Alice opens her eyes and does not have a headache. She remembers falling and hitting her head, but there is no accompanying headache. She puts her hand to her forehead but there is no pain and no swelling. Yet she is sure she has tripped and that she hit her head as she fell. So where is the bruise and were is the headache? Alice bruises like a peach. And one always got a headache when one received a blow to the head. She is sure of it.
She takes a deep breath.
She had definitely fallen because she is lying on her back on a very hard surface. A very, very hard surface. Her back aches, but it is the pain you get from lying on a hard surface for too long, not the pain from falling suddenly onto one. She can not describe the difference to you, but she can definitely recognise it.
So she has been lying on her back on this hard surface for a long time, but she does not have a bruise and she does not have a headache.
It is most confusing.
She rolls her head to the side and sees blackness. That is not say that she passed out, but literally she sees something that is black. She lifts her head a little and sees that it is a black tile, and that this black tile is surrounded by white tiles; white tiles that are inter-spaced with more black tiles.
She is, in fact, lying on a tiled floor. A floor tiled with inter-spaced black and white tiles. A common enough flooring. One, for instance, that is used extensively throughout her school. But not one used commonly used to floor gazebos.
No, she is sure, gazebos are usually floored in wood. Usually, in fact, the same type of wood that the walls and roof were made from. Yes, she has definitely never seen black and white floor tiles in a gazebo.
She sits up and looks around.
She is definitely not in her gazebo. Which makes her think that she is definitely not in her back garden either. A fact confirmed when she looks beyond her feet and sees a long, slowly curving, corridor stretching into the distance. The black and white tiles making that funny zig-zag pattern as they recede into the distance. The corridor is flanked by bland magnolia coloured walls, with out any doors, or windows, or any markings of any kind.
“This corridor is definitely longer than our garden,” she confirms.
Her face lit up in sudden realisation.
“Oh, I know where I am,” she nods to herself. “I am in hospital.”
“Yes,” she looks down at the black and white floor tiles. “They use this type of floor in a hospital.”
“And,” she looks along the corridor. “They always have long corridors in hospital.”
“And,” She looks at the walls, “They always paint the walls magnolia in hospitals too. I am sure every hospital I have ever been in has had magnolia coloured walls.”
“That must be it,” she reassures herself. “I fell and hit my head and I have been taken to hospital.”
“Though,” she looks around again. “Surely they will have put me in a bed on a ward, rather than have left me lying on the floor in the corridor?”
“Yes,” she continues to look around, though nothing has changed. “I am sure that the doctors and nurses would not leave their patients lying on the floor in corridors.”
She looks down the empty corridor and at the featureless magnolia walls, and shakes her head slowly.
“Oh, I know,” she brightens. “It’s simple. I must have fallen off the trolly while they were pushing me along the corridor and they will be back for me in a moment.”
She waits for the doctors and nurses to return for her.
“Just as soon as they realise that I have fallen off the trolly.”
She waits some more.
“Any moment now.”
But no one came.
She looks around once more, but does not archive anything more by looking around this time than she has from her previous looks around.
“Well I have not been inside very many hospitals, but I am quite sure that they are very busy places,” she looks down the empty corridor. “Full of people coming and going all of the time.”
There is complete silence once she has finished talking.
“Hmmm,” she chews her bottom lip. “Perhaps I am not in hospital after all.”
She looks around once more.
“No,” she slumps a little. “Not in hospital at all.”
She stops herself from looking around yet another time.
Instead she stands. And does not sway, does not feel lightheaded and does not want to sit down.
“Hmmm,” she stops herself from biting her bottom lip again. “Am I sure that I fell and hit my head?”
She has none of the symptoms of falling and hitting her head.
“In fact I feel quite well,” she blushes. “Apart, that is, from the fact that I appear to have started talking out loud to myself rather a lot.”
She thinks some more.
“But yet I distinctly remember the startled exclamation from my big sister,” she put her hands out in front of herself, as if catching herself in a fall. “And I remember falling forward.” She steps forward, “Into the gazebo.”
“So I must have hit my head,” she looks around again. “Else I would be lying on the floor of the Gazebo with my big sister shouting at me. And not standing in this strange corridor talking to myself.”
She considers everything once again and nods her head, “Of that I am quite sure.”
She looks around once more and notices something she had not seen before.
Directly across the corridor from her is a small mahogany table. The sort people put in their hallways to place their telephones on. And sitting on the small table, instead of a telephone, is an old fashioned medicine bottle with a cork stopper pushed into its top. Affixed by a string tied around the neck of the bottle is a small yellow tag.
Alice looks up and down the silent corridor but there is no sign of anybody, or anything, else.
Alice takes a step towards the table, but her footstep makes such a loud noise, which echoes along the corridor and makes her heart jump, that she comes to an immediate stop.
