Day 38: Passing Through

She Just Wanted to Be Heard
Day 38: Passing Through
Part of Story Arc 1: Counterclockwise
A "The Ring/Ringu" Fanfic
by Laurel (Sailorhathor)

Chapters: 38 of 100
Rating: Overall Rating Sup13+ (adult theme; horror elements that might be too scary for children under 13; bad language)
Dates: Begun September 2006. Some material is based on previously written stories from 2003-2005. This chapter was written in July 2010.
Word Count: 3,589
Summary: The gang tests Jodie's theory by seeing what kind of dreams they have the night after the séance. They involve an elevator, a giant wave of black water, and a dead innkeeper in a rowboat.
Warning: Contains spoilers for the entire Ringu and The Ring series.
Beta Thanks: Thanks to Sammie for beta'ing this chapter!
Fanfic Challenges: Fits [info]50_darkfics Prompt #38 Outcast and [info]Coclaim100 Prompt #38 Chocolate.
Author's Notes: When I did an actual search on the internet for the number of Dean Winchesters in the USA, I came up with a grand total of FOUR. XD As this wouldn't lead to a very interesting search for Svetlana, I upped the number into the hundreds.
During the scene where Akemi plays Kokkuri-san with her friends, they are actually speaking Japanese. It was hard to convey this in the story, but if there ever was a filmed version of the scene, the characters would be speaking Japanese with English subtitles. :D
The dream where the characters go running around the college with the elevator and such is loosely based on an actual dream I had.

X-over with the TV series Supernatural. Set pre-series, during Sam's years at Stanford.

        Quinn, turning over, propped his head up with his pillow and looked to see if Svetlana's eyes were open. They were; she stared at the ceiling, worry in her eyes. "Are you really going to call all the Dean Winchesters in the country?" he asked quietly.

        She nodded at him in the dark.

        "How many did you find during your 'net search?"

        "I tell you, one-hundred-seventy-eight."

        Quinn scoffed. "And you're really going to call them all?"

        "If I have to."

        "Exactly how are you going to approach that?"

        Svetlana rolled her eyes. "I say hello, is Dean Winchester there, and then I listen to his voice to see if he sound like same person from my dream. If he does, I say this is Svetlana. Do you remember me? If he right Dean Winchester, he know who I am."

        "Well..." He had to admit it. "...that's actually not such a bad way to handle it."

        "Humph. I'm not crazy." She turned over, facing him with her back.

        With a sigh, Quinn said, "I'm sorry I made fun of you, Svet. But you gotta admit, it's kinda weird to call all those guys..."

        "If it save our lives, then it's worth it." Svetlana gave his shin a light kick with her heel. "Now go to sleep."

        He looked at the black shapes on his desk. Two thin, rectangular boxes, the copies of the cursed tape they had made, stacked crookedly on top of each other. "We don't need anybody to save our lives. We copied the tape." Now heaving a relieved sigh, Quinn put his arms under his head and stretched, grinning. "There shouldn't be anymore nightmares."

        "Maybe Jodie wrong. We should be sure."

        "Mmmm," he hummed, stretching again. "Yeah, yeah." And he settled in for what he knew would be his first really good night's sleep of the week.

        They had asked Akemi to stay over, just for one night. Although they looked at her as an expert, she didn't feel like one, but agreed to stay over anyway just incase there was some sort of post-séance backlash. Jodie had given up her bed to Danica and Akemi, while Darcy opted to just go back to the dorm. As Jodie slept on the couch, Akemi got her side of the bed, next to a bedside table.

        Akemi's copy of the tape sat on that table. She kept looking at it in the dark as Danica breathed deeply, lost in sleep almost as soon as she lay down, the jetlag finally hitting her. Although Akemi wanted to believe in Jodie's theory, she couldn't help but be afraid.

        Then she remembered the baku. Akemi tried to be as quiet as possible as she retrieved her purse from the side of the bed, dug around in it, and brought out a little statuette attached to a keychain. Made of resin painted white, it looked like a strange creature with an elephant-like, furry head; a lion's tail; and the paws of a tiger. She had known of the mythological Japanese beast called the baku since she was a little girl; legend said that it would eat one's bad dreams if one asked it to.

