Hey, everyone. I'm really sorry about my recent story-Paris McKay: Runaway- to those who bothered to read it. I didn't feel the story and I wasn't getting much feedback. I hope this one is better. It was inspired by something I saw in Atlanta-I didn't experience this, though. I've just been…I don't know. Please, someone review. I'm sorry if this note sounds sad.
Skylar Jackson POV-Chapter 1
I stared at the nasty-looking fire escape, freezing from the cold, pounding rain and listening to the police sirens close in on me. It looks like it could collapse at the slightest touch or sneeze. But it's my only option besides a dumpster I just saw a rat puking in. Ew.
God, please. Get me out of this. I know what happened and You know what happened. Just please, help me. Amen.
The sirens rang louder, bouncing off the alley walls. I saw a hotel at the end of the alley. The Lazy Daisy Hotel.
It was an old, deserted hotel. I ran as fast as my twelve-year-old legs could carry me to the rusted-over door. I tugged and banged on the door as it screamed in protest until there was a gap big enough for my small figure. Water poured in the hotel. I scrambled to close it back. I gasped for air as I slid down the back of the door. I wrapped my arms around my legs and tried to breathe normal as the sirens shot by the alley outside.
My breathing slowed enough for me to survey my surroundings. The hotel was obviously deserted. No sign people anywhere. Perfect for me. The hotel was lovely, for a broken down one, at least. In the center of the room lay a three-level, dry, blue fountain with bright, white stars painted on the bottom and where the water came out. The dusty, alabaster stairs were opposite the door and spread out in different directions. All around the side of the lobby furniture was sprawled, left by the movers. The lobby desk was also a dark blue, matching the fountain, and a silver, dusty bell lay atop its highest shelf. Behind the desk was a door that, I'm guessing, led somewhere to Maintenance or a restaurant in the building but the door was kind of…clean. There were luggage carts in a neat, straight line behind the desk also. Two revolving doors led to the guest's rooms on either side of the stairs. All in all, it was in good shape.
I stood, trying to hold myself together because I knew I would fall apart if I let an inch of what happened tonight creep back on me. Instead, I thought about other things as I headed down the hallway to the right of the stairs, too tired to climb them. I pushed through the revolving door and it squeaked and stopped a little. It wouldn't go more than halfway so I had to squeeze myself through the gap. I walked to the first room I saw and tried the handle. Unlocked. I collapsed on the bed only to jump back up, screaming.
There was someone in the bed! I screamed as they sat up, startled out of sleep. "Who's there?" The person demanded. It sounded feminine so it must be a girl. "Nilla? Miles? Jack, you'd better not be messing with me. I'm tired!" She complained, whiney.
I couldn't speak. My mind was blank and tears were falling down my face from all that had happened today, July sixteenth. The girl got out of bed, still grumbling and made her way toward me. I crumbled to the ground, against the wall. The girl flicked the light on.
My eyes took a second to adjust from the sudden light. The girl was frozen, staring at me. She had black hair, freckles sprayed all over her nose and cheeks, and brown-caramel eyes. She wore a tank top and some yoga pants. She had to have been at least sixteen or seventeen. Her expression was just a look of pure shock and fright. I hear footsteps pounding down the hallway and knew that I was neck-deep. I couldn't process any thought, just what was going on around me.
"Hello." The girl said, trying to comfort me as she absorbed what was happening. I must look as scared as her, I thought. I just sat there, stuck. "My name is Lee." That was all she could get out before the door burst open and six teenagers flew through the door and onto the ground.
The one closest to me was a girl about fifteen or sixteen. She was a honey blonde with a few streaks of light brown all over. She had nice, clear skin, beautiful green eyes, and was kind of short; she looked a little too small, petite. She had a Tie-Dye T-Shirt on and some black pants. The next closest was a tall guy who seemed twenty or younger. He had auburn hair, black eyes and was built like a football player. He wore a tight, muscle-shirt and some gray pants. The next was a guy about fourteen and he was looking dead at me, having caught sight of me first. He had light brown hair, broad shoulders, kind-looking grey eyes, and a few freckles. He had on an Under Armor shirt and some running shorts that came down to his knees. Next to him was a mean-looking boy. He had fiery, red hair that stuck out everywhere, icy grey eyes. He looked about sixteen. He glared at me with circles under his eyes, a cut on his lip, a bruised chin, and a well-built figure. He wore a white T-Shirt and some black shorts. Next to him was another guy. He looked mischievous and with his tricky blue eyes, red-blonde hair, and freckles covering his face. He looked about sixteen. He, too, had seen me and was rubbing his eyes like he thought he was hallucinating. He was dressed in green pants that were faded and a black T-Shirt. There was a girl who looked seventeen but was probably twenty. She had soft amber eyes, waist-length curly, blonde hair, and tan, clear skin. She was fairly tall, about average, and had a good figure. She wore a really old, huge, and ragged red T-Shirt and some short-shorts.
