little hand of my orange lollipop bobbing up and down as I looked up at the sky. Well, first off it’s completely dreary...So dreary the clouds above me were almost black, the color of charcoal gray. I kicked a fat rock and started to head for the bus stop a few blocks away.
A couple of minutes later I stopped walking and looked around the deserted area, the houses silent as if nobody lived in them for years. Funny, there should be students walking around here by now. The rain pounded on my raincoat, I wasn't able to find my umbrella. Those damn parents of mine must’ve taken it with them to the airport. I shivered and continued my long trek to the bus stop. Another few minutes had past by before doubt started as to why I was alone in the streets, there should be several of my classmates coming out of these houses.
'This place looks deserted' I sneered, it doesn't LOOK deserted...it IS deserted. Am I missing something here? I mean, am I…uh…weird? Is this a day off from school? No, I don’t think they said anything about any kind of professional day or holidays. Today certainly is a normal day. I ignored this nagging feeling inside of me and continued my walk. I waited for a couple of minutes, the bus doesn’t seem like as if it’s going to come. I waited for another fifteen minutes. Geeze, are they all sick or something? I looked around the bus stop, the row of houses in across the road seems eerie. I shuffled a little bit and looked around again.
Ooookay. I'll just walk to school. But before I was able to take another step the bus was beside me. I let go a yelp, as the bus door opened. This is certainly weird, I mean all vehicles produce some kind of sound, at least a small squeak? a slight shuffle can be heard from this dreary atmosphere you could even hear an ant walk by. Oh right, there’s nothing here. I looked up at the driver.
I tried not to stare.
He wore a black hat, with a thick scarf around his face, I could only see his dark eyes. He was wearing a thick cloak around him, his hands were covered with leather gloves.
“Bus fare is free,” He said when I was about to pay him a youth ticket.
“Uh, thanks.” I smiled and I could tell he smiled back from behind his scarf. I heard a creak from somewhere in his face. “Uhhm, did you just…uh, break something from uh….your face?”
“No, I’m fine,” His voice was really rough, but flat. I nodded and stiffly walked to the back of the bus. No one was on it other than me and the driver. I was so far back at the bus that I was surprised when the driver tried to make conversation with me.
“School is fun, isn’t it.” He didn’t make it sound like a question, behind that scarf I could tell he was smiling.
“Uh, you could say that.”
“You like sports.” Again, like an assumption.
“Uh, yeah.” I’m pretty good at everything I guess...okay, so what if I'm vain?
“You have a boyfriend.” Uhm, I didn’t really want to answer that.
“Almost?” I said. Not really, but I have someone on mind.
“You like him.” Was that a question?
“Here’s your stop.” He said again with his flat voice.
“Uhmm, thanks.” I was about to leave the weird bus driver but he said something that made me hesitate, but also reluctant to leave.
“Oh, and by the way, young lady. Be careful. Worms are coming this way,”
Before I know it I was out of the bus, standing dumbly on the stop light. No cars. Nobody. I'm...freaking out. The school is on the other side of the road. I pressed the button that signals the cars that a pedestrian is about to cross. Now that I remembered, I didn’t need to do that. Well, I ignored my sarcastic remark and started to walk towards my school. The school is small, which has around two hundred students all in which are either on drugs and failing classes or just there barely passing. Only the quarter of the population is knowledgeable. The other quarter isn’t even noticeable. Oh right, the jocks and cheerleader types. Well, to tell myself the truth, we don’t even have cheerleaders. Just slightly popular girls. Huh, wow, I never thought of that before.
I opened the nearest door, it was locked. It’s alright, it happens a lot. How about...the other one? I walked and shuffled. Nope. Okay, one more door to go before I can use the one on the parking lot, which is always open. No, not opening. I took a deep breath and prayed. The last door is open, I was relieved because apparently, I am still not happy about the driver talking about worms and questions penetrating about my private life. I opened the door with relief and stepped in. Okay, now I know that school’s close. The hallway toward the grade sevens is empty. I walked forward and turned right, where the office is. I tried to open the door, but it’s closed.
