My best friend stared at me, as if she were hiding what she knew from me. Frustrated, I shoved Nikki’s arms off of my torso and began to stretch out my legs from their criss-crossed state. Each joint and muscle screamed in pain. They were stiff and practically immovable. I groaned as I forced my right leg to straighten. Cracking and popping sounds followed each tiny movement. Once my right leg was free, I took a break before subjecting the other one to similar torture.
“You’ve been sitting like that for almost eight hours now.” Nikki outstretched her arms and yawned. “I tried to get you to lie down flat when we got home, but you wouldn’t budge.”
For no reason at all, I really wanted to be angry at this girl. I think I just needed to place my anger on something or someone because I could not take it out on the situation we were placed in. Unfortunately, getting mad at the only person who knows what happened to us would not end well for me. So, I decided to try to distract myself.
Just as I was about to wrench my left leg straight, I caught a whiff of something that smelled absolutely delicious. My stomach growled at the scent. This was something I had never smelled before, it was a meaty smell with undertones of flowers and apples. The desire to eat something consumed my every thought. I hastily snapped my leg out in front of me, not caring about the excruciating pain now radiating from it. Nikki grabbed a hold of me as I nearly sprinted to the door.
“Jess, don’t go out there.” She warned me with a concerned look.
Why shouldn’t I go out there? I smell food and I’m starving. Whatever that is, I bet it will taste delicious. So many thoughts of something to eat swarmed through my brain.
I continued to muscle my way to the metal door, struggling against the unusual strength of my friend. “Just let me go, Nik! I’m starving and I really need food,” I begged her. She quickly darted to block the door knob. “Jess, look through the peep hole. What do you see?”
I leaned against her shoulder and peered through the hole in the door. “I see a couple of girls standing outside of their door across the hall. They’re talking, but I don’t see any of them with food. I wonder what that smell is coming from.” Nikki grabbed my hand and dragged me over to her dresser and beside it hung a floor length mirror.
“What you’re smelling, is those girls. I smell it too, and I really want to slam open the door and bash their skulls in and eat the soft pink tissue of their brains.” Horrified by her confession, I turned and felt my stomach try to expel what little contents it held from my body. I could not believe what she said. I did not want to believe that she said that! Then I realized that the thoughts and images that had been floating in my brain hadn’t been about regular food, but brains. I felt disgusted with myself.
“What happened to us? Why do we feel the need to eat people?” I tried to stop asking questions that I knew did not currently have answers. “What are we going to do? Do you know anything else?” I managed to stop myself, and I caught a glimpse of what I looked like in the mirror. There was a ghost standing where I was supposed to be. While turning to face the mirror, I began poking, prodding, and pulling at myself.
What was once a stylish strawberry-blonde pixie cut, was replaced by a mess of dull, chalk white hair that now sat lifeless on top of my head. The freckles that had brought color to my light ivory skin had disappeared and my skin was left as white as snow. Tears began to fill my eyes and leak over onto my cheeks. I gazed into my reflection and saw that my eyes were the same gray color as Nikki’s. I began to weep for my hazel eyes, dirty blonde hair, and once lively complexion. Gradually, I slid to the floor and cried.