        Putting the figure on the bedside table, Akemi whispered, "Baku, eat my bad dreams," and settled down into her pillow, feeling a bit silly. Better safe than sorry, as the Americans always said.

        Earlier in the night, she had spoken of Kokkuri-san to the group, that's all it was. That's why she was now dreaming about the strangest encounter she'd ever had while playing the game back in Japan, when she was fourteen.

        Yuki wanted to play it all the time, it seemed. Akemi remembered sitting on the opposite side of the square table by her mother's antique couch, her fingertip barely on the coin with Yuki's plump fingertip against hers and Mariko's on the other side, forming a Y. The window nearby was open even though it was raining; players of Kokkuri-san were supposed to do that to give the spirit a way to enter and leave the house.

        The first question, by custom, was to ask the date of your death. Or maybe that was just the way teenagers did it, Akemi couldn't remember.

        "Kokkuri-san, Kokkuri-san," Yuki began, "what is the date of my death?"

        The yen piece began to move. It gave Yuki a date far off in the future, in the year 2064.

        "Aw, who wants to live to be that old?" she responded.

        Mariko shook her head. "I can't ask this question. It's too creepy." Her face looked little and scared, like a child, when she said it.

        "You chicken. I'll ask, then." The girls put their fingers back on the coin.

        The older Akemi took a seat in a nearby chair. These girls of her memory didn't seem to be able to perceive her there, watching.

        "Kokkuri-san, Kokkuri-san, what is the date of Mariko's death?"

        The board gave them a date in the year 2057.

        "Almost as long as you," Mariko said, smiling and breathing a sigh of relief.

        Akemi wasn't going to be chicken. She remembered how determined she was at the time to prove she wasn't afraid of this game, after refusing to watch a scary movie only a week before at a classmate's party. How some of the boys had teased her! If she showed no fear here, Yuki would probably tell everyone at school, and then her reputation would improve. Akemi didn't like being thought of as a frightened little girl, like Mariko.

        She raised her chin and placed her finger on the coin. "Come on. Let's go again." With a gleam in her eye, Akemi finished, "I need Kokkuri-san to tell me when I'm going to die."

        "Oh, Akemi, you're so brave," Mariko remarked.

        Akemi just smiled, feeling satisfied. "Kokkuri-san, Kokkuri-san, what is the date of my death?"

        The board replied March 20, 2004.

        Yuki and Mariko let out stunned, girlish cries. "Oh my God! That's only eight years away!"

        Although she wanted to scream and run aimlessly around the room, Akemi had kept her cool. "Oh well. Everyone has to go sometime."

        The older Akemi barely heard her counterparts squealing and telling young Akemi of how brave she was, for she realized at that moment that the board had predicted she would die on Saturday. This coming Saturday. It was exactly seven days after she'd watched Samara's cursed tape.

        "Okay, now watch this." Clearing her throat, Yuki said, "Kokkuri-san, we ask you to depart."

        Older Akemi's head swam as she stood up, backing into the large window. The curtains blew around her, but they slowly began to calm as the window slid closed on its own. The teenage girls squealed, jumped up, and ran from the room. "Did you see that?!" Mariko yelped on their way out.

        Akemi watched the room fade and change into one of the study areas of the college she attended with several of the others. Her heart pounded. "Oh God... how can this be real? Is that really how it happened? Or am I remembering it wrong?" She clutched the protective charm hanging around her neck. "This is creeping me out. Baku, eat my bad dreams."

        In a nearby classroom, Quinn and Jodie sat cross-legged on the floor with a room full of other students. The white screen that hung over the chalkboard had been pulled down.

        "I hope that means we're going to watch a movie," Quinn commented, pointing to the screen. "I don't even care if it's educational, I just want to watch a movie."

        Jodie giggled. "We're not even in any classes together. What am I doing here?" She looked toward the open door. Something ran by, passing through the hall. It looked like a horse-sized animal that was half elephant, half tiger, maybe, all white. It's tongue lolled out the side of its mouth like a big playful dog, white fluffy hair billowing out from behind its ears. Jodie was stunned. "Did you see that?!"

        "See what?"

        "A big animal just went running by the door."

