Monday, August 20, 2012
Sam's Sunday Snippet
The gang flips a 200-year-old manor house in the beautiful, rolling hills of Brown County, Indiana. Unfortunately the house is the site of a questionable death and is rumored to be haunted. Adam and Dirk get caught up in the story of the young couple who were torn apart by family, local events, and something sinister that still seems to be stalking the house. It might not be a ghost, but whatever it is, it has the potential to be deadly.
Scratch, scratch, scratch.
Adam tossed and turned on the cot, his sleep haunted by visions of dead animals, nooses, and blazing fire.
Scratch, scratch, scratch.
A cold nose nudged his arm and Adam grumbled, pulling his arm back from the edge of the cot and draping it over his stomach.
He started to doze, his dreams rising up to disturb him again. A hoarse scream pierced Adam’s half-sleep and he sat up with a gasp. Walter was across the room, digging at the closed door and whining.
Adam surged off the cot, got tangled in the sheet wrapped around his legs, and fell to his knees on the floor. A crash split the silence. Walter barked, frantically biting at the wood.
Adam realized the noises were coming from down the hall and, with a jolt of horror, understood that it had to be Dirk. He threw open his door and started running. Dirk’s door was locked, the handle refusing to turn in Adam’s hand. He screamed Dirk’s name as he pounded and Walter lunged at the door.
A horrible, wet, choking noise sounded behind the door and Adam lost all semblance of reason. He shoved Walter out of the way and stepped back, kicking the door beside the knob as hard as he could.
Pain sheared up his leg. He ignored it, kicking the door a second time. The choking sounds had grown more frantic by the time his third kick crashed the door back on its hinges. And his worst nightmare was realized.
Dirk hung from the iron fixture at the center of the ceiling, twisting and frantically clawing at the rope noose digging into his throat. As he spun, fighting death with every second, the fixture started to loosen from the plaster.
Unfortunately, it didn’t appear that it would fall in time to save Dirk. Adam ran over and grabbed at Dirk’s thrashing legs. In full out panic mode, Dirk couldn’t stop himself from flailing. His legs kicked in violent arcs, slamming against Adam over and over before Adam managed to get his arms wrapped around them.
Gritting his teeth, Adam lifted Dirk as best he could, managing only a couple inches. It was enough to allow Dirk to pull some air into his lungs. He gasped in a breath and cried out at the pain caused by the effort.
“Breathe, baby,” Adam urged. “Just breathe. You’re gonna be fine.” Even as he tried to calm his lover, Adam looked around for a way to hoist Dirk up enough so he could remove the noose.
There was a chair across the room, lying on its side against the wall as if it had been thrown or kicked there. Adam had the sudden, horrifying thought that Dirk had done this to himself. He couldn’t reach the chair unless he let go of Dirk again and there was no way he was doing that.
Dirk’s legs started to slip through Adam’s arms and he panicked. His arms and shoulders were already straining from trying to keep him elevated in the clumsy hold. He glanced at Dirk. Can you get your legs over my shoulders?”
Dirk pulled on the rope with bloody fingers and managed to lift himself a little but he was weak from his struggles and grew quickly frustrated when his fingers slipped.
“Never mind, here…” Adam stretched out a leg and hooked his toe over the cot, dragging it closer. Dirk started to struggle again and Adam realized he was pulling on Dirk’s legs. He quickly readjusted to take the slack off the rope and reached out with his leg again. With much grunting and straining, Adam finally managed to hook his foot around the frame and tug the cot closer. The cot scraped over the floor until it was close enough for Adam to step up with one foot.
With his leg bent and supported by the cot, he settled Dirk’s feet onto his bent thigh. Dirk was able to shove upward onto his toes and give himself another couple inches of slack. He gasped, his bleeding fingers slipping over the rope as he tried to pull it past his chin and scrape it over his head. Finally he was free and he looped his fingers through the noose so he could lower himself to the floor. Adam held onto Dirk as he slid downward, supporting him as he dropped.
As Dirk’s feet touched the floor his legs collapsed beneath him. Adam caught him, grabbing him into a hug that nearly finished the job the rope had started. He finally loosened his grip when Dirk gasped in pain. Kissing Dirk’s face Adam thought his heart might pound right out of his chest. Dirk clutched him hard, his chest heaving.
“Who did this to you, Dirk?”
Dirk scraped a shaky hand over his face but didn’t respond. He was vibrating with adrenalin and his gaze was blank. He appeared to be shocky with fear.
“It’s okay, babe, we’ll talk about it later. Let’s get you to the hospital. We need to have that throat checked out. If it swells up you might not be able to breathe.”
Dirk sighed but let Adam help him to his feet and out the door.