It sounded as though my look-alike had just left the room. Not only was it terribly cold and dark, but it was uncomfortably silent. Normally I could hear the nocturnal insects sing right through the night, but from where I was, not a single cricket could be heard. Then I started to think. If I could just find my way out to the front door or something, maybe get to the manager……..actually I was not sure what I was hoping for but I had to do something. I imagined the walls and decided to just start moving in the direction I supposed was best.
Nkosi: So how do I get back in? Any ideas? You seem to know your way around the walls.
Woman: It amuses me how you are not afraid of me. Why are you not afraid?
Nkosi: The object of this exercise is……..what….that I should be afraid…?
Woman: Not at all! I’m just amused.
Nkosi: Well I’m not the least bit amused nor do I care to be afraid of anything right now. Since I came home from work I have had nothing but one crazy incident after the other, including being strangled by some ghost….thing….that just popped out of the wall, Becky is fighting for her life, I JUST CAME FLYING THROUGH A WALL…….trust me you are not that big a surprise. It’s actually quite fitting that a weird woman….shadow….is out here on the ledge with me, helping me plot how to get back into the building…….THROUGH THE WALL……………………. and so on and so forth. Haaa!
Woman: I guess I get your point…
Nkosi: Yes……and right now everyone else is getting some sleep but here I am wide awake. Damn it! It’s…..it’s just gone 3am…..! Ok how do I get back in? You know what! Never mind! I will find a way down. For your sake Wonder had better be ok!
Woman: What will YOU do to me?
Nkosi: Always a way……..everything under the sun has a beginning and an end. Mark my words. If my Wonder is harmed by you…..shadow people…..if this crazy story you told me about Frank is true…….you will regret you ever knew me……both of you.
Woman: Hmm….you really are……
Nkosi: Save it……I don’t care…..I don’t give a hoot…! All you need to know is this! I’m getting back in there and your friend will get what’s coming to him.
Woman: Nkosi…….I will help you. This was never meant to happen.
Nkosi: Hmm! Anyway! Funnels and drains! That’s my way down……if they will hold.
I crossed two corners and kept making my way sideways along the walls. I had to be in the lounge. Well, I hoped I was. As I continued I was greeted by a growing brightness. The lounge light was on so all of a sudden I could see. I was afraid my look-alike would be lurking around but there was no one in the room, much to my relief. I could see the door from where I was. If I just carried on across the next two walls I would be alright……!
“Wonder….you will never get out this way.”
What…..who was that…it sounded like someone was within the walls right next to me. I was starting to ‘not’ be afraid. I had seen so many crazy things within less than 24 hours so this was just the saga continuing. I tried to respond but I could not.
“Oh…….did he….did he remove your ability to speak? Gosh that guy is starting to make me mad..”
Was she talking about Frank? She knew him? I felt a dash of cold come across me then all of a sudden….
“Who are you, what are you…….are you in the wall…” I was able to speak. “Did you just sprinkle something on me?”
“Yes Wonder! I am your friend…..Becky’s shadow…”
“Ok that sounds ridiculous but since I am trapped in here…I guess anything is possible. Why and how did I get here…..? Where is that Frank? He is not human….”
“Nor am I! He is a shadow, like me….only he has an agenda….and will harm you if we do not do something quickly…”
“I am stuck within a wall! I do not feel human right now…how is it possible to do this…what did he do….”
“He turned you into a shadow to keep you….”
“Keep me…keep me here for what…”
“I….I don’t understand….”
“Frank fell in love with you….he wants to keep you. He hopes you will love him back…”
“He turned me into a shadow so I could love him back…..”
“It’s an obsession. It has driven him for almost a year to become what he is today. Before you, he was just happy to be a shadow gliding along surfaces.”
“Shadows are not things. You are just….”
“The outline of the figure that is blocking light from a surface…?”
“Well yeah so you are not a thing. How are you able to move and speak? And….turn me into one? This is ridiculous…..let me out of here.”
“I will help you. I just need to get the formula he used. I do not have that one.”
“hmm….you will have to speak to your building manager about that one.”
“There is a woman in my lounge, she actually looks a little like me who is she? She knows I’m in here and she got me to shadow her. I was forced to do exactly what she was doing, as if I am her shadow. How did she do that?”
“Woman? Like you?”
“Yes….she was here a few……moments ago….I’m losing all sense of time in here, Lord help…I’m going to go MAD JUST NOW..!”
“It’s ok Wonder…..trust me I will help you like I said. Stay calm! You will be fine I promise. As for the woman…..
Nkosi: Hello…..sorry to bother you at such an odd time of the night or morning….ha….I noticed the light was still on and I…!
Building manager: Ah Nkosi….I saw Wonder just about an hour or so ago.
Nkosi: You did? That is just great. Where is she? I left her in the car and I thought she would stay there till I got back. I am very concerned. She is no longer there. Apparently she is in danger…”
Building manager: Danger?
Nkosi: I heard from a sha….a strange woman……..that she might be in danger.
Building manager: A shadow? hmm!
Nkosi: You……wha…how did you know I meant…..
Building manager: Yah! There is a lot I do know. Then there is a lot I do not know! But one thing I do know is your girl went up to the flat looking for you and, if the stain of blood on the pavement is anything to go by……she is in grave danger.
Nkosi: Oh God! And you say it so calmly. I’m going to find her….
Building manager: Come back Nkosi…you are not going to win this on your own. You….
Nkosi: You all keep telling me Wonder is in danger but then expect me to remain as calm as you are. What if I find her in Becky’s state or WORSE? And you all seem to know exactly what’s gone wrong……! Someone needs to start explaining! And NOW!
Building manager: I will explain but we have no time right now! Come inside I will explain as I prepare!
“Yes the woman…….who is she? Why does she look like me and most of all, who does she think she is taking over my flat like that”
“Wonder honey…..she has been in this flat longer than you have.”
“You mean she used to rent the place before me?”
“No…she lived here before you did and even with you till today.”
“Ok woman….shadow…whatever….I have never seen THAT woman in ALL my life”
“Yes you have, many times. Normally on surfaces and you actually noticed her for the first time in the last photo you took with your friends. Well, she made herself known then…….to get your attention.”
“The last photo I took?”
“But that’s the one with the strange shadow”
“She is a shadow?”
“She is MY shadow?”
“So why is she human and there……and I am a shadow….and…..here?
“Hmm is not answer!”
“I know you know…so tell me…”
“Haa…..Frank put you here..”
“Yes…Frank put me here…”
“So Frank put her there instead of me……?”
“He put her there….no…..or he put her there…yes?”
“Yes but it’s a little more….”
“Why am I here and she is there? She is the shadow! Why am I here?”
“He wants you here….to get your attention.”
“He has my attention, clearly.”
“Why is she there?”
“I guess so no one can tell you’ve disappeared. There is a lot he hasn’t actually told me”
“So he left her in my flat…”
“No he never left..”
“So where is he…..?”
“He is in the flat….”
“They are both there together…?”
“Frank is a shadow, she is a shadow, you are a shadow and so all you three shadows are busy lurking around my flat…”
“Oh sorry….I AM A SHADOW, SO THAT’S FOUR!”
“No yours is not permanent. There are only two shadows Wonder! Gosh how do I say this so you understand…”
“She is Frank”
“Frank……..Frank is that woman in…..”
“I don’t know how best to explain this but……Frank IS your shadow…..”