Like Dying Embers
Carrie was jolted from her sleep when the door opened. She sat up groggily and could hear Rachel crying. “Come on, baby, let’s get you some water and food,” she heard Ryan say, to which he was answered with sniffles.
Carrie sat up now, her sleepiness leaving her and replaced with worry. She rubbed the sleep out of her eyes before seeing Ryan helping a sobbing and shaken Rachel through the living room.
“Holy shit, what happened to her?” Carrie asked, her voice filled with concern. She shot up from the couch and took flank on Rachel’s other side and helped Ryan get her to the large armchair by the couch. Her sobs got louder when Carrie was near, and after sitting down, the distraught blonde clung to Carrie as if her life depended on it.
“We were walking to the car, and—and,” she hiccupped and sniffled again before continuing,” Ryan forgot his jacket inside so he went to get it, and this homeless guy tried to attack me!”
“Someone attacked you?!” Carrie asked. Ryan returned with a glass of water for Rachel, but she didn’t move her head from its place on my shoulder.
“I shoved him away from me and kicked him in the balls, but it was like it didn’t even faze him! I think he was on drugs—he was growling and shit—and he scratched my arm before Ryan came out and started beating him up.” Rachel stopped and took a deep breath.
Ryan cut in now, and Rachel’s sobs turned into soft sniffles as Carrie ran her hand over her back to comfort her. She must be in shock, and the attacked scared her half to death. “I punched him a couple times—fucker bit me on my arm, fucking weak ass. I stomped his face and knocked him out, but it was too dark to see who it was. Rachel was freaking out and I left him though, I was so fucking pissed but Rachel just wanted to leave.” Carrie nodded at Ryan’s story, but then a thought hit me.
“Wait, he bit you? Let me see,” Carrie used her free hand to prod his arm. He pushed his sleeve back to show a definite bite mark, but it was so unusual. It looked like he bit him hard and drew blood, and took flesh off. Carrie’s eyes widened and she grabbed his arm to look at it closer.
“Holy shit, Ryan! He fucking got you! We need to get this cleaned! Babe, where do you keep the peroxide?” She had to get it clean—who knows what was in that guys mouth?
She sniffled and shook her head. “I don’t have any, or bandages.” Carrie mentally face-palmed at this; she even had a first-aid kit in her bathroom for emergencies.
Carrie untangled herself from Rachel and stood up. Ryan opened his mouth the question, but Carrie beat him to the punch. “You stay here with Rachel, and I’ll run down to the mart down the street—they should have some. You make sure she eats and keep her calm, we don’t want to have her go into shock and then go to the hospital.” The two didn’t have good enough insurance to cover a hospital visit—especially for something as stupid as shock.
Carrie quickly went to her bag on the side of the couch and took it to the bathroom to throw on clothes for outside. She put on pair of tight yoga pants, her sequined sweater, and (after some mental debate) a pair of flip flops. She exited the bathroom and looked at Ryan, who looked a little sick, but Rachel looked god-awful. She was crying once more, whimpering about how she felt like she was dying. “I’ll be right back; make sure she eats something,” Carrie told Ryan, to which he nodded. She grabbed her purse with her keys and cell phone, and shut the apartment door before making the trip down a flight of stairs for the parking lot of the complex.
Rachel didn’t live in the best neighborhood, but it wasn’t the worst. As Carrie got into her car, she could hear gunshots in the distance. She shook her head and rolled her eyes before climbing into her little Nissan. Probably another one of those druggie guys from the news and that bath-salt shit. Thank God Merle never tried to eat her face off when he was high. He may have hit her that one instance, but damn, she did not want her face ripped off.
It was a short drive to a small 24-hour gas station. She pulled into the parking spaces, not needing to fill up. Carrie locked the car behind her and walked into the mart, hearing more gun shots in the distance. She tried to ignore it, now figuring it may be a shoot-out. Only two more days in the city before you get to go back home, Carrie told herself, missing the quiet town now that the city had several drug and shoot-out cases the whole week she was there. She entered the building with a little ding.
She walked around the mart searching for first-aid items. Carrie was unable to resist grabbing a packet of Skittles and an Almond Joy before she found the HBA items. She grabbed a small bottle of hydrogen peroxide as well as a travel first aid kit before walking up to the counter. The boy behind the counter couldn’t be any older than his early twenties, and he looked absolutely tired. ‘Mike’, as his nametag read, rang up her items and she paid with her credit card, wondering how much money she would have to pull from her bank, as she had spent a lot of money over the week. Eh, I’ll deal with it later. Maybe work some overtime.
With her small plastic bag in hand, she got back into her car and drove back to the apartment. She turned on the radio in her car and changed the mode to CD. She had so many CDs of different genres and often switched them out, so she had no idea what was in at the moment. She smiled when the jazzy tune of Frank Sinatra began to play. She balanced watching the rode and furious clicking the ‘next’ button to get to one of her favorites, I’ve Got the World on a String.
The short drive came to an end when she pulled back into her parking space. Again, she exited her little Nissan and locked the doors before heading up the wrought-iron stairwell to the second floor of the apartment complex. She was still humming jazzy tunes to herself, though she yawned a few times in between; it was around two AM after all. Plus, the humming was helping tune out the growing gunshots and the screams accompanying them in the distance. Everything is just fine, normal and fine. Back into the country in two days, and then a visit to Merle. Carrie walked down to number 204 and opened the door. “Okay, babe, I got some—“ Carrie stopped and a powerful scream left her throat at the sight of the scene in front of her.
NotesI wonder what happened? LOL. Thank you guys for your awesome subscribes and comments, hope you're enjoying. The story will pick up from here.
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