Several days have passed since her younger brother was sent to the hospital. Despite the advice to stay home, she braved the crowds of school. As she ventured over the white tiles she could not help but notice the stares she got from everyone. She occasionally caught the whispers talking about her. Apparently the word of her brother's problem spread fast among the people of the town. She tried to ignore the stares and whispers and go on with her life, but she slowly broke down. She felt her fists clench over time.
Her time at home was not as good either. The local police have closed off the apartment where she once lived, and is currently living out of a motel room with her mother. She preferred this, seeing as there was an off air about the apartment, something didn't settle well with her. She often found her self unable to concentrate and found herself walking the streets to the hospital. She would stay by her brother's side till night fall and then begin her walk back.
Every time she visited her brother she felt her heart break. He looked so frail with all those tubes hooked into him. The doctors said he was in a coma, which was caused by the shock of the experience. She felt so lost without her brother.
These days passed on mostly the same. She would somehow get through school, go back to the apartment and then travel to see her brother. The normal broke when officer Bryant and FBI agent Kenneth were seen up at the hospital on her way out from her daily visit. The way they looked at her made her spine shiver. It felt almost like an accusing stare, with a hint of uncertainty. She quickly exited the building trying to get that stare out of her mind.
The air cut through her skin, forcing her to think about her walk. The sky was constantly cloudy, but rain refused to fall. She turned her focus back onto her walk back home. The night was dead quiet, the only noise that could be heard was her own foot steps hitting the sidewalk. She continued on her way sinking back to her thoughts. It was not all that far away from the motel now.
Suddenly the sound of footsteps could be heard behind her. From the sounds of it there was two of them. They seemed to keep pace with her. She took in a breath of the cool air and quickened her pace without looking behind her. They also quickened their pace easily keeping up. Now her fear was starting to show as she quickened her pace into that of a slight jog while taking a corner towards the motel. They followed easily. Suddenly one of the two figures spoke up.
"Hold up!" A tough voice said seemingly out of breath.
Christine noticed who that voice belonged to, so she slowed her pace to a full stop next to a tall pine tree.
"Hello there Christine. We have been trying to contact you two." Officer Bryant said stepping in front of Kenneth. "Every time we came to visit neither of you were at home, and you didn't answer the calls we left."
"Sorry about that, things have been rather hard on the two of us." Christine said still letting her fear subside.
"It was by luck we ran into you at the hospital, but before we could talk you took off." Kenneth said, wheezing ever so slightly.
"Just wanted to get home before my mother. So might I ask what was so important?"
"Well we finished the search of the apartment. Not a single piece of evidence was left behind. The only thing there belonged to the three of you, including the footprints and fingerprints."
"I see..." Christine looked down at her dirt covered shoes. "So any idea on who did such thing to my brother?"
"We have a few ideas, but thats all they are as of now."
"Well I hope your right. Don't want the person to strike again... and maybe succeed next time. If you want any help I am willing to do what I can, just get that person." Christine said as a few stray tears escaped her eyes.
"Glad to hear you say that, but can't let you help."
"Oh... Well is there anyone you suspect that I might know?"
"Well, the thing is..." Bryant began, unsure how to proceed.
"We kind of suspect you and your mother." Kenneth blurted out.
"WHAT!" Why would we do such a thing to Alexander? We loved him."
"Please don't take it personal, its just with the lack of evidence we don't have much to go on. . ."
"But its not only that, you very well could be targets yourselves. We don't know anything about the person who did this to you. It could be a grudge from ages past, or it could have been anger. All we can really say for sure is that we can't let you two go without someone from now on."
"Great, being followed by a cop. Just what I always wanted."
"Now don't think of it as a bad thing, think of it as protection."
"Listen, can I go home now, I feel a major headache forming."
"Sure go on ahead. We will have two cops waiting outside for the two of you in the morning." Bryant said turning around with Kenneth behind him.
"Don't forget you have our number if you feel the need to tell us anything that might be of some use." Kenneth said taking a toothpick from his pocket.
