#BlogBattle 18 Theme: Dream. Flash Fiction/Short Story
Grecca just keeps coming back for more. She and I are working this whole story out, and I can’t seem to put it down.
Want to start at the beginning? 1. Grecca Through the Loops
or just the previous installment? 7. Grecca Refuses to Drop Dead
Grecca is a spoiled, rich girl from the future. She’s the belle of every ball, and she knows it. She’s got everything a girl could want except the love and attention of her parents. In fact, her relationship with her closet is better than her relationship with her father.
But now, through various circumstances, Grecca’s life has been threatened by a woman in red, and her dad has been keeping secrets from her. It seems only a chauffeur and maid can protect Grecca and give her the answers she needs. Right now, she doesn’t really know where she is. The first question has to be, can she even trust them?
Grecca’s Bad Dream
Why am I standing in this alley in front of this door? That light above is bright. What’s going on? No! I can’t move. Please somebody help me. It’s coming, and I can’t move. What do I do? The stupid tears are blocking my eyes, I can’t see. I can’t even wipe my eyes! Oh no! No! I can see its beady little eyes, all eight of them. I’m stuck. I’m stuck.
Her eyes snapped open, and she sat up with a start, banging her head against the bunk above. She wasn’t sure if the clanging was just in her head or if everyone else could hear it. Grecca slumped back against the far less than plush bunk and groaned.
The newly forming lump on her dyed red hairline throbbed with her racing pulse. It was the dream that did it. The same dream she’d had since she was a little girl. That horrible, recurring nightmare.
“Are you all right, Grecca?”
She frowned, her eyes searching the backs of her eyelids. She recognized that voice. “Corrin?” She peeked and then stared in surprise at her maid sitting in a chair next to the dangerous double-tiered bed.
“Actually, my name is–wait, I’m not sure I can tell you. Never mind.”
“Are you serious?” Grecca couldn’t place her sudden anger except that it likely had something to do with the fact she still had no idea what was going on. And aside from her familiar old dream, nothing made any sense. She ducked out from under the upper bunk and sat on the edge of the bed, her bare feet resting on the smooth, cool floor.
“I can’t believe my shoes are gone.”
“You almost died, Grecca, and you’re worried about your shoes?”
Grecca glared at the amused expression on Corrin-not-Corrin’s face. “Those were Fiavoretti, Corrin. Fiavoretti. We’re talking sixteen-hundred ameuros in perfectly fitting, designer pumps. I’ll never be able to replace them.”
“Better the shoes than you.”
“No one would miss me if I was gone.”
“That’s not true. You’re the star of every place you go. The paparazzi clamor to be first at your mansion’s gate. I’ve seen your plethora of friends. And you’ve got both your parents. How can you say such a thing?”
“Simple. It’s all fake.”
“You’re awake,” Ariston said, approaching from across the large room filled with dozens of similar bunk-beds aligned perfectly in rows down the obsidian floor.
“Sir, she woke up just a few minutes ago.”
“I can speak, Corrin, or whatever your name is.” Grecca craned her neck at an awkward angle and looked up at Ariston. “I just woke up. Glad I did, too. That dream scares the life out of me every time. So, now are you going to tell me what on earth is going on here?”
She watched Ariston glance over at Corrin, some silent message passing between them. “I’m here to take you home.”
“What? No explanation? You’re not even going to tell me why Corrin is here. Not that that’s her name, but whatever. You’ll have to explain some things to me, or I’m going to tell everything I know to all those lovely cameras squatting outside my family’s home. I’m sure they can pull up plenty of lovely pictures of your ruggedly handsome face.”
Grecca regretted calling him handsome the second he grinned. She stood up to her full height and still had to tip her head back a little to stare him in the eye. “Listen, Aries, you got some ‘splaining to do. I’m not going anywhere until you spill it.”
He held up his hands in surrender. “Fine. I told you I’d tell you what I can, and I will. Just relax. Corrin is undercover at the mansion. Whatever you do, do not give her away. It could very well get her killed. She’s there to protect you, so keep that in mind.”
Grecca squinted at Corrin and wondered who she really was. The maid-slash-guard girl stood up under Grecca’s scrutiny. Things still didn’t make sense, and she couldn’t understand why her father’s paid bodyguards weren’t enough. Any one of those henchmen could bench press two Aristons at once. “Ooookaaay.”
“I know you’re confused, Miss Phoenician, but the less you know, the better. It keeps you safe,” he said.
Still confused and angry, she turned her glower on Ariston. “Oh yeah, safe. Is that what you call my drugging, kidnapping, and almost eye-gouging then murder by Red? You’ve got to get out in the world more, Aries. Too much radiation exposure with all that driving has addled your mind.”
“We’ll talk more on the way home. Agent C., you head out for some rest so you can be at the mansion for your morning shift.”
“Yes, sir,” Corrin saluted in some old-fashioned sign of respect or whatever it was. She marched between the aisles of empty bunk beds and out the door.
Ariston had been standing with his hands behind his back the entire time but finally brought them out where Grecca could see. In one hand he held an apple fritter and in the other a mug of coffee.
“Corrin said these were some of your favorites.”
“They are, and I’m starving.” Grecca hadn’t realized how hungry she was until she saw the fritter. He held them out to her. The lack of movement in the donut arm brought back the recollection of him being shot during their escape. She accepted the proffered victuals and nibbled at the edge of the fritter.
“It’s all real, isn’t it, Ariston? If that’s even your name. I haven’t just dreamed it all up, have I.”
“No, Grecca. I’m sorry.”
“Not as sorry as I am.” She took a big bite and chewed it slowly while mulling over the whole experience. “How’s the arm?”
“It’ll heal.” He backed away from Grecca and turned on his heel at a wall of lockers. Ariston reached inside one and pulled out a black jumpsuit, similar to Grecca’s ruined one, but not near the quality of material and design as hers. “It’s passable, and it’ll help avoid suspicion. When you’re done eating, change into this, and I’ll take you home.”