Welcome to Day 2 of the
October Frights Blog Hop
and Part 2 of
The Land of the Rising Sun...
Under the dim glow of his single flashlight, Karl studied the lean body of the woman crushed from the waist down. Her arms, torso and face escaped unscathed. An exotic beauty with long, black hair and high cheekbones, sweat clung to her stained, torn shirt, which revealed the small mounds of her breasts. It saddened him to see such loveliness mangled and broken.
Her oval eyes popped open. They were the color of dark chocolate. Her eyelashes swept upward as she stared at him. Karl abruptly dropped the section of the wall to the ground. It landed with a deafening thud, sending a plume of dirt and dust into the air.
“Don’t be afraid, ma’am. We’re going to get you out of here.” He pressed his hand against his chest, pointed at her then, up at the opening above.
“I…speak English,” she said in a raspy whisper. “Water, please.”
In one swift movement he sat next to her. Unsnapping the canteen from his belt, he lifted her head and put the opening to her lips. “Take small sips.” Her scent, now stronger, hung like a cloud of the intoxicating perfume of a beautiful woman.
“Thank you.” She rested her head on the curve of his knee.
Uncomfortable with such an intimate gesture, he shifted his position.
“Please,” she pleaded. “You are much softer than the hard ground.”
He returned his leg and she placed her head on his lap.
“How were able to lift that wall with such ease?”
“The light down here is deceiving. It’s not that big or heavy.”
“I stared at it for days. It must weigh thousands of kilos.” A strong, magnetic energy radiated from her being. Mysterious. Seductive. Dangerous.
“What’s your name?” He offered her more water, resisting the urge to brush a strand of hair from her delicate face.
“Kiyomi.” She took a gulp of water.
“I’m Karl. Are you in much pain?”
“No.” Her eyes squeezed shut. “I don’t feel anything from the waist down.”
“Help will be here soon.”
Her eyes held his in a bewitching stare. “You carry a heavy burden on your journey through this life. Something happened to you long ago and you’re still trying to adjust,” Kiyomi said.
Uncertainty crept into his gut. He lifted her head off his lap and placed it softly on the ground. He slid away from her toward the wall, jagged pieces of the crumbled remains pressed into his back.
“Do I make you uncomfortable?”
“No. I needed to stretch my leg. I’m getting a cramp.”
“Of course.” Her lips curled into a lopsided grin. “Why don’t you want to talk about it? It’s damaged your fundamental nature and left you scarred.” Her melodic voice soothed him like a lullaby to a baby. “Who are you, Karl?”
“I think the better question is who are you?”
“Just a woman who was unfortunate to be in the wrong place at the wrong time.”
“And I’m just a man who works on a search and rescue team. Nothing more.”
“You want to tell someone. You need to tell someone. Someone safe. I won’t survive this. We both know it. Your secret will follow me to the grave.” Temptation whispered in her voice and he willed himself to be strong. “I’m the perfect person to tell.”
“There’s nothing to tell.” Where the hell is Maggie and the stretcher? His grip to resist was slipping.
“If you tell a dying woman your secret it will set you free to bloom like an exquisite lotus.”
I miss my family, friends, and the warmth of the sun.
“Karl, come closer. Everything will be fine. I promise.” Her hand dug through the dirt and wreckage toward him. “Please.”
As the tight space closed in on him, he hungered for her the way an alcoholic longs for a forbidden bottle. “I…can’t.”
He took her hand.
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over at these authors...
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Night to Dawn Magazine & Books LLC
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Angela Yuriko Smith