Christine rushed home and unlocked the door. She could not believe what was happening. Her mother and herself was now suspects in the attempted murder of her brother. She grabbed a empty glass off the counter and filled it with tap water. She took two asprin out of a bottle and quickly downed them. She then walked into the her current room and sat on the bed and curled up. She set her head on her knees and let the tears fall.
The next morning came sooner than expected. She apparently fell asleep while crying. She slowly lowered her feet to the ground while rubbing the sleep from her red eyes. She picked out a new wardrobe of a black jeans with a black shirt with long sleeves. She went to the small bathroom and began to change. She stopped when she looked into the mirror. She noticed her features have been slowly fading away. Her white skin has turned pale, and her eyes bloodshot, from the constant tears and the lack of sleep. Her hair which was once shiny and full of bounce now was laying flat across her shoulders. This surprised her slightly. With a shake of her head she finished what she came in there to do.
She exited the bathroom with a comb in her hand trying to get rid of some of the tangles from her hair as she walked into the kitchen. A note was on the table from her mother. "Dear Chris, I will be bringing home dinner tonight. Please be home by six. Love mom." Christine read aloud. She set the piece of paper back on the table and took a look outside. There the assigned cop stood, drinking a cup of coffee next to his squad car. He took notice and waved at her.
Christine decided to skip breakfast and begin the day. She wanted to spend as much time as possible with her brother since today was now Saturday. She grabbed her red coat and then her keys. She stepped out of the door to be greeted by sunlight filtered through clouds. After locking up she approached the policeman.
"Morning there, I'm officer Dan. I've been told you are to be followed to make sure nothing happens to you." Dan said taking out his badge.
"Thats fine, do as you wish. I'm just going to visit my brother for the day."
"Mind if I give you a lift to the hospital then?"
"Nah, I think I'll be walking there."
"Alright, I'll just keep an eye on you then."
With that Christine began on her way. As she began walking she heard a car door open and close, and the the familiar engine starting. She tried to keep her mind off of what was going on but found it hard to ignore the car. She eventually made it to the hospital. In the lobby she looked at the clock. It told it was a quarter to noon. She planned to make the most of her five hours with her brother.
She walked up to the receptionist, who she quickly became accustomed to. Carla always greeted her with a smile and quickly let her on her way. She followed the familiar path to where her brother was being kept. She looked behind her to see Dan was keeping up with her. She reached the room and quietly opened the door. Only the rhythmic beeping of the instruments could be heard in the room. She pulled up a seat towards the bed and sat down. The police officer quickly followed through the door and took a place at the other side of the room.
Christine felt uneasy with his eyes looking at her, but she felt it was for the best. Shrugging it off she turned to her brother.
"Hello there Alexander, I'm back again. Hope you have been doing alright." Christine started. "Things on our end have not gone well since what ever happened to you. Mother and I are being followed now. I got officer Dan following me around now. I really do wish you would get better soon. We would all want to know who did this to you." Christine then forced a smile on her face as she looked at her brother. She pulled out one of her books that she was required to read. Despite being forced to read it, she found herself liking the book. She sat in the chair reading the book, occasionally glancing at her brother and at Dan, who sat quietly writing something. Time marched on quickly and before she knew it, it was time to leave. She packed her things up quietly and looked upon her brother once more.
Dan began to walk out of the door ahead of Christine. She was about to close the door and return home when a weak voice broke through the silence.
"Christine" a weak voice said.
Christine stopped and returned to the room and knelt next to her brother's side. "Alex? Alex is that you?" She said grabbing his hand slightly.
"Is that you Chris?" Alex said without opening his eyes.
Dan quickly walked in looking at the two, unsure of what to say. Christine felt her eyes build up with tears. "Yeah its me Alex. What happened to you? Who did this to you?"
"Chris, careful of sleep, he awaits for you under the red moon." Alex managed to say through small breaths.
"What are you talking about? Christine asked confused at her brother's remarks.
Alexander didn't reply. He turned his head slightly and glanced at Christine, who's eyes were filled with worry and confusion focused towards him. He returned to glance at the plain white ceiling. "Your dreams. Beware of him." With that he slowly closed his eyes.
