The room is dimly lit by recessed lighting. Its dimmer switch is currently set to a low setting to draw little to no attention into the room. The walls are a dirty yellowish colour. They are bare, no clock, no pictures, and nothing decorative or inviting.

Sydni is aware of hushed voices behind her talking in tones too low to make out their words. Her head feels heavy and the effort of trying to lift her chin from her chest sends waves of nausea pulsing through her. How many times had they hit her? It didn’t matter because they couldn’t beat information out of her that she didn’t have. She must have lost consciousness at some point because she couldn’t remember being left alone in the room.

Her breath was ragged and raspy; it echoed like a growl in the otherwise silent room. A soft click. Someone had entered the room. Sydni’s body tensed and she strained against her restraints. “Time to get you out good friend,” whispered a familiar voice behind her.

Her restraints moved slightly, but in order to get them off of her her arms had to be pulled back and away from the chair that imprisoned her. Pain shot through her and before she could respond her world fell into darkness.

*             *             *

As the last rays of fog cleared Sydni became aware of a bright light dancing over her closed eyelids.  It was a light that carried warmth. She peeked through the cracks of her swollen eyes to see sunlight pouring through a large window. Her mind swirled in confusion. The hard metal chair was gone. She was in a soft bed with a firm pillow. The intense pain was muted somehow. She knew the feeling; someone had given her something for the pain and nursed her injuries. Everything was such a sharp contrast to her memories from before she blacked out.

By Shari Marshall – 2019

January’s theme is contrast. You are invited to post a link in the comment section below with your interpretation of contrast, any medium welcome.