Samiya! Samiya! Where are you?!
The young woman shot up in her bed, sweat acting as the glue for her hair to stick to her forehead. Her affrighted big, brown eyes flitted from one side to the other of the small studio apartment.
Shadows played in the space, enjoying their freedom to frolic before the sun shone through in all its strength.
She inched backwards, pressing her back against the bed's cold, hard headboard. The covers and blankets were pulled backwards with her, her hands scrunching up the material as she tried to garner some comfort from the ghostly sheets.
She stared in front of her, not noticing her living space anymore; her eyes were replaying those oh-so-familiar scenes which she couldn't place into her past. She didn't know where she saw all the death and destruction. Or...
She shuddered, tears streaking across her cheeks, but no sniffs or sobs heard. She would rather know that she dreamt of what happened instead of what might happen.
Her eyelids shut close, hiding the scared brown pools. Immediately, a face appeared from the black void.
His brown eyes laughed at her, the twinkle unmistakably mischievous.
His mouth was wide and friendly; he was laughing at her. His copper skin glowed in the light of a sunny day, but the heat couldn't scorch away his joy.
She could see only him in the middle of the pitch black background, but she somehow felt the sun falling on her and the breeze blowing past her. It ruffled his black hair; he shoved a hand through the messy strands, and she could suddenly hear herself: "You need to cut it! Hair doesn't get shorter by itself."
"Yes, dear," he mocked with a wink, before laughing and then turning to run. He disappeared into the void, and the sun and breeze left with him.
Her eyes shot open again, and met the same sight as every other morning. A minimalistically-designed studio apartment. She felt caged in, but the sun was only starting to light up the sparse space with golden rays. It was still too early to open her windows and allow in the morning breeze.
She stretched out her legs, grimacing at the stiff muscles. Pulling back her legs to her chest, she rested her chin on her knees. She stared at her toes, allowing her thoughts to run away with her again.
This couldn't be how life was supposed to be...So sheltered and caged in. But, she certainly didn't wish for a life of war and fighting either. She just wished for freedom.
Freedom comes at a price, Samiya. She shook her head, but recognized the words as being uttered by the voice of the stranger from her dreams.
"Who are you?" she whispered, her nose scrunching up as she halted her next flow of tears. "Why do you haunt me?"
A breeze swept over her. Her head shot up, fear clutching her heart in its cold claws. She plunged towards the foot of the bed, tumbling over it to the ground. Pressing her body to the ground, she crawled into the little space she had left for herself, the rest of the space underneath the bed closed up to allow nobody sight of the hiding space.
She shut the small door with her toes, stretching her body to spill into the space to the top of her head. She lay still, her eyes now awake and focused, her ears paying attention to the slightest of sounds. She shivered at the haunting cry of an anguished young man, but she knew that it wasn't really being called from within her apartment.
"Samiya! Samiya! Where are you?!"