Isellta ran out of the bedroom and down the hall. He had to get away from everything that Preyuna had said and everything that Mark Caten had done. He had to get away from the voice pounding inside his head…the one telling him that he was stupid and wrong and that he would always be that way.
Hank came around the corner. He smiled a weary smile at Isellta. “Hey—”
Isellta darted into the first available room and closed the door behind him. He leaned back against it. His heart pounded in his chest. Preyuna’s memories merged with his own memories. The terrible combination flashed through his mind.
He handled her roughly.
Her hand curled in a fist.
He slapped her face, punched her, grabbed her hair and yanked it hard.
She punched his shoulder, grabbed his rrhoa koa, pulled it, twisted it, and yanked it hard.
“Please no.” Isellta whimpered. “No.”
He laughed at her pain and distress.
She grew angrier and more frustrated with his cries of pain.
He climbed on top of her, pinning her to the mattress.
Isellta clutched his head. “NO!”
She climbed on top of him, pinning him to the mattress.
He doubled over. “I don’t want to. I don’t want to. Please. Please.” He sank to his knees, crying. “Please…”
A strange sound reverberated in Robin’s dream. Something almost like a gong strike, but not really. It was a lighter sound. A purer sound.
It woke him.
“hnnnm…” Robin tried to open his eyes, but his eyelids were so heavy. He could barely raise them above a crack. It felt so much better to keep them closed. So, he kept them closed.
But someone out there was crying very quietly.
He sniffed the air.
No familiar or unfamiliar scents.
But someone was crying.
Hello? Robin mentally called out. Who’s there?
No answer came — verbal or mental.
Robin grunted as his hunger caught up to him. Great. he thought. Just what I dang darned needed right freakin’ now.
He ignored the unknown crier and mentally reached out for Isellta. ‘sellta. I’m here. Please. Please hear me. I’m right here. If you’re alive, come to me. If you ain’t alive, haunt me. My beautiful ‘sellta, haunt me like crazy.
Just right here.
Hear me. Come to me.
My ‘sellta, please.
Robin winced as his abdomen clenched from the hunger. “hnnff. nnff…” DARN IT ALL! I ain’t ready for this to happen all o’er again. DARN IT! DARN IT!
‘SELLTA! PLEASE! COME TO ME! GET ME OUTTA HERE!
He winced again at yet another hunger spike. I’m hungry. So hungry. I don’t wanna go through this all o’er again. Don’t wanna get all lost in hunger again. Don’t want Olessa to get me. Don’t want her to wreck my only good eye.