"I don't want go." I whispered softly, staring down at the car's floorboards. She didn't understand. She'd been on her best behavior. She didn't break anything, not once! She didn't even set anything on fire, which she was kind of notorious in the Foster Care system for doing so- She was polite to her parents and her other housemates. She did all her chores, everything she was asked without argument! So.. Why was she being forced to leave? It didn't make sense, unless..
"You have to go. There isn't room here for you anymore." the social worker said. The child's eyes narrowed, and she sneered.
"Just admit it. They just don't want me anymore." She spat, clutching her sock monkey. The social worker didn't respond, and just started up the car.
...Unless they didn't want her anymore. She should've known.
The radio was the only sound that was heard during the long drive. Eventually, though, as we drove deeper and deeper into the boonies, we lost any radio signal. So the social worker pressed the CD button, and a song started up. It looked to be the last track on the CD. The eleventh track.
She knew this artist. It was Imagine Dragons. She liked them. A lot of their songs were sad, and.. And, well, she could relate to those songs. Whilst the song played, the child's mind decided to throw her back in time.
Back to the time when her mother had given up on raising her. When she had taken her five year old self to a park one weekend, and disappeared. It wasn't new. No, her mother had done that many times. It's just that this time, the park was so far away. Oftentimes, parents try to protect their children from cruelness of reality. I found that incredibly amusing, considering my mother threw me right into it's chaos.
Her kindergarten self couldn't remember the way back to her home. But she'd heard from her mother firsthand how awful the place where unwanted children went. She'd heard how terrible Foster Care was. She didn't want to go there. So she hid. She survived living off the street for two years until she was caught by a police officer and placed into Foster Care.
That was a little less than six years ago. Since the time she was placed into Foster Care, she'd been in 15 different foster families, and the one she was headed for at this moment was going to be her sixteenth foster family.
She liked to play a game in her head where she would imagine what her new foster family would look like. Would it be a small family, or big? She hoped it was big, that way she could easily just blend into the background.
Would they have a dog? A cat? She preferred cats, honestly, but as long as the dog didn't try to bite her, and wasn't one of those small yappy dogs, she was okay with a dog.
What kind of jobs would her new foster family have? This is where the game gets fun. The more bizarre, the better, as she often told herself.
Eventually she decided that one of her family members would have a job as clown. Once she decided on which family member it was, she'd probably call them 'The Clown' in her head everytime she would refer to them.
On the way to her last foster family, she decided one of her foster family members would be a acrobat. And as it turned out, one of her fellow foster siblings was incredibly flexible. She did gymnastics twice a week. She was often in the backyard doing cartwheels and flips, much to the foster parents horror. They were terrified she'd mess up and break her neck. Though, she never did.
"Sammy? We're almost there." The social worker told the girl. The girl only pursed her lips and shook her head.
"That's not my name anymore." The girl said softly. The social work gave an exasperated sigh, and resisted the urge to facepalm. She'd have to right the kid's new new name down in her notes so she didn't call her by the 'wrong' name when she did her check-ups on her and her family.
"What's your name this time, then?" The social worker asked the girl. The girl furrowed her brow, and looked at her lap, staring hard at her sock monkey.
"Einsam. This time, my name is Einsam." The social worker knew that it was probably a name in another language, but the girl didn't elaborate.
But the girl knew. The girl knew it was German. She also knew it meant lonely. She felt it fit, because she was honestly so lonely. She found it hard to connect to others. Those her age, and adults. And, because of that, she felt as if she'd never find a place that she belonged.
She felt like she was going to always be lonely.
But whilst they thought so, both social worker and child didn't notice that they drove past a tree with a circle and an 'x' crossed through it that was carved into the tree.
So it WAS gonna just be a copy-n-paste of the chapter from Wattpad-
But then I had an idea.
"You weren't supposed to fucking ATTACK them, Toby!"
"Well how in the hell was I supposed to know that?! Nobody told me that the new recruit was a human! And was coming from a car!"
"We shouldn't HAVE to tell you! Slendy's told us time and time again that we're not supposed to hunt from passerby's! Especially humans in cars!"
"Pfft! And since when have YOU listened to those rules, Jeff?"
'ENOUGH! We shouldn't be arguing right now, we have more important things to worry about. The child is majorly injured, and is dying. We need to get her to Eyeless Jack and Dr. Smiley immediately, if there is any hope for her survival. Jeff, grab the child's belongings, quickly. Toby, make this look like an accident. And let me be clear in saying that you are not off the hook. Come back to the mansion immediately after you finish.'
It happened all so quickly, honestly. I had just finished up packing up my journal back into the black trash bag that held all of my belongings, and was holding my sock monkey in my lap when it happened. A blur of motion skirted directly in front of them, 30 feet away.
A boy, with two hatchets in his hand, orange goggles over his eyes, and a mask over his mouth that looked like a smile. He was wearing a hoodie with his hood up as well.
