Cybil woke up drenched in sweat so profusely that had she stayed tucked in bed she would have definitely not seen the light of day. She scrambled out of bed, feeling as if worms were still writhing over her skin. The cool touch of their pale skin still sensational on her own.
Despite the freezing temperature, she walked herself into the shower and stood under the barely Luke warm water. Her flannel pyjamas gaining kilos as the water eagerly seeped into its every fiber. Can you forget? The voice still rung eerie in her head, like a distant whisper half lost in the sound of the wind. Can you keep your eyes closed and not see it any more?
It was only when the pile of autumn leaves flashed in her mind that Cybil scrambled out of the shower. Afraid. Her heart thudded in her chest as if she’d run a mile. She peeled her soaking pyjamas off and threw them away as if the clothes were dirty, laced with the very soil that had muddied her hands. Her hands! She brought both up to see them, palms, back, palms again. They were as clean as she was. The shivering had already set in and her teeth clattered, setting off another glimpse of the horrid dream. It sounded like rattling bones to her. She shivered, not from the cold but from the thought and ran back out to her room, stark naked.
Her twin glared at her from the book she was holding. ‘I thought I’d give this back to you.’ She said slow and deliberate, staring Cybil from head to toes. ‘Are you doing drugs again?’ Her one eyebrow rose up in a question. Cybil shook her head, trying to grab something, anything from her bed to cover herself. ‘Fine, don’t tell me.’ Gwin shook her head and walked out, closing the door behind her.
Cybil grabbed her fleece robe, slide it around her petite frame and sat shivering on the edge of the bed. A young woman’s face flashed in her mind. She lay in an awkward position, like a rag doll thrown to the floor. Her head cocked at an odd angle, turned away from her body, chin up, eyes barely closed, her mouth slack, though it had a natural curve that made her look as if she were smiling. The figure blinked. Her eyes turning to Cybil, her smile widening. Why don’t you tell her? She asked, forever with that smile.
Cybil shivered. Frightened as ever.
The dreams had started a month back. Ever since she had stood on a bridge ready to end her own life but the height had frightened her and she had passed out. The police had brought her back, and since then, the woman under the leaves had appeared. Something about her set Cybil off, like she should know who she was.
Cybil crawled into bed, pulled the covers all the way to her neck and stared at her lampshade on the side table. The past month she’d been sleeping with her lights on.