Caeli's voice mail was the first voice other than her own that Dristha had heard in a very long time. It was nice, but it wasn't contact. She needed contact. She needed someone to tell her that everything was going to get better and The Doctor would come to save them at the last minute like he always did. She wasn't going to get that from voice mail.
"Hi," said Caeli's recording for the third time in a row. The tone beeped and Dristha left her message. "Caeli." Her message started, "Caeli, something went wrong with everything and everything's gone wrong." Dristha whispered into the phone. The silence in the house was horrifying. It had been crowding her, caving in on her. Dristha was scared if she spoke to loud she'd break the silence and then it would get angry with her. "I." Dristha felt like she might cry again. It hadn't been long since she'd stopped. Which hadn't been long since she'd gone outside. Into the rain. Dristha breathed in deep and exhaled. Now was not the time to start thinking about the rain. She needed to leave a message. And she needed to leave it in such a way that she came across as cool calm and collected. All of which she was not feeling at all. But Caeli didn't need to know that. "After careful consideration," Dristha tried to withhold the tremor in her voice, "I have decided to come down to Melbourne for a visit." Dristha let out a nervous laugh that sounded remarkably like a sob. "Its been a while eh Cae-Chan?" Dristha let out a little huff and did her best to be cheery. "I'll see you real soon." Dristha went to hang up the phone when a sudden thought came upon her and as a P.S. She added "And Cae-chan, If you're not where you say you are when I get down there...I'ma hunt you down and tell you off." There. That sounded like she was in charge of things. Which I am! Dristha reminded herself forcefully. She hung up the the phone, but didn't put it down. Enjoying the idea of something heavy and comforting in her hand. That was until an old, unwanted memory of playing Silent Hill surfaced and Dristha looked down at her phone with a new fear and suspicion. Nervously she went to put it down. She didn't want monsters calling her or static scaring the crap out of her. But what if Caeli tries to call me? Thought Dristha, hand hovering.Dristha recalled that it was Caeli who had first forced her to play Silent Hill. "Damn you Caeli."
Dristha, still under the table contemplated things. She contemplated how it was she had come about to being under the table. It had been morning when it happened. Dristha wasn't sure what time, she had been in a Sky Rim endued coma for some days. Then the power went out. It had been very upsetting because she hadn't saved yet. She was going to have to kill a whole lot of hard to kill guys all over again.
"Mum!" Dristha called out. "The power went out." She felt like she was stating the obvious but sometimes the obvious needed to be said.
Her mother didn't respond. The dim light struggling through the heavy rain clouds made the day seem later than it was. What time is it? Dristha couldn't remember. She couldn't even check on her xbox. For some reason a worry that she couldn't name tugged at the corner of her mind. Like she couldn't quite remember something important.
"Mum?" Dristha called out again. The silence of the house carried her voice. "Mum?" Dristha got up and wandered from the study to the dining area. Her phone sat on the table, it blinked 00:00. "That's not good." Said Dristha softly. She looked about the kitchen and the lounge, the bedrooms and backyard. She had stopped and stared at the back yard for some time. Her glass doors opening onto the yard revealed the storm that had been hurracaining outside for days. Schools were closed, towns flooded. The bushes were bent over by the angry wind. Rain hailing down in horizontal sheets. Dristha swallowed. "That's not good either."
It surely was not. Outside it was like an all too realistic screenshot of a storm in full force. It was a force without motion. Hypnotised, Dristha slid open the glass and stepped onto the back porch. She wandered to the edge, reaching out from under the shelter of the porch to the unbelievable stillness of the world around. Vaguely, Dristha wondered where her chickens were. She had been so careful to put them in their pen and keep them safe from. From... "What on earth is going on here?" Dristha mused aloud as she reached out and touched the rain. It lost its round floating abilities the moment her hand came in contact with them. Like magic turning them back into regular water that was cold and wet and running down her hand. Dristha retracted her arm and shook the water away. She went back inside. There was something very wrong with everything and Dristha didn't know how to process it. She decided she didn't like the rain and was going to stay inside till it went away. She had also decided that she should probably contact some sort of authority and let them know something seriously serious had occurred.
As you expected and Dristha did not 000 was engaged. Dristha tried to rationalise it, there was probably a lot of people calling emergency services. Dristha risked another glance outside the kitchen window. Yes, there were probably a lot of people trying to call emergency services. Rain that wasn't falling was something that probably would upset the general public. Dristha found she was very good at rationalising. Maybe she should try problem solving. She could try calling someone other than 000? It was a good idea exept that everyone else was engaged also. Her mother was engaged, her brother was engaged, her father's number also failed with connection. Every single person she knew in Brisbane had a tone that told her that their number was not in use and she should probably stop trying. Dristha put the phone back on the kitchen table and stared at it. She stared at her phone until she thought it might break if she stared at it any longer. At that point Dristha Decided to sit under the table and have a good long think. It felt nice and cosy and safe under the table. It was a good a place as any to develop a plan of attack. I'll start by building a fort. Thought Dristha decisively. It felt good to be making plans much better than crying which was nowhere near as gratifying. The table would make a good fort. Dristha tried to stifle a yourn. Just because she'd started playing xbox since some time yesterday afternoon without sleeping didn't mean she should be falling asleep under the table now. Not when something scarier could happen at any moment. Surely she was too afraid to fall asleep?
Dristha wasn't sure how long it had been since the phone that still blinked 00:00 buzzed her awake.
She had screamed and bumped her head before realising recognising her message tone. Her message tone! Clumsy Dristha grabbed her phone from the table and hungrily devoured the message from the safety of under the table.
Shortly after leaving the voice mail Dristha realised that going down to Melbourne also meant getting out from under the table. "I should probably start packing." Said Dristha aloud to no one. Numbed by shock, and refusing to look at a single window Dristha moved like a sleep walker to pack her room and started packing bags.