Last time in Visions Softly Creeping:
It didn’t respond with words or language, or pictures or thoughts; she just suddenly understood, a revelation like a neon sign splitting the night. She started screaming. Above her body, the doctors and scientists watched as the EKG’s needle danced off the chart, her panicked heart suddenly restarting, bursting in agitation. Before they could wake her, she woke herself, desperately grasping at the nearest arm, one belonging to a young doctor, before shattering everyone’s mind with the senseless horror she’d witnessed. She regained her composure by the time the soldiers burst through the double doors, sitting up straight in her gurney surrounded by inexplicable medical devices and a frothing, convulsing medical staff.
“I need to speak to the general,” she said. “We have a problem.”
And now, the continuation:
She was poised. Standing in the white I.C.U. gown, her long socks pulled up to uneven heights, stickers still hanging from her shaven head, she might have appeared frazzled; one would be forgiven for thinking her vulnerable at first glance, vulnerable until one happened to look into her eyes as the general now did. They were unwavering without hint of a forlorn helplessness nor taste of heated fury. They were the determined eyes of a tiger.
“Do you believe in God?” she asked. The general was too careful to reply, his eye quickly darting to the human vegetables lying around the operating room. She seemed to remember him kissing a crucifix once, the only present hint of which was a silver chain leading under his uniform. “I saw something when I was under,” she continued. “See isn’t quite correct. When I was trying to contact the others, I got an echo off of. . .” here she grew quiet, reaching out as if to grasp the unfathomably substance and twist it into words. “It’s alive, though I don’t know what that means.” Finally, as she threw her mind back to that awful realization in the darkness, she blinked, turning her gaze from the general.
Stepping forward, he put a hand on her shoulder, “Let’s get you out of here.”
She laughed, burying her face into his chest. “Did the others,” she began.
“No,” he answered. “No positive results. None of you seemed able to communicate while dead.”
“I saw something,” she repeated. “And it saw me.”
“You’ll be alright,” he told her.
“I don’t have words for it, but it still remains,” she tapped the side of her head. “I think I showed it to them,” she said, looking down at one of the doctors. Stopping, she clenched the general’s arm. “It’s hungry. I understood that.” Turning around, she looked at the soulless bodies strewn about the room. “Sheol,” she whispered, finally finding the word.