Author's note: Its not one of my finest work, but its just an idea that I wanted to have written. I would love some feedback on this.
Inaya was fast asleep in her seat long before the movie even started. The salty caramel popcorn she was craving just a while ago were cold, and half eaten, and her drink had reached room temperature. Her hair covered most of her face and in the dark, no one could even tell the seat next to Safina had a real person in it. Inaya always took the aisle seat, in her words “It was just a better seat” so Safina had to take the seat next to her. Minutes after the lights went out Safina felt a light tap on her leg. She turned her head and tried to focus on the figure a step away from Inaya’s seat. She pointed to the seat next to her. Safina let her through but could take eyes off this figure which she was able to then distinguish as a girl around her age. She could only describe this girl as having a regal aura.
Safina heard sirens wailing and her attention went back to the movie. While Inaya slept Safina through the movie and extra credits Safina had eaten all the food they had. Soon the credits ended as well but the lights did not come up, the theater was still dark when Safina called out Inaya to wake her.
She moved slightly and brushed her hair away from her face, “What” she said in a daze “Is the movie over?”
“Yeap, you missed it all. Also…” Safina took her phone out and showed it to Inaya.
“Seriously,” Inaya looked at all of her pictures, which were with her mouth open “Send me these when we get home.”
“You’re not mad.”
“No, I’ll post it with the caption ‘Best nap of my life’' Inaya joked as she handed the phone back.
They sat in the dark for another 15 minutes waiting for the lights to turn back on, but the more they waited the more anxious Safina became. Soon the sounds of the others in the theater died down and it was completely silent. Safina could hear her heart race but Inaya, unbothered by the situation, got up to leave. Safina followed Inaya’s actions and got off her seat.
“The lights haven’t come up yet” Safina jumped at the unfamiliar voice that came from behind her. “Sorry, I…I didn’t mean to scare you. I just thought we couldn’t leave if the lights didn't come on.”
“It has been a while since the movie ended. They forgot to turn on the lights. It is better to leave” Inaya responded to the confused girl who got up from her seat.
Inaya offered her guidance towards the exit, but she remained behind them and followed until they were outside. Safina could now see the girl more clearly, she had a tiny smile on her face after she took a closer look at her. The girl didn’t just have a regal aura, she was dressed as if she just came out of a movie, brown knee length coat, jeans, and a matching head scarf. Pretty, Safina thought.
“Thank you for helping me, this is my first time in a movie theater, so you know…Anyway I’m Fadel. It was nice meeting you” Fadel said with a smile as bright as the sun and walked out towards the hall.
Inaya and Safina gave each other ‘The Look,’ which meant they were both intrigued yet confused by Fadel. They too walked through the exit area until they came to the hall where Fadel was standing still looking ahead. As soon as they got next to Fadel their eyes landed on the half-demolished hall. Half of the ceiling had fallen to the floor, the food bar was covered in dust and mold, the furniture was knocked over and there was not a soul in sight.
Fadel's hands were clenched in tight, but her heavy breathing made her look more worried than angry. The sun light shone from the half-fallen ceiling.
“Safina, how long was the movie?” Inaya asked without looking at Safina.
“Two hours maybe”
“This cannot happen again,” Fadel interrupted and pulled them back towards the movie theater.
Once inside and again in the dark Fadel let go of their hands. In her panic mode, Fadel paced the aisle, she looked back at Safina and Inaya and then paced again.
“What is happening?” Safina broke the silence and stopped Fadel from pacing. “Why is this place in ruins, NO! How is this place in ruins? We were in here for two hours max and then that…It was fine. I don’t…” Safina began breathing heavily.
“It's hard to explain. But believe me this I tried to stop it, I tried hard” Fadel paced again, this time playing with her hands.
“I don’t understand, even if this is hard, EXPLAIN! One minute everything is fine and the next this. And what do you mean you tried to stop it.” Inaya explodes at Fadel, she pats Safina to calm her down.
“If I tell you, you won’t believe me”
Holding in all her anger Inaya calmly looked at Fadel, “Try.”
“I have a…power of sorts” she breathed in one last time before she spoke again in one breath, “If I stay in one place too long, it starts to look like what it would look like in 100 years. That's why this place is…crumbling.”
“Wait,” Safina said, “What? Does that mean, the people around us are…dead.”
“No, they just don’t exist in this building, they are alive just not here” she paced again taking to herself this time “I’m not making any sense, I shouldn’t have come here.”
“Why are we still here?” Safina yells at Fadel.
“I don’t know, this is the first time this has ever happened to me.”
“I think she’s crazy, she could have put something in our food to make us see all that” Inaya whispers to Safina.
“But you didn’t eat anything” Safina whispers back.
They looked around the theater, still dark. They could only see as far as their touches went. Inaya turned off her torch and opened her phone to see if they had any signals.
“Turn the light back on” Safina whispered.
“This cannot be happening. This cannot be happening. This cannot be happening. This cannot be happening” Fadel said over and over, her voice lower than a whisper.
“Turn the light back on, she is scaring me” Safina grabbed Inaya arm to get her attention.
“Dude, fine” She turns to light back on “Just checking for signals. My mom is picking us up, so I was just checking if she called me. Relax.”
They whisper among each other while Fadel continues to pace. Suddenly the sounds of Fadel pacing stops. When they finally look up, they see that Fadel is quietly staring at them. Her hands tightly grabbed her coat.
“We might die,” Fadel says unexpected.
“Nothing is going to happen, ok. We cannot explain what we saw but let us just think about it,” Inaya grabbed Safina’s hand and signaled her towards the exit.
“You don’t believe me” Fadel reaches into her coat, “No one ever believes me. Poor Fadel, with a strange power.”
Fadel moved closer to Inaya and Safina. They took steps back towards the exit. And then broke into a run. Fadel ran after them, she was faster than them and reached the exit before they could. She stood at the door like a wall. Her hand now out of her coat, Inaya could see and then hear a taser, it was the one that could open into a long stick.
“Believe me now. My powers make me stranger than you. If only you believed me” she swung the taser and it hit Safina on the head.
Safina fainted few seconds after the impact. Fadel turned her attention to Inaya next.
“Fadel stop, what do you want from us?” Inaya tried to stall her.
“Nothing, I just wanted someone to believe me.”
“Is that why you pretended to be helpless ‘never seen a cinema in life’ and all and then all that pacing and whispering.”
“I tried to make it believable but you and her, you kept talking to yourself, not caring about me.”
Fadel swung the taser few more times until it hit Inaya in the arm first and then on her head. Inaya fainted soon after the hit to her head.
Sometime later Inaya regained consciousness and opened her eyes to see the movie playing on the screen. Inaya looked to her right to see Safina eating her popcorn. Inaya straightened herself and tapped on Safina’s shoulder.
“I didn’t want to wake you up,” Safina whispered to her.
Inaya motioned with her hands “it’s ok” and then Safina motioned to her right.
“This is Fadel, I just met her. This is her first time in a cinema” Safina told her excitedly.
Inaya looked over to where Safina had pointed. Her eyes met a pretty girl in a scarf, overcoat, and jeans. The girl’s smile turned from sweet to scary in seconds.