There once was town in middle of nowhere. This town wasn’t on most maps and not known to any city folk. Now in this strange town was a sidewalk with a large zipper that stretched along the concrete. No one in the town knew where it came from or what it meant. But a wise old man would always tell them to never touch it. They trusted the man, calling him the Elder, for he had once saved from destroying itself. Then one fateful day changed the town forever. The Elder died. He left all his inheritance and his large house to a young girl that no one recognized. She was to be the next Elder, and the townspeople named her Eternity.
As years pasted the little child grew into a beautiful young woman. Unlike most humans her hair was as dark as the night sky yet shimmered blue when light was cast upon it and extended down her thin, pale body. Some said her eyes were the sun themselves for her fiery irises stung right into your core. Other said she looked horrifying and looked much like the Elder himself. And, akin to the Elder, Eternity roamed the town, barefoot, watching over the zipper.
One day she came upon an intriguing site: The zipper had been unzipped. Her curiosity got the best of her and she bent beside it looking down to see what wonders lay beyond the object. But there was nothing, only pure blackness. Though the sun was high in the sky, it did not illuminate the pit.
“What evil lies down in there?” she whispered to herself.
She stood and noticed four other people, three men, one boy, examining the cavern, one of which lay on the ground motionless. Two of them were throwing rocks down it, waiting to hear the bottom but heard nothing. The other sat quietly beside the young man who lay on the concrete. Not a word a passed between them.
“Who did this?” Eternity abruptly asked making her way towards the four.
“Explain yourselves!” Her pace quickened.
“We found it like this,” said the man who had been throwing rocks and the other man beside him nodded.
The boy who sat beside the man stood and looked at Eternity. His face was red with tears and his hands were shaking.
“My dad isn’t waking up!” he yelled choking on the urge not to cry.
It was true. Eternity felt for a heartbeat. He was alive but obviously unconscious. She raised herself up and directed her towards them. With a calm voice she said,
“I want to question all of you. Meet me at the police station in an hour and don’t any of you think about running.”
With that she left the four townspeople who observed in silence.
Everyone arrived at the police station on time except for the unconscious man who had been hospitalized. Eternity had asked the sheriff to help with an interrogation. She started right away. She took the first man into a dark room and sat him down at a small table.
“Tell me your name, age, and occupation.” Her words were sharp and quick.
“My name is Oliver Times, I’m 34, and I live right on the edge of Captain Street,” he replied not thinking twice about it.
“Where were you last night?”
“I was working at my job.” He looked at the floor.
“What kind of job?” Her flaming eyes glared at him.
“I-I work at a downtown store.” He wasn’t telling her something. His hands were shaking.
“What was the name of the store?’ She leaned closer to his face her glare burning his very heart.
“Oh, I’m sure you know what store, Rick’s Gadgets & More.”
Eternity turned to the sheriff who was standing the corner. He nodded, answering that Oliver’s claim was true. Then suddenly his expression changed.
“I know you from somewhere! I recognize your deceitful eyes!” The sheriff pointed straight at Oliver, “You’re that murder suspect!”
“What? Me? I’m sorry, sir; I don’t know what you’re talking about.”
“Yes you do! You were the one who murdered that innocent woman! You ran and we haven’t been able to find you but now-”
“It wasn’t me! I didn’t kill anyone!”
The argument continued. Both men seemed at each other’s throats making accusations. Eternity couldn’t take it any longer.
“Guys, stop this nonsense! This isn’t why we’re here!” she yelled this just as a headache formed.
She cringed and paused. It wasn’t the first time this happened. Ever since she was made the Elder of this town these strange headaches began popping up at random moments. She didn’t know why and almost didn’t want to. She feared the worst.
“Is it a headache again?” the sheriff calmly asked.
“No, I’m fine, wait, why was I not informed about this murder?”
The sheriff glanced at her and crossed his arms, “Its police business not yours.”
“I’m the Elder; it’s my business to know what goes on in this godforsaken town! We’ve got a real problem. That zipper thing just might be the end of this town. I’m prepared to figure this out even if it kills me! Are you?”
She expected a sarcastic answer but the sheriff only shook his head, walked towards the door, and opened it.
“Hey,” Oliver called to him, “At least that kid wasn’t killed.”
The sheriff spun around just as Oliver flung the table towards Eternity. She ducked but the table leg smacked her forehead. Blood spilled from the wound, dripping all over the floor. Oliver dodged for the exit. He was able to force his through the sheriff’s attempt to stop him. He made it out but soon more police officers began to chase him. It wasn’t long before he realized he wasn’t going to make it out. He ran towards the nearest window and jumped out of it.
There was an audible smack as his body hit the ground below. Eternity stood to see what happened clasping her forehead, she regretted doing this. The walls around her began spinning. She fell over landing in a pool of blood. It got in her mouth and hair. She tried to get up but the thick fluid stuck her to the floor. The pain increased. Everything throughout the room became a big blur of colors and soon she blacked out.