The social worker cussed, and slammed on the brakes. Einsam smirked inwardly and tucked that information into her brain. If she was asked about the drive over by her new foster family, she'd be sure to tell them about how her driver cussed. It'd be sure to get the lady in trouble.
It was clear they weren't going to stop in time, so the social worker made to swerve around the boy. But just as the car swerved around him, he turned and threw one of his hatchets. It twirled in the air with deadly accuracy, and crashed through the glass, the blade embedding itself in the social workers skull. A silent explosion of blood squelched all around the now-dead woman, and splattered all over the windshield, the steering wheel, and Einsam. The child was screaming now, having watched it happen all right in front of her.
Then, in horror, she realized that the car was still swerving, still speeding... Now directly towards the treeline. Aiming dead straight at a tree. Still screaming, she frantically fumbled with her seat belt, trying and failing to unbuckle herself so she could jump out of the car.
She couldn't get the belt unbuckled. At the last moment, she looked up at the tree the car was just about to crash into, opened her mouth and screamed out.
"DADDY, SAVE ME!"
There was the loud sound of screaming metal, and Einsam's body jolted forwards, and her face slammed against the dashboard of the car. Everything went black as she heard several sounds of bones snapping.
It had been a long, long time since Einsam had thought about her Dad. The child had only met the man three times... That she could remember.
The first time she met him, she was two and a half. He had come and visited her and her mother. He had brought Einsam a Dora the Explorer toy. It was one of the best presents she'd ever gotten, because, at the time, she'd LOVED Dora. She used to play with the singing Dora toy everyday. Well, everyday until her mother got sick and tired of it, removed the batteries and threw the toy against the wall over and over again until it was in pieces. Her mother had ignored her pleas for her to stop, and left the sobbing toddler sitting on the floor by the toy in pieces. She didn't even care.
The second time she saw her father, she was four. Her dad actually came, picked her up from daycare on a Friday, and she spent the weekend at his place. She met his girlfriend, a lady who was an ACTUALLY nice woman. Her room in the apartment was actually really pretty, and nice. It wasn't raggedy and full of second-hand (mostly broken) toys that she had at her home. On Saturday, her dad took her out to iHop, and she was able to order whatever she wanted! That was another first for her. After that, they went back to his apartment and watched her morning cartoons. After morning cartoons were over, her father and his girlfriend took her shopping. They got her several new outfits. In fact, one of her favorite outfits to wear even at her present age of 13 was inspired by one of the outfits they'd bought for her that day. Sunday morning was a rather lazy morning, she had breakfast, watched her morning cartoons, then her dad and his girlfriend took her to a museum. That evening she went back to her mother.
The last time she saw her father... Her mother was stuffing his bloody, beaten corpse in a trash bag, whilst wearing gloves and a hairnet. Her father's girlfriend had already been stuffed into a garbage bag. Her mother was muttering darkly about how no one would show her up to be the bad parent. The child was wide-eyed, and crying. Her mother finally seemed to notice her, and turned to her.
"Unless you want to wind up like your dear father and her girlfriend, you won't speak a word about this. Understand?"
The five year-old agreed.
Things start picking up.
I remember that I was unconscious for a long time. It was cold and warm. It was soft and hard. It was honestly… painless. I wasn’t scared for some reason, despite the fact that somewhere in the back of my mind, I knew I was probably dying. But for the most part, I was oddly content with floating around in an endless sea of darkness.
But that wasn’t always the case.
Sometimes I would stop floating in darkness and touch down. I wouldn’t feel any pain, but… voices.
I could remember hearing voices. Snippets of conversations before I started to float off again.
“Alright, Dr. Smiley, the lung is reinflated. Shall we deal with the several fractures, or the injury on the patient’s head?”
“We move to the head injury.”
“EJ, I just finished the GCS test on the patient, they scored at a three. Grab the ICP monitor, we need to hook her up to it ASAP. Finish up stitching the gash on her head, I’ll go grab it.”
“...Now onto setting all these fractures. Dr. Smiley, if you’ll set the bones, I’ll mix up the plaster for the casts.”
“You’re just nervous you’ll make a mistake again after you made a miscalculation setting Liu’s arm, aren’t you?”
“...I’d rather not make a mistake like that on a child.”
“Who is she?”
“I dunno. Toby raided a car and was caught. She was in it, apparently.”
“...know if you can hear me or not. I remember when I was younger, my mother told me that people in comas can hear, so I’m just gonna go with that.” A pause. “You’ve been out for a rather long time. Dr. Smiley and EJ say that you still have brain activity, even though its small. They’re optimistic that you’ll wake up, given time.”
“...I hope you wake up soon. It’ll be nice to have another girl to hang around with.”
“I don’t even know why the big man is making us take shifts watching you. Obviously, if you wanted to wake up, you would’ve done it now.”
