Cough cough

Another splash of red was spreading across the napkin as I sat there staring at the hospital bed. A smell of stale bleach filled the room as I flicked the napkin into the pile beside my bed. It had been three days of testing, three days of hell as they cut pieces out of me trying to figure out what was wrong. Death felt like an end goal at this point rather than a looming fear.

My name is Josh, and I am dying. Great way to start an introduction, I know, but I like letting you know where this relationship is going. To the grave that is.

The biggest thing that irritates me is I still don't know why I'm dying. I was healthy not three days ago, brimming with energy as any sixteen year old would be. I had a girlfriend, a car, and a hundred dollars to my name that would have gone towards a date to maybe impress said girlfriend. Who knows, still a virgin so I can't say she's been impressed that much by the other dinners.

"This sucks." I grumbled, not about the virgin thing mind you, that sucks too but that goes unsaid.

Mysteries always bothered me, the unknown, something I couldn't grasp. I know it sounds like arrogance, I just want to know enough about things to be able to look at it and go, 'It's not magic, it's a combustion engine on wheels with a few gears attached.'

That's the reason I'm still afraid of the dark, that looming blanket over everything that makes everything just a little more mysterious. It hides the truth blanketing everything under it with new rules, new creatures, and new dangers. That was my problem with my girlfriend probably, since most of our dinners ended around four in the evening.

The lights flickered a moment as if to taunt me with shadows just as I was thinking about them, a fly trying to ascend to godhood through the light.

Just like clockwork I prayed, prayed to a god I didn't even know existed, or gods. If Horus could heal my wounds and let me ascend to a healthy body once more.. well praise be to Horus!

I truly hoped that there were none out there though, for they had abandoned me at that point. My prayers always came up with silence and pain, and still with no answer. It was more comforting thinking that there was no mighty God than to believe he turned a deaf ear to my prayers.

Even though it was helpless, I sat there looking to the ceiling, with a sigh, and honestly a little bit of hope, "If there is a god, I don't care if I die. If you're there and can hear me, just tell me what I have. Let me know why I'm dying."

The sound of a cane hitting the ground every few seconds made him a bit more comfortable, because he knew if anyone hated not knowing more than him it was Dr. Hueso. He was one of the best doctors around, though he was an asshole. He took some Marinol from his bottle saying simply, "You won't need this if I cure you, and you'll be dead if I don't so don't make a fuss."

You wouldn't believe how much I hated this guy, and loved him at the same time. He was my version of a drunk parent. His unshaven face, racoon like darkness under his eyes, short untamed hair. He looked like a drunk too, sometimes smelled like it.

"It can't be." Dr. Hueso said, a bit irritated from outside my room. The door hanging slightly ajar allowing me to hear him and the nurse talking.

"It has to be, we eliminated everything else." A female's voice spoke up.

"But it's never Lupus!"

"This time it is, it has to be." The voice reinsured her point.

It was then that heat struck my chest, my heart speeding up to the point where it started stuttering. Alarms blew from every which way, running coming from further and further. "Shit, you didn't have to kill me off as soon as I found out."

Suddenly all sound stopped as the monitor showed that I flatlined. I didn't know how I was still conscious, but as people started coming in with a crash cart I couldn't hear a single sound. I could tell they were yelling orders around and as a nurse raised the paddles everything froze.

"Kill one person." A voice boomed in this frozen space, making me stare blankly at the nurses and doctors around me.

'Was someone here a wizard?' The thought went through my head, 'Or am I dead already, and this is just a test?'

The pain in my chest reappeared as I could feel myself dying but it wouldn't come. Seconds passed with nothing happening, except increasing pain. "Until you have a plan, and intent to kill you will stay frozen in this place with just your pain to keep you company."

Well, that makes that choice for me!

Time started going again, the paddles coming down to my chest as I gripped the poor woman's head. The quick movements startled everyone, as the other nurse turned on the defibrillator on reflex. The shock must have killed her as her eyes started bleeding, staring at me in horror.

The feeling of regret never came over me she fell to the ground. A few of the nurses going to her side as time slowed to a halt again, pain spreading across my chest as the adrenaline calmed down.

"Success. Round two, kill the nurse who poisoned you."

"What?!" My mind reeled as I heard that, one of these nurses here is the reason I'm dying? They had to die. There was no more need for the voice to continue, I didn't have any hesitation to want to kill the person who kill me.

Rage filled my mind as my eyes went between all of the nurses, and time immediately speed up as I grabbed a needle from a pocket slamming into the neck of my murderer. He held his neck as the adrenaline coursed right through his blood making his body seize, fear soaking into his eyes replacing his arrogant look.

How did I figure it out?

His eyes, he was staring at me with no emotion, no worry, just apathy. Maybe a little shock, that was expected given the dead nurse, but he never took his eyes off of me. I expected that from my Dr. he was an asshole, but this nurse wasn't an asshole. I had seen him taking care of other patients, with looks of pity in his eyes as he took care of them.

He had been in the room several times, refilling my bags that hung beside me but he never spoke much. I assumed he was like a gopher for the rest of the team since I never saw him with them at all.

Short, slightly pudgy with a balding head desperately clinging to what little hair he had. He reminded me of some sort of bird in ways and he acted just like one. Always aloof, looking down at me, even if he wasn't the murderer I wanted him dead. Not that I hate birds mind you, just everything has a time and a place.

"Success! Round three..."

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