When the girl first opened her eyes, all I could see was the fear. It was palpable; pouring off her with the rapidly dispersing mist of her death-caul. Not long after the fear, came the confusion. Where was she? Was she dead? Is this heaven? Hell? These would probably be the first few questions that new mouth of hers would ask, had I not chosen that very moment to speak.

“You’ll have questions. A lot of them. For now, just know that you’re safe; he can’t hurt you here. None of them can.”

Still, she didn’t utter a word. It was hard at first, if I remember it correctly. Something about the new body, its…inconsistency…takes some getting used to, it can take considerable willpower to make any sound. It would get easier for her. It got easier for everyone. She just lay there shivering, curled into a foetal position and looked at me with the harried eyes of a survivor, which was ironic, considering her current predicament.

I moved over and sat cross legged on the floor near her and as I did, the curled position she was in got a little tighter. She didn’t trust me, and why should she? She didn’t know me at all, had never seen me before in her life. My life had ended before her own had even begun. I sat there for a few long moments. Surrounded by the silence of this place; it was almost pleasant, serene. Eventually, the stiffness in her body relaxed and she unfolded herself gracefully.

She was a slight thing, couldn’t have been more than nineteen years old. She still had the marks of abuse on her face and neck. Those would fade with time, if she wanted them too, if she let them. Her hair was blonde before, but had obviously been dyed because now it was orange fire, tied into a braid. Those haunted blue eyes stared at me from her face, which was dappled with freckles. This place made her already pale skin look like porcelain. She seemed so fragile and I almost expected to hear that ceramic scrape as her limbs extended and she sat up, wrapping her arms around her knees.

Her eyes took in the place slowly, she turned her head in all directions as she took stock of where she was. Eventually, she turned them onto me. I sat quietly as she regarded me, I had no idea what must be going on in her mind. I only knew that like all of us at the beginning, she would have questions. It seemed as if she was about to start asking, so I smiled at her. My reward, of course, was a question.

“Where am I? Am I still in the warehouse?” She frowned as she spoke and took another look around.

“Not exactly, freckles” I tried to sound soothing. “More like a reflection of it. You might want to brace yourself kiddo. I have some bad news…”

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