Chapter 1 || Quoth the Raven “Nevermind” (6)

Trigger warnings: Violence, domestic violence, blood. More blood than usual. You know what, just assume blood as a given from now on

The house was furnished with long leather couches, a minimalist fireplace and even a fountain, yet it was a jarring imitation of luxury in a neighbourhood such as this. Though it was noon, all the blinds were fully down. An effort to keep the media at bay, perhaps.

“Why are you at my home, if you’re not the press?” asked the manager. “If it’s money you want…”

“We’re not interested in money,” said Cap. “We just wanna know one thing, Caden. The truth of why you were there, in your own words.”

“You can tell us,” said Rowan. “Don’t worry, we won’t tell a soul.”

“Start from the top,” said Cap.

“Why aren’t you there with them?” asked Zeke.

“I would be, but someone had to make sure you didn’t starve to death. Cap and Rowan didn’t want to miss the chance to play good cop bad cop, and Elowen, uh, wants to put off seeing you as long as possible. In fact, she would prefer not to see you ever again.”

“The feeling is mutual.”

“How much do you know?” asked the manager.

“Where to begin,” said Cap. “I know you dated Lexi Lilly.”

“My cat was our shared cat,” said Lexi Lilly.

“I know you shared the cat.”

“We were happy for almost a year.”

“But the bliss didn’t last past the anniversary, did it?”

“He started being jealous. Asking me where I’d been, who I was talking to…”

“You became controlling.”

“He yelled at me.”

“Then you started verbally abusing her.”

The manager’s face was white as a sheet and his hands trembled. “H-how…”

“He hit me once,” said Lexi Lilly quietly.

“And in the end, you resorted to violence,” said Cap. “And that wasn’t all, was it? Not even close. Look, Caden, I could keep going but we all know where this will end. We know everything, alright? How would it look if the world knew about this? So start talking, and don’t leave anything out.”

“So there are four of us,” said Alyssa. “The twins are spellcasters.”

“They’re twins, huh.”

“Yup. And Cap, eh, who knows what Cap is. He’s definitely a Sensitive like you, but is also a bit insane.”

“Wait, what do you mean by Sensitive?”

“You can see me, right? I’m sure you’ve guessed, but most people can’t.”

“What even are you exactly?”

“I don’t think there’s an official term,” said Alyssa, “but people call us ‘sleepwalkers’. I’ve also heard ‘comawalkers’ and ‘bloody abominations of nature’. Basically, we’re people in a coma whose consciousness wanders around.”

Why can I see you though?”

“Who knows? The one thing I’ve learnt while in this state is, there are rules, but most of them are made to be broken.”

Zeke put another letter into Alyssa’s outstretched hand. “Why are you telling me this stuff, by the way?” he asked. “What if I decide to jump out the window and tell the police?”

“Why, because they’re gonna believe you?”

That shut him up.

“They already came by,” said Alyssa. “Some snitches recognised us from the news. But we made sure we had alibis, and the police are now looking for people who look like us. A wild goose chase. I could ask the same to you though, why are you asking me this stuff?”

“I think it’s a pretty logical response,” said Zeke.

“I dunno, honestly we thought you’d try to ram the door down. I was even prepared to knock you out again.”

“…”

“It was the letters, those damn letters,” said the manager.

“It killed you to know she didn’t destroy them?” said Rowan.

The manager snorted. “Like she would. They were letters from her precious band leader.”

Lexi Lilly gasped. “Wait, are you talking about-”

“Lexi,” murmured Elowen.

“Oh, right. Sorry. He’s talking about the letters I wrote to Dilan, the leader of my old band. I never told anyone about those, how does he…”

“So the letters to Dilan,” said Rowan. “They sparked your jealousy.”

“You would have thought the same! She complained to him about me!”

“So, like I said, there are some general rules,” said Alyssa. “Unfortunately, most of the rules we’ve found have been broken at some point. So we gotta take them as guidelines rather than law.”

“Ok, what are some of the rules that haven’t been broken so far?”

“Well, bear in mind that we don’t have the biggest sample size. But one of them is, no one who wakes up from their coma remembers what they were up to when they were sleepwalking.”

“Uh huh.”

“Another good one is, the stronger your coma self gets, the weaker your corporeal self gets, and vice versa. That’s why, unless you’re a long term stable sleepwalker like me, you should try not to do things that push you closer to the other side.”

“Like what?”

