It is not only my footsteps that echo in this dark tunnel. It's his, too. It's not just my breath leaving a burning scratch in my throat. It is also his. I can hear him. Somewhere behind me. A little further away, by that ledge he gave me. A little farther away, by the constant adrenaline pumping through my veins, making me run faster and faster.
I don't want to die. I don't want to die because of him. It was just that one moment. That one moment that decided my fate. I should never have gone near him. ...him. That strangely silent boy who seems to put on a different face every day. Only yesterday he smiled at me. Yesterday he gave me pills for my headaches.
Yesterday he was still talking to me that everything would turn out fine. Today I am running for my life. Everything in my body is burning. Feels like boiling lava in my veins. There's nothing else left in me. It's getting darker and darker around me. I don't know where I'm going. I don't know if I'm ever gonna make it out of here.
I just know I don't want to die down here. He's catching up. I can feel it, just by the hairs on the back of my neck, just standing up under his presence. He's dangerous. He's not like me. I can feel it with every fiber of my being. He is different. Not of this world. He's catching up too fast.
The tunnel in front of me splits. Right or left. Left or right. It doesn't matter. Just get away from him. Keep going. Faster and faster. A single stone throws me off balance. This single stone, unseen, ignored by me, on the ground in front of me. This single stone that makes me stumble.
Everything inside me falls forward. I lose my balance like a leaf in the wind. Burning fire in my palms as I fall forward and instinctively try to catch myself with my hands. It hurts. But the thought that it will catch up with me now is much worse and overshadows any pain inside me. Where is he? I can't see him. It's too dark. I don't know where I am.
Only then do I realize how quiet it is. Nothing echoes back into this tunnel. Nothing but my own breath, hectic and gasping for air from my mouth. Breath. I need air in my lungs before I can run again. I have to get out of here. It's this heaviness that suddenly falls on my legs, that makes me stumble again as I try to pick myself up.
But I have to keep running. Before- He stands before me. Silent. Motionless. He just stands there. He's caught up with me. He's got all the time in the world. I freeze in the middle of my movement. It's like someone pulled a plug inside me. I can't move anymore. There's something in his gaze. Something that gives me chills.
He just looks at me. Not even the slightest glimmer of emotion in his eyes. It's like he's looking at me through two silver, emotionless disks. There's nothing left in his eyes. Yesterday there was warmth radiating from them. Yesterday I had to remember that they reminded me of a cool glow. A cool, distant, yet beautiful glow.
Now all the glow has disappeared from his eyes. All that remains is this icy cold. He's not moving. It seems as if he is not even breathing. He is not breathing. I don't dare to move, although every instinct in me is screaming for me to turn around and keep running. Further away from him.
This creature that looks so infinitely similar to a person like me and yet does not resemble me in any way. Only when I hear his words, feeling returns to my legs. "You must be so happy."
His voice is cold. There is no better description. Cold, hard. There's not a bit of the warmth left that I knew. There's not a mellow undertone left to tell me everything's gonna be all right. There's just this hard, cold voice. Only then do I realize what he said. Happy?
My mouth opens automatically. Maybe I shouldn't answer him, maybe I should just keep quiet. But a deep, desperate instinct in me screams at me to resist and not to let this creeping foreboding of my imminent death win. But a deep, desperate instinct in me screams at me to resist and not to let this creeping foreboding of my imminent death win.
These are not words which I utter, it is a gasping laughter. I must be happy? It is my laughter which changes something in his gaze. For a short moment, so short that it has disappeared in the moment I blink, I see pain flaring up in his eyes. A pain so deeply rooted that it almost made me flinch. But it's just that cold again, looking at me.
Why should something so cold feel pain? The slight movement that now comes into him makes me slip back a little. My body reacts all by itself. I no longer give any commands. There is only my body, which does not want to give up, and my thoughts, which are spellbound by this creature before me.
He cannot be a human being. He cannot be from this world. His gaze remains unchanged, but he still comes closer to me. Before I can realize it, he has crouched before me. Crouching on the ground directly in front of me, looking me straight in the eyes. I am getting cold. There is something in those eyes that makes me tremble.
The moment he starts talking, I realize I'm going to die. "You can feel so much. How does it feel to feel the burning in your palms? Does it hurt? How does it feel when everything inside you is throbbing because you ran so fast? Does it hurt? How does it feel to not have enough breath left to say something? Does it feel good? Does it hurt?"
He is like an animal that wants to study its prey. It's not his words that trigger anything in me. It is the tone of his voice and the expression in his eyes that changes with every new sentence. There it is again, this pain. This deep pain that is spreading in these cold silver discs. There's something that wears on him. Something that hurts him. In a way I can never understand.
Maybe that's why he's doing what he's doing. Maybe that's the explanation for everything that's happening. Maybe- The thought dissolves even as I start it. I feel so light. Something's wrong. Why am I getting so cold? Why can't I feel my body? I'm not able to lower my gaze to see what's happening. All I can do is look into his eyes.
His eyes that won't let me go for a moment. That hold me captive. That distract me from what's pulling the heat out of my body. The only thing I can feel is this cold. This icy cold that passes from his eyes to me. Why am I fighting back? Why do I run? Why am I alive? I have no answer anymore. My only answer is in front of me.
Then suddenly everything becomes blurry before my eyes. Starts spinning, starts blurring. I have nothing to worry about. It's over.
The boy sighs his last breath. Doesn't realize what I'm doing. Notice not how deep my hand is in his chest. Didn't even flinch. He's sinking into himself. Can't close his eyes, all the life that I could see in them before is already extinguished. Now they look like mine. Empty. Cold. Motionless.
Why can't I stop it? Why can't I feel anything? Why does it hurt so much?