The crowd jumped and sang the last lyrics. This was it. Their great finale. From the high stage Shenya almost felt sorry for those people chanting her name. One last song and that was it. She waited for the drummer to beat their most liked song. Two loud beats on the tom almost startled her otherwise perfect figure. Was he insane? Shenya went to the back of the stage where he continued hitting the toms without grace. “Wolverine!” she hissed, covering her microphone with one hand. The drummer blinked, as if woken from a trance. He looked up, rising his golden eyes to stare right into hers. Goodness! And she though she’ll be used to his freaky contact lens by now. “ Stop that!” she commanded, “play “Break Free” and stop with this foolishness. For one last time!” Wolverine looked at her with eyes that reflected so many sleepless nights. She was tired too. Tired of everything. He stopped staring then and the beat got softer. Shenya exhaled, relieved and turned to the front of the stage. It all happened in two seconds but the crowd must have noticed, they always do. She exchanged a look with Joshua, his grip tight on the guitar. His eyes said so much, and yet nothing. Not anymore. Shenya put her smile on and sang the lyrics everyone seemed to love.
In the middle of the crowd, Ivy saw the scene and wondered what was it about. It was her first Shenya concert and their last one. She liked the drummer. She pitied the band for losing him. When Shenya begun singing Ivy forgot anything else, so did the other teenagers near her. Ivy sang along the lyrics everyone knew: “On a night like this/ Its perfect if you just escape,/ The pressure grows to much to bare/ I will not endure, I will just go free!”
Ivy stopped singing as Shenya’s voice grew up three octaves. She felt the energy of the guitar pulse trough her veins. Her soul rose with Shenya’s voice then hung there, somewhere up, in the air.
The song went on when a loud thunder rolled down from the sky, then the rain started to pour. It just fitted Ivy’s mood. She loved the rain. Her soul came back into her body and she started singing again. The whole crowd was singing along in unison. Ivy wasn’t jumping anymore, she just stared at the stage before her. The rhythm pulsed in the beating of her heart. It fastened, then Shenya’s voice held one long, high cry and the song descended its notes to its glorious end in the heavy rain, the last note’s vibration still remaining into the humid air.
Ivy breathed hard and watched smiling as Shenya introduced the band to the public for the last time. She saw Wolverine rising from his seat behind the large drum set and getting out of the stage. Ivy thought of it for two seconds then pushed through the chanting crowd. Some people swore when her elbows hit them too hard, she’d apologize then, but most of the people hadn’t noticed. They were in trance. Weird effect the music has on people. When she finally made it to the front of the stage,the guards stopped her. She showed them a card. Her dad said to do so if she wanted to go backstage. Ivy didn’t know what it meant but hopefully it worked, the bulky guardians let her trough. She ran to the back of the stage but Wolverine was nowhere in sight. Her heart stopped for a split second but then she caught a glimpse of a black leather jacket entering one of the old buildings behind the scenes. She followed him in the rain and entered the gray concrete block. She hesitated a second at the door. A great wave of fear struck her. Hair stood up at the ends on her arms and on the back of her neck. Perhaps it was just the cold from the rain. Ivy swallowed the knot in her neck. She followed the wet footprints on the carpeted stairs.
The first floor seemed empty. A long corridor with doors on both sides stretched out before her. At the end the wall was made of tinted glass, just like the ones made for car windows, just in reverse, for she couldn’t see outside at all, instead, the window reflected the hallway, and it made it look huge and dark. She wondered if this was the way the man took. A sound cracked the silence then and interrupted her thoughts. Something like breaking pottery, then a loud howl filled the room. She though the sound came from the furthest room, the one closest to the window. Her heart stopped first, then took off, racing, wild. She felt suddenly very cold, not only on the outside, from her wet jeans sticking to her legs and her soaking top, but on the inside.
She advances on the hallway, unsure why she does it in the first place. She had walked half the distance when a woman cried with a voice so high, that Ivy’s ears hurt. She raised her hands to cover them. It sounded like a cry of despair. Ivy hoped somehow, that it was a small thing that startled the woman, a spider, maybe. ”God help me!” she prayed, but it didn’t pass her mind to turn around and run away. Instead, she went further into the hallway. She stopped near the wall, fearing to glance inside. Her breath was steady, even if her heart was pounding. She could hear better now. A tiny voice imploring between sobs, an alert breath. Ivy raised her eyes from the ground and was astonished by the view in the glass reflection. A man in a leather jacket bent over a frail black-haired woman, her deep blue eyes, imploring him to spare her life: “No! No! Please, don’t!” . Ivy closed her eyes, blinking. When she opened them again she saw a pocket knife arose in the man’s hand, ready to hit.
