Your eyelids flutter open. The ceiling above you is covered in unicorn stickers. The dying sun throws itself across the cracked and covered expanse as you feel a sense of déjà vu wash across conscience. You remember this room, but you can’t place from where. The exact location is like an eel throwing you the finger as it writhes out from between your seeking hands.
Wait. Eels don’t have fingers.
“Hey you’re awake!”
You sit up fast, your thoughts scattering. You turn your head to see a small girl peeking in the doorway. Her hair is a mess of reds and oranges, just like the sun outside.
“God, we thought you were dead! Damn that would’ve sucked if you were! But you aren’t, so everything’s okay.” She grins. You don’t appreciate how casually she talks about you dying.
“So, Hatchet told me you don’t remember anything, so I’ll reintroduce myself!” She dances her way into the room, spinning in front of your bed before posing. You realize she’s even younger than you originally thought. She can’t be more than nine or ten. “I’m Soi!” She extends a hand.
Warily, you take it. “I’m…” You trail off. “Lingz!” she finishes for you. “Your name is Lingz.”
So, someone actually named you Lingz. God, what were they smoking?
“I’m Lingz…” You cringe at the way the name sounds in your mouth.
“There are dumber names. Trust me.” Soi’s face goes serious for a moment, then she switches back to smiles and giggles. “Come with me! We have a lot to do. You almost dying setting us back by a lot.”
She extends her hand again, this time to help you out of bed. You stand for a moment, then stumble. Soi steadies you as best she can.
“Baby steps,” she mumbles it more to herself than you.
The two of you make your way out of the bedroom and down a long hallway. The doors lining it are all wide open, exposing barren rooms. One of them is even stripped of its wood flooring. Soi continues to steer you left through a laughable dining room and into a kitchen.
In front of the stove stands a woman, dark skinned, golden eyes fixing themselves on you. You feel the instinct to shrink away under her gaze.
“You finally woke the fuck up,” she observes, mouth twisting into a frown. “Don’t be such a meanie!” Soi stomps her foot.
“Sorry I’m just a little pissed that we’ve missed three whole days waiting on this kid. We should’ve been in Daegon by now.” She shakes her head, turning on the gas. “So do you remember anything?”
She fishes a pan out of the cupboard and waves with it. “Then take a seat. This can take a while.”
You obey, but note there aren’t any chairs. Soi carries one in from the dining room. “There’s only two, so we move them around a lot,” she explains, setting it down for you. You take a seat, wincing at the way the wood creaks beneath you.