The moment she approached him Emma felt her anxiety spike to a whole different level. She would just waste their time with this. There were others out there with worse situations than hers currently. Right? Even in the air conditioned room she began to feel overheated. She wanted to just roll up her sleeves or take the hoodie off completely. But she refrained from doing either, knowing the looks she’d get if anyone in the room saw her arms. With the cases they had seen…even though she knew they wouldn’t think she was crazy she couldn’t help but be fearful they might. Who else did she have to turn to? Everyone who she should be able to trust had turned their backs and refused to help her. All fully convinced she was crazy and doing this all herself. Who else did she have? What did she have to lose?
Shaking herself from her thoughts she looked at him. For a moment she was silent, blinking a few times as she took in what he was saying. It took all of her to force a smile, something she just never felt like doing anymore. A smile that was now always fake instead of genuine. One she felt forced to put on and act like nothing was wrong even when it was. “I’m Emma” she offered a small greeting back, hesitating for a moment before reaching out to shake his hand only to tuck her hand back into the front pocket of her hoodie afterwards. For a change she was at a loss for words. Or perhaps it was her hesitating because she had so many just brush her off. Maybe even a combination of both.
Glancing towards the main floor she watched the group that had gathered before looking back to him with a small nod. “So it would seem. I didn’t realize this many people were actually interested or believed. Always seems like there are more who don’t believe.” She said, knowing from her previous job the amount of skeptics out there not to mention those in her own friendship circle. “I…” she began to speak up but hesitated. Emma wanted to say yes, that she did wish to speak with them. However she wasn’t able to get the words out, her mind again causing her to hesitate.
Dropping her gaze to the floor she shifted on her feet. Her anxiety seeming to spike again as she thought things through. Composure had gone out the window at this point as she slowly lifted her head, focusing her gaze back to him. She couldn’t even attempt to hide anything at this point, even trying to hold back the tears was exhausting and she couldn’t do it. “I don’t want to take up their time….but I also don’t know who else to turn to. My friends…they all think I’m crazy.”
Something had to give and soon. Sitting in the living room Emma stared at the tv. She barely even paid attention to the show that was on. Her mind was elsewhere. Going over the events of the past few months. It had started out so small and now it had gotten worse. Her friends didn’t believe anything she said. They had an excuse for everything. “You’re just having vivid nightmares.” “It’s all in your head.” “It’s probably just post concussion related.” “You need to see a psychiatrist you’re losing it.” “Stop being so dramatic and trying to get attention it makes you look pathetic.” Her friends…those she thought actually cared had simply turned their backs as if it was nothing. Who was left for her to turn to? No one. She was alone, she felt isolated even as her one friend sat there in the living room with her. The marks that had begun to appear on her? Self inflicted according to them. Something had to give.
Looking away from the tv she turned her attention to something else. She wanted to get out of the apartment, not wanting to sit there all day and be exposed to this…well whatever the hell it was. Her friends planned to attend a festival going on in town but Emma wasn’t feeling that. She wanted out of the apartment but at the same time she didn’t want to be in a large crowd either. Searching to see what movies were playing her eyes caught something else. A lecture going on at the nearby college. Open to students, staff and anyone else who wished to attend. Ed and Lorraine Warren. Okay so getting out of the apartment to attend a lecture about the paranormal may not seem like a good idea to some especially given what she was going through. But for Emma it felt like a small ray of hope. The first one she’s seen in months. If anyone would believe her about what was going on they would…right?
With her friend still at the apartment Emma went to the bathroom to take a quick shower. She tried to be as quick as she could, also trying to ignore any sound she heard. The only place she felt safe was the living room. At least during the day and if someone was there with her. Anywhere else forget it. Just as she finished her shower and reached to turn the water off a loud sound that she could only describe as some type of scream or shriek happened right by her ear. Without looking she frantically got out of the shower, grabbing a towel to wrap around herself as she rushed out and to her room. As she dried off and began to get dressed she found another mark. This time going down her back and looked more like scratches. Shaking her head she quickly got dressed and put her shoes on, grabbing a jacket before leaving her room.
“You’re going to roast if you go outside wearing that. It’s the middle of July and it’s supposed to be almost 100 ° today.” Her friend spoke up, startling her and causing her to turn around. “Guess it’s a good thing I’m not going to be spending much time outside then.” She grabbed her purse and her keys before leaving. There was no way she’d tell her friend where she was going. What was the point? It wasn’t like she’d believe a word she said anyway. Best to just go to the lecture without saying a word. The moment she stepped outside of her apartment building she instantly felt the heat. Dressed in jeans with a hoodie on, Emma was far from dressed for the warm weather. But she didn’t care. She was more concerned with covering the marks so people she passed didn’t give her looks. She could only begin to imagine what they would think.
The drive to the college was about five minutes. Finding a parking spot Emma got out and looked around. Spotting the signs direction everyone to the lecture she began to follow them. There was some relief as she entered the building, no longer feeling the heat from outside. The plus side was she was out of the apartment and didn’t feel like she had to keep looking over her shoulder. Walking down the hallway she soon found the room and walked inside. Finding a spot towards the back she sat down.
When the lecture started she quickly ignored anyone else around her. At times she felt a heavy uneasy feeling wash over her, almost like she was going to be sick. This caused her to shift in her seat a couple of times but just as quickly as it started it had stopped and she was back to listening to the lecture. When it was over she watched as anyone else in the room got up and left. She could head a few conversations about what they thought but not many were speaking about it, not currently anyway. Watching them leave she took a moment to herself, debating on if she should say anything or not. They wouldn’t think she was insane like everyone else. Yet….she was still hesitant about it. Glancing up she watched a few who had gone to talk with Ed and Lorraine, about what she couldn’t hear. Instead she glanced around the room. She was trying to waste time, not in a hurry to return to her apartment anytime soon.
Finally getting up from her seat she made her way towards the one she saw towards the back. She figured he must work with the Warrens after seeing him helping during the lecture. Perhaps talking to him would be a good idea. She didn’t want to trouble anyone with her problems but she needed some answers. At least confirmation that she wasn’t going insane. “Excuse me…you work with the Warrens right?” She felt awkward approaching anyone she didn’t know, especially about the subject she wanted to discuss. But really who else did she have to turn to?