Orbs of light penetrated the thin skin of her eyelids. They kept on moving sideways – left to right, right to left. Cold air touched her still damp neck.
A stranger, she could remember a stranger looming in on her before she lost consciousness and bodily function. She was hurting all over. She felt something was forced into or out of her body.
All she could remember for a moment was the acute pain in her loins. Every inch of her body was numb. It was like she was drugged. Her mind switched on and off. Her thoughts and visions were fleeting. All she could remember were muffled voices and cut-up conversations.
“She’s still unconscious.”
“What did you give her?”
She remembered a glimmer of silver flash on her half-open eyes. Her head was still heavy but she could still feel the pain. It was spreading all over her body. From what she could remember, she was riding the bus on her way home. She remembered trying to get off the bus but then things started to get blurry and a face of a man she didn’t recognize flashes in her head again and again.
“Keep an eye on her.”
“She might come through. You wouldn’t want her screaming all of a sudden…”
“Call me immediately when she does come to.”
The door closed. She could hear the faint thud of the metal workings of the knob crash into panels of the doorway. The seething pain was still coursing through her being.
It was a familiar voice, her mom’s. But it couldn’t be.
“Cristy, baby. Are you okay?”
She thought she was hallucinating.
Snip. Cut. She could remember a sharp edge slicing her skin. She remembered the feeling of being cut open, though she couldn’t remember what that specific moment felt like. Everything faded to black as the shadow of a hand closed in on her face. It landed on her mouth and the lights vanished.
The pain crawled from her lower extremities to her torso and finally found its way to her head. She felt like every part of her pulsated with tremors of a kind of pain that was new to her. Her half-conscious state was pierced by a shriek. A little voice came out and pried her eyes open.
From pink to blinding light, her eyes focused and accustomed themselves to the room she was in. She started seeing familiar faces as well as that of the man’s she thought she saw before she drifted to sleep. A pair of arms reached out to her. They were cradling a child bundled in soft linens.
The little child cooed and rubbed her face into the warmth of her chest. Her tiny face was pink as a rose petal though it was supple with some parts that were flaky.
She scanned the room and found the face of the man he last saw. She remembered. The unfamiliar face belonged to the man who sat across her on the bus. She let a smile appear on her face and closed her eyes while she put her cheek next to the baby in her arms.