“Like, trying to interact with people you know, that’s one of them. Most of the time, that’s no big deal. But like I said, there have been exceptions.”

“You’ve been opening my letters?” cried Lexi Lilly, her fingers curling up in indignation.

“Lexi,” murmured Elowen again.

Lexi Lilly bit her lip in anger.

“You said you have them, right?” continued the manager. “You saw what they were like. Back and forth they went, like two bloody lovebirds in a tree. It was that last letter she wrote. That damn letter, it just… I had suspected for some time, but to see the evidence that she had been cheating on me…”

What?” shrieked Lexi Lilly.

“‘I wrote this song thinking of you,’ she said. She wrote that song while we were still together! I couldn’t let her send that letter, that song should have been mine.”

“So you planned it,” said Cap. “Waited until night, covered your face, drove to her house.”

“No!” said the manager. “It wasn’t planned, I didn’t mean to do it! I was very drunk, and I just wanted to scare her. But she started screaming, and running, I don’t even remember having the knife-”

“Wait, what?”

The manager looked up. “What do you mean, what?”

You stabbed her? But that fan confessed,” said Rowan, bewildered.

“I… what… you said you knew…”

Three of the four heads in the room turned to Lexi Lilly.

“What are you looking at?” cried the manager.

Lexi Lilly couldn’t think. She couldn’t breathe. She couldn’t hear anything over the sound of her heartbeat. Her heartbeat as it pushed out the blood.

Over her clothes.

Over her hands.

<Previous 1-5 || Next 1-7>

11 thoughts on “Chapter 1 || Quoth the Raven “Nevermind” (6)

  1. Alyssa fascinates me. At any point in time, someone could go and plug the life support off from her body, and her sleepwalker self would go poof. And equally, if her physical body was to retain consciousness, she would loose all of her memories of her time with the group, presumably something she’s built most of her identity around, with having to leave her old life behind. That must feel very strange. But maybe strangely freeing too. Make every moment count, since it could all disappear instantly one way or another.

    (Random thought; I wonder how old Alyssa’s comatose body is, since she says she’s been like this for a long time. Does her sleepwalker form change and get older as the body does, or would she stay as she was at the time of “almost eath” and only the comatose body ages?)

    Are spellcasters something widely known about in this universe? Since Zeke seems more surprised by the fact the twins are twins than, ya know, them having magic. But in fairness to him he’s been forced to accept a lot of weirdness within a very short space of time so I can’s say I blame him for being like “spellcasters, yeah whatever.”

    So based on what Alyssa told us in this chapter the exact little mission Lexi is having the rest of the group run and going to confront her ex is chipping away at her physical body. That’s not great especially with the news she’s just.

    Oof, him straight up confessing like that is worrying – he likely has no intention for them to be able to leave. I know he thought they already knew, but that likely means he was just biding for time in this discussion while trying to figure out a way to dispose of them. I mean, the guy murdered someone over a song. At least there’s three of them and only one of him – not counting Lexi since I’m not sure she’ll be in a state to fight against him.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Alyssa is definitely in the least stable position out of all of them (physically, anyway), so all she’s got going is living for the moment, however long that may last. As for her aging, I’m gonna quote her and say, there are no absolute rules for this state 😊

      Zeke is doing his best to survive the day, even if it means focusing on all the wrong details. No, spellcasters are not widely known- Zeke is currently in listen first, absorb later mode. Later, parts of the conversation will start coming back to him, and he’ll go whaaaaaat?? But for now, yes Zeke… the twins are twins.

      Lexi Lilly however is not in the same mode as Zeke, and each fact is hitting her hard. Not good for her corporeal self. Unfortunately, she might not have too much control over that. To be fair, none of them were expecting that confession.

      You called it though, the manager IS the stabber! I set this up just like a Scooby Doo episode- the gang, the victim and one (1) other named character. Who’s the villain? Hmm… hard to say… He would have gotten away with it too, if it weren’t for those meddling kids! (I guess Zeke is there too, in the background, as a tortured observer.)

      The manager is a scumbag, but at least he’s honest about it 🤷‍♀️ If it turns into a fistfight, the gang will have to fight fair and send in their strongest fighter against him. It’s not honourable otherwise. Tune in next week for manager vs Elowen (man vs wild)!

      Liked by 1 person

  2. After reading the trigger warning, at every spot of red in every screenshot, I thought, Blood! But I still wasn’t prepared when I saw it.

