Monday, November 30, 2009

Rob and Quinn: First Encounter

I hear someone behind me. It’s too dark to see who, and it’s too dark and far away for it to be any of the Mambergs. My head darts back involuntarily, my eyes scanning the darkness. Only trees. The leaves rustle in the wind like dry paper, every little movement making me jump. I’m too afraid to move.

I only see the dark object for a moment in my peripheral vision before it jumps on me. I feel pain through my adrenaline, my eyesight pulsing and my hearing acute. I hear myself exhale loudly as the air is knocked out of my stomach, and then I’m flying.

He threw me. I just barely miss the trunk of a giant oak. If I’d hit it, I would have shattered a few bones. I land hard on the moist ground, my muscles groaning as they hit the dirt, but my adrenaline dulls the pain.

I scramble to get up and run, but he tackles me before I can even stand up. I’m pinned to the ground. His fists meet my face with great force, right in the cheekbone. I realize that he’s kneeling above me, and as I’m preparing myself for another blow, he presses my chest surprisingly hard down against the ground.

He pants heavily, snorting on his breath like a bull. His eyes are so horribly dark, gleaming in the moonlight as he holds me down in the shadows.

“Let go of me.”

My voice is stronger than I thought I could muster. It’s commanding. My insides are trembling, but physically I’m holding up. His eyes are so horribly dark, just like the surrounding shadows of the forest. “Let go of me.”

One more hit, and he’s gone.

I stare back up at the leaves, the moon shining through the fog. Or maybe my eyesight is making it blurry. The air is cold as it rushes back into my lungs, chilling the cuts scraping up my legs and my left arm. My new pants are ripped where the right knee got caught on a sharp stick or something, a deep gauge behind the material. The sound of the leaves rustling in the wind is screaming in my ears, my hearing enhanced by raging adrenaline.

Robert Mamberg is a whole lot more complicated than I thought.

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