Rated PG; blood, pain
Prompt: Write about a character who can suddenly see things through another person's eyes--literally.
Author's note: Really short story because this can't be extended.
“Uh, I think it worked?”
“Yeah, that’s right! It did! We did it!”
Nama runs over and hugs me. She hides her face from me, burying it into my chest. I know why. However, I appreciate it, so I don’t call her out. It’s a little weird, with her being almost my height, but I can’t complain. She's also probably hiding so she doesn’t have to look at me, to see a certain feature.
Of course, as much as we hate to, we have to end the hug. We can’t stay intertwined forever, no matter how much we both want to. I’m not ready to leave. I need a few more minutes. Just to adjust my vision. That’s what I keep telling myself, anyway. I actually can see pretty well, which surprises me.
But Nama, in all her cruelness, steps back, finally looking at me. I have to tamp down the urge to open my mouth. I’m not sure if I want to gag, vomit, or scream, but something wants to come out that shouldn’t. Nama is definitely feeling the same way. She presses her lips into a tight line.
She’s wearing my eyes.
And I’m wearing hers.
My eyes are a shimmering green. They look like lily pads floating lazily, reflecting the early morning sun. They’re quite pleasing to watch the light refract off of. So her having them in her is not technically what’s making me feel sick and terrified. It’s the aftermath of Skar’s terrible surgery job.
Ze hopped away as soon as the job was done, not even bothering to wake us up or get zir keys. Ze just bolted, probably feeling about as good as I do. Skar left us alone, in an underground bunker. I would too if I was this bad at surgery.
Blood trickles from Nama’s right eye, which she’s closed. Some of it got on my shirt. It looks like she’s crying blood. Oh, and the messy stitches on her cheek. It looks like Skar had a slip of the hand. Why did we trust zir again?
There’s a bruise on Nama’s top lip--its petals extending all the way to her nose--that she’s poking with her tongue.
“What do you think Skar did here?” She’s trying to look at it, but can’t get a good angle with. . .
. . .well, my eyes.
“Maybe ze decided to slap you, just to make sure you were alive.”
“That sounds like zir.”
Nama tries to touch it with her finger. She winces as her fingertip makes contact with the purple stain. The motion makes her face bunch up. It pulls apart the pathetic attempt at stitching like two hands ripping apart a piece of paper.
More blood flows.
Nama and I finally decide to do something about her injuries. The spell that kept us here, facing each other, broke when her stitches did.
“I’ll go get some bandages. You, paper towels.” Nama says.
I nod and go to the kitchen.
When I get in there, I see a blanket-covered heap lying on the grey couch, snoring softly. The sound is comforting. Or it would be if I didn’t know who was making it.
I don’t wake zir. I would like to, but I know that’ll just make zir annoyed. I don’t like Skar when ze’s annoyed. I’m not brave enough, either. Not that I would want to be, anyway.
I walk past zir, remembering the urgency of the task. I go straight to the counter, where a few things lie: an open jar of peanut butter, a nearly empty plastic water bottle, a stack of paper plates, an unplugged coffee maker, a toaster with bread sticking out of it, and a roll of paper towels.
The first few towels are covered in peanut butter. I rip them off and throw them on the ground. It falls like a feather on the tiled floor. The peanut butter makes it stick. I turn around, running out the open door, away from Skar and zir mess.
Nama is pulling the bandages out of a supply closet next to the bed she was lying in. Mine’s on the other side of the room, left quickly in the haste to get to my friend. The friend stands up, shutting the door with her heel.
I jog to get to her. She cringes as she looks at my no doubt butchered face. She opens her mouth, almost saying something, but deciding against it.
“Oh, thank god you have the towels.”
Neither of us has much medical experience. Probably why we came up with this in the first place. We fiddle around for a bit. I end up removing her stitches with pliers. It comes out like a shoelace from a sneaker. She curses Skar as she watches the bloody string come out.
A few wet cloths, some tape, and a couple of band-aids later, the long scar running across Nama’s cheek is covered in gauze and stuck on a bandaid. Maybe we should have learned more about basic first-aid before trying to understand the complicated stuff.
Nama has been looking at me and biting her lip this whole time. She wants to say something about my face.
“Okay, is it that bad? My face?”
Nama plasters on a fake smile at my question.
“No, it’s not that, it’s. . .”
I rub my cheeks, and they have no blemishes. They’re still smooth. I don’t feel any pain. No stitches or slashes on my forehead or chin, either. It looks like Skar put more care into my surgery than ze did for Nama. Ze doesn’t like me. Ze barely likes zirself.
“I. . .don’t get it.”
I keep poking my face, waiting for the agony to start. Nothing.
“Why are you so marked up, and I’m not?”
“Oh, well-” Nama stops talking, looking at the break room door.
Skar is standing there. Ze is a short individual, with long honey-colored hair and pretty dark skin. Ze is wearing the same red hoodie, ripped jean shorts, and yellow leggings as ze was a few hours ago. The cheap studs with squirrels on them are still in zir ears. The light brown eyes that look exactly like Nama’s, pools of melted chocolate, are new though.
“Hey,” Skar says. “I decided to participate in your experiment. All it took was a bit of magic, once I realized I was bad at the surgery.”
Ze nods to Nama, who is gaping at zir. Magic?
“Hey, I gave you my eyes,” Skar turns to me. “You don’t mind, do you?”