Something is digging into my back and I wake up with a start as suddenly realize that I don't know where I am. I blink and rub my eyes hoping that when I open them things will be a bit clearer but when I open them I am still completely lost. I am sitting in what seems to be an alley behind a large bin that smells horrendous.
I stand to my feet and almost fall to my knees as a searing pain shoots up my leg. I fall to the ground and fall against something soft. I push myself into a sitting position to see what I landed on. A scream catches in my throat as I half roll, half fall off of the body that lies motionless on the ground, the man's sightless eyes staring back at me and sending a violent chill down my back.
I drag myself to the other side of the narrow alley and press my back up against the brick wall and force myself to breathe, though it's nearly impossible with those eyes boring into me and no matter how hard I try I cannot seem to turn away from his gaze. I swallow and try to remember how it was that I ended up lost in an alley with a blind man but all I can remember was helping Jaden bring the Cyborg inside and then him telling me about some secret self-defense skills that I had no idea I had. I had gone off to my room and the next thing I know I'm waking up in the alley.
The sun is starting to go down now and I realize that lost or not, the last thing I want to do is sleep across from a dead man. I pull myself gingerly to my feet and limp to toward the road. There's no one to be seen, and I grip the wall to study myself as I get my bearings. A man and woman round the corner and I call out to him weakly. They turn and the woman gasps and moves behind the man.
The man steps forward but I can tell he's nervous as he makes sure the girl stays behind him. "Are you ok?"
I nod, "I think I twisted my ankle."
The woman nudges him and he turns his head toward her, never for a moment taking his eyes off me. She whispers something in his ear and he turns back toward me. "You shouldn't be out here. It's dangerous for someone of your level. Not all Creations of the Land are as kind as we are. Some like to prey on those that have no connection to the oubliette." His eyes sweep over me as he continues, "But it looks like you've already discovered that."
My head is starting to spin and I struggle to grasp what he's saying. "What are you talking about?"
He nods toward me, "Well look at yourself. You look like you got into quite the scuffle, maybe hit your head. It's a shame, no hospital will take a character of your rank..."
His words float over me and fade away. My heart is beating at a hundred miles a minute as I examine my hands and the stains on my shirt. For the first time since waking up I realize that I am covered in blood and worst of all I know that it isn't mine.