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 [OS] Don't Let Me Die [EAOR]
Glassy, fever bright eyes struggled to make sense of the dim, dizzy world. Cob webs and musty wood...where was he? How long had he been here? It didn't make any sense, nothing made any sense. The quiet seemed too loud, ringing in his ears. Blood, there was so much blood...on his chest and arms, his legs and face. His tattered clothing reeked of it, was soaked in patches and swatches all over his body. And his wrists...his ankles... oh mio dio, did they burn; swollen and weeping, flaking skin coated in a viscous mixture of sweat, blood, and pus.

It was sickening...sick...dio, why did he feel so sick?

His heart was racing, his breathing was too fast...David had to get out of here, and soon. The thought seemed old, reused. As if the realization was resurfacing from amongst the fog...was this the first time he had been awake? Or had he tried to escape before? Did it matter? No. It couldn't. He couldn't think about it. All that mattered was now, not how he got here, not what had happened, not why he couldn't remember. Those were all questions for safety, and right now, he definitely wasn't safe.

The chains looped around his wrists pulled away damaged skin with every move the firestarter made, but not moving meant giving up, and giving up wasn't an option. He couldn't let Lori down like that; couldn't let her come home to him gone without a trace. Even before Dave started twisting, his pale skin was slicked with a fine sheen of sweat, but after only a few minutes of struggling, his usually unruly hair was plastered flat from exertion. It hurt, ever second of it hurt, but it was working.

The once tight metal was loosening; easing away with the help of the very same gruesome mixture it had created to slip over his hand once his brutally thinned wrist proved insufficient. He was free! Or at least almost. With one hand free, Dave was able to sit up, even if doing so made the world spin and tip like a carnival ride. He wanted to stop and wait, give himself some time to adjust, but stopping could mean never starting again. If he passed out again, all was lost, and passing out was a very real possibility.

He had to move, and he had to move now.

With trembling uncoordinated fingers, the drifter removed the chains from his remaining limbs, wincing with each touch to the metal he couldn't stand to smell let alone come in contact with...but it was now or never. As soon as he was unbound, David stumbled away from the bloodstained, wooden table that had once held him. Every step was a hard fought victory as the man climbed up the nearest set of rickety stairs. The house, if that's what it was, seemed empty, but at that very moment, he couldn't have cared less. Being stopped hadn't even crossed his hazy mind. It simply wouldn't happen, couldn't happen unless the universe really did hate him.

And thankfully it didn't.

The world beyond the horrible shack that had held him captive was no less damp and dreary...but at least it didn't smell like blood. It wasn't dark and cold and was alive, just like he was. The swampy ground sucked at Dave's feet like grasping hands—trying to halt his escape like no human had—but his resolve was relentless. He would keep walking until he couldn't any more, no matter how long it took, no matter how many times he stumbled and fell...he was going to get home. He had to get home.

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