The Taste of Revenge This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

March 11, 2011
By , Jupiter, FL
Chapter 1: Into the Hospital

Sheila’s heart pounded like a drum as she and her older brother Jonathon approached the abandoned Awakened New York hospital. It was now dusk and Sheila was sure that around that time, it was the start of the Dark Ones’ reign over the deserted city until dawn the next day. The two siblings were armed with only fully loaded, automatic machine guns and a switchblade for each of them. The two silently crept up to the main front doors of the hospital, which was sure to have hundreds of Dark Ones’ living inside. Jonathon was in front, and as he turned around to his younger sister, he asked in a warning tone,
“You sure you want to do this? It looks pretty dangerous…”
Sheila gulped nervously in reply, quivering uneasily,
“Why are we doing this again?” she asked timidly. Jonathon sighed,
“During the Awakening, the Colonists used this hospital as a safety shelter before it was overrun by the Dark Ones. There’s bound to be tons of supplies still left over here…”
“And tons of Dark Ones…” Sheila said under her breath. Jonathon must’ve not heard her, because he slowly creaked open the front sliding doors (which no longer slid) of the hospital and scuttled inside.
“Make sure you’re flashlight attachment on your gun is on, and turn on your night-vision so you won’t lose me.” And Sheila turned on her flashlight attached to the end of her gun, turned on her night-vision goggles, and entered the pitch black hospital along with her brother. When they entered the facility, Jonathon spat in disgust,

“I can smell the rotten odor of the Dark Ones. They’re here, and I’m guessing they’re awake…” from the distance, Sheila could hear a wild howl from one of the Dark Ones somewhere in the hospital. She had never actually seen a Dark One, but her brother Jonathon, who had gotten a scar across his left eye from a fight with one, had told her terrifying stories of razor sharp fangs for teeth; green, rotted skin, and yellow, plague-filled, evil eyes. The picture in her mind had never left, and now she was about to see if her dark visions of the creatures were correct.

The two siblings crept silently down the haunted corridors of the hospital, shining their flashlights in all of the dark corners. As they were walking, an old crate fell off of a shelf, making a loud crash, and a loud scream from Sheila. Jonathon jumped and bolted around, ready to fire at a Dark One who was harming her sister, but it was nothing but a wild pack of rats. Jonathon sighed in relief,

“Try to keep your voice down! You don’t want them knowing we’re here, do you?!” he hissed, and continued forward.

“I think they already do…” Sheila said quietly as she saw a pair of red glowing eyes in the shadows, which quickly scurried off when she shined her flashlight on it. She continued walking with her brother for several more minutes, passing through more corridors and passing more abandoned hospital rooms, until something made her stop dead in her tracks. She looked to her right as she came to a four-way turn, startled by what she thought was someone’s voice. She looked into the darkness of the corridor, until she heard the voice again. It was a woman’s voice, which, as she listened closer, found was calling her name. The voice sounded eerily familiar, and the more she stopped and listened, the more the voice became louder and clearer. She turned forward to see her brother was about twenty feet ahead, and she called for him to stop. He turned around to her and asked,

“What is it?”

She began telling him about the voices she heard,

“Don’t you hear them?”

Jonathon looked at Sheila like she was going insane, not like she already was.

“Hear what?” Sheila shushed her older brother, listening quietly to the ever growing voices. Jonathon obviously didn’t hear them, because he just rolled his eyes and turned around, continuing forward. But Sheila stayed, staring down the pitch black corridor, where the voices where echoing down toward her. Now she was sure the voices where calling her, telling her to come down the corridor to them. Suddenly, the woman voice was joined by a second voice, a man’s. Sheila’s gentle brown eyes suddenly dilated, filling with tears. At that moment, she realized that the voices calling her where her parents, who went missing a year before, shortly after the Awakening.

Sheila’s legs were quivering, not knowing what to think. She had dreamed day and night to see her parents again, and now the time had finally come. She started running forward, hearing nothing but the voices, which were so loud they were drowning out the screams from Jonathon to stop and to come back, and that it was a trap. She knew that he was chasing her, but she was running so fast he almost immediately fell behind, and she didn’t care. She needed to see her parents.

She ran forward through the pitch blackness, not knowing what was in front of her, her brother’s muffled cries no longer to be heard. The voices sounded so sweet and innocent and loving, just as they had been a year before, when they were around. But then Sheila started to realize a change in the voices. The voices of her sweet, loving parents began morphing with that of Dark Ones. She started to turn around, but it was too late. As she suddenly stopped, the ground below her caved in, and she fell through the hospital floor. She plummeted through the tile floor, with pieces of tile falling with her, and she fell for what seemed like hours, floating peacefully in midair.

