So much blood. Oh God it was everywhere, even the knife in his hand was caked with it. The girl lying on the floor was vaguely familiar, blonde hair streaked with gore and blue eyes suddenly vacant and staring at the ceiling. He tilted his head to one side, vaguely becoming aware of movement in the room, he raised the knife –
"No!" Angel Futon screamed and sat up in bed; he gasped for breath and stared at the door. When his mother didn't appear to see why he had screamed, Angel frowned. His rational mind slowly filtered back and reminded him that he had moved out a few days ago. The door swung open and Sharon Harris padded in, she looked perfect this morning. Deep auburn curls and bright green eyes, she wore simple jeans and a white vest but she still looked glamorous. But, best of all, Sharon was smart. Angel could actually have a conversation with her, not like Lily. Lily Dimmock had been a petite blonde with greying blue eyes and –
"Holy shit!" Angel threw himself from the bed and ran downstairs to the phone; he picked up the handset and dialled Lily's number. Sharon stood beside him as the phone rang and rang, Angel was about to hang up when a voice snapped "What?"
"Dawn? It's Angel. Is Lily there?" The line was silent for a moment before Dawn shouted so loud he thought his ears would bleed.
"Lily's not here! What's wrong with you? She has a life now and it doesn't involve you, you lying scum!"
"Lily broke up with me, Dawn and she did it because she believed your lies. If anyone's the lying scum here it's you. Just tell her to call me when she gets in and stop being a stroppy brat cunt." Angel's voice was low and even, he dropped the phone into the cradle before Dawn could get over her shock. Angel leaned his head against the cool wall and sighed. The shredded girl from his nightmare was Lily, he knew she was okay but he still wanted to check. The sound of sobbing snapped him back to the house and he followed the sound to the kitchen.
Sharon was sitting at the table, her hands wrapped around a mug of coffee. Tears lipped down her cheeks, she swiped them away when Angel walked in and cleared her throat.
"Hey. What's up babe?" Sharon looked up at him, the pain in her eyes almost painful.
"Do you want to get back with Lily? Because it's too late if you do" she sniffed. Angel frowned, he was about to speak when a siren shot past the house. He moved to the window and lifted the net curtain to one side, two more police cars and an ambulance flew past. He shook his head and turned back to Sharon.
"I'm not getting back with Lily. I just wanted to make sure she's okay, I had a weird dream and she was dead. I know it was just a dream but I had to be sure." Sharon stared at him for a moment; she pushed her cup to one side and sighed.
"I know it was hard on you, but we have to move on." Angel swallowed and nodded, he frowned when another police car sped past the house.
"What the Hell is going on out there?" He pulled on some trousers from the washing pile and followed Sharon out to the garden gate. They peered down the street to where the police cars were gathered; it looked like they were at the park. Angel sighed and checked his watch; he was going to be late for work
Later that morning, Angel felt better about his dream. That was all it was after all, just a bad dream. He hoisted his bag over his shoulder and left his desk to go for lunch. He headed across the court yard of his office building towards the little cafe; Angel was almost there when a sharp shove in his back sent him flying forward.
"What the fuck?" Angel spun around and frowned at Dawn Twain, she was fuming and tears spilled down her cheeks.
"What did you do you son of a bitch? Are you happy now? She's dead! Lily's dead!" Dawn flew at him, clawing at his face and screaming obscenities. Angel used his bag as a shield, a pair of arms wrapped around Dawn's waist and she was pulled backward. James Green dragged her away; he was another of Lily's housemates. He piled Dawn into a car and drove her away.
"Holy shit" whispered Angel. He dropped onto a bench and pulled his mobile out with a shaking hand.
"Hey Angel. I thought you were at work?" Sharon's voice was high and cheerful.
"Lily's dead. Can you come get me?" There was a moment of silence before Sharon said she was on her way and hung up.
Angel almost crawled up to his room and back into bed. He didn't know how he felt, he had been with Lily for a long time but they just weren't meant to be. Dawn had spread all kinds of rumours about him that Lily, of course, had believed. It was all Dawn's fault. That bitch deserves everything she gets.
The room was finally quiet. After all that screaming and begging his ears were ringing. The dead girl lay on the floor in a spreading pool of blood. Her eyes were gone, her throat was cut and best of all, her tongue was laying on the floor. He chuckled as he wrapped it in a towel, it wasn't so sharp now.
Angel's eyes flew open, panic rising in his chest again. When his lungs finally decided to take a breath he reached out and switched on the bedside lamp. The scream caught in his throat, the bed was smudged with blood. He struggled out of bed, knocking a bundle from the table. It spilled onto the floor and a human tongue rolled onto his hand. Angel screamed.
Sharon was reading the paper with a coffee when Angel screamed. She dropped her mug and bolted up the stairs, slamming open the bedroom door. Angel was curled in a corner of the room, blood was spattered everywhere and a tongue was laying on the carpet on a piece of towel. Sharon nudged the tongue with the tip of her she and sighed.
"I thought we discussed souvinirs. You can't keep that, let me get a bag" she said, Sharon headed for the bathroom and pulled a black bag from the cupboard under the sink. She moved around the bedroom, shoving bedding into the bag.
Angel stared at Sharon. How could she be so calm, there was blood everywhere! She picked up the tongue and dropped it into the bag.
"Sharon? What's going on? What did you do?" he asked. She looked up at him, her eyes suddenly flat and empty. She dropped the bag on the floor and perched on the edge of the bed.
"Angel, we talked about this. You can't take souvinirs, they'll lead the police straight to us" she said, using the tone of voice a teacher saves for a particularly awkward pupil.
"What are you on about?" whispered Angel; he pushed himself further back against the wall as Sharon held her hand out to him. She smiled that old smile that had made him fall in love with her. Angel hesitated for a moment before taking her hand and allowing her to lead him next door into the spare room. He gasped; James Green was tied to a chair in the centre of the room. He was gagged and bleeding from a wound on his forehead.
"What did you do?" cried Angel, yanking his hand away from Sharon. She looked hurt.
"I didn't do anything! You came home covered in blood, said you'd killed Lily and you were going to bed. Next thing I know, you wake up screaming your head off about some bad dream. You killed Lily and Dawn, not me! I only wanted to help you because I love you!" Sharon slid down the wall and curled into a ball, sobbing so hard her shoulders shook with every breath.
Angel stared at Sharon for a moment. A sudden flash like a bolt of lightning ignited his brain and the events of the last few nights flooded back. Lily screaming, her blood feeling so warm and right on his hands and then Dawn, her cruel smile suddenly sliced away. Laughing and laughing, always laughing.
Sharon lifted her head when Angel touched her hands, he was smiling. His eyes were alight with something she didn't recognize.
"Come on, Sharon. No more bad dreams after this one." Sharon smiled and pulled a knife from her belt she stood up and they turned towards James.
Angel woke up the next morning slowly and without screaming. He smiled and rolled over to pull Sharon closer to him; she smiled and squeezed his hand.
"No more bad dreams?" she said her voice still slow and full of sleep.
"No more bad dreams" answered Angel; he smiled across the room at the still and bloodied body of James in the corner. Must remember to get rid of that, thought Angel as he drifted back to sleep.