Wednesday, December 31, 2008


By Scott Wilson
Word Count: 769

Lexis shuffled down the cold, sterile hospital corridor to her private room in the west wing of the Sunnybank Private Hospital. Her eyes were still foggy from the experimental blindness treatment. Dr Faith Savage told her she should begin to see clearly in a couple of weeks. At the beginning of the week, Lexis could only see a single bright light, flooding her ocular senses like the incoming tidal wave on a beach. It wasn’t until the seventh day that Lexis began to see shapes, dark forms dancing in the light, like marionettes swinging and swaying on the strings of a puppet master.

Lexis reached her room a staggered across the open corridor to her bed, feeling another bout of vertigo. Getting used to sight after being blind from birth was not going to be easy. She reached her bed and saw dark shadow sitting on her bed.

“Who’s there?” She said, startled by the unexpected visitor.

There was no answer and the figure disappeared when she blinked. She was now in the room by herself, but the feeling of another presence in the room did not leave easily. Lexis had only ever felt objects before, so she did not know exactly what anything was supposed to look like. The feel of an object was not always consistent with how it really looked, especially to someone who had no preconceived ideas of what things were.

Lexis felt the buzzer to hail a nurse. She was scared now, she passed nobody on the way to her room, and more disturbing Lexis heard no voices. Finding the call switch only eased her tension slightly. Without a response to the buzzer, she would still be worried.

“Hello,” she yelled after no nurse came running within a few minutes. Five minutes was the longest she waited before today.

Lexis hoped up from her bed again and fumbled her way out the door and back into the hall with a hand guiding her along the wall. No movement seemed to happen up the hall, down the hall or at the nurse’s station. This struck Lexis as being strange, especially for a private hospital, she would understand it if she went public where half the wards were vacant.

Using the rail on the wall as a guide, Lexis edged her way down the long, bright corridor, looking from side to side for signs of other patients or staff. Everything around was still a blur, but the light seemed to be clearer and, somehow sharper. By the end of the corridor, she was sure that she was living in a bad rerun of the Twilight Zone or something. It just didn’t add up, everyone was gone; disappeared over night.

A noise behind Lexis startled her, and she almost tripped over as she pivoted around quickly. Down the end of the corridor, near where Lexis judged her room would be, stood two tall, dark shapes. She thought they couldn’t be nursing staff; they always wore white shirts and trousers.

“Hello,” she called.

There was no reply, but the figures did seem to hear her call. They slowly moved towards Lexis. As they came closer, Lexis thought they were hovering a few feet above the floor, rather than walking on it like a normal person would, or should.

“Who’s there?” she said.

Although the two towering figures were now only a few feet away, they were still fuzzy, lacking clearly defined outlines. Lexis realised that everything looked as though she were watching an out of focus television.

“Welcome, Lexis,” one said.

“We have been expecting you,” the other said.

“Who are you? Where are the nurses?”

“Oh, you are between time, now,” said one.

“Between time... what are you talking about?”

“When you began looking in-between things that were and were not,” one said.

“You eventually crossed over to here,” The other one said.

“What are you talking about? Where is here, it looks like the hospital to me.”

“Here, is where you were before you could see,” one said.

“But it is in the space between what you call time,” the other one said.

Lexis looked around the corridor. It looked like the hospital she woke up in, but was that the same one she was in before the operation. She could not be sure. Without sight, she did not know exactly what the hospital looked like, so she thought she could be anywhere now.

“Oh, you are anywhere,” one said.

“And nowhere,” the other one said.

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