Ce jolted awake, pulse racing as she fought to separate reality from the darkness pulling at the edge of her conscience. Glancing at the clock, she noted the time. A thin sheen of sweat covered her body, and she blinked, pushing the images away as she worked to slow her breathing. Running her fingers along the skin of her taut abdomen, she still felt the knife, the pain of being eviscerated. “Dammit.” She hissed between clenched teeth. Jumping out of bed and rushing to the bathroom, she pushed her thick hair away from her face just before emptying her stomach.
When she finished retching, Ce brushed her teeth, observing her amber, bloodshot eyes, noting the now visible lines of tension. Finished, she pulled an herbal balm from the recessed cabinet and applied it to her temples and the pulse points of her wrists, hoping to keep the migraine at bay. She had no time for it now. Sighing, she headed to her office.
Pouring two fingers of bourbon, she sat down behind the mahogany desk and opened the worn leather-bound journal, recording the date and time of her waking before putting pen to paper with every detail she could remember. Done, she noted the current time and downed her drink before grabbing her cell phone. Fingers poised, she weighed the pros and cons of calling now rather than in the morning. Ce had felt the all-consuming pain of the blade as it had sliced her open. Shaking, she tapped the screen and opened favorites before selecting the first name on her list. Then she waited.
“Cerulean, are you okay?” His voice was alert, even at this ungodly hour.
“No, I’m not. This is bad.” Regarding her now empty glass, she contemplated a refill. “Terrible Benoit.” Hearing his quick intake of breath followed by a calming exhale, she waited, knowing he was composing himself before responding.
“Consider me gone.” He said before disconnecting.
Ce rushed, needing to grab a shower and dress within a brief window of time. Having been down this road before, she knew everything would move at supersonic speed once he arrived.