In that moment Ivy wanted to scream, to run, regretting she even entered the block, but her legs wouldn’t move. She couldn’t even close her eyes to the ghastly images. All she could do was stare at the reflected horror scene before her. The man’s armed hand went down with force and struck the young woman’s belly. Ivy flinched as she saw blood streaming on the floor tiles. Her stomach felt it too and she felt nauseated. The young woman screamed, but her scream was fade, without echo or hope. To Ivy’s dreadful surprise, the man’s hand rose and then struck again with more force and hatred. And then again and again until the woman’s body went limp, all ragged in his arms, her voice was now silent. He stood up then, the knife in his left hand filthy and oozing red blood. Ivy could see the woman’s eyes still open, now red at the margins, her mouth pouring blood on the floor.
The man turned and saw Ivy’s reflection in the hall’s glass. She caught on her breath and her feet unlocked.
She got a glimpse of the killer’s golden eyes, filled with an animal rage. With regret she recognized in him what once was the drummer of her favorite band. She ran on the corridor and felt the man running after her, for she couldn’t hear his footsteps on the soft carpet. Ivy followed the footsteps left by her wet sneakers. Too early she felt the man’s breath on her neck and a powerful, salty smell of blood.
The man’s hand caught her shoulder then and turned her to face him. Even with a knife in his hand and a murderous look, Ivy could still see the beauty in the man in front of her and her sight turned from fear to astonishment. Wolverine’s eyes changed too. Instead of furious he was now amazed. No one had ever looked like that at him before. He flinched from that thought and raised his bloody knife. “Wait!” the girl cried rising her arms across her face to make believe she was protected. She had a pretty face, all surrounded by dark wet hair. Her black eyes distracted him. Wolverine’s hand stopped descending and he looked at her once again in astonishment. People usually cried “No!” when other people wanted to kill them, he thought. Ivy didn’t wait for his answer. She knew she didn’t have time. ” I know you’ll kill me”, she said in one breath, ” but will you please do it with only one cut?”.
People are usually afraid of dying. She was now afraid of struggling between life and death like the blue eyed woman did. She wanted to die quick. “Cut me here”, she said touching her throat just under the mandible. “I don’t want to die a slow death”. Wolverine was shaken by her steady voice and firm last wish. The man lowered his arm to the level of her neck as she closed her eyes taking with her the last image of her killer: his gold eyes shocked and fierce, though able to love, his untidy, wet black hair spread all over his white face splattered with red drops. She felt the tip of the knife touching her throat, warm and wet with somebody else’s blood and she stopped breathing. She waited, wondering after a while if she was already dead, still feeling the sickening smell of blood. Her ears tinkled as the blade pressed her skin. Then she could feel the cold of the blade no more and she wondered again if she was dead. If so, it happened faster than she imagined. She wondered what will she see when she’ll open her eyes.
“Open your eyes” a soft voice said. She did and looked up at Wolverine’s face with just a bit of astonishment. His eyes were pleading now, like she was the killer and he was the victim. “I never knew you voice was so beautiful” she said, looking him in the eyes. “Is your real name Wolverine?”Ivy said softly. He didn’t answer.
Though the knife was still in his hand,the blood on it now turning a subtle shade of black, Ivy approached him and put a hand on his face. She felt sorry for him.
The man wanted to resist her touch, but her hand was soft and warm. He looked in her big black eyes and thought there was a sparkle of hope, or maybe even joy.
“My name is Adam” he left her eyes and looked down. ” I will still have to kill you.” his voice sounded raw even to his ears.“I know” the girl said. “You can’t let this job undone”. She took her hand back from his face and it was bloody. She stepped back one single step and waited again.
Adam looked at his wet and stained clothes then at the girl in front of him, waiting for her life to end. She might as well be a frantic fan who thought it was cool to be killed by her idol. He knew that wasn’t the case even as he thought it. He observed the big red stain on the girl’s green top o the right shoulder and looked down at his red hand. Adam hated himself. “Run!” he said, “Run now or I kill you!” he screamed when she didn’t move, each word a small piece of his internal struggle. His pain was nearly visible and he was sure the girl could see it. She came closer to him for a second time and easily touched his left hand, the one that held the knife. Adam did not move; slowly, looking at his face, Ivy took the blade from his hands. Adam looked in her big black eyes once again, as she put the blade to her throat, her hand not even wavering. Adam looked at her, first confused, then horrified, seeing one drop of fresh blood among the rain drops descending on her beautiful white skin. He couldn’t let such a creature die, it wouldn’t be fair for the humanity to loose such a soul. He didn’t say anything, just caught her hand and threw away his knife. It landed on the fluffy green carpet, splattering it with blood. Ivy didn’t even flinch while he did it. She kept looking in his melted-gold eyes searching for hope. He touched her throat and wiped the blood with his soft bloody fingers. It left a red smear across her white skin. Adam then took her hand and put it to his face, closing his eyes.
Breathing in for the first time.