Sweet Dreams Sneak Peak - From Point of Villainy
The Event – Friday, 11:55 pm
Hannah’s head rolled back as two hands lifted her out of bed by the armpits. She let out a soft moan and tried to see through half-opened eyelids. It was still dark.
“Shh, Hannah. It’s me.”
“Is it morning?"
“No, darlin’. We’re just going on a quick trip, okay?”
Hannah was confused but tired. She wrapped her arms around her dad’s neck and put her head on his shoulder as he carried her downstairs.
The house was dark except for a light on in the kitchen. When they got to the bottom of the stairs, they turned the corner, and Hannah’s mum was standing by the island looking at her phone.
“Ready?” her dad said.
“Yes, let’s go.” Her mum looked up. “Is she awake?”
Her mum walked over and tucked a piece of hair behind Hannah’s ear and kissed her forehead.
“You can sleep in the car, okay sweetie?”
With her head still on her dad’s shoulder, Hannah yawned and didn’t say anything. Her mum pursed her lips and left Hannah with her dad. The kitchen went dark and the front entry lit up as her mum lead the way outside.
Hannah’s dad carried her out to the car and she hugged him tighter as the chilly night air pierced her pyjamas. She let him buckle her into the car seat, and just as she started to wonder where Bernie was, the floppy purple bunny arrived in her arms. She held it close to her.
“Try to sleep, kiddo.”
“Where are we going?”
“We’re going to visit Auntie Claire.”
“Because she wants to see you.”
“Try to sleep, okay Hannah?”
The door slid shut, and moments later the vehicle came to life and started backing up. Hannah looked out the window, wondering why they were going to visit Auntie Claire in the middle of the night as she watched the garage light disappear in slivers behind the closing door.
Her dad swung the car around and it shuddered in protest as he shifted into drive while they were still rolling backwards. Hannah’s head was pushed back against her car seat as they leapt forward and drove off down the street. They hadn’t gone very far before Hannah felt her eyes getting heavy, and she cuddled Bernie close to her.
Lights flickered beyond Hannah’s closed eyelids and she fluttered them open. Street posts raced by beyond the window. A green light flew past her, followed by honking and screeching rubber.
The sound of the radio played in the background, and a man’s voice she didn’t recognize filled the front of the car but didn’t come through the back speakers.
“...Chelsea bridge is out… debris blocking the intersection of Clerkenwell and the A1… hundreds of them headed towards… broken water main… city bus on fire…”
Hannah yawned and looked out the other window until the passing streetlights disappeared behind her eyelids once again.
A loud thump jerked Hannah awake and she opened her eyes.
“Shit, shit, shit.”
Her mum's face appeared between the front two seats as she looked out the back window.
“It’s still moving,” she said.
The glow of the dashboard lit her dad’s face enough that Hannah could see him glance in the rearview mirror.
“Oh shit.” His eyes got wider.
“It’s coming after us, go faster, go faster,” her mum hissed.
“Mum?” Hannah said.
Hannah’s mum looked over.
“It’s nothing, honey. Go back to sleep.” Hannah’s mum gave her a weird look that was maybe supposed to be a smile.
Hannah didn’t know what they were talking about, but they both got quiet as the sound of the revving engine filled the interior of the car. Hannah found the noise soothing and closed her eyes.
To Be Continued in the Points of Villainy anthology…