All she could think was, “I was tricked. Tricked by those demons!” she screamed in her mind. Her body quaked in anger as she fell, until finally she hit the ground with a thud. She was in a sandpit, lit only with a dim light that hung from the roof of the pit. Her gun was nowhere to be seen; only her switchblade was left attached to her side. Jonathon was also gone, leaving her all alone in the empty pit of sand. She got to her feet, brushing sand off of her camo pants and grey t-shirt. She cursed silently, angry with herself for being fooled by those mindless Dark Ones. They had been toying with her mind once again.

It was silent in the dimly lit sandpit; Sheila was all alone, so she decided to spend her time searching for a way out. She tried climbing up the walls, but they were too steep. Then she had an idea. She took her switchblade and jabbed it into the wall; the blade went right through, and so she used it as a way to pull herself up. But before she could begin to climb the wall, she heard a low grumbling sound coming from the shadows of the pit. Sheila immediately drew her blade and got into a fighting stance, pointing her knife towards the shadows of the sandpit.

Then, glowing yellow eyes could be seen coming from an area of the shadows. She jumped in surprise, and then loosened herself so she could prepare for a fight with a Dark One. The creature lunged from the shadows, its appearance matching Jonathon’s description perfectly: scabby, green, decomposing skin; evil, plague-filled, yellow eyes; long, sharp claws for hands; razor sharp fangs for teeth; and rotted, old bones sticking out of them. The creature was howling, showing it’s razor fang teeth which were dripping in blood. The demented being charged at Sheila; she readied herself just right. Finally, the Dark One was just about to grab Sheila, and she jumped out of the way.

When the demonic being found it had missed, it turned around and glared at Sheila, roaring in frustration. Sheila readied herself for a second charge from the creature, but instead, to her surprise, the creature started talking,

“You’re a fighter!” it growled in a raspy, menacing voice. Sheila’s eyes widened,

“You can talk?” she asked, amazed. The Dark One grinned,

“We all can,” it sneered. “Now, keep playing with me! I enjoy your hesitation to make yourself my meal…” and it lunged again. This time, Sheila jumped the other direction, but the Dark One had been expecting that. As soon as Sheila dove the other direction, the Dark One reached out its hand as it ran and clawed her in the arm as it ran by. Sheila grasped her arm, howling in pain. The next thing she knew, the Dark One was looming over her, ready to make the finishing move. It grinned evilly, blood dripping from its fang-teeth,

“Too easy…” the creature said. Sheila reached for her knife and attempted to stab the creature in defense, but it swatted it away effortlessly. “You think you can beat me? Ha! The mortals are doomed from this planet! The Dark Ones will rule!” it began laughing sinisterly, and Sheila closed her eyes and lowered her head in defeat. She was done for. Finished. Soon she would be part of the enemy she sought to destroy.

Suddenly, the Dark One fell silent, and only a thud was heard. Sheila opened her eyes in confusion. She then jumped back in shock as she saw the Dark One, dead on the ground. The side of its head was oozing blood, where her knife was stuck straight through. She then saw the slayer of the creature, a hooded man wearing a dark brown cloak, wearing a necklace with a cross.

“Back to the netherworlds from which you came, demon!” the mysterious hooded man shouted. The hooded man then took of his head, revealing his face. His hair was a brilliant grey, short, and spikey.
His eyes were a bright, gorgeous lime green. Like Jonathon, he had a long white scar across his neck, connecting his jaw to his chest. He looked like he was around 35. Sheila spoke to the man in the cloak,

“Who are you?” she asked. The man smiled,

“I am Oswald, priest of St. Smithson Catholic Church. And you are?” he helped Sheila to her feet, her arm suddenly burning. She looked at her arm, which was now a severe gash, oozing blood that was mixed with strange green goo.

“I’m Sheila,” she said sorely. Oswald the priest looked at Sheila’s arm wound, the slash from the Dark One she’d been fighting.

“Oh my!” Oswald gasped. “We need to get you vaccinated!” the priest then put her arm around Sheila, helping her walk away to a passageway on the other side of the sandpit, which Sheila obviously hadn’t seen. Sheila began speaking to the priest,

“Why did you come here?” she asked.

“I was around hunting for more food in the sewers, and I saw you were in a bit of trouble. So, I decided to help you out.”

Sheila was a bit confused, “But, you’re a priest! Aren’t you not supposed to kill?”

Oswald’s face darkened, “Yes, but it also one of my duties to eliminate any corruption from this world, which I have done by slaying that Dark One. But that was only one out of many.”

“One out of many?” Sheila asked. Oswald’s face darkened again,

“I’m going to rid the world of the entire race of Dark Ones.”

Sheila was about to say something, but Oswald changed the subject,

“Come, we must heal your bite before you start changing!” and the two made their way to Oswald’s hideout, his church; leaving Sheila wondering whether to trust this man, or to leave and try finding her brother.

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