TITLE: The Cell
GENRE: Thriller with Romantic Elements
I stopped caring 368 scratch marks ago, but something compels me to keep track of the days. The little hashes on the wall give me false purpose and I pursue the routine task with vigor. But it doesn’t stop my mind from wandering into forbidden territory. How many more scratches will these walls hold? And, worse, what if I run out of space before death frees me.
- from the journal of Oliver Shaw
Death was a whore, cheating Oliver Shaw out of more and more blood and still leaving him unsatisfied.
A sudden burst of white-hot truth shot up his spine and into his fingers. His heart kicked out a stuttered beat. You’re still alive. The taunt hissed across his foggy brain, bringing with it an unwanted sense of awareness.
Cold concrete pressed against his cheek. A bead of moisture leaked out from under his eyelids, loosening the dried blood that had crusted there. His stomach heaved. He sucked in a breath and choked on the bile that filled his throat along with the stench of excrement and putrid food.
Open your eyes, you gutless coward.
He gritted his teeth and dragged his eyelids open. A sliver of light speared into his retina, blinding him with a sharp ache to the back of his skull.
The light bulb.
That single f****** bulb. Always on. Always grounding him in its glaring reality.
He couldn't take another day in this hellhole.