Flash Fiction Friday: ABIGAIL by Callie Armstrong
TODAY’S BREW: Vampire Wine! It’s almost time for Dracula, dawg! (sorry about the “dawg.”)
For our Flash Fiction Friday double header, I’m pleased to bring you a Scream/ Paranormal Activity mindfucker of a story from the beautiful and very funny Callie Armstrong. I love this chick from Twitter, and begged her to write me a story because I wanted her on NOW. So enjoy!
Abigal had been nervous to to tell her three best friends that she wasn’t going to Georgia State with them, more nervous than when she’d asked her father to pay for Georgia Tech, but Emily, Grace and Ashlee had taken the news well. They told Abigail to quit worrying about nothing. “We can still live together.” Emily reassured her “The schools are basically on top of one another.”
The girls spent the summer before their freshmen year looking for the perfect apartment and jobs that would help pay for it. On the day they moved in, they spent the night drinking wine they’d stolen from their parents before they moved out, eating pizza, reminiscing about the 15 years they’d known one another, and making plans for how much better the next 15 would be. When they finally drifted off to sleep that night Abigail was woken up by crying. When she got out of bed and went into the living room Grace was sitting with her back against the sliding glass door that led to their deck. Her eyes were wet and swollen almost shut, snot was coming out of her nose and she was heaving. Abigail ran to her, knelt down, and tried to hug her, but Grace pushed her away.
She screamed, “Get off of me! Get off of me!”
Abigail tried to talk to her, to find out what was wrong, but all Grace would say was, “My blood, my blood. Get it out!”
Terrified, Abigail ran to the room Emily and Ashlee shared, but neither would wake up. Abigail shook them and yelled at them, frantic, not wanting to go back into the living room alone where Grace was ripping off her clothes and tearing at her skin, but they wouldn’t wake up. They wouldn’t flinch.
Abigail spent the night next to Grace, trying to hold her and comfort her, trying to keep her from scratching herself as she screamed. Someone has to hear this, Abigail told herself, someone has to come help me. She prayed to no one, for someone. She tried to dial the police but her cell phone’s reception was bad and she couldn’t find any other phone. She was too distracted by Grace’s screaming and moaning to look for long before going back to her.
At some point she must have fallen asleep, because she woke up on the living room floor, the right side of her face imprinted from the carpet. Grace was eating cereal with the other two girls in the kitchen. Before Abigail sat up and saw them, she heard their laughter.
The three girls continued to laugh when they saw her stand and joked about how drunk Abigail must have gotten to fall asleep in such an uncomfortable way. She was too distracted and confused, to respond to them. She sat down without speaking in the chair across from Grace and began eating an apple. She knew it hadn’t been a dream.
Grace looked at her and mouthed, “Are you ok?” while the other two were talking about Emily’s new job. Abigail nodded then went to her room to change and shower, wanting to pull Grace aside but thinking that she must be embarrassed or not remember.
“Maybe she was sleepwalking.” Abigail said aloud to herself, turning the shower handle to hot and stepping underneath the water. She felt the bruise forming on her shoulder where Grace had hit her while she thrashed.
Grace didn’t remember. She didn’t remember crying or screaming. She didn’t remember being naked. “I woke up with the same pajamas on that I was wearing when I went to bed.” She told Abigail later that day on a walk to the grocery store. She acted offended when Abigail pressed her about it so she dropped it, settling on the fact that Grace was most definitely embarrassed.
The next night it happened again, and again three times a week later. Not wanting to be alone in her confusion, Abigail told Emily and Ashlee who didn’t believe her until she showed them the scratch marks on her neck and arms when Grace attacked her while she tried to restrain her from jumping off the balcony.
“Your blood is bad too,” Grace screamed into the night, one leg hanging over the rail, “Come with me! Doesn’t it burn? It burns.” She had ranted.
The next night Grace slept without waking. Abigail stayed up late studying and fell asleep at her desk. At 4 she was woken by familiar screams from an unfamiliar voice. It was Emily screaming about her blood, naked and crying. The night after was Ashlee. Abigail no longer got nights of reprieve. When Grace and Emily slept, Ashlee was afflicted. When she slept it was one of the other two. When Abigail tried to talk to them about it in the mornings they looked at her as if she had lost her mind. When she showed them her scratches and bruises they berated her.
“I wasn’t here last night” Emily yelled at her one morning. “How did I fucking attack you if I wasn’t here?”
Abigail had no answer.
When the police found the bodies, Emily, Ashlee and Grace had been bled of every drop of their blood. They lay stacked like dolls put away on Abigail’s closet floor, rid of the toxic blood that haunted her dreams. Abigail was found 5 floors down, broken open like a pumpkin, blood and brains pouring out of her. It was declared a triple murder/suicide, and the case was closed with condolences to each family but Abigail’s.
The families paid a service to clean out the girls’ apartment and to donate their things to charity. If they had done it themselves, one of them might have taken the time to look at the video in the camcorder that Abigail set up the night before her death. It would have shown three girls screaming in the living room and one trying to help them.