"Lee! What happened? We heard a scream and-" One young-looking boy started before he saw me. He wore a white T-Shirt and some worn-out black pants. He looked about fourteen and had hair about as dark as sugar. He had the blackest eyes and was extremely short and skinny. "Who's this?" He asked, taking a step towards me.
I didn't say anything and backed further into the wall. So, Lee spoke for me. "I don't know. She woke me up but I didn't scream, that was her. Now, back up! You're scaring her!" Lee bit the last part. She turned back to me, smiling warmly. "What's your name, honey?" She asked, tentatively.
I looked up at her and my arms loosened a little. "Sk-Skyl-lar J-Jack-son." I stuttered, quietly. Lee smiled again.
"That's a nice name. This is Royce." She pointed to the guy who looked about twenty. "But everyone calls him Roy because that's not so cool." Roy frowned at her. "And this is Mia, Roy's girlfriend." She pointed to the girl about Roy's age. "She doesn't think she's very pretty but I disagree." Mia also frowned at her. Lee continued to smile. I felt a smile creeping up my face, as well. "This is Nilla." She touched the bright blonde-haired boy that had spoken moment ago. "His real name is Dean but we like to call him Nilla or Vanilla. You can see why." She ruffled his hair as he smiled, not too upset by her words of him. "This is Miles." She grabbed the mean-looking boy's hand and smiled at him. He relaxed a little and eased his glare from me to a happy look at Lee. "He's my guy. And, don't worry, he won't bite. His bark is worse than his bite." She pulled away as he leaned in and went over to the honey-blonde girl. "This is Jean-short for Jeannette-and I don't think I have anything bad to say about her. She's pretty chill." Jean smiled at me and then at Lee. "And, this, unfortunately, is Jack." She pointed at the boy who had been rubbing his eyes. "I don't really have anything interesting to say about him except the fact that-" She put her arm around his shoulders and Jeannette's and pulled them close together. "Jean and Jack are in denial of each other. They don't want to admit their feelings for each other. Stubborn mules." She muttered the last part but I heard it. By now, I was grinning and fighting back giggles. "And, last but not least, this is Dig. He's pretty quiet." She walked over to the guy who'd seen me first with the kind, grey eyes. I waited for her to explain more about Dig but she didn't. "Well, there you have it!" She clapped her hands together and sat on the bed. "What about you?" She questioned, hand resting on her chin like The Thinker.
I hesitated, looking away. I loosened my arms from my legs so they were straight. Biting my lip, I thought about what to tell them. Finally, I turned back to the group of teens. "You don't want to know." I said. They all looked concerned and surprised at how quiet and serene my voice was. It quivered when I tried to speak again. "But, I thought that the hotel was abandoned so I just came in and went to the nearest room." I blinked a fresh burning in my eyes. "I-I didn't kn-know anyone lived here. I'm s-sorry." I said, trying to keep my voice from shaking.
"Oh, sweetie. It's okay." Mia was the one to speak up and come to me. She slid down the wall next to me and hugged me. I turned into her and poured my eyes out on what was probably her only shirt. I heard everyone leave the room with quiet footsteps. Mia mumbled soothing words in my ear and tried to make me comfortable as she rocked me back and forth like my mom used to when I was three. I cried and cried until I was literally dried up. I couldn't cry anymore. I pulled back, rubbing my eyes and nose with my sleeves. "Feel better?" Mia asked.
"Well, I'm sure you're tired." She said kindly. I nodded. "Come on, I'm sure Lee won't mind you sleeping in her bed tonight. Besides, there are plenty more. I'll come back with some dry clothes and some food. You can clean up in one of the bathrooms. They never cut off the plumbing when the hotel ran out of business. " She smiled and I did, too.
"Thanks." I whispered as she closed the door where many faces were waiting, questions buzzing around their heads. I covered my head with the comforter and tried to blot out the painful memories swooping in on me with Jesus's light.