With a slight sense of fear she searched the room, and spied a nurse standing next to Dan, both shocked at what they saw. Quickly the nurse snapped out of her shock and checked up on Alexander. After a moment of checking she turned to Christine.
"Don't worry, he just went back in the coma it seems."
Christine gave a sigh of relief. "Thats good to know."
"So what did he say to you Christine?" Dan jumped in, curious of what the siblings whispered to each other.
"I'm not sure. He seemed out of it. All he said was to be careful of someone who apparently appears under a red moon in dreams. That is if I understand what he was saying correctly."
Dan took moved his right hand to his chin and grabbed the other arm while closing his eyes in thought. "Strange, I'm sure it meant nothing, however we can never be certain with these kind of things."
Christy took a look at her watch. "SHOOT! I was to make it home soon."
"Lets get you home then. I'm sure your mother won't mind much if we hurry."
"Alright." Christine followed officer Dan to his squad car, making sure to give her farewell to her brother. On the ride home she could not get the conversation off of her mind. It was not like her brother to make things up, but she kept telling herself something of what truly happened could have been in there somewhere. Before she knew it she was home. She got out of the car and waved farewell to Dan. She looked at the small parking lot and spotted her mother's car. She tested the door and found it unlocked. She walked into the motel and found her mother sitting at the table nibbling on her chicken.
"Where have you been?" She said not bothering to take the fork out of her mouth.
"The hospital. It was pretty interesting up there. How was your day?"
"As good as it could get with a police officer watching you. Guessing you had one yourself?"
"Yeah, but he was kind of nice."
"Lucky you, mine had a scowl stuck on his face. He scared off several customers which in turn made my boss put me in back for dish washing duty. So do tell, what was so interesting at the hospital?"
Christine walked over and lifted the lid up showing a plain cheeseburger with a side of fries."Well for the longest while nothing. I mostly got caught up on my reading. It was not till we began to leave that it all happened." She paused long enough to eat a couple of fries. Her mother raised an eyebrow at the tone in Christine's voice. It was a mix of excitement and confusion, which was a very odd mixture for Christine.
"Well Alex came to." The mother dropped the fork on the table, her jaw dropped in shock. "Before you get to excited he is back in the coma..."
"Oh. Did he manage to say anything?"
"Yeah, but it was kind of confusing. He just told me to be careful of sleep. Something about a man standing under a red moon..."
"Yeah that is strange, how ever I'm sure it means nothing... or at least I hope."
"I hope so as well, but it still does not sit well with me."
"Well I managed to rent a movie today after work. Lets try to get our mind off of this for the night. Just eat your burger before it gets cold."
Christine placed her head on her pillow. She scolded herself on how late she was on the computer. She was searching for stuff relating to dreams, and found herself becoming interested in the subject the more she read. Her eyes felt heavy and the pillow under her just beaconed sleep to come. She slid under the blue covers and turned off the lamp next to the bed. She closed her eyes as she reflected upon the day. No matter how good the movie, she was unable to take her mind off of the words. Slowly she faded off into a deep sleep.
She found herself along the side of a beach. She quickly noticed the place from a vacation she took with her family. It was at the end of summer. Many of the tourists have been long gone, and they managed to get the beach almost to themselves. Out over the water a brilliant sunset could seen. It looked close enough to reach it. She closed her eyes and felt the sun's last rays hit her face. She snapped back to reality as a splash of cold water hit her square in the face.
"Got you" Alexander said sticking his tongue out playfully. Christine looked down, she was now wearing the same two piece bathing suit she wore on that vacation. Another splash hit her face.
"Oh I'm going to get you." She said with a smile. She jumped into the cold water and shivered for a moment, letting her body get used to it. Once she could move, she rushed towards her brother and splashed him back. This war of splashing lasted for several moments till a soft voice rang out from the beach.
"Come on you two, we are starting dinner over here. Hope you like hotdogs." The mother quickly turned around and headed towards a small fire. The smell of hot dogs could be smelled, and it made their stomaches growl. On the count of three the two siblings rushed for the beach and the warm inviting fire. Christine managed to make it to the fire first with Alexander right behind. They both took a place on top of a towel.
