barking. i hear barking. and footsteps . a flashlight shines on my face and the light burns. i groan. at the sudden pain.
"We have a live one." someone yells into the distance.. the shadow of a man kneels down. fear spikes through me. I'm terrified that this person is going to kill me too. who else would stack endless bodies in a room?
the man reaches out a hand.
"no…" I murmur trying in vain to block him with my own. "please. don't…"
The man shushes me. "you're safe now." he says.
"who…" I begin, but I can't make out the rest. The scene around me blurs and fades.
"hey! stay awake!" The voice commands me. "You have a concussion. need to stay awake! "
I barely hear him. the entire world is ebbing away.
"stay with me!" I hear just before the darkness takes hold of me and I fall into oblivion.
"Stay with me." Malvin orders. It's not a request. "be my bride."
"I'd rather die." I spit.
"that, unfortunately is not an option." he tells me, then adds with a smile. "but Benjen's death can be arranged if you really wish it."
In that moment, I loathe him. More than loathe him. There are no words for what I feel for this hateful, cruel mockery of a human being.
I do not waver.
"you don't want to marry me." I stare him straight in the eyes. "you want to enslave me. Use me up. Drain me of my power and play with whatever scraps you might leave behind"
"Well that does sound fun now, doesn't it?" his eyes gleam. "But you're thinking too small. I have much bigger plans for you. You and I, we're going to do great things."
I shiver. Somehow I know what he's planning will be just the opposite.
"She's awake!" A voice states the obvious, as I drowsily open my eyes. A man in blue scrubs is hovering over me. "It says here your name is Miss Caitlyne Daniels. is that correct?"
I nodded, still half asleep, my head heavy. my body groggy.
He shined a pen light in my eyes.
"ahh" I winced at the pain.
"sorry bout that." The man in scrubs smiled. he had an accent i couldn't place. "pupils dilated normally… good.." he muttered to himself.
"Cassie." I added.
"my name. It's Cassy. I don't like being called Caitlyne."
"Ok Cassy." he smiled brightly again. I liked his smile. "Can you rate your pain for me on a scale of 1- 10 for me. ten being the highest-"
"Wait..Where am I? What's going on?" Questions flooded my brain "Who are you? Is that a brogue? It's hot." My mouth gaped open. I hadnt intended to say that last part. It had just come tumbling out.
" did I just say that out loud?" I mumbled in shock.
He chuckled. "Yes you did. I think that's enough morphine for you." he pushed some buttons on a side table.
My cheeks blushed. I looked around. monitors that beeped and buzzed filled the room. The smell of chemicals stung my nose. I was in a bed. a hospital bed. this was a hospital. my face lit up with confusion.
"Has there been an accident? Are you my doctor or something?"
He smiled soothingly. "No not your doctor. I'm your nurse for today. And it's lilt."
"You're names lilt?" I asked with doubt tingeing my voice. "oh… that's um… interesting… I mean nice. it's a nice name."
He laughed out loud this time, shaking his head.
"no no no." he corrected. "I meant the accent is called a lilt not a brogue. scotts have brogues. we here have lilts. a vital difference."
"oh… wait. we here? where exactly is here?" my eye brows knit together.
" which hospital you mean?" he asked.
"no. yes. I mean I know I'm in a hospital obviously but what city…. heck what state am I in?"
he looked puzzled. "you mean county?"
I sighed. "sure. what county? "
"Meath." He answered, as if I had any idea as to what that meant.
"what the heck is a meath?"
"It's where you are. County Meath. We brought you to the nearest hospital in Navan."
"I've never heard of these places." I smiled at my ignorance. "Is it near orlando? miami? how far away from home am I?"
he scowled, his eyebrows pushing together. "Miss, you're not in the US."
"what?" I didnt understand. I had never even been to another state, let alone an entirely different country. " That doesn't make sense. I've never even been outside of florida."
"Well you're definitely not near Florida now. heard it's nice though. beaches and such."
" I dont understand. How did I get here?"
his scowl deepened. "You mean you don't know?"
He went on after i didn't answer. " Well, there's a team of baffled detectives out there,, hoping you could tell them."
"well sorry to disappoint but i don't know anything." I told him. "the last thing I remember is waking up in a shed with…"
I shuddered as the memories came rushing back to me.
limbs. blood. bodies. pain. my voice became frantic , my heart raced in my chest. I couldn't breathe. I COULDNT breathe.
"oh my Gd.. Oh my Gd. This can't be real."
"Take a deep breath." He soothed. "you're hyperventilating."
"but how... why... I don't..."
"calm down" he said gently "You're having a panic attack. we don't need to talk now. rest."
"No!" I shouted. "I need to know! Am I in Canada or something?"
He shook his head his expression darkening.
"Mexico?" I asked in disbelief. "Is that why the name of this place sounds so… foreign."
Another shake of the head.
He got up to leave.
"Welcome to Ireland." he said simply and left the room.