Daniel was home at last. Home to his new apartment, the one he had gotten after the… incident at the last one. He took an ice cold beer from the fridge, settled into his favorite chair and sighed. Now that he was home, a sense of safety was starting come over him. He took a long sip of beer and turned the TV on. It was starting to get easier for him to think about the events that had unfolded, events that had harmed his best friend in such a profound manner.
Bethany was asleep. Her state of unconsciousness was so utterly unbreakable that Daniel feared she might be comatose, but the nurse had assured him that this was just because of the strength of the sleeping pill she had been given.
Daniel had handed the mask over to the lab and he was anxiously awaiting the results they would give him. He honestly had no idea what he was going to do in the meantime with Bethany unconscious and the lab results days away. He wondered if he was going to go mad with all of this waiting.
Bethany had been in the hospital for twenty four hours now and her condition had not improved. He wondered if there was some way that he could talk to her, some way that he could ease her suffering. Every time she awoke, she was just as hysterical as she was before. Daniel had tried with all his might to listen to her, to somehow ascertain what she was trying to tell him, but she was completely unintelligible. There was no actual sense to what she was screaming.
Daniel kept thinking back to the moment she had started to scream. It was as if she had seen some kind of monster, and she kept screaming that it was there with them, that it was coming.
All of a sudden, Daniel’s phone began to ring. He jumped at the sudden vibration, not having expected any calls, and saw that it was the lab technician that was trying to find traces of drugs in the mask.
Daniel answered the call, only to hear screaming at the other end.
“Mr. Bullock,” said a woman on the other end, her voice just barely managing to cut through the screams in the background, “the mask… Harvey put it on… I don’t know…”
“What?” said Daniel. “The lab technician put the mask on and now he’s…”
“Yes!” said the woman, “Please, can you come down here? Please I’ve called the police and I don’t know what else to do.”
Daniel grabbed his coat, gave Bethany one last glance, and then rushed out the door. As he headed to his car, his mind was racing. What was going on here? Why would the lab technician have put the mask on? Whatever the reason, since he was experiencing the same episode as Bethany there was definitely something wrong with the mask.