Yeah, I'm only being partway serious about this. Just...I don't know, take it how you will. Maybe I'll continue it, maybe I'll hand it over to someone else. Either way, enjoy.

Being driven was the worst.

Driving was okay, she was a good driver. But she could never stand being driven.

She was driven after to the hospital after the incident. Driven to another, better-equipped hospital after that. Driven to an asylum after that.

The psychology books she'd read said that the car was not a phallic symbol like people thought in Western societies. It actually represented the womb.

The womb wanted to take her back. It would be easy to let it do so, simply surrender to it and give up control, let it do the thinking. But she didn't want that.

There was always the other oblivion. That was always an option. It always had been, and always would be. And she might choose it, eventually. But right now she didn't want that. She just wanted the nightmares to stop.

Sometimes it would seem like they had gone away. She would go for months, a year, never thinking of them. Then they would come, unbidden, worse than before. At first it was just nightmares. Now it was worse.

But she decided to fight. So she drove to the airport, and she had rented a car and now she was driving. She liked driving, even though driving in America was tough, because the cars were reversed. But still, she was driving. Not being driven.

The rain was thick, but not unbearable. She saw a sign in the twilight that told her she had only a few more miles to go before she reached her destination.

This trip wasn't approved by her doctor. The doctor wanted her to keep living her life, keep going to therapy, keep trying to live normally. Even after ten years, her best chance, according to the doctor, was to live normally.

So she'd lived normally. She went to college. She got a job teaching kids physics. She got a pet cat. She got a boyfriend. She got another cat.

Sometimes the dreams would come and she'd wake up and scream and the cats would rush to her, like they were trying to comfort her. Sometimes she'd overhear kids talking about their club activities and she'd freeze and some forgotten game would almost make her cry. Sometimes she'd wake up and not see her boyfriend lying next to her, but him and then she would cry and she'd hug him awake sobbing and telling him how much she missed him. None of that was normal.

She didn't remember what happened. That much had been ascertained by the days of questioning following the Incident. No, she didn't remember what happened, but she didn't forget completely either. Then she'd received a letter about the book.

It took her a month to find a copy of the book, and then a few more weeks to learn to read English well enough to make sense of it all (she'd learned to speak it quite well at college, but the book was a historical one, and used some complicated syntax). She didn't know where the letter had come from, but once she read the book, it didn't matter. She didn't tell her boyfriend, her doctor, or any of her friends about it and what it said. All she knew was that she had to find the place that book told her about. If what the book said was true, then maybe she could find help there.

Her boyfriend was concerned for her. And she didn't like to worry him. She knew that he had good reasons for being worried, though. "I know that what happened must've been bad," he said once, "and I know I probably won't understand. But please, try to tell me. Or tell someone."

"I told everything I know," she replied.

"That's not what I mean," he sighed. "I know you can't remember much. I just want to be able to help you. It seems like whenever you're scared of something and you want help, you don't let anyone come close."

"I'm sorry."

"I'm not blaming you for anything. But you have people that care about you. People that love you. And if you don't let them in, then there's nothing they can do for you. Right?"


That was after she'd woken him up in the middle of the night. He had been patient with her. Maybe too patient. Sometimes she suspected him of talking secretly with her doctor, but she'd never brought it up. He said that he loved her, and she said she loved him. And she supposed that she did. But how could he understand what had happened, when she herself couldn't? Sometimes she thought that she dreamt of it, but her memories never remained when she woke up. All she could recall was the terror, the anger, and the sense of betrayal. By who or what, she didn't know. Maybe someone betrayed her, maybe she betrayed them, maybe, as her doctor supposed, she felt betrayed by the world for taking everything away from her.

But that was why she was here. Because if the book was right, then this place could help her remember. It apparently had that kind of power. Though the book warned people to stay away, she remembered all the things she used to do that people warned her not to. That construction site was pretty dangerous, and in retrospect she thought she was very lucky that she never hurt herself there.

As Rena pulled up near the Haerbey Motel (she wasn't going to bother trying to pronounce that one) and ducked out of her car, she noticed that a sign was illuminated in the now pouring storm. She gathered her luggage as quickly as possible before darting towards the motel's doors, reading the sign out of the corner of her eye.

"Welcome to Silent Hill."