Nadia slept fitfully at night. It was that way since the blackout incident. The digital watch sat beside her looking at her with focus in the dark room. The moment it struck 3:33 am Nadia's eyes flew open as though she was awoken by some internal alarm. The clock almost blinked at her in response to distasteful look on her face.
Nadia stared uncomfortably at the clock for a while, she waited for 3:34 but the single minute wasn't passing. Growing nervous from the elongated time she patted the clock, still the time didn't move. Propping herself up on the arm now Nadia picked up the clock and shook it. Back in the corner of her room an apparition glided over the floor silently, malignantly.
Nadia was now sure that more than a minute has definitely passed, she sat up and looked about herself in the dark room. Her eyes darted across it trying to search for something which she would love to never find. A cold draft that started from nowhere touched her behind her neck and goose prickles rose on her skin. Nadia tucked herself under covers in response and took Carl's hand in hers as she tucked herself in. But something wasn't right about the feeling of his hand. His hand felt unusually cold and for some reason unlively.
The hand she was holding tightened it's own grip on her hand. Nadia reluctantly looked from under the covers only to find a disembodied hand floating about at the place where Carl was supposed to be sleeping. It had a greyish decayed hue and blood spurted out of its open end. She screamed and the lights came on. Carl shook her violently, asking her what has happened while looking at her with concern.
Nadia looked at Carl and hugged him as tight as she could. Carl didn't know what was happening but he hugged back regardless. He offered her some water and a few words of solace and she settled down. The clock had moved on to 3:34 to her relief and somehow it was still sitting on the table where it was originally kept on every night.
Carl and Nadia sat for a while and chatted. Carl sensed that Nadia was just not ready to sleep and he didn't want to sleep before assuring that Nadia would be fine. It wasn't the first time that Nadia screamed in a nightmare, it had infact happened one too many times. Some times Nadia was aware, others she wasn't but Carl knew in any case what he had to do, wait for her to sleep. Nadia rested her head on Carl's chest, the feeling in her arm of holding that decayed hand had rattled her from deep within. But after a few minutes Nadia was able to reason with herself that both she and Carl needed to sleep. She sat up and turned her head towards Carl to say good night. The lights flickered for a moment and then came back on. An apparition sat behind Carl, it's head was over Carl's shoulder. It had a face split in half, bloodied on the chin and ashened on the cheeks. It's long tongue licked at Carl's ear. Nadia's stomach churned at the site of the saliva that dripped from over Carl's ear but before she could so much as draw a breath the apparition's face was right in front of her's. The heavy weight of fear made it hard for her to breath or swallow.
"Say so much as a word and your precious will be gone" the appreciation said in a pinching voice. Then it went back again behind Carl and licked his neck. Nadia was helpless and all she could do was force herself to nod in agreement. The moment she nodded the apparition disappeared. Nadia slid in the bed and pulled the cover right over her head curled into a ball and shook. Carl unaware of whatever had happened went back to sleep as usual.
In the morning everything that she remembered from the night seemed so bizarre that she thought it best to never bring it up. The last thing she wanted for herself was to make Carl suspicious of her past and her lineage.