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After heavy editing, here's what i came up with again for my first chapter. My second one is still in process, but just know that I'll have it done before May 10th at the latest.


I. Incubation


It all begins with a sound. Not a sharp, succinct sound, but one that drools on with the benevolence of a soft degree, loud enough to barely be heard. Did I say it was benevolent? Well now it’s not. The volume approaches its peak, loud enough for me to say goodbye to the happy reveries I was basking in just moments before, gone for good. Just like my freedom and my respect. That much is made clear based upon where I’ve woken up in…or what I’ve woken up in.

The sheer darkness sends me into a panic already. So black, that my mind immediately wanders off to its darkest corners for means of an explanation. But then…

The one source of light that I can see makes its presence known as focus fills my sleep-driven eyes. It is a low-lit amber light bulb hanging from a noose-tight cord in the ceiling. And I can only see that four walls enclose my space, nothing more.

I feel sore throughout my entire body, but my head feels explicitly worse. So I place my hands on my head to massage it, when I realize it’s completely shaven off. Wait, no it’s not, not completely. I can feel a clump of hair on the back of my neck, in the formation of 2 circles banded together. But why is my head shaven?

I lose my focus. Suddenly the inside of my head is pounded with pain, hard enough for me to lose my train of thought, and then I scream. It appears that the walls are closing in. I can hear them closing in. I scream again, the noise grows in volume. And then sudden silence.

I wait for a few seconds, regain focus again, and from what I can tell, the walls are back to their normal positions, though I can’t entirely be sure. The amber bulb suddenly fritzes brightly for a moment and then explodes, the glass falling on top of me. My one source of light, gone. Blackness again for a few seconds.

Then the brighter lights come on. From the top of the ceiling, neon lights illuminate the room and portray the hell that I've been brought into.

The walls are filled with green wallpaper, a puke green. There’s a red door in front of me, and a window to my right. A red brick wall covers up the outside of the window completely, forcing dreadful thoughts of prisons into my mind, with no way out.

Closer examination of the concrete floor I’m standing on brings about a new discovery. Parts of it are darker than the others, marked in some sort of paint. The paint makes out multiple lines and curves, and as I walk around the room, those markings form out letters, then words. A specific message clearly spells out that something more sinister is going on here, as I read: “WELCOME TOM.” Dread consumes my brain.

Thus the thought that this might just be a horrible nightmare I’m in becomes endangered, then extinct. Someone brought me here tonight, to this room. Or is it morning? Caring about it fails me, so I decide there’s nothing better for me to do than go through the door. I run for it by instinctual reaction.

I can’t go through the door, it’s locked.

I curse under my breath. Whoever did this wouldn’t make it easy for me, that much was certainly a fraction of reality. Whatever reality I can grasp at this point.

I begin to look further around the room. Except for the smashed light bulb, I can’t seem to find anything of use to open the door.

One of the bricks in the window suddenly pushes itself out from the wall and falls down to the floor, murdering the silence immediately with a violent passion. I scream again, but this time from sudden fright.

After waiting a minute or so to calm down, I can grasp 2 more fractions of reality. First, it’s still dark out, and it appears to be raining profusely. Second, the brick has a hollowed out spot in one of its sides, where there’s a piece of parchment paper within. I care not to look through the hole in the wall it made, for fear of someone watching me.

That fear is easily confirmed when I hear a beeping noise from above. I look up and realize that a small camera hangs on the wall opposite the one with the walled-off window, staring right at me with its malignant glass eye. I stare back at it, and another realization comes from chaos into order: that someone is watching me right now. I hope the camera has audio recording, because it would be a shame for the words I start spewing to go to waste.

I see that there’s nothing better to do but look at the paper. It says: You’ve Got to Pick a Pocket or 2. Then I check my pockets. I see that in my left is a brass key which by logic should fit the door up ahead, and then in my right, a switchblade knife. I check the door, the key fits.

The knife ready at my side, I take a deep breath to prepare myself for whatever lies ahead, and I think to myself for a few more seconds to recap all that’s happened so far. And then my thoughts turn to them. I swear on every breath I have that if whoever is behind this did anything to them, I will make sure that they pay dearly. I’ll make them suffer until they’re hanging on the last threads of life, and then they’ll beg for me to kill them. I hope that’s not what’s happening to me right now…

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