"So have a lot of fun out there kids?" A tall man said as he approached. Christine turned and stared at him after skewering the hotdog on a fork. The man seemed familiar, but for some reason she could not place who it was. He had short spiky blonde hair, with a body of a overworked working man. He held a warm smile on his face.
"Yup dad. We had loads of fun." Alexander said smiling at him.
"Thats good to know."
Christine returned to the fire and gazed into it as it danced. Several small memories came back about her father. She looked down at the ground. "Father..." She whispered to her self as a smile grew on her face. She knew this was a dream, but it was nice to be back together again. Alexander full of life, her father standing there, her mother smiling genuinely, and the full moon over rising over head. She returned her gaze to the food cooking in front of her. She moved her hotdog from the fire to see it was cooked the way she remembered liking them. She was handed a bun, and placed it inside. She then grabbed some ketchup and squirted a small line across it. She happily ate the food, enjoying the chatter from all around.
"Well would you look at that, the moon is turning red." The mother said looking up.
"Well I'll be, that is a strange sight." The father said shortly after.
Christine felt fear overcome her as she dropped the hotdog. She looked up and her eyes held fast to the crimson moon. The red glow grew from the center and eventually covered the moon in its entirety. The beach was now shrouded in a red tint. Suddenly the glow from the fire was cut off. She turned her head to find her family gone. She stood up from her seat on the beach and took a better look around. The once blue seas were now red. The sky was pitch black, other than the moon. Her mind told her to run away from the moon, but her feet would not comply with that order.
Out of the corner of her eye she spotted a shadow move with great speed. Christine attempted to follow the speeding object but quickly lost track. However her eyes beheld something else. In front of her stood a man of shadows standing under the moon. She could not figure out his features, but he wore a hat with long sides and what appeared to be a cloak of shadows. The only other piece of clothing that was visible was a pair of white gloves showing his long fingers. He glared back at her with red eyes. The fear she had grew quickly at the site of this man. She recalled her brothers words once again. Her mind split. Part of her figured this was because he told this to her, but the other part told her it was real. She was between two conflicting views. She did not have much time to think about it as the man began to slowly walk towards her.
With a deep breath she decided to turn around and run. This time her legs listened and she sped off into the darkness. She ran as fast as her legs could. She reached the end of the beach. She decided she gave herself some time to think of a plan. She looked back the way she came and her eyes opened wide in surprise. The shadow man was still in view, and even closer than before. He continued at his slow walk towards her. She then broke off into another sprint, pushing herself to the limit. She managed to make it to a set of houses she remembered on the car ride to and back from the beach. She always wondered how easy it would be to lose someone by weaving between the houses. She considered this no time to think about the past. She rushed into the small passage between the houses.
Time quickly passed till she could no longer run. She found herself in the middle of a maze made up from the walls of the houses. She felt something was wrong. She did not remember this many houses when she first saw them. Behind her she heard soft foot steps. She turned her head to see him still behind her. This time however he stopped several feet away from her. He raised his hand and a toothy grin could be seen.
"You have no where to run. Come with me quietly and you will be spared the pain." He said with a low sinister voice.
"What did you do with my brother?" She yelled back at the man.
"That runt? I just simply sent him to the realm of dreams. He won't be breaking away from my spell again though. He will be trapped here well beyond his body's life."
"Give me back my brother!" Christine said now showing her teeth in return.
"I told you, I can't do that. However you do not have to worry about him for long, you will be joining him soon."
"Don't count on it."
"Feel free to struggle if you want. I'll just make your punishment all the worse the more you struggle."
Christine began to slowly back away. With one big breath she spun around and broke out into another sprint. This time however she ran into a solid object, forcing her to fall onto the ground. She rubbed her head and looked up. Here eyes once again grew large in fright. The man now stood inches away from here. He raised his hand and a laugh broke through his lips. He swiftly lowered his hand attempting to strike her with enough force to send her flying. However as his hand was about to make contact it passed through Christine. She looked at her body and it became transparent.
"Heh, looks like our session is up this time, but don't get too comfortable. I'll be here waiting for your return, and next time you won't be so lucky." As she finally vanished the last thing she could hear was a loud laugh which shook the very ground.