    This chapter starts to explain a lot!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Hmm, do you think it would be better if I included another trigger warning closer to the actual scenes? I always strive to give adequate warning.

      Yup the mystery has started to unravel. We’re solidly in the second half now!

      Thanks for reading 😀

      Like

  3. That teaser into Alyssa’s backstory. So she’s a sleepwalker. How’d she end up being one. Do all who are in a coma sleepwalk? Or just a select few? Why/How’d she to be there in the first place? Ahhh the tease.

    Btw Cap posing with his wineglass and potions reminds me of Taurus for some reason. if this is a cameo its so cool!! 😃 i mean… alchemy right?

    Poor zeke haha. Although i kinda like that he is lost about everything so we get a breakdown on what’s going on and i have to say im loving how everything is coming together. I mean understanding the story btw and not what’s specifically unravelling in lex lily’s life. Gosh. To think he went to that extreme. I wonder what’s the truth. Did she really cheat?even if she did it doesn’t justify what happened between them. Idk about him saying its all an accident. Multiple stabbings is meant to scare someone? It was pure rage more like.

    Obviously i has no faith in the guy 😆

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Great questions! Like what Alyssa said, there aren’t many solid rules in her state of being. Her backstory is definitely planned for the future, so more on her then!

      Haha, I guess Cap does look like Taurus! It’s the hair, right? Unfortunately Taurus lived far before Cap’s time, but if they did meet I would assume they’d get along splendidly xD

      Poor Zeke indeed. We are all Zeke 😦 Drinking in a bar, missing classes. Classic Zeke.
      The manager is a scumbag and you are absolutely right not to have faith in him. Being drunk is no excuse for stabbing someone! Whether or not Lexi Lilly cheated and everything else will hopefully be revealed very soon.

      Thanks for reading!

      Like

  4. I loved the accompanying pictures with the explanation of who/what everyone was! Strangely I’m most interested in Cap. The derpy cat on his legs made me laugh 😂

    Having your consciousness wander while you’re in a coma is terrifying and terribly lonely both. I wonder how long Alyssa has been in a coma for. She’s obviously friendly with her group, so I’d guess a while at least, unless they knew each other before she slipped into a coma. Man, and they won’t remember anything when they wake up? That’s so sad. Especially if they’re with people that can see them and bonded with them. I wonder if that’s what’ll happen to Alyssa and Lexi when they wake up. If they wake up. And what will happen to their consciousness if they die? Does it just go poof?

    Oh gods. So it really was the manager that did it – and over something that might have been a misunderstanding, no less. Poor Lexi. I hope this doesn’t end up messing with her connection somehow, like Alyssa warned about people getting too close to the other side 😨

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Glad you like the pictures! They were super fun to make but oh gosh positioning all the props… Am I not doing it right? 😂 Cap is a funny guy. And the cat… looks kinda stoned. Oh dear.

      Yeah, it’s quite a sad state to be in, I imagine it to feel like an untethered boat floating on the sea. Alyssa is rather stable in her state now but it can still take a turn at any second. She’s made friends she won’t remember if she wakes up, so there’s no way to win. No matter which way she goes, it’s poof to her coma self.

      The manager, who was highly sus, was indeed scum! Poor Lexi indeed, she wasn’t ready for that drop. Whether or not she’ll cross that flimsy invisible line, we’ll have to see…

      Liked by 1 person

  5. OOooh, okay, so there are more people like Lexi around, the sleepwalkers. Such an interesting concept, I love it. It’s fun to imagine what comatose people might be thinking or even if they think. This is so cool that you’ve made their consciousness able to have lives of their own almost, at least in their daily activities. The manager killed her! *gasp*

    Liked by 1 person

  6. Alright, I’ve got so much to say. I KNEW IT WAS THE MANAGER! What a d**k that guy is. Jealous over nothing and frankly, even if something was happening it didn’t give him the right to put his hands on Lexi.

    Secondly, Lexi is breaking one of the big rules right now! What happens now? It seems like she’s in some kind of flashback to her murder…

    Thirdly, I love knowing what everyone is now. I was thinking ghosts, but the sleepwalker thing is way more interesting. I have a million questions about Alyssa. Where is her body?

    Also, I’m sorry, but I’m in love with Cap now.

    Oh and “More blood than usual. You know what, just assume blood as a given from now on” was a sign to me that I’m in the right place.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google photo

You are commenting using your Google account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s