#21 – Pierced
- Oswald Glendale meets and becomes obsessed with Sarah Price, using a ruse to get close to her.
- Oswald whisked an unconscious Sarah away to a woodland cabin.
- Sarah discovers a strange mark on her hip; but thinks nothing of it.
- Sarah finds herself falling for Oswald.
- A stranger to Emerald Heights is involved in a terrible car accident.
The rustic ambiance of the woodland cabin was new to Sarah Price, and she found herself enjoying it immensely – as Oswald had told her she would. “These woods are God’s raw and natural beauty, unblemished by the touch of man; as pure as Eden itself,” he had said as he stroked her cheek, “you, Sarah, stun me all the more because, for all the beauty of the nature that surrounds us, I find myself uninterested in it, rather, I am enthralled by your gloried splendor.”
Her legs had quite literally quivered.
She had enjoyed the long walk along the forest trail that Oswald had taken her on, the trips out on the lake in the little skiff that that he rowed by hand, his strong arms working to slice the oars through the water. The small clusters of wildflowers that he showed her, one after another, likening their beauty to her own and waxing poetic whenever he could.
She couldn’t hear enough of it.
Finally, that afternoon, she had convinced Oswald that she at least needed to check her messages; she had been out of contact and away from work for four days. It wasn’t entirely unusual for her to be away, although the fact that there had been no prior warning, she suspected, would have given her family and friends cause for concern.
There were several from her father, her assistant and from her friends, Leticia and Kerstin. Her father seemed less concerned than the girls at her whereabouts, but all had inquired and asked that she call them to let them know that she was “okay”.
“I’ve got to call them and let them know where I am,” she had said to him.
“They will want you to come home, they will want this to be over.”
“Nothing’s got to be over,” she said, kissing him on his cheek. She hadn’t understood why they couldn’t simply return to Emerald Heights and continue the relationship that had kindled itself so swiftly. “My friends and family will adore you just as much as I do.”
Oswald he smiled, but only wanly, “adoration,” he repeated, “that is what you feel for me?”
She had looked at him, “no,” she said, “no I… I love you.”
He had allowed her to call her father and, quizzically, call Kerstin Waterford, but not Leticia McKinelle. He had asserted that Leticia would hear from Kerstin and that it would be nothing but a wasted call for her to call them both.
“I’m in Paris, Daddy,” she said when she talked to her father. It was a lie, but one that Oswald said made the most sense. “I’m sorry, I forgot to update the schedule. I musta forgot.” She added, “We, uh, I mean I… should be home in the next couple of day… I’m going to wrap up the business that I have to do here. Some good, uhm… purchases and stuff.”
Oswald had told her that they wouldn’t understand if she told them that she had a “new suitor” – a term that made her face grow warm and a broad smile cross her lips. He said that her father would wonder why she was in the woods with him before he had even met the man. Briefly she wondered that herself; for one thing, she couldn’t remember coming to the woods, or planning to come to the woods, in the first place.
But being there, with Oswald, was wonderful; and like he said, she should concentrate more on feeling the good things than thinking about all the bad possibilities.
“What the fuck was that?” Isaac jumped back as the sound of metal smashing metal pierced the night. He immediately looked down but found no answer forthcoming. “I think that dude just got into a god damned accident.”
“What?” The reply came from below the counter, “the guy who was just in here? Are you serious?” The other man stood and looked out the window. Their vantage point was poor as the truck had turned as it left the parking lot and the counter of the convenience store was on the wrong side for a clear line of sight.
Isaac tugged at his jeans, pulling them up from around his ankles. He zipped them up and made his way around the counter. As he approached the window he could clearly see the scene of the accident in all its gory glory. “Shit,” he said, “should we call the cops?”
Owen pointed down the road in the opposite direction of the crash and said, “no need, the cops are already here.”
The two teens stood looking at one another for some time, neither willing to breach the front doors of the establishment in order to more closely investigate the accident. They watched as the police made their assessment of the scene, neither feeling especially in the mood to continue their previous interlude. As Owen paced back across in front of the entrance for the dozenth time, he spied a car pulling into the lot. “It’s an effing cop.”
“Aw, shit.” Isaac spat. “Well, look like you’re a friggin’ shopper, will you?”
Owen turned and began wandering up and down the isles of the convenience store as the cop came in through the front door.
The burly man came directly toward the counter and stopped in front of Isaac, “you hear the accident?” He asked.
“Yeah,” Isaac nodded, “that’s a sonofabitch.” He shook his head.
“We’re trying to find information about the driver and his passenger, a young boy,” Isaac broke eye contact with the officer for a moment in order to seek out Owen, but he wasn’t looking his way. Isaac hadn’t seen a young boy, “the truck caught fire and burned up the vict… the drivers identification.” Isaac nodded where he felt it was appropriate to nod but said nothing.
“I… I don’t know who he was,” Isaac replied, his voice less steady than he’d hoped.
