Hollow Day – Cassandra

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The day before Hollow’s eve had begun, and Cassandra was becoming beyond anxious. She looked up at it twice for every minute that ticked over on the clock. She was shaking violently as she packed everything she thought she needed for the trip to the camp.

“Cassandra, are you nearly ready? I would like to hit the road?” Cassandra’s mother yelled from out outside as she was packing in the last of her things into her car. Flustered, Cassandra decided she had gotten everything and quickly closed her bag before leaving through the front door. She turned and made sure that the door was locked securely behind her; as she turned away, she did a double take as she could have sworn that she saw something move in the mirror.

“Na, no way she knows.” She reassured herself as she ran over to her mother.

“I am all packed; the door is locked, so we can go now.”

“Great, we are picking up David and Sasha on the way over since their parents are overseas right now.”

Cassandra’s eyes rolled, “urgh, I hate them. She is weird, and he always hits on me; it is really off-putting.”

“Well, too bad. I would hate to think you were left alone on Hollow Day, so I am not letting anyone else go through that if I can help it.”

Cassandra sat into the car, disinterested in continuing the conversation; she felt slightly better knowing she would be in the front while the Fillabricks would be in the back. But ultimately, she was just focused on getting to the safe house and sleeping out Hollow Day.

“Can we go any faster? I don’t want to miss a spot in the safe house.”

Cassandra’s mother laughed. “We are registered to the one nearby, so there will always be a spot no matter what.”

“Yea, but what if they gave it away, or they just decide they are not taking in any more people?”

“Sweetie, I had no idea that this day scared you so much. You watch so many horror movies I assumed this day never got to you.”

“Literal monsters from nightmares start roaming the streets for a full day; why wouldn’t that bother me? I just want to get to my bed and sleep away these days.”

“Ok, I will be quick, but it is only ten minutes from the Fillabricks, and we are only a minute from theirs.”

Cassandra went back to nervously tapping and looking out the window, where once again, she could have sworn she saw something move in her reflection. She stared into the mirror, trying to spot something; she got closer as she looked more and more in-depth for what was moving.

“Don’t worry, Cass, you still look good. You don’t have to check the mirror.”

“Urgh, hi David.” She said reluctantly as she sat back in her seat, locking her eyes forward.

Both David and Sasha climbed in the car, “Thanks misses Merry.” The two Fillabricks said as they fastened their seatbelts.

“No worries, kids, but you really need to get your licenses. Cassandra has hers, and I am pretty sure that you two could have gotten them a few years ago now.”

The two Fillabricks just sat there awkwardly, unsure of what to say. Cassandra could feel the awkwardness, so she turned up the radio so there was no awkward silence. No one talked for the ride over to the Safehouse; they all sat listening to the radio as the car drove by more homes that had started evacuating. Nearly every house they passed had someone playing with a gun or some form of melee weapon. Those who were not armed were getting into cars and heading out to their registered safe houses. The area was littered with them, each one slightly different from the last, although some people had taken this time to make a few dollars. While most only ask for the cost of the day, there are a few that charge ridiculous prices to those who have nowhere else to go.

“This is why I always come here the day before Hollow eve; no traffic, and we can just cruise on in.” Cassandra’s mother said as she pulled into the armored gates of the safe house.

She could see an individual screaming at the guards to let them in, they looked her dead in the eye, begging for a ride, but she drove on, turning the radio up to distract herself.

It was impossible to see into the safe houses when you were outside; they were domed and heavily armored, and the inside Was just as armored, with a large floor place covered in hardened steel. Dents scattered across the floor where things had tried to dig up. All around were men and women with guns; while they were in uniform, they were not all military; most of them were just farmers with an itchy trigger finger ready to blow the face off any nightmare that walked through their camp.

“Ok, kids, I will park the car up; you get your bags and go to our room; here are the keys; we are number 459. Hurry up before people start queuing behind me.”

Cassandra’s mum drove off to follow the already long queue of vehicles waiting to park.

“Well, come on, let’s go; when we get to the room, I am going to do anything I can to stay up till moments away from Hollow Day so I can sleep the day away. If you want to join me, feel free.”

Cassandra started to walk towards their accommodation as the other two followed.

“Don’t know if my sister could handle doing that, but I will sit up with you if you like.”

“Dick, you fall asleep at like nine at night. If anything, it will be me and Cass and you asleep on the end of the bed like a little dog.”

“Oh my gosh, sibling banter, this is going to be so much fun.” Cassandra said sarcastically and very loudly; she continued walking forward, avoiding eye contact with the other two hoping that they would keep their mouths shut for the night.

It took the three nearly half an hour to get to their room as they fought their way through the crowds of other people to the sanctity of their own little space. Although they were prepared for minimal, they were still all underwhelmed with what they were presented with.

A cramped rectangle room with two sets of bunks and a small pile of blankets on the end of each one.

“Guess that is why they tell us to bring our own bedding; it is going to be freezing these next two nights. Maybe we could all sleep together on one bed for warmth.”

That is a great idea, David, except for one little detail, you can have all our blankets, and Sasha and I will share a bed with my big Duvet.”

“I was only joking, but whatever.” David said as he put all his things on the top bunk.

“We don’t have to sleep together if you don’t want Cass; I have my own blanket.”

“No, I don’t want to sleep alone, but even more, I do not want to sleep next to your brother.”

“Cool so movies on the laptop?”

“Yea, I am going to be awake till the last minutes of Hollow Eve if I can manage that.”

“Cool, I can help with that.”

The two girls sat up all night watching movie after movie sharing their earphones with one another. All through Hollow ,Eve, they tried doing any and all activities to stay awake. Eventually, they were kicked out of the main halls. By the time they returned to the room, everyone else was asleep, so they quietly crawled into bed and tried to put another movie on but fell asleep nearly immediately.

Cassandra awoke, still half asleep. She made her way to the bathroom, and as she was washing her hands, she looked up into the mirror, where she saw a familiar face.

“Been having fun in my body?”