“Oh, my,” Alice glances up and down the corridor, expecting at any moment for hordes of people to come running up to her to see what all the racket is about. But once the step is completed, and its echoes have faded, the corridor remains as silent, and as empty of anyone else, as before the inception of the step.
Alice takes another step, this time trying to step as quietly as she possibly can, but once again a thunderous noise accompanies her step. And once again Alice waits while the echoes fade to see if even one person will approach to enquire as to the source of such a clamorous racket. But once again the corridor returns to silence and as Alice looks up and down all she can see are the magnolia walls and black and white floor tiles receding into the distance.
Feeling somehow naughty, as if she were a burglar in someone else’s home, Alice crosses to the table; each footstep echoing along the corridor; but none producing even a solitary enquiry as to its source. By the time she reaches the table her heart is beating wildly and she is tingling all over with excitement.
Particularly, she notes, her nipples were feeling very sensitive and she has a peculiar feeling in the base of her tummy, way down below her bellybutton.
How unusual, she thinks, it is not particularly cold in this corridor. And I have not been drinking any fizzy drinks recently to make my tummy fizz up.
But her eyes are drawn once again to the little bottle. And she is filled once more with curiosity.
Licking her lips, she reaches to pick it up. But as soon as her fingers touch the cold glass of the bottle a static shock run up her arm and down through her entire body.
Her hand involuntary jerks away from the bottle and she jumps into the air with a startled yelp.
Her mouth is dry, her heart is beating fast, her nipples are so hard they almost hurt, her tummy is all atingle and her knees feel as if they are about to give way.
“And,” she says out loud, “I mush have peed myself a little, for my panties feel damp.”
“Oh!” she put her hand to her mouth, suddenly realising that she has spoken out aloud about peeing herself.
But her voice, unlike her footsteps, produces no loud echo along the corridor, and a quick glance up and down confirms that there is no one here to hear what she has said.
Steading herself against the table she gingerly reaches out to touch the label that is attached to the bottle with the tips of her fingers. She lets out the breath she did not know she was holding when touching the label produces no accompanying shock. Gently she holds the label and, slowly and carefully, concerned to avoid touching the glass of the bottle, or disturb it in any way, she turns the label over.
There she finds, written in very neat joined-up handwriting, the words “Drink Me”.
“Drink Me?” she considers “How can one drink the contents of a bottle when one can not even touch the bottle?”
But the words “Drink Me” burn in her mind.
Very slowly, her hand shaking with anticipation, she reaches for the bottle. Her fingertips touch the bottle and she jerks her hand back. But there had been no shock. She had jerked her hand back out of pure expectation, and not from the physical realisation of any shock.
Slowly she touches her fingers to the bottle again. The glass is ice cold to her touch, but otherwise unremarkable.
“Someone must have been keeping it in a freezer. But yet,” she looks closer, “there is no frost on it.”
She leans to the side to peer around to the back, confirming the bottle’s pristine condition. “Curiouser and curiouser,” she mumbles.
She looks up and down the corridor, expecting to be discovered at any moment, before taking the bottle in her hand and bringing it up to her face to have a better look at it.
She turns it to the left, she turns it to the right, she tilts it back and forward, looks at the top of the cork and the base of the bottle, but there is not a single mark on it. In fact it does not look as if there has ever been a label affixed, not anything at all, not even a price sticker.
She has also never seen a cork stuck in the top of a bottle before. It is like something one would see in a cartoon or an old movie, not something one would normally come across in the real world.
“Well,” Alice shrugs. “If I am going to drink it I suppose I might as well open it.”
She takes hold of the cork and, holding the bottle at arms length, afraid of what might happen, with her eyes half closed and her face averted, she carefully pulls the cork out of the bottle.
Nothing happens. There is no static shock, no giant echo, not even a small explosion. There is nothing.
Nothing that is except that the cork came out smoothly, with not even the smallest of pops.
She looks up and down the empty corridor. She looks at the inanimate bottle in her hand. She looks at the cork held in the other.
Still nothing happens.
She waits some more.
Nothing continues to happen.
She lets out her breath and relaxes a little, looking from left to right, from the bottle to the cork and back once more.
Slowly she brings her hands closer to her face and winkling her nose slightly she sniffs the cork. It smelts of peppermint.
She holds the bottle under her nose and sniffs. It too smelts of peppermint.
“Hmm,” Alice shrugs. “I have never heard of peppermint flavours medicine.” She thinks some more, “Or poison.”
She puts the cork down and turns the bottle slowly in her hands, carefully not to spill any of its contents.
Tag Cloud#fictionfriday 1Song1Week1Year Alexandra Alice analysis paralysis BDSM block day job DJ-DJS Domestic Service ebook Erotic Erotica finish Flash Flash Fiction Holly Lisle howto Julie Justine Master Music News Podacst Progress publish Reading Seducing a Girl September Resolution Short Story speed bump story Tenori-On Terminal Singularity tweets Video Video Podcast Vlog Web Stuff word count Writers block Writing writing career writing craft YouTube