She wasn’t dead. She wasn’t precisely alive either but she wasn’t dead and that’s all that mattered.
She knew something was wrong. Her skin itched and when it didn’t itch, she didn’t feel it at all. That didn’t seem right but she wasn’t sure how it was wrong either.
It was just so hard to think.
The witch woman was back again too. She wasn’t entirely sure how long it was between when the woman left and returned. Maybe it was only a few minutes but it seemed like longer, felt like longer. Or maybe the woman was gone weeks or years and the time felt faster. She didn’t know and that felt wrong too.
The woman always grinned, hugely, when she saw her. Always reached out with young hands with long nails and ran her strong fingers through her stringy, dry hair. That didn’t seem right either. She felt like her hair use to be soft, beautiful, and shining. Now it was lack and hung limply. Why did it do that?
“Ah.” The woman would coo and the sound would spark rage and fear in her. She couldn’t seem to unlock either of those emotions externally, couldn’t seem to work them up out of her heart and into her mouth or face. She only tried to lean away a bit, unable to move with the chains around her neck keeping her to the rotting wooden wall.
“Ahh. There’s my little zombie. How are you today? Not so pretty now, are we bitch? I rode his dick all night last night. It was magnificent. He hasn’t mentioned you once. He doesn’t even care what happened to you. Bitch. He’s mine now.”
The woman often went on like this. She didn’t know why, but that filled her with anger too. More hidden anger she couldn’t tap. Sometimes, she tried to curse back at the woman but nothing more than a guttural moan ever passed her ragged lips.
She had this feeling that she was here because of that woman. That the woman had done this to her. Whatever had happened had been because of the woman. She didn’t know why, but that seemed right somehow. It was very hard to think, like she was thinking through a thick, hazy fog. That didn’t seem right either but it was how things were.
She didn’t know about the ‘he’ the woman referred to. Clearly, it was a man who was suppose to know her. But she didn’t remember any man. She remembered no one and nothing. Just the shack with the rotting wood with night and day slipping through the cracks in the walls. She knew nothing.
And she wanted to know. She very desperately wanted to know. She didn’t know her name or why she was there or what was happening to her. She wanted to know. But she was never able to ask her questions to find out. She thought she should be frustrated by that but she couldn’t work up that emotion either.
The woman usually just ranted at her. Sometimes the woman even slapped or hit her hard enough to knock her to the ground before laughing wildly and leaving. The blows never hurt or left marks that she could see. The woman never left food or let her use the bathroom. And she never needed either. She didn’t wonder why that was. She didn’t want to know why that was true.
She just knew her shack and that something was wrong. She knew that she was both dead and not and that it was wrong.
She was wrong. She didn’t know how to be right again. Maybe if she thought about it a bit more, something would come to her.
[Original work by Samantha L. Davidson / This Crooked Crown. Support This Crooked Crown on Patreon for more short stories and novellas. Originally posted here.]