Status: Complete - February 22, 2018

Haunting Grey


"What are you?" I whisper.

Natalie's fingers tighten around mine, and I can't breathe. There's a pressure in my chest, and I gasp. The room blurs in and out of focus.

"Come with me," she tells me. "Please, Travis. You need to see what happened. I need to show you everything."

My eyes narrow. "I'm not going anywhere with you. I'm staying here."

"You need to see," she urges, standing.

"Why do you look like that?" I ask. "Your face—"

"I'm dead," she says. "While we were in the woods, someone else was there. They grabbed me. I felt the pain in my face, saw the blood, but I was gone before I even hit the ground."

"Why didn't the police find whoever did this?"

"Because they don't know who it was. The only person who knows is me, and obviously I can't tell them anything. The killer disappeared."

"They think it was an accident?" My voice rises. "There's no way that could be considered an accident. You couldn't have died from a fall—not like that."

"You did," she responds weakly. "When I appeared to you, you panicked and fall. You hit your head and your dad found you."

My dad said he thought I was dead when he found me. But he wasn't actually talking to me, not a physical me anyway, but my body.

"He buried me in the woods," she explains. "The one who did this to me. It was a long time before they found me—before you went into the coma."

"No," I snap. "It was that same day, I remember."

"Travis," she murmurs, presses her face into my neck, and it's warm, making me shiver. "You don't understand. You've been in a coma for a year. All of this—finding me, talking to your dad and the cops—it didn't happen."

Her words penetrate, and then everything is spinning. Once it rights itself, we're not in my bedroom anymore, but in the hospital. In my hospital room. And my dad is there. His head is lowered onto the bed, his hand gripping mine, and he's crying.

I'm in two places at once—in limbo with Natalie, while also clinging to a life with machines breathing for me, barely alive—and I know now that I'm running out of time.