Eternity’s eyes shot open. She rapidly sat up and then became dizzy after the sudden movement. Her head ached worse than ever. Wait, her head was no longer covered in blood. Instead it had been cleaned and stitched up. She found herself in a hospital bed. How did she get here? But that didn’t worry her, she wanted to know what had happened at the police station and if anyone else was interrogated. These thoughts plagued her mind with more headaches. She lay back down, resting tender mind.
“Oh, you’re awake,” someone said. It was a nurse.
“Where’s the sheriff?” Eternity insisted.
“Now, miss, you need to rest.” The nurse seemed calm.
“No, you don’t understand. I need to speak with the sheriff.” Her patience thinned quickly.
The nurse was about to answer when the sheriff entered the room along with another officer Eternity didn’t recognize. The sheriff motioned for the nurse to leave and she did so. He steadily watched her go and then shut the door behind him. He looked to Eternity.
“You look chipper,” he said his face didn’t show any expression.
“What happened?” she blurted out suddenly.
“Well, a lot actually. You were out for three days. Sheesh, we were so worried about that Oliver guy we forgot about you and if Kaleb over here hadn’t found yah, you might’ve not made it.” He pointed towards the young man behind him, who apparently was named Kaleb.
“Thank you.” She felt that her voice was too soft when she said this.
Kaleb nodded without saying a word.
“Anyway,” the sheriff continued glancing back and forth at the two, “Kaleb and I questioned the other two suspects. The other is named James but he had nothing to do with the zipper. The boy was just the same. Speaking of the zipper, it’s gone.”
“What do you mean ‘gone’?” Eternity felt her heart rate accelerate.
“I mean there’s no zipper just a giant hole.” With that said, the sheriff turned and left. But Kale stayed.
He came close to her and in an almost whisper voice said, “There’s a lot of things he didn’t tell you. I’d like to talk to you it about now but I can’t. Just know there’s more to the zipper story.”
“Why isn’t he telling me?” Again her voice sounded too soft.
“He doesn’t trust you. He thinks you’re too young.”
“I am not! I’m almost 20!” This was yelled and Kaleb covered her mouth.
“I’ll be back to see you, okay?”
She nodded vigorously. Kaleb removed his hand and turned towards the door.
“Thank you, again,” she said to him before he walked out.
He gave a smile that made her redden and then he exited. Eternity sighed. What was the sheriff not telling her? It obviously was something important, something that might even cause Kaleb to lose his job. She didn’t linger on this idea for too long, it gave her another headache. She closed her eyes and drifted into sleep.
Something woke her, no, someone. She opened her eyes to see a man standing in the doorway. The lights in the hallway silhouetted his body and cast a shadow in the dark room. Though his face was darkened she could see who he was.
“You were that unconscious man by the zipper,” she said squinting to see his features.
“You don’t remember do you?” His low voice rumbled so deep Eternity felt her hands shake.
“D-don’t remember what?”
“That night I saw you unzip the zipper. That night you let out the Beast and then knocked me unconscious. You unleashed something beyond human comprehension. I’m surprised that we’re not all dead from it. How could you not remember that?”
Fear pierced right through Eternity’s soul. “W-what?!”
James sat quietly on a bench in an abandoned train station. The night air was crisp and the moon’s light glistened along the tracks. Crickets could be heard in the background. Everything seemed normal but then again James knew there was nothing normal about this place. He calmly sat waiting. In the darkness, two men could be seen walking towards him. He stood growing a little impatience. The two men finally approached the stained. Their steps were heavy and caused the wooden stairs creak as they made their way to the platform. James swallowed. They were much taller than he had anticipated and obviously a lot stronger as well.
“Do you have it?” the taller one grunted.
“Yeah, I’ve got it,” James carefully pulled something out of his coat pocket, “It was on the sheriff’s desk like you told me.”
The man reached for it but James slyly pulled it away. He smirked.
“Now, Mr. Raczek, I need my reward first and also you owe me a man. Oliver died so I’m doubling my price for this thing. What is it anyway?” He casually brushed his hand across its cylinder shape.
“Don’t pull my leg, James. The price doesn’t change,” Mr. Raczek retorted.
“Fine,” James frowned, “but next time I want double.”
Mr. Raczek handed a black case to him. James checked it then nodded with satisfaction and handed the object over. He looked up awaiting the man’s response.
“Alright, here’s your next mission,” Mr. Raczek gave a half smile, “Get friendly with this girl.”
He handed James a photo. Though the camera was a bit blurry, James could tell who this girl was.
“What do mean ‘friendly’?”
“I mean get her to trust you and then kill her.” Mr. Raczek walked toward the steps preparing to leave but he turned and said, “And James?”
“You might wanna start preparing. This town’s about to go into total chaos after what I’m going to do with it and I’m not just talking about the Beast.”
He then left walking back into the blackness from where he entered. James stood alone again. He looked down at the picture of the girl. How in the world was he supposed to this? He knew not to question his employer but something wasn’t right about all this. He shoved away the feeling and focused on the task at hand. A branch snapped behind and whirled around to see the enemy.
“Who’s there?” he yelled but no one could be seen. He sighed and soon strode away from the station leaving it in the darkness.