Chapter _; book ii
Working chapter title: the taste of fear; the promise of the blind
Beneath the startlingly flourescent lights, Eden stumbled blindly along the city streets. Navigating through the crowd of commuters became increasingly unlikely; every step forward felt like two steps to the side. Her index finger and thumb pressed forcefully against her brow and temple as she attempted to choke back the nausea one more time. She could taste her lunch creeping back up her throat. Her head was pounding; a constant drumming noise echoing within her skull, hard and loud. Interminable, almighty.
Her damp palm made purchase on the cool cement wall and she peeled open her eyes. Dizzy from the queasiness that seemed to seep from muscle to muscle in her body, she lost her footing and felt the sharp crack of her tailbone hitting the sidewalk. Something had to be dangerously wrong, she began to realize; her disorientation grew with each intake of breath. With her eyes fully open, she saw blurred silhouettes all around her, glowing so luminously she wasn't sure she was really seeing anything at all.
She knew people milled about her, she could smell them; every time someone shoved passed her she felt the pressure of another figure against her skin, but she saw no body. Nothing except a burning white effulgence.
Hundreds of them, moving quickly in all directions. Her eyes hurt from their brightness. She was surrounded by white-hot beacons.
Somewhere beyond the overwhelming misery in her head, she could hear the sound of traffic. The commotion of city life, bustling and chaotic. It appeared far away, but she was almost certain she'd seen a car moving between two glimmering spots of light. Eden had suffered through migraines throughout her life, even more in the last few years, but this was different. This was definitely not normal, she conceded to herself, swallowing down another wave of wooziness. She closed her eyes and shielded them further with her hand, hoping the darkness would help her overcome whatever was causing such pandemonium in her body.
She was beginning to feel frightened; the noise of the city and the agony in her head was enough, but the strange visions that overpowered her sight were worse. She'd been fine when she woke up, and the realization that she'd done nothing to bring this on herself was what really had her heart racing. It occured to her suddenly that she may not be able to get herself home, and the idea of being on these streets in such a vulnerable state much longer was panicking. She had to call someone, she had to get home.
She had to get off these streets before the wrong person came along and found her.
"Dial Malcolm," she mumbled, hoping her bluetooth would recognize the command without any issues. When the vomit reached the back of her mouth, she had no chance to fight it, only enough time to turn over and not upchuck her chicken club into her lap. In her ear, she heard ringing.
She had to finish spitting out the remnants of her late lunch before she could answer. "Malcolm," she sounded whiney, but she hardly had the energy to care, "I need you to come get me."
"Where are you?"
"I don't know," it was easy to hand over control of the situation to Malcolm. He was capable, she comforted herself, he could fix this. "Please hurry," her voice was strained with the looming threat of tears. She opened her eyes for an instant, hoping against the odds that her vision had returned to normal.
It hadn't, she discovered.
In fact, there was nothing except the empty whiteness. "I can't see," she wailed, unable to find any molecule of control to stop the desperation in her cry.