S...1: "Oh Headlights"
Sydney had never really liked rain; it fell from the sky in overwhelming successions, sheets of water coming down and covering everything for miles. It pelted against the windshield like hail, the wipers fighting against the watery assault viciously, but still she could barely see past the hood of the SUV. With her feet pressed against the dashboard Sydney groaned in disgust, "we should've hit the highway by now."
The driver, an older girl with dark blonde hair pulled back into a sloppy bun glanced at her irritably. "I know," she said pointedly, her eyes shifting back to the road. "I know."
"It's just a straight road, we'll get there soon," a voice chirped from the back seat. A pair of hands reached around, grabbing the shoulders of Sydney's seat, a small girl popping up behind her head. She smiled brightly. "Aubrey's just driving slowly because of the porcupines," she beamed as she made her statement.
Sydney stared at her with lips parted, about to speak, when a forth passenger spoke from the remaining backseat. "Look Sydney, even Peninnah noticed it's a single road that we couldn't of possibly veered off of," and then a pause. "Unless we're going the wrong way altogether," she said a bit maliciously.
Peninnah glanced at the fourth girl with wide, horrified eyes. "Aubrey's taking us to Nevada?" she gasped, the pitch of her voice practically breaking Sydney's eardrums.
"Why Nevada?" Sydney questioned as she messaged her injured ear.
"I don't know!" Peninnah squeaked. "Ask Aubrey! She's the one derailing this entire endeavor!"
With a snide tone the forth girl asked, "Wow Peninnah, when did you learn the word 'endeavor'?"
"Now Omri... You know I don't understand big words," Peninnah said softly. "So you're going to have to paraphrase everything you just said to better suit my educational inadequacies."
From the driver's seat Aubrey stared back at Peninnah in the rearview mirror, a brow raised. "Do you hear yourself talk Penni?"
"No, no she leaves that tedious job up to the three of us," Omri practically hissed from her window seat.
Sydney glanced back as Peninnah began to chatter away at Omri, the bubbly girl seemingly oblivious to the platinum blonde's insult. The two sitting in the back seat had nothing in common, she noticed again even after knowing them both for years; one stared across with dark brooding salmon brown eyes, unfriendly and somehow always looking displeased against her snowy face. Opposite her sat the embodiment of sunshine, with her bright blue eyes and rosy complexion, the orbs of blue always beckoning smiles and cheer.
It was odd situations like these that made Sydney wonder how they had all stayed friends for so long, or more importantly how Omri herself had stayed in their little group for as long as she had. The two had always clashed, probably because Omri was a stuck-up, rich, homeschooled, single child pain in the ass... And she was a know it all, which was always annoying. Acting all high and mighty while a stiff wind got the best of her, tossing her tiny frame around like a ragdoll.
A really finely dressed ragdoll... in a fucking jumper...
Who wears a goddamned jumper anyway? And a better question would be how does one make a jumper look classy, let alone as expensive as Omri did. Sydney shook her head of the mental assault of her sworn rival, realizing that the situation at hand was considerably more important than ragging on Omri.
"Omri, do you still have the GPS back by you?" Aubrey said harshly, obviously becoming more and more irritated as the drive dragged on.
Sydney glanced back as Omri began shuffling through a bag on the floor, muttering something about the GPS not being at the bottom where she left it. Across from her Peninnah had inexplicably acquired the small black device, her fingers tapping against it worriedly. Sydney was no language expert, but she was positive that the GPS had somehow been switched to Spanish or maybe even Italian.
With pleading eyes Peninnah stared at her, a pitiful pout painted across her doll like face. "It keeps talking French at me..."
"Give me that," Omri snapped as she swiped the GPS from Peninnah, her nimble little fingers tapping masterfully away at the screen. Peninnah stared over her shoulder, listening as the tiny computer spat out something else in Spanish, red letters blinking on and off across the screen.
Sydney rolled a little further against the seat, peering back curiously as Omri poked buttons and swore quietly. "What does it say?" she quizzed, reaching back to steal the device away.
With cat-like reflexes Omri quickly pulled back, her eyes still staring at the blinking red letters. "It can't connect to the satellite."
"I didn't know you knew any Spanish," Sydney said slowly, watching Omri's head come up with brooding eyes, the platinum girl staring at her as if her gaze alone may cause Sydney's head to explode.
"I don't," she said venomously. "I read the image glossary before we left."
"When did you have time?" Aubrey muttered as she grabbed Sydney's shoulder, pushing her back against her seat.
Omri rolled her eyes. "Oh please, there were barely a hundred images."
A strange silence overtook the vehicle, eyes shifting to Omri for a few long seconds. She was the odd one Sydney figured, and the homeschooler was about to prove it to everyone.
"You know... The tall skinny trees obscuring our view, our electronics all on the fritz," Omri murmured with a slight smile, her head pressed gingerly against the window. "This is the perfect setting for a Slenderman encounter."
