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Connection - 16

by fortis


~1146

Kerra slowly drifted into consciousness. It was as if all her senses turned on one by one. Her ears were ringing. Her head and heart were still killing her, but she could feel that she was lying on a very soft bed. She was too weak to move her head, and each breath she pulled sent fire into her lungs. She wrenched her eyes open to slits. Though at first her eyes were blinded by what little light there was in the dim room, eventually she was able to focus on a face. It was Drigg, watching her from a chair against the wall. His usually so carefree face was heavy with signs of worry: his eyebrows were drawn together, and his mouth turned deeply down at the corners.

Kerra tried to speak but all that came out was a groan.

Drigg’s eyebrows shot up and he was at her side in an instant. “Kerra, can you hear me?”

It was a moment before her sluggish eyes could find his eyes again, and it took all her effort to give even the barest nod.

Drigg released a great sigh of relief. “We didn’t know what happened. All at once you just fell off the table and you were just writhing on the floor. And the screams. Oh Kerra, the screams. I was terrified. It wasn’t till Gran burst into the room that I finally stopped panicking and actually could do something. She told me to take you to her bed. I thought we should call the doctors, take you to the hospital, but she said there wasn’t anything wrong with you that she could tell.” He looked as if he were about to continue, but then snapped his jaw shut. “Sorry. I’m rambling.” He murmured.

Kerra winced with a new pulse of pain in her head. What was wrong with her?

“I just… I was really scared Kerra. More scared than I think I’ve ever been.” Drigg rubbed the back of his neck and sat back down in the chair. “I don’t know what happened, but I’m glad you’re okay.”

It took her massive effort to reach out to Everen along the connection, but she did it. Everen?

There was a very long delay—odd for Everen, who usually jumped at the opportunity to talk to Kerra—before she responded. Yeah?

I feel awful. I don’t know what happened.

Another lengthy pause before a distant, weak flicker of surprise and fear. You too?

Kerra knew her brain wasn’t functioning right, so she wasn’t sure if she’d understood.

You had it too?

Yeah.

Kerra’s mind reeled. She knew she and her sisters shared a connection, but they had never had a scared experience like this before. She wondered if Shandi had felt it too. But her head was hurting too much for her to connect to Shandi.

No wait, the connection… wasn’t there.

She was sure of it. She searched the incorporeal part of her that she knew would allow her to communicate with Shandi, but she couldn’t find it. It just… Didn’t exist.

Kerra reached back for the connection with Everen. Can you talk to Shandi?

There was a pause, and then Everen sent a sharp feeling of fear and despair. What does this mean?

I don’t know. But already, she knew. Not even thousands of light years could break the connection between them. There was only one thing Kerra could think of that would completely sever it.

You don’t suppose… she’s dead? asked Everen, giving words to Kerra’s thoughts.

Waves of pain, both emotional and physical, crashed over Kerra. What else could it be?

Oh noooo, Everen moaned. No, no, no, no…

Kerra felt the same way. She felt hot, heavy tears start to form in her eyes and spill onto her cheeks. Her breathing became even more ragged, and she let out a sob.

Drigg appeared at her side again, running his hands through his hair. “What? What is it? How can I help? Do you need more pain meds? We stuck a pain patch on you already, but I don’t know if that works with your skin, to be honest. Do you think you could take a pill?”

She gingerly shook her head. She knew she didn’t need a pill. Slowly becoming more able to process her pain, she realized that she hadn’t actually hurt anything physically. But even as the knowledge that she had no physical injuries sunk in, so too did the realization that Shandi was gone. She sobbed again and realized she was hyperventilating. She had to get out of this bed. She had to breathe. Had to get to Shandi, wherever she was. Had to go. She clawed at the covers and tried to sit up.

“Whoa, whoa, don’t push yourself. I don’t know what’s wrong with you but I would not recommend sitting up after you collapsed like that. Just calm down. Take it easy. You’re okay. You’re going to be okay. We’ll make it through this.” He leaned over her and tried to arrange the covers again in some semblance of order.

But Kerra knew it would not be okay. Shandi was dead. A piece of herself had been ripped out, and she was bleeding out inside. It would never be okay again. She reached up with her hands and pounded weakly against his chest. How dare he keep her there? She wanted to scream at him, but all that would come out of her mouth was sobs and saliva and whimpers.

“Hey now, hey now,” Drigg said, clearly surprised. “None of that.” He tried to wrestle her arms back under the covers. Usually his tight grasp on her wrists would have sent searing pain up her arms and caused her to gasp, but now, the pain was just a distant echo, a prick of pain compared to the void that ripped her up inside.

Finally, one of her sobs morphed into a word. “Shandi.” Her voice was high and broken. The weight of her name breaking free from her lungs felt as if she’d coughed up a boulder. But when she inhaled, it was back, twice as heavy.

