Jenna woke up in the forest. She had been here before, she knew that, but she didn’t know where she was or how she got here. The sky was as black as any night but the stars that hung in the sky were dazzling white, bright blue, sparkling yellow, and some were deep red in color. The moon was a creamy colored crescent that hung low in the branches of the trees as if it had become entangled in the bare limbs. Dew began to fall from the clear sky and each drop became a falling star; a silver streak of color that splashed down upon the plants on the forest floor, creating a brief luminescent display. “I’m dreaming” Jenna said aloud but there was no sound but that of the dew splashing down from the clear sky.
She looked up and could see the drops forming, falling, elongating as they raced one another to the surface of the earth, some landing in tree tops and others slipping between the outstretched arms of the trees to be greedily consumed by the plants which grew in the dark places of the crowded vegetation. Her breath came out in a small explosion, she had forgotten to breathe, and Jenna noticed the sound of her breath echoed and reverberated like a pebble dropped into a still pond. Sound is light, Jenna thought, and light blinds. She made a small clicking noise and then saw the trees and the underbrush more clearly, as if the sound of her voice had illuminated the world in a small yet vital way.
There was a wave of vertigo and Jenna nearly fell. She sat down in the wet underbrush and listened to the sounds of the woods in the near dark. There were animals walking, owls gliding overhead, leaves still falling, and there was a storm, yes, the sound of a storm, and before the storm ran two creatures of the night, who were heading towards her at a pace that defied the laws of physics. She realized that what she was experiencing was not a dream yet it was not part of the world she had always known to exist. This was a reality based not on light or sight but based entirely on the lack of the senses she had always felt was truthful to her. Jenna smiled even as she knew something was happening to her, and around her, and there was nothing she could do about it, yet.
The sky darkened as the storm approached and Jenna closed her eyes as the rain began, first as slow soft drops that resembled dew and then as the storm drew closer the rain was faster, harder, made of water not transpired from the leaves of trees but gulped from the open water of the distant ocean and now flung back down to earth, orphaned from the sea until it made its way back through twisting stream, noisy creeks, and vast rivers. Even as the wetness began to draw the heat from her body, and Jenna realized that this might kill her, she sought to go deeper, to follow the rain into the earth, to feel the roots of the trees, but there was a draw, a pull, something undeniable about the light of the stars beyond the clouds and rain. Jenna pulled herself back from the brink of total darkness and sat up. She lay on the floor of some room and she had no idea where she might be.
The smell of the room told her everything she needed to know; this was Sam’s trailer. The rank odor of cigarette smoke and beer permeated the air. Jenna make a clicking noise with her tongue and she realized she was in the bedroom of the twins but there was no sound of their breathing. There was the smell of blood. She fought back the wave of panic that threatened her senses and clicked again. The room was intact and the smell of blood came from under the door.
Instinctively she reached for the light switch and stopped. No, that was not needed now. But there was a light in the kitchen and Jenna realized that what she was about to see would wound her in a way that was as fundamental as sight, or blindness. The first body she didn’t recognize but the hat told it was Cleve. He was nude from the waist down and the trauma to his body shocked Jenna. But this was a man who lived inside of a bottle, was drawn to those who evaded quiet conversation, and who liked the idea of taking chances, even if he was ill equipped intellectually to gauge the danger versus rewards for this behavior. This is how it was going to end for him, and Jenna knew in some way she had flirted with this lifestyle.
Sam lay on her back with her eyes open, a single gruesome gash on her forehead, above her left eye. Jenna knelt down and placed her palm on Sam’s face. The flesh was already cold and felt unreal. This was the little girl, twenty years ago, who held her hand in Disney movies at the scary parts. Jenna felt a wail of grief began and she accepted it, breathed it in deeply, and then stood up and felt the grief turn into rage. A storm raged outside of the trailer but she knew now that nothing on this earth or from this earth, was anything to concern her, and she knew where to find a place where her rage would serve her. She staggered a bit, still unsteady, but she had to get to Paulette’s house before it was too late. Someone might have called 9-11 for the noise here must have been terrible. She had to find the twins, but that could wait. Now was the time for vengeance and Jenna knew the hunter was going to be the hunted before the storm passed.
End part five