Okay, tell me what you think. I have two versions of the first chapter.
I think both suck. The first one I wrote a while ago. Actually, rewrote it like 10 times. I'm not lying, I have proof. All are different. But are based on the same idea.
I have tried every scenario. Maybe it's my brain?
Notice this is a rough draft, due to all my doubts on it.
The cold of the soil underneath his feet is beginning to bite his bones.
Zachary Jones feels it biting and steps on the grass that patiently awaits the sun’s return, but it doesn’t help, the grass is covered with frozen dew. He didn’t notice he wasn’t wearing shoes when he rushed out of his house nearly three hours ago, until recently, when he arrived at the lake and stepped on a stick that made his knees bend and his body nearly tumble to the ground.
He would’ve stay in bed if he didn’t have nightmares. His bad dreams have been the same for the past two nights; but today, he dreamt something different, something that made him walk around town in search of answers.
He’s found none.
What he’s found is that standing near the water helps him replay his dreams, his forgotten memories. Now he is here, needing to remember more of what faints away; needing to know if he is capable of seeing who killed them. He wants to see the murderer hiding in his mind.
A sharp pain coils at the back of his head and sliders down his spine. His skin contracts and forces him to jerk his shoulders forward. He breathes through his mouth slowly, trying not to swallow the contents of his stuffed nose, and feels the cold air soothing his irritated throat.
The icy wind blowing against his body makes him remember his parents dying in front of him for a split second.
It fills him with fear and a desire to run away.
He stares at the sky and tries to imagine white clouds to clear his mind, but his memories begin to fight him, clustering his thoughts with sour, twisted pictures. He doesn’t feel like he’s strong enough to return into his past, but he must.
The recent bad dream unveiled something new. This gives him courage, courage to encounter the pain again.
It also gives him hope.
His hands tingle, then his feet, as if they want to do something else than just be attached to him. He’s losing focus, so he attempts to concentrate on the calm surface of the water and the silky vapor that rises.
The light around him wanes against his darkness.
He’s thinking about many things, trying to lock out the memory that taunts him.
A harsh obscurity settles on his eyes, and his eyelids fall shut. A shrilling sound stings his eardrums and he remembers.
Light and Darkness
The red front door swings open.
Zachary Jones, a tall boy with blonde hair and blue eyes walks out and closes it behind him, quietly. He tries to go unnoticed, but two watchful eyes have already captured his intentions.
Monday morning has come as a curse to the small town of Zephyr-Qualm, Georgia. Not only because it is rather cold and foggy at the beginning of June, but also because it is missing two of its inhabitants. Out of all the nearly one thousand people that live here, Zach is perhaps the person who feels the most pain.
Seeing his parents die in front of him is something that now haunts. The nightmares don’t stop, neither do the flashbacks that make him scream when they crawl on him while wide awake.
Thomas Jones and Melanie Rebecca Jones died two days ago, but to Zach, his parents die in his memories every minute.
He walks to the end of the street, and into the forest surrounding the town. Dew covers the foliage, and he knows his shoes and clothes will be soaking wet in no time. He changes course and makes it out of the knee-high grass; the forest floor is clean so he walks faster.
The lake is only a mile away. He will make it on time—before he forgets his dream, at least.
‘Zach,” he hears someone say.
He slows down and stops. Silence. He can only hear himself breathe in and out. The cold air scorches his lungs. He hears the birds. There is no wind, no sun yet.
“What!” he yells.
Tears fill his eyes, so he begins running again. The lake isn’t far. He can make it.
He cries. Why no one who was with him, and his siblings, the day someone murdered his parents has the same memories he has? He wonders. He wonders why everyone has different memories. Why does everyone remember something different? Some say they remember nothing at all. Yet Thomas and Melanie still die at the end, everyone knows that. What no one knows is who the killer is.
“Zach,” the forest whispers.
He ignores it. The palms of his hands tingle. He keeps running. His hands sting, and ache.
The trees begin to rumble. The noises take control of his eyes. He looks side-to-side; afraid something might be chasing him, keeps a steady pace. Maybe he imagines voices.
“Run,” a tree in front of him commands.
The lake is where he will get, no matter what. But he’s tired, and his legs burn. He ignores the noises, the voices—
“ZACH!” the trees shout at him.
He panics and a branch collides with his shoulder; it sends him plummeting to the ground. He lands back first and sees a few flashes of light. All the air squeezes out of his lungs, so he slowly tries to draw it back. It seems impossible. His lungs seem to have turn into steel, unable to stretch. He’s gasping. A gulp of air makes it in; a second later flows out.
The clear sky above makes him forget why he was running. He feels safe. Unable to breathe, he tries to calm down by staring at the tree top that seem to brush the blue sky and make it bleed orange.
A sigh escapes his lips as he begins to breathe normally, but now is unable to stand up.
He’s too late.
The light around him wanes against his darkness.
He’s thinking about many things, trying to lock out the memory that taunts him. A harsh obscurity settles on his eyes, and his eyelids fall shut. The trees begin to whisper, and a shrilling sound throbs his eardrums.