• How did I get here?

    Runa came to her senses to find herself tucked in an empty bathtub as guns blazed just outside the bathroom door. The decibels produced by the firearms had deafened her, and the smell of gunpowder filled her nostrils, further exacerbating the pulsating migraine on the left side of her head. Despite the raging gunfight outside, Runa wanted nothing more than to close her eyes and drift off to sleep as she was plagued by weakness.

    She propped herself up against the shower wall, struggling against the shooting pain throughout her body. Runa’s eyes laid on her reflection across the room and was aghast at what she saw. Her body had been riddled with injuries and judging from the amount of agony she was in, she anticipated the internal damage to be extensive. Runa’s neck was an array of colours ranging from deep purples to blush reds like a bouquet of dying tulips. It ached to tilt her head one way or another and found difficulty in taking deep breaths. She lifted her bloodstained t-shirt to reveal another forest of bruises covering her abdomen, becoming nauseous at the sight of it. She hauled herself onto the edge of the bathtub as she heaved, her stomach churning every time she did. Droplets of tears plopped onto the floor as she winced in pain, the lower half of her body tingling with numbness that was beginning to make its way upward. Drool ran from the corner of her mouth and pooled onto the porcelain surface as she rested her head, begging God to put an end to her suffering.

    Runa leaned back and peered down to find a 9mm pistol by her side but was unsure as to how she had acquired it.

    A gunshot blew through the centre of the bathroom door and Runa’s reflection exploded into a million pieces. The shower tiles rained down on her as she tried to shield herself with her arms. She shrieked in fear, throwing her hands over her mouth to muffle her sobs. Runa slid into the bathtub until she was flat on her back. She could feel her heartbeat thundering in her ears as she cried.

    Another barrage of bullets passed through the door, this time blowing off the handle and fracturing the toilet basin in the northeastern corner of the room. A steady stream of water began to flood the bathroom. Chunks of drywall and tile began to float as the floor quickly became a lake. She gathered all the strength she could muster and reached for the gun, practically throwing herself onto the bathtub’s porcelain ledge and aiming it towards the door. The structure of the doorframe began to weaken as it endured hit after hit until the hinges could no longer hold it in place. Runa pulled the trigger, unknowing whether the magazine was loaded or not.


    The recoil had taken her by surprise, causing her to flinch and drop the pistol into the bathtub. She had shot the intruder in his right shin, and strangely, the wound hardly slowed him down. He took his firearm and aimed it at her, his rabid eyes would be the last thing she saw before perpetual darkness swallowed her.

    Runa watched him pull the trigger and blinked on-cue as she heard the distinct click of an empty chamber. He pulled it once more, but there was nothing. The intruder tossed the gun upon the realization and charged at her with a sharpened edge. She sank back down into the bathtub and reached for the gun one last time, her body writhing in agony as she extended her reach. A horrid scream fled her lungs as she seized the weapon and pulled the trigger again, closing her eyes and turning her head away.


    Silence flooded her ears again as the bullet escaped from the chamber. She opened her eyes and stared at the man as he clamped his hands around his throat. His blood fountained in all directions and spraying onto her face. He stumbled backwards and collapsed lifelessly onto the bathroom floor.

    Runa sat there motionless, watching his blood flow like a river underneath him. The entire bathroom was covered in gore as red stained the walls to the porcelain surfaces. The sight of the human carnage caused her to throw up.

    A man had leaned against the broken doorframe and observed Runa from afar. He was covered in gunpowder from head to toe, and his clothes were tattered and bloodstained just as hers had been. A stream of blood breaking off like tree branches ran down the side of his face from a gash on the left-side of his forehead. Her eyes followed him into the bathroom as pieces of glass and tile crunched underneath his feet. She tracked his movements across the room, still brandishing the pistol. He opened his mouth to speak, however, there was only silence. Slowly, the man placed the gun onto the floor.

    Put the gun down. He mouthed.

    A female figure suddenly leaned against the doorframe, appearing to be in the same condition as them. She suffered a wound on her upper-left arm and pressed her hand firmly against it. The man hurried over and tore off a section of fabric from his shirt, tying it tightly around her arm. The woman was trembling with fear as her lips quivered and he did his best to comfort her temporarily, wiping away the tears as he held her in his embrace as she sobbed uncontrollably. Runa could not hear her cries but became emotional at the sight of her despair. She watched as the woman crumpled into his arms, dropping the knife she had been holding onto the floor.

    Runa exhaled and placed the gun down, wiping her blood-splattered face afterwards. The man turned towards her and nodded at the gesture. She tread on the edge of consciousness as pain radiated throughout her body once more, letting out a pitiful groan as she slumped down into the bathtub. The man rushed over, but at that point he was nothing more than more than a blurred figure in her vision.

    Runa closed her eyes almost willfully as she succumbed to her injuries. Not knowing if she would ever open them again.