“I don’t blame you though. The real world is awful. I mean, why else would I spend all my time playing video games?”
“I may not get the whole ‘watch the kid’ thing that’s going on… But I honestly don’t understand why I was told to talk to you. It’s not like you’re Sleeping Beauty. ”
There was a chuckle that died out into a sigh.
“...You know, when I was first created, I had a friend. And I was happy. I was pure. He changed me.” There was a dry chuckle, obviously forced. “His name was Issac.”
“I made a mistake, and my punishment caused me to be imprisoned in a box for… a long time.” A pause. “Being trapped… It does things to you.”
There was a tense silence.
“...I hope you’re not trapped there. In your head. I may hate kids… But I would never want that for anyone.”
There was raspy breaths, the sound rattly in the breath, like the person was badly sick. There was a long silence.
“...Name’s hold power.” A pause. “I knew your name the moment I saw you. Your first name.”
“I also could sense the hatred towards your first name. You’ve rejected it.”
There was a soft, rattly breath. A chuckle, perhaps?
“Rest easy, little one. Your first name holds no power over you any longer. You’ve broken free from those chains.”
There was strange sounds.
The sounds continued like this for some time.
“L-look… I just wa-wanted to apolo-logize. I’m s-sorry I ca-caused you t-to get hu-hurt.”
“It’s n-not the fi-first time th-that I’ve don-done th-this. I ma-made m-my si-sister cr-crash, t-too.”
The sounds got louder and more violent-sounding.
“My fa-father told m-me it wa-was m-my fault. A-all my fa-fault.” A pause. “Th-this is m-my f-fault, t-to-o. I’m so-sorry. It’s all m-my fa-fault. A-all my f-fault. A-all-”
“...Hey, Toby. Dinnertime, bro.”
There was a long pause before those ticking sounds slowly faded away.
“..The docs said that your brain activity is increasing. They said that it’s almost 100% guaranteed that you’re gonna wake up. That’s good.”
“...I just hope we don’t scare you off.”
Humming. There was humming along with occasional soft singing.
It eventually stopped.
“...I haven’t felt such levels of sadness, hopelessness and loneliness in someone this age before.”
There was a long period of silence.
“None of us here have even officially met you, but I can say with certainty that we all have come to care for you. If the reasons you haven’t woken up are associated with fear of rejection… You have no reason to fear.”
“Once people like us decide that we care for someone, we do. We’ll care for them. Protect them. We’ll do next to anything to keep them happy and safe.”
“I know that you’ve never really had a permanent place to call home… And that it might be hard to understand this. But, if you’ll allow us, a lot of us would be happy if you decided to call this place home when you awaken.”
It was quiet now. I was floating in the comfortable darkness at the moment. Floating in the peaceful, unfeeling darkness.
I became aware of something, slowly. The darkness didn’t feel so dense.
It was almost an itch… An itch on her face.
Things felt more solid.
She could feel things. It felt a little cold, and there was something cool underneath her… Was that her hand?
Yeah, she was pretty sure that was her hand. She could make out sounds again. No breathing nearby… She guessed she was alone. She did hear a beeping sound. It was a little irritating. She remembered hearing it in the background as she heard all those voices talk to her.
There was a flicker of soft, low lighting.
Oh! She’d forgotten she even had eyes for a moment. She took a breath, grimacing inwardly a little at how dry her throat and mouth was.
And she opened her eyes.
She was in a medical ward of some sort. The sky outside the window indicated that it was late afternoon. If she had to guess the time, she’d say… Maybe… 7:30pm? Yeah. That sounds about right.
The medical ward is dead silent. She’s pretty sure she’s alone. But, just to make sure…
“...Hello?” She calls out hoarsely. Immediately afterwards, she dissolved into a coughing fit. Her throat was too dry.
All the while, there was a machine next to the beeping machine that was going off the charts. In fact, it had risen to such a level where there was a little alert on it that read, ‘Brain activity at normal levels - alerting medical personnel’
Downstairs, sitting in the living room was EJ, Laughing Jack, and BEN. BEN was playing the newest Legends of Zelda game that had come out not that long ago, and EJ was reading a book whilst sitting next to him. Laughing Jack was sitting cross-legged on the floor, sorting a large sack of candy he had sitting next to him.
Suddenly, something in EJ’s jacket started making a repeated, high-pitched beeping sound, and EJ jumped, confused at first. BEN and Laughing Jack looked over from what they were doing, curious.
He reached into his hoodie pocket and pulled out the device, his initial confusion dissolving into equal parts of panic and relief. He pressed a button on it and the sound stopped.
“What the hell is that?” BEN asked, as EJ bookmarked his book, set it on the coffee table, and stood up.
“It’s my alert component for the brain monitor for the kid. It just alert me that she’s at normal levels.”
Both BEN and Laughing Jack’s attention were caught completely.
“If I had to make an assumption, I’m pretty sure that mystery girl just woke up.”