La répétition de près de mourir

La répétition de près de mourir

A Chapter by Nicole

Translation- The Repeatition of Almost Dying


It isn’t until after his shadow finally disappears that I remember to breathe. I can’t afford to lose my head now of all times, so I wind my way down the rest of the alley. I pop out at the other end of Market, and quickly join the hustle and bustle once again. I see a man with a sack ahead of me, already filled from a day’s worth of thievery and the lowest forms of cheating. I curse under my breath, upset that he got to it before me. However, as the old-time saying goes, no use crying over spilled milk. So I steal his bag. I take off fast, running harder than I can ever remember running before. The harsh air beats fast and rigid down my throat until I can taste blood. Even above the cries of the crowd, and the others running for dear life like me, I can hear his footsteps following me, and I know he hasn’t, and won’t, give up. Losing all sense of direction, I duck left and right, running in circles for all I know. I jump over people huddled on the ground, and swing around corners violently. Finally I take a sharp left into a side street, pressing my back against the cool wall. I ration my breaths, trying to quiet them. Finally, I slowly peek around the corner.

A large pair of hands grabs me around the collar. A stench of garlic and underground fills the air around me until I’m choking. Pulling me up to his face, I see that the man has finally caught up to me. His hot breath covers my face like a mask, but I will myself not to cough.

“ ‘ello princess.”

My heart drops down to my feet and I feel beads of sweat form on my forehead.

“Whatcha got there?”

I try to not break his gaze, hanging onto the stupid hope that I can somehow intimidate this man of monster proportions. I look back into his eyes, trying not to show that I’m afraid, but my mouth has gone dry and blatant fear is closer to me than a tattoo.

“Now...” the man starts, smirking as he pulls a knife from his bag, “I don’t appreciate thievery, princess. However...” he stops, running the dull side of the blade against my quivering throat, “I can’t kill you quite yet. We’re in need of some...” he grins down at me “fresh blood.” My legs are reduced to rubber, and he slowly puts me down before grabbing my neck and leading me further into the alley.

We walk for what feels like miles, yet we never reach the end. We keep taking bizarre twists and turns that just lead us further into the maze of alley-ways. Every few feet he nudges my back with his knife, just to remind me that I am mortal. By the time we reach an old fish shack, my legs ache and my knees are ready to give out. A small dent has formed where I’ve been repeatedly prodded. The air is rank with over-ripe “catch of the day,” “the day” probably being months ago. Fish carcasses lie in large baskets, flanking the door. Oddly enough, there aren’t any animals around; no stray cats trying to steal a meal, or even birds of prey. He pushes open the door with a grubby hand, nudging me forward with the tip of his knife. My blood rushes into my head, and I clutch the sack to me. Tentatively, I step into the dark.

© 2012 Nicole

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Added on September 26, 2012
Last Updated on September 26, 2012



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