I was staring at a stained ceiling. Where was I?
Lying on a bed with wet sheets, snow lashing against a large window. Had they left me here to die? Could I not just close my eyes and be gone? The pain…It was still inside my stomach. It was still there! I had to take it out even if it meant my death.
Slowly I reached for it, barely able to control my arm. My trembling hand finally touched it. I wanted to scream out with pain but I had no voice. My insides burned as if I had been drinking acid. I grabbed it and pulled it out of my stomach.
With my other hand, I reached for the bottle around my neck and broke its thin glass. The content spilled on my fingers. I touched my mouth but was unable to swallow the liquid. I put my hand on the wound. After that, I felt nothing.
I blinked. Everything was blurry. A few men encircled me, talking to each other.
‘How did she?’
‘I’m not certain…’
‘Did she do this on her own?’
‘Probably. She did something else too. The wound is trying to seal itself shut.’
Was I awake or asleep? Perhaps it was a dream though my body felt real pain. It was cold and yet I was staring at a rich fire hearth. I was freezing, shaking and would have done just about anything to feel a bit warmer.
‘It’s cold!’ I heard myself say. My voice has never sounded this weak and altered before.
The big window I had spotted before, though fogged, revealed darkness outside.
Someone was in the room, and as in a dream, I could not see him clearly. I wanted to wake up yet I was afraid the pain might worsen.
The figure was now before the hearth mending the fire.
‘It’s so very cold,’
‘No, it’s not,’ he said softly, his voice startling me.
‘Yes, it is. I’m freezing,’ I insisted.
‘I am sweating my…’ he stopped, sighed, ‘you’ll be all right in a moment.’
But how? My hands were cold, my feet and legs ached so much that they no longer felt as parts of my body.
‘You will be warm soon.’
That tone! That hoarse tone in his voice.
‘Your voice is so familiar,’ I said.
‘Yes, I’ve met someone with such a pleasant hoarse voice. I remember…’
The coldness distracted me.
He came closer and my view becoming clearer. I watched him take off his shirt revealing heavy well-shaped muscles. I chuckled, though my chuckle sounded as if someone was dying.
‘I will not sleep with you!’ I said remembering that first time when we met.