“Tarnished” Part 5

Drugged and abducted, Hannah’s body has obviously been abused. Unfortunately, the police can’t find any solid evidence to support her claims. Apparently, the bizarre markings on her body simply aren’t enough….

“But the man, surely you can do something with his description? And his name, that can’t be common.” Bernie was furious with his inability to control the situation. He wanted to make her better, keep the world at bay, but he couldn’t.

“We’ll send up a police artist, but I don’t hold out much hope. I’m sorry, Mr. Shipman.” Sullenly, they left.

“We’ll find who did this to you, Hannah-banana. I won’t let anyone hurt you anymore, I promise.”

“Thanks, Bernie.” She whispered as the drugs kicked in. She fell asleep with his comforting hand on her brow.

Kier’s face floated up in front of her. There was laughter. She felt the blazing pain of the silver as it touched her. Writhing away from the metal, she screamed. Others laughed, one voice joined by many.

To her left, she saw the play of light on metal. Turning her head, she saw one of the wicked silver knives from the table upstairs. She couldn’t see who held it, but it moved at her with lightning swiftness. Another burning pain just below her breast.

“Why are you doing this?” She screamed.

“Thou shalt not suffer a witch to live!” The woman yelled.

Voices joined his. “Thou shalt not suffer….!”

Screaming, she woke in the hospital bed. Cold sweat bathed her body. The sheets and blankets were tangled around her arms and legs. The hospital was silent, no one stirred. It was creepy as hell in the dark. She hit the nurse’s call button. Not expecting an immediate response, she was startled when the intercom beside her head crackled.

“Yes?”

“I need to go to the bathroom,” Hannah made up an excuse.

“Of course, dear. Someone will be with you soon.”

“Thank you.”

She groped for the light above her bed, pulling the chain. It flickered on, blinking erratically for several seconds before settling into an eerie, blue-white glow.

The door opened suddenly, making Hannah jump. A woman in a snug uniform backed into the room.

“Someone needs to use the bathroom?” She turned and Hannah gasped in horror. It was the woman from the store.

Grabbing the call button, she pressed repeatedly, screaming like a mad woman. No one answered.

“Help!” She screeched. “Help me! Help!” Hannah pulled the blankets over her head in a childish attempt to protect herself.

Sounds of running in the hallway, soft soled shoes squeaking on the tile floor. Three nurses and an aide rushed through the door, slamming it back into the wall. The tall woman from the shop wasn’t among them. She was gone!

“Are you all right, honey?” The charge nurse, an older black woman approached her cautiously. “You got to lie back down and rest. Dr. Zimmerer was real specific about that.”

“There was someone here! Someone who wasn’t supposed to be! She was here!”

“Who was?” The aide approached her slowly. She was a middle aged white woman with graying hair.

“The woman from the store, she and her son did this to me.”

“Honey,” the charge nurse said cajolingly. “You was just having a bad dream. I’m gonna give you something to help you sleep better.” She approached with a syringe.

“I don’t want it,” Hannah protested. “I don’t want a shot.”

“Doctor’s orders. If you get too upset, I’m supposed to give you a shot.”

“Call my fiancé. I want to talk to him. I don’t want a shot!” Hannah became more agitated.

The nurses withdrew and the aide dialed the phone. After several rings, Bernie answered sleepily. “Hannah? What’s wrong?”

She told him about the dream and seeing the woman in her room. Near hysterics, she begged him to come to the hospital.

“I’m coming, Hannah-banana. I’ll be there in fifteen minutes, I promise.” He hung up.

She held the phone to her chest, crying softly as the aide took it from her and hung it up. “You want me to stay until your man comes?” She had soft brown eyes, like a deer.

“Please. I don’t want to be alone right now.”

“Sure thing, Ms. Simpson.” She drew up a chair and sat next to the bed.

Hannah’s hand strayed over and touched the nurse on the wrist. A white hot pain shocked her fingers. The woman was wearing a silver bracelet!

“Take that off, please. I’m allergic to silver.”

“Sure thing, honey.” She stood up, took off the bracelet, put it in her pocket and washed her hands thoroughly before sitting back down.

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