I was trying very hard not to freak out.
I walked towards the eight grade hallway, and it’s as deserted as the hallway from before. I took a gulp of my own saliva and started backing up. The gym is opposite of the eighth grade hallway, its big doors are closed. Usually, there would be guys playing basketball and teachers would be buzzing around here and talking. I ignored the grade eight hallway and walked towards the library. It was closed, the small glass window that showed the inside of the library was incredibly dirty. It never got that dirty before, it's like as if I'm in the same place but...completely different. I saw a fuzzy figure behind the dirty glass and I ran for the door knob.
"Hey! HEY!" I shook the knob like it was my own lifeline. The lock's broken. "HEY! Can you hear me in there? Where is everyone?! HEY!"
The figure was slowly slumping out of my view as I pounded desperately to get his...her attention.
"Why can't you hear me?" I stopped myself from panicking just in time, my breathing was shallow and fast. My face stung from the tears and I wiped them away and steeled myself once more.
Something’s really, really wrong.
I was going to hyperventilate but I walked down the small set of stairs towards the ninth grade hallway. Where I’m supposed to be. I walked slowly, and so far nobody is here. I arrived at the point where two small hallways are separated. One left, one on the right. On the right wall of the hallway there’s two offices, and four more class room, I could see the short hallway all the way to the end. One of the lights where out, and it seems really creepy. The left hallway has around four to five classrooms, where I take my English, math and science classes.
No one is in sight. I started towards my 'home room', where my social class would usually take place. I tried opening the door but it’s locked.
“HEY!” A loud voice made me scream, I jumped and a pair of warm hands grasped my shoulders.
“Let me go!” My eyes shut tight, I thrust my knee up.
“Ow! Holy crap!” I opened them and one of the students from this school was grasping his vital part, which I unintentionally hit.
“Oh crap, I’m so sorry,” His name is Cain. He is the same age as me. He’s fairly tall, around six feet. His hair is brown, his eyes are the same color, but there’s a childish smile that lurks from his handsome face.
“So sorry! I was so freaked out… and, where’s everybody? I mean, don’t we have school today?”
He’s still there on the floor, moaning from the pain, “God, you hit hard.”
“Uhmm, sorry.” His back against the wall, he looked up.
His eyes…man, they’re so…anyway, he said, “I looked up my agenda and it doesn’t say anything.”
In the beginning of each year we are given an agenda, where we’re supposed to put out homework schedules in each day for daily use. The teachers used to check to see if we put anything down on our paper, but since we passed onto grade nine, they didn’t do it anymore. I tried to be diligent but I lost interest after a while. I’m just not the organizing type of person. In the agenda there were different types of information in it, like time tables, events, and stuff like mathematical calculations and scientific charts. The cover for each grade on the agenda is always different each year. For this year, our cover changes its picture if you tilt it a certain way.
“Yeah, me too. I checked so many times, and it doesn’t say anything. No holidays or professional days either,” I sighed, my back was against the opposite wall. We faced each other, calmly assessing the situation.
“On your way here, have you seen anyone or anybody at all?” He asked.
“No, you?” Forgetting my earlier encounter(S).
“Nope, not a soul. Other than you that is,”
“Yeah, in this situation, I don’t think we count. Where is everybody?”
“My parents are supposed to be at work,” He said calmly, his arms hanging on his side, his head raised up so he can see me.
“Pfft, mine’s supposed to be on a four day vacation,” I sneered.
“Oh really? I heard in the cafeteria the other day that your parents where in a vacation not too long ago,”
“Yeah, well they’re at it again, with their annoying romance whatsoever,”
“Aren’t you lonely?” He asked.
I was taken by surprised by that question. Because when it comes to my parent’s constant traveling I don’t think of loneliness, I think of it as an annoyance, a hindrance to me.