“Okay,” the officer replied slowly, “well I’d like your survaillence videos if you don’t mind, so we can see if we can get any information from them…”
“Oh fuck!” Isaac said out loud; he brought his hand to his head swiftly and turned slightly to look at the camera that was pointing directly at him from behind the counter. He made a feeble attempt to clear his throat to regain his composure, “uhm… that… that won’t do you any good,” he said, “he didn’t come in here.”
The officer’s eyes narrowed and for the first time his gaze shifted away from Isaac and sought out Owen who was staring unduly a the man having been alarmed by Isaac oath. “Yes. He did.” The officer stated.
“What? No, no… uhm… he…”
The officer pulled a plastic bag from his pocket and placed it on the counter. Isaac saw within the bag the matchbook on which he had scribbled the directions for Juniper Avenue only an hour before. The outer cover of the matchbook bore the logo for the store in which they were standing. “Oh… yeah, uhm… I guess he did come in here.”
“Yeah, I guess he did,” the officer said, taking a step backward as Owen drew closer to the counter. The officer watched them both, “so, about those tapes.”
Isaac shrugged, “yeah, uhm, sorry… they’re… turned off.” He turned and looked at Owen who breathed for the first time in minutes.
Oswald Glendale stood over the sleeping form of Sarah Price.
He smiled, “my love,” he said, “you are the most exquisite creature I have ever seen.” He ran his finger slowly along her exposed arm. “Your proportions are perfect, your smile is flawless, your skin like silk…” he drew in a long, slow breath. “You are the first woman I have ever met in whom I have seen no flaws. There is nothing that my surgeon’s blade could do to improve upon your visage.”
He leaned in and kissed her on the forehead, “and you are mine.”
He turned toward a cabinet in the corner of the room and withdrew a syringe and a vial. “Before long our love will be unbreakable,” he said, pushing the syringe through the rubber cap and into the liquid. He drew back on the stopper slowly as he measured out a dose of its contents.
“This,” he said, referring to the contents of the vial, “will ensure that the love that you feel for me today will never diminish, will never waver.” He paused and flicked the side of the syringe. “There will be those who will try to tear us apart. But there attempts will be in vain for you and I are destined to be together…” he trailed off.
He pressed the plunger into the syringe slightly to chase out the air. “I am like the mythical Adam and God has delivered you, my Eve, unto me that we may forge together a great life in a world of our mutual bliss. And, what a world it will be with you at my side, my beauty; my flawless, priceless beauty.”
He gently pulled the cover from her hip, exposing her flesh to the air. In her sleep, she stirred slight but didn’t wake. “Sarah,” he breathed softly and lowly as he leaned in with the syringe. As he pierced her flesh with the sharp steel, he spoke softly, “how much I want you,” he said as he began to depress the plunger, “how much I deserve you,” he continued.
He withdrew the syringe while his lips graced the very place it had been. He kissed her silken skin, feeling the warmth of her against his lips. He whispered, “and you are mine.”
“We’ve got a John Doe paediatric here. Possible haemorrhage; hasn’t regained consciousness since we picked him up.” The wheels on the gurney squeaked as it rolled alongside the paramedics. The paramedics were checking the boy’s vital signs as they wheeled him into the Emergency Room at Bayview Hospital.
The triage nurse, who had been sitting behind her desk, leapt up as she heard the words barked across the room. She pushed two orderlies toward a cubical with the instructions to get it prepared for the incoming patient. “Where’re his parents?” The middle aged woman asked.
“There was another male at the scene – possibly the father,” one of the EMTs said as he kept his hands on the boy’s wrist taking his pulse manually; a heart monitor beeped in stride.
Ingrid winced as she steered the team in the direction of the vacant cubicle. “How’re his vitals?”
“We’ve still got a pulse but it’s weak and thready; that’s about it. His pupilary relfex is normal, but he hasn’t regained consciousness.” The medic’s voice was impassive; this was old hat for him, high medical drama was nothing new in Emerald Heights. “There’s a suspected fracture here,” he said, pointing at the boy’s chest, “and there’s a haematoma forming on the spine which may indicate an internal breach.”
Nurse Schneider shook her head; the kid was in rough shape. He looked pale and his breathing was so slow and shallow that his chest barely rose. He looked almost dead laying there on the table. “We’ll have to get him scanned,” she said, grabbing the chart which had been started by an orderly. “Get me Dr. Bachman,” she said to the orderly, turned him and pushed him away.
She moved into toward the child, forcing a few of the medics out of the way. As she stood over him the boy’s form she felt her stomach tighten. He could have been her own son – a few years younger – she poked his abdomen a few times. He boy didn’t respond at all.
She was interrupted by the doors swinging open and a large man entering the room. “Doctor Bachman,” she said in greeting, “he needs a CT and abdominal X-ray immediately. There’s a spot on his spine that should be looked at – I haven’t seen it yet, but the medic said that they suspect internal bleeding.”
The doctor nodded, “sounds good… let’s get to it.” He pointed at two orderlies and gestured toward the door, letting them know to wheel the boy out of the room. “X-ray first,” he directed.
Before leaving the room he turned back to Ingrid and inquired, “parent?”
“DOA,” she said, shaking her head.Tags:Bayview Hospital, Oswald Glendale, Sarah Price