Lethean Shroud, Part Two

Rayanna grasped the door latch, smearing blood on the handle as she opened it. She pulled back her hands to study them a moment. Streaks and splotches tainted her fingers and palms. Ruddy grime seated deep under her jagged nails.

Is it mine?

She grabbed a crumpled napkin from the floor. Brownish specks dotted the surface and sand fell into her lap as she unfolded the tissue. Wiping her hands on the inner layers, she slid out of the SUV into the night.

Her ankle boots crunched on the weedy gravel, vanishing under a pool of thick fog. She rounded the black vehicle and squinted at the road. The headlights added a glare to the mist, but failed to illuminate more than a car’s length of the scene. Rayanna paced the area, sweeping her feet through the cloudy shadows.

The chilling mist coiled around her feet and pried at the hem of her low cut socks. She paused, offering a glance at the broken windshield before scanning the roadside. Spindly, dark silhouettes haunted the near distance, suggesting a forested landscape.

If I hit an animal, where is it?

A blipping siren whipped her attention to the street, where red and blue lights flashed into the mist. Headlights lined up behind the SUV and a patrol car’s faint outline appeared along the roadside. The glare of lights persisted into the mist as the slam of a car door resounded.

A male voice and bootsteps approached. “This your vehicle?”

“I … don’t know.” Rayanna hugged herself, curling her stained fingertips against her body as the stetson-crowned officer came into view. “I can’t remember anything. Can you help me?”




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