A startled cry. "Not the Slenderman!" Peninnah sobbed, throwing herself back against her seat with her arms wrapped around herself protectively.
Aubrey groaned loudly. "Penni, you don't even know what that means," exasperated, she looked like she was about to slam the car into a tree, and sometimes Sydney wondered when it was going to finally happen.
"But... But Omri said it all ominous and spooky," came the shrill reasoning of Peninnah, her bright eyes apologetic and pleading.
A slightly psychotic rant ensued from the back, the role of spazoid played by the car's very own Penni. Omri muttered something unpleasant about the high pitched chirping as she pulled on a pair of black headphones, her hands returning to the GPS probably to try and reset the settings Peninnah had tampered with.
Sydney sighed loudly. "So what's taking so long?" she murmured as she pulled her knees to her chest, poking at the brightly colored toes of her sneakers.
From the corner of her eye she could see Aubrey tapping her foot uneasily against the floor, her green eyes watching the rain drops as if they were bullets threatening her life. At first she didn't reply, fidgeting in her seat as if she were sitting on needles. "I don't know, I really don't know," she muttered uncomfortably. "It took us, what? An hour to drive out to the campsite," she glanced at Sydney as she spoke, her knuckles tightening around the wheel as she looked to the younger girl for confirmation.
Before Sydney could respond the car jerked beneath them, an odd metallic roar screaming out against the sound of the ever persistent storm. Sydney felt her head and shoulder bounce off the window, her body stiff as she pushed herself away from the door. Aubrey had her foot pressed hard against the breaks, the whole rear end of the vehicle swerving wide out into the ditch.
An intense feeling began welling up inside of Sydney as the car began to tilt, a pit forming like a brick in her abdomen. She could hear Peninnah squeal from the back seat, and Omri snap something as she too was swung into the right half of her seat, the belt tightening harshly against her chest. "Aubrey!" she snapped as her headphones fell down around her neck.
The tires screeched in protest, the headlights flickering against trees that spun by as Aubrey lost control; mud beneath the wheels, pulling the car deeper into the ditch. Sydney herself found her voice working of its own accord, cursing wildly as the SUV was flipped suddenly onto its side, the lights flashing off and on as a blast of mud sprayed in from Aubrey's broken window.
Another snap and crack from the car, more metal twisting in on itself as the car rolled again. Sydney found herself frighteningly aware of the breaking windshield and the cry of the tortured SUV frame, mud oozing in through the busted sides. Her seat belt tugged painfully at her pelvis as the world was rolled, forcing bile up into her throat... or was it down?
She gagged on the taste, nearly losing what had worked its way into her throat, but she kept it down as everything became still again. As quickly as the scene had begun, it was over; the only sounds she heard then were that of the rain pounding away at the undercarriage. Ahead the headlights still shone brightly out onto what looked like the washed out road. No one spoke, no sound she heard was human. All she seemed to notice was how heavy her head felt as she dangled upside down in her seat.
Peninnah made a soft noise from the back, her hand touching Sydney's shoulder for a moment before she was silent again. Omri didn't make a sound, but Sydney could still make out the faintest beats of her music playing from her headphones, her arms hanging down against the roof now filled in with dark mud. Aubrey, just two or so feet from her, was bleeding from the forehead.
When had she hit her head?
Sydney just couldn't recall.
"Penni?" she murmured, turning slightly in her seat. "Penni, are you there?" she whimpered as her fingers pressed against her seat belt. She looked up at it, tugging at the strap holding her up against the seat. She didn't feel hurt until she managed to undo the clip, falling into the ooze that was beginning to flood the car. Peninnah made another sound, something that sounded a little like words, but there was really no way of knowing for certain. She felt dizzy and numb, probably from bouncing off the window earlier, but she knew well enough she could still move, and more importantly that the car was sinking.
Carefully she crawled into the back of the car, cutting her knee on some broken glass hiding in the muck. "Penni, wake up," she pleaded as she grabbed the semiconscious girl's wrist, doing her best to ignore the pain in her leg. Wasting no more time Sydney reached up and began fighting with the clip that restrained her friend until it snapped, dropping the other girl down on top of her.
She groaned quietly as Sydney popped open the door, kicking at it harshly until it stayed open. It was hard dragging Peninnah from the car, pulling dead weight through at least a foot of mud. Still, she managed to get her up onto the road where the dirt hadn't completely washed away. "Wake up, wake up, wake up," Sydney chanted, tapping her hand against Peninnah's face as tears began to well up in her eyes.
Sound from the car drew Sydney back to reality, a voice muffled by rain. From the opened door Omri appeared, dragging her arms through the mud until she was free of the wreck; she looked dinged up, but not badly hurt. A real miracle Sydney decided, which meant that Aubrey must have taken the most damage...
Treat Others How You Would Like To Be Treated.
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Chapter end notes:
Ah, that awkward moment when you realize you've uploaded the raw version of a chapter. Ha ha, really terrible stuff.
Anyway, this is the correct version now, so sorry about that little mishap :)