Fiction On Odyssey: Prologue
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Fiction On Odyssey: Prologue

Watch your step.

Fiction On Odyssey: Prologue

A pair of footsteps was the only source of noise that pierced the air as the moon hung high in the sky. Jackie Dalva found herself to be the only one on the abandoned tracks, a spot usually dedicated for smoking weed and secret hook ups. Jackie admitted to herself that she was there to do none of those things, and was merely taking a swift walk through.

Her pace was quick and ready, with her hands stuffed in the front pocket of her hoodie. Her hood was drawn up, while her eyes were glued down to few nothing but the few steps ahead of her. With each slight gust of wind, Jackie shifted in her hoodie, and found a new sense of comfort within herself. With each meow of a cat, crunch of a leaf, or car horn in the distance, a part of Jackie’s soul lurched over to hide, but she tried her hardest to keep herself steady. All she needed to do was get home. If she continued to walk straight, the tracks would lead her right home with no interruptions, and no one able to see her. All she needed to do was keep walking straight.

Jackie Dalva made the mistake of not hearing the pair of footsteps behind her.

Further down the tracks, about fifty or so steps behind our very own Jackie Dalva, three pairs of footsteps stomped away in her direction. Cassandra Cuenca never thought she would find herself on the Kearny railroad tracks, as everyone very well knew that it was the drug capitol of the town. Her parents would slaughter her if they ever caught her there. Even so, Cassandra was never one to tie herself up in any of those matters, all in her own accord of course.

Cassandra kept her pace quick, as her shorter legs could not keep up with the longer legs of her two friends. Her petite frame swam in her oversized hoodie, that was very well her boyfriend’s rather than her own. She kept her black, wavy hair in a loose bun atop her miniature head. Her eyes squinted as the dark around them was too thick for her to see past more than 10 feet in every direction.

“Why would Jackie even be around here at this time?” Cassandra questioned as she dug her face further into her drawn hood. Nothing within her could find the appeal of walking alone on a cold, dark night. Something about the beauty of it could not register within her mind.

“Because she can get home from here, without anyone being able to see her,” Spencer, the one boy of the three, and the one farthest ahead, replied. As he walked, Spencer was sure to keep his eyes up and ahead, as he was ready for the first sight of Jackie to come into view. He could not tell whether his gut reaction would have been to slap her or hug her. Preferably slap, Spencer thought to himself.

“This is so dangerous for no reason,” Veronica exclaimed, not caring about the hour of the day in which it was, “If she were to fall from these tracks…” But Veronica could not finish her sentence before she looked over the side of the tracks herself. One wrong step and she could have found herself in the freezing, winding river below. If Jackie had been using those tracks for a while, she would have had to have been careful.

“Do you still have her location up?” Cassandra questioned toward Spencer, whose phone was very clearly still in his grasp. Spencer only nodded his head and hoped that Cassandra could still see him in the dark.

“It still says that she’s ahead of us,” Spencer replied as his eyes darted down to his phone, “We need to speed up or we will never catch up to her.” Without looking back toward his friends, Spencer quickened his already fast pace. Cassandra and Veronica practically broke out into a sprint to catch up with him but were eventually in a line with him once again.

“Are you guys sure we can’t use our phone flashlights?” Cassandra questioned once more and looked over to her two friends for a response. Several times she had stumbled over the unevenness of the tracks, and having some source of light would have just made everything easier.

“Spence was right,” Veronica replied, “It would look very suspicious if anyone were to look up here and seeing three flashlights bobbing around.” Cassandra’s eyes shut for a moment, as a long, drawn-out breath escaped her lips. Nothing within her enjoying strolling along an elevated set of train tracks in the middle of a chill, winter night. All she could think about was her parents’ faces if they had discovered her whereabouts. She could imagine the look of horror on her mother’s face, and the look of pure anger on her father’s. They needed to find Jackie as soon as possible.

A cough in the distance threw Cassandra back into reality. Her eyes shot forward in a shameful attempt to find the source of the cough, but the darkness was no help to her. “Did anyone hear that?” Cassandra asked her two friends, without taking her eyes off of the black void ahead of her.

“Hear what?” Veronica asked curiously, but the three of them were stopped by Spencer’s arm, which had flung out in front of them all.

“I heard it too,” Spencer whispered. The three of them stood, halted by Spencer’s arm, as his eyes darted at every angle possible in front of him. A slight scuffle soon followed, and Spencer was off. It took Veronica a few seconds to catch up to the now bolting Spencer, and even Cassandra, as she was quick to follow the noise as well. Veronica’s eyes continuously shifted from looking directly in front of her to below her, as she could not tell what was safer.

The scuffling ahead of them grew larger and louder, as the three of them grew nearer and nearer. The scuffle soon became more precise, several scattering footsteps could be heard, and a muffled voice pleading for him.

Spencer pushed passed his harsh, sharp breath, and ran faster. The scuffle soon turned into a cloud of dark silhouettes. Spencer could make out what seemed to be two bodies, one significantly taller than the other.

“Jackie!” Veronica could not help but scream. As they got closer and closer, the image of a white, bald man dressed in black turned to face them. Spencer felt his body halt, and his two other friends beside him did the same. The man ahead of them was sickly pale, and his face looked caved in as if there was no muscle to him. As Veronica looked down, she could make out Jackie laying on the tracks. An audible gasp escaped her mouth, and without a second’s notice, the man came charging after the three of them.

Cassandra could not make out the rest. All she could remember was Spencer pushing Veronica and her to the side. She fell and hit the tracks with her hands to save her. A harsh breath blurted out as she collided with the tracks. Above her, she could hear an altercation, and she looked up just in time to see Spencer struggling with the man. His arms trembled as he held the man back, and with a moment of built up strength, Spencer thrust the man off of him.

The ghostly man stood for a moment, and Cassandra swore she made eye contact with his faint gray eyes right before he fell over.

“No!” Cassandra yelled as she lurched forward, but could not do anything to stop him. She was reaching out into a dark nothingness, and she could just imagine the sight of the man’s body falling to the river below.

“Shit,” Spencer breathed, as his hand shot up to his sweating forehead. “Holy shit.” I’m going to jail, Spencer thought to himself. His legs began to tremble as his knees soon gave out, and he was sent collapsing to the train tracks as well. Beside him, he could hear Jackie’s faint cries echoing through the night. A slight feeling of resentment blazed through his feelings of worrying and anxiety. This is all Jackie’s fault, he thought, if she had just told the truth

“We have to get out of here,” Veronica said faintly and reached over for Spencer’s hand. His mahogany eyes stared into her’s for a moment before accepting her hand. Her hand felt warm in his cold grip, but it felt welcoming.

“What are we going to do?” Spencer whispered to her, and she gulped before replying.

“We are going to go home,” Veronica replied, “and after that… We will figure it out.” For a slight moment, Spencer had faith in her. For a moment, he believed that they could get past this all. Just for a moment.

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This article has not been reviewed by Odyssey HQ and solely reflects the ideas and opinions of the creator.
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