“Hmmm,” I gave a thoughtful expression, “Truthfully, I never thought about it that way, but now that you asked. I’m sure I am. Sort of,”
“How can you stand it?” He asked.
“I don’t know. Really, I just make myself busy enough that I won't think about it,” The answer startled me as much as it did with the initial question.
“I think I can sympathize,” I raised a brow. He smiled shyly, “Not too long ago, around a year or so…I lost someone important, since then my parents didn’t seem to be themselves,”
I didn’t know what to say. He was looking down at the floor, his face didn’t portray anything. “That sucks.”
“Yeah,” he smiled. I nodded.
“Anyway, we might as well go home, you know,” I pointed out. “It’s stupid to stay here. This place is freaking me out.”
“Same here,” He admitted quite slowly.
“Hmm, oh hey don’t you live near my house?” I pointed out.
“Yeah, I’ve seen you a couple of times taking the bus with me,”
“Err…about the bus. I really don’t feel like it’s a good idea,”
It was his turn to look surprised, “You too?”
“Huh? What? You met the weird psycho that asks about weird things, and he doesn’t even sound like he’s asking?”
“Yes, yes. That’s him! A man who’s been wearing a weird scarf!”
“Exactly! Geeze, how long ago did you arrive here?” I asked, now a little bit enthused.
“A couple of minutes,” he answered.
“It can’t be…” I hesitated. “That we missed each other on the bus this morning? Because I often see you riding the same time as I do.”
“You’re right, this is getting very weird.” Since, the bus only comes every hour and he just arrived a few minutes earlier...not mentioning the bus takes time to go around the route...
Did we miss each other on the bus? But how could that be, I'm pretty sure nobody was there when I took a seat.
I finally nodded in agreement.
“Okay, how about we try and see if we can catch the same bus driver again?”
“You mean see if the same guy comes up? What are the chances?” He asked.
“What are the chances that everybody’s not here except for us?” I retorted.
“Right, right.” Muttering. “Anyway, it’s not good if we stay here any longer. Let’s get out of here and take that bus,”
“Yeah, let’s go.”
I wearily eyed the library as we passed, but stopped when I saw that the door was open.
"Cain, the...door. It wasn't open before," I stated.
"You're right," He walked beside me and pointed, "And the floor wasn't like that..."
Blood stains. Stains that trailed towards the back of the library.
"What's going on here?" I asked, "What's happening?" My eyes darted everywhere, caution tensed my body.
"I don't know, but I'm not going to check it out," Cain answered calmly as we heard a sharp cry deeper in the library.
I ran as fast as I could and didn't stop until the school was behind us...
The bus stop is in front of the library. We waited there in awkward silence for a few minutes and we both started to fidget.
“Uhmm, so why did you pass that ball to the opposing team anway?”I guess the shock won't be coming anytime soon.
“What?” He blinked and slowly started to register what I was saying.
“You know, in the basketball tournament from the other day, you passed the ball to the opposing team,”
He started to go red, “Uhh, well. It was you know, an accident.”
I started to laugh and not long after that he joined in.
A loud rumbling sound came out from beneath us.
“W-what was that?” I asked. Our eyes met, remembering what the scarfed man said before I left the bus.
“The worm is on our way.” We both whispered and sprinted.
“Cain! Let’s go!” I shouted as he tripped. I helped him up and we both turned to see a giant maggot like thing sprouting from the ground. It had numerous small sharp teeth, it looks really, really dangerous. I am stating the obvious here, I shrieked at myself.
“RUN!” Cain's panic sliced through my thoughts. We jolted and ran across the field, side by side. I could hear the worm-maggot screaming, it hurts my ears, I could hear the cement being ripped apart by its wake, slowly catching towards us. I could tell, because instead of cement being destroyed it was soil and we're running across a field.
TO BE CONTINUED...