Chapter 13

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Matteo opened the stairwell door and we walked through. My nose immediately wrinkled in disgust at the awful smell that was floating down to us, but I pushed it away and started climbing the steps after Ezekiel and Xian who were leading the way.

We got up the first flight of stairs and stopped on the staircase just before the door onto the second level. I leaned forward around the two in front of me and saw the door was opened and flickering lights were blinking on the other side.

I rested back against the wall, my hand wrapped around the handle of one of the bigger knives at my side, and watched as Ezekiel glanced around the door frame before turning back to all of us and nodding his head. He then gestured with one of his hands to the other flight of stairs to which we nodded and then he and Xian disappeared through the door, out into the hallway.

I looked behind me at Matteo and Willow who were both holding hands. They nodded their heads at me and I did the same as I took a deep breath and made my way up the last few steps and turned to the other flight of stairs. As I walked by the door, I caught a glimpse of Ezekiel and Xian walking away, deeper down the hallway.

Our boots crunched the bits of glass underneath our feet as we walked up the stairs. My heart rate picked up ever so slightly and my hands felt very sweaty against the handle of the knife.

I stopped just as Ezekiel had done once we had made it to the third level and I stood with my back against the wall. Matteo and Willow did the exact same thing beside me and I took the large knife out so I could use it just in case.

The door was wedged open with a wooden block as had the one on the second level and the lights flickered overhead all of us. I then glanced at Matteo and Willow quickly before sticking the side of my head around the edge and having a look at what was on the other side.

My eyes immediately widened ever so slightly as I saw a body in white leaning against the far wall and covered in blood. Their glasses were askew on their pale face and their dark eyes were wide as they sat there, their arms limp at their sides.

I swallowed the lump in my throat and forced my eyes away from them, looking down each of the two sides of the hallway. After seeing that the coast was clear, I looked back at Willow and Matteo and gestured with my hands that there was no one there. They nodded along and then I took the initiative.

I stepped out into the hallway just as a shiver ran up my spine. I kept my eyes away from the body in front of me as I glanced down each of the two sides of the hallway and then turned to the left. I heard Willow let out a small gasp as her eyes landed on the dead body, but she and Matteo caught up to me quickly. I turned around and gave Willow the best reassuring smile I could muster before my eyes shifted to the two of their clasped hands and I forced my eyes away as the smile faltered.

Zack was the only one on my mind right now and I needed to know if he was alright.

My pace picked up as we walked down the long hallway. Every door we passed, I tried opening them. Some were empty, others were just locked, but thankfully we didn't come face to face with any Feymon.

After a while, and once we started nearing the end of the hallway, a new sort of worry started swirling around within me. Where even are they all? Did they do this level already and then went to do other ones? Or had they known we were here and now they were just playing with us?

"This doesn't feel right," Willow whispered from behind me. "Where are they all?"

It was like she had read my mind.

I shrugged at her question and switched my knife over to my other hand as I wiped the sweat away from my right before returning it to that hand. We then came to the end of the hallway where we were to turn to the right and down the next hallway where the training room and cafeteria were located.

I looked around the corner of the wall and frowned heavily at the emptiness. There were blood splatters all over the place, but no more bodies or Feymon in sight. I straightened back up and looked back down the hall we had come before turning my eyes back onto Willow and Matteo with a confused expression.

Willow's brows furrowed. "What is it?"

I shook my head with the exact same expression and walked around the corner onto the empty hallway. Matteo and Willow followed after me and we remained silent as we walked underneath the flickering lights. A trail of blood soon came into view and we followed it, leading to the training room doors.

The doors were both closed and blood covered. My hands shook as we grew closer and I stood up close in front of them, trying to see through one of the small windows on the doors. Matteo and Willow both shared the other one and all three of our eyes widened as we stood, frozen, staring at the horrors on the other side. 

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