But Drigg just looked perplexed. “What about her? Do you want me to find her? I could probably find her if you needed me to?”

Some crazy part of Kerra believed him. Believed that he could just go out and find her wandering around on the street somewhere. She wanted to say, “Yes, please go find her,” but she knew that would be cruel to Drigg. More tears streamed down her face as she shook her head.

“Then what? What?! Tell me Kerra! What do you need?” His voice broke on the last syllable, and he looked as if he were about to break down crying as well.

“Shandi,” she whispered.

“Then let me find her!”

“She’s dead.”


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710 Reviews


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Tue Jan 01, 2019 2:41 am
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ShadowVyper wrote a review...



Fort!

*inserts generic greeting*

Actually, come to think of it, I'm almost caught up! Isn't that exciting? If my math is correct I've only got this chapter and one more before I'm all caught up. Pretty sure I've never gotten through a YWS novel this quickly before in my entire life haha. Very cool story!

No wait, the connection… wasn’t there.


:(((((((((((((((((((((((((

“Then what? What?! Tell me Kerra! What do you need?” His voice broke on the last syllable, and he looked as if he were about to break down crying as well.


Aww, buddy. He's so adorably concerned and it just makes me want to cuddle him. That's so sweet of him. I definitely like this character. He's great.

~ ~ ~

This was such a heart wrenching chapter! I mean, I already knew what was coming, and it still felt like you ripped my heart out. Poor Kerra... and Everen... and Shandi. Oh my gosh :( That's so tragic.

I have so many feels from this chapter as well. You did such a good job of capturing the raw grief that the sisters feel, and it was just... wow. Phenomenal. Very good job at writing this chapter. I know it couldn't have been easy to have such strong emotions handled so well, but you did a superb job.

Okay, so, on to the next (and last!!) chapter I have to read to get caught up. Let's do it!

~Shady 8)




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Sun Dec 09, 2018 1:32 am
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fraey wrote a review...



Hi there!

Took me a while, but hopefully, I can catch up to at least your posts in the forums!

So, my thoughts on this chapter were that this was a good way of showing Kerra's pain, distress, and sadness and wow I wasn't expecting this! The whole interaction with Everen made me feel even worse for them both since that's an awful way of realizing someone's loss is with that much actual pain through their connections.

Drigg's character here is a little different than previous encounters, but it's interesting to see him from Kerra's view of feeling out-of-touch with the present and still thinking about Shandi. That's a different way of showing someone so overwhelmed that they can't register really anything happening outside of them.

I guess Drigg sort of fits here, as he's proven to care very deeply about Kerra and seeing your crush (of sorts) get that animated and in obvious pain cannot be a great thing for your psyche, and he probably just wants to be able to stop that happening to her.

Also, you've got me hurting over here and that's why I haven't done this review before because now I'm very worried about the whole gang up there on the surface and aw Shandi.

Overall, you did a good job in showing a realistic enough version of someone going through the aftershocks of feeling the loss of a loved one and then having to realize it happened.




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Sun Oct 28, 2018 9:18 pm
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Querencia wrote a review...



Hi fortis!

I was going to say I was happy to read your latest chapter, but, uh, this is really heavy. Still! I adore the way you wrote it. :)

And the screams. Oh Kerra, the screams.

Seems sort of weird to say "the screams" when you're talking to the person who was screaming? Maybe something like, "And you were screaming, Kerra..." and then "oh, the screams" as almost a side thought to himself.

The weight of her name breaking free from her lungs felt as if she’d coughed up a boulder. But when she inhaled, it was back, twice as heavy.

Love this line!! <3 Maybe at the beginning of the second sentence, something like, "She should've been relieved, but..."? That might work a little better, but I totally dig the boulder imagery.

“Yes, please go find him,”

*her :)

“Everen,” she whispered.

Based on the last two lines, I think you want Shandi here?

Okay, wow, a lot of stuff went down here. I won't lie, I thought it was going to be Everen instead of Shandi, and I could really feel how Kerra was affected by this terrible blow. I think it's very realistic that she entirely ignores Drigg while she's trying to cope with her pain and I love it.

To be honest, I think that Drigg is doing too much... fluttering? Like the whole "hey now" thing is sort of his attitude throughout, until he gets a little desperate at the end. Maybe it would help to have a clearer transition from relieved to concerned/comforting to a little bit desperate, which would contrast with Kerra's constant pain and hopelessness. Also, is it possible he would be concerned enough to end up calling for Maru?

I really don't know what to say about this chapter! It was really emotional, and I think you handled it in a good way so that it didn't feel too dramatic, just enough balance between Kerra's inner turmoil and Drigg's fear for her. I can't wait to find out what happens next!! :) Keep up the fantastic work.

-Q





If you want something badly, you just gotta believe it's gonna work out.
— Andy, Parks & Rec