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A Shadow Past



"You will always remember this," he hissed in her ear…


It was the one thing she swore she would forget.







You abused me in a way that I’ve never known
So break me, shake me, hate me
Take me over
When the madness stops then
You will be alone

"Break Me, Shake Me" by Savage Garden





Jessie turned restlessly in bed, the blanket twisted around her body, vague images fading in and out of her dreams.

You little bitch…’

Her eyes opened instantly, the rush of adrenaline pulling her out of sleep, and out of the shadows. The ceiling came into focus, along with the knowledge she was in her bedroom, alone. Nonetheless, it took a few minutes before her heart rate slowed to a normal pace.

"Just a nightmare," she whispered to herself. It didn’t make her feel any better.



It had been two weeks since their mission to Nahane, and during that entire time Jessie hadn’t gotten a good night’s sleep. Work was hectic and she’d get so busy multitasking her brain refused to shut down at night, still working on a translation or trying to solve a problem. When she did manage to fall asleep, strange dreams infiltrated her subconscious, causing her to toss and turn. One in particular had stayed with her, or more precisely, a small part of it. No matter how hard Jessie tried she couldn’t recall a beginning or ending. The only thing she could remember was standing outside in front of a set of totems; tall, impressive carvings silhouetted against the backdrop of thick evergreen trees. There was a low rumble of thunder in the distance, the sky darkening as a storm approached. The totems were enveloped in the growing shadows as the wind picked up, whistling through the trees, causing the branches to bend precariously. The thunder grew louder, the shadows darker, and above the cacophony of the storm was the sound of frantically flapping wings. Rooted to the spot, Jessie felt a trickle of fear as the whistling sound turned into a low, mournful moan, and from deep in the woods a pair of silver eyes stared unwaveringly back at her. Then, in the blink of an eye, there was nothing. Jessie had the distinct feeling there was something she was supposed to figure out regarding those totems, but as the days wore on and her fatigue grew, it became more and more difficult to concentrate on the task at hand.

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