        "What kind?" Quinn turned around to look too. "Oh shit."

        The ghost of Anna Morgan was floating in the door. Jodie's mouth popped open in shock and dread. The woman looked just as she had in their previous dreams, wearing the old-fashioned black dress she'd died in with the antique cameo around her neck, her feet a foot off the floor. The other students didn't seem to think there was anything strange about this; they just watched her enter the room with detached interest, a couple of them checking their phone messages.

        "I thought you said we'd be okay if we just copied the tape!" Quinn snapped.

        Shrugging defensively, Jodie stammered, "I, I thought you would! I don't know how it works. Maybe... maybe you still have nightmares until your seven days are up. Or this is just a regular nightmare and not one sent by Samara." She shrugged again.

        Anna was hovering in front of the screen now. "Class, we're going to watch a movie today, but first you must be ready to take some notes."

        The other members of the class dutifully took out their pens and paper and got ready to write.

        Leaning over to Jodie, Quinn whispered, "Do you have any paper?" out the side of his mouth.

        She shook her head at him. "Where's my purse? I don't even have a pen."

        Anna glared at them for a moment before beginning to rattle off some notes. "First, you must know that Mysteria cannot save you."

        The class all wrote in perfect unison, taking down this note.

        "The Winchesters cannot save you either."

        The class took this down too.

        "There's a reason why I'm dressed this way. My daughter and I were going to appear in a play about life in the Victorian era, and we were practicing our lines when she pissed me off for the last time. I lost my mind at that moment. It wasn't a long trip, let me tell you."

        The students labored to get it all down.

        "When Samara went out to stand at the well, I snuck up behind her and wrapped a garbage bag around her head. She wouldn't stop struggling, so I bashed her in the head with a stone and threw her into the well," Anna explained.

        One of the students raised her hand. "Was she dead when you threw her in?" the girl asked.

        "No, it took seven days for her to die."

        "Seven... days..." a boy said as he wrote it down.

        Quinn and Jodie just looked at each other in horror.

        "Everyone, because these two students in the front aren't taking any notes, everyone has to read an extra chapter in the textbook tonight." Anna glared at Quinn and Jodie again.

        The class moaned; they started throwing wadded up paper at the two in the front, who ducked and covered their heads.

        "Now put away your papers and your cell phones - it's time for the movie." Floating toward the back of the room, Anna switched on the projector and started the film.

        Quinn and Jodie recognized it instantly. It was Samara's cursed tape.

        "You can't show this to a whole classroom full of people!" Quinn cried, jumping up. As he moved to the back of the room, Jodie got up and followed him. "It'll kill 'em!"

        When he reached for the switch to turn off the projector, Anna grabbed him by the arm and violently threw him into the windows by the classroom door. Quinn broke one of them with his back, then flopped limply to the floor. Jodie let out a scream.

        "Mind your own business," Anna said, and turned back to the projector, ignoring him.

        Jodie went to help Quinn up. "Are you okay?"

        He got to his feet with a wince. "Where'd she get the kung-fu moves all of a sudden?"

        "Let's just avoid her. I don't think we have any control over this nightmare." She pulled Quinn toward the door.

        "Yeah. This being a school dream, we're probably lucky we aren't naked."

        On their way out the door, Anna dropped one more cryptic comment. "It's every man for himself."

        "Yeah, okay, you crazy bitch."

        The students brought out their pens and wrote that one down anywhere they could, on their hands, desks, or each other's arms. "Every... man... for himself..." the one boy said as he wrote.

        Quinn and Jodie ran down the hall, away from the room. Anna leaned out the doorway. "You'd do it, wouldn't you?" she called.

        They found Akemi in the study area, petting the large animal. When she saw them, the delighted smile on her face dimmed a bit, as was her reserved nature. "Quinn-san, Jodie-san..."

        "What the hell is that?!" Quinn asked, indicating the animal. He looked at Quinn with his big lolly tongue and suddenly rubbed his furry head against Quinn's arm. Quinn backed up a step.

        "It's a baku," Akemi explained. "A creature of Japanese legend that eats bad dreams."

        "Well tell him to start chowing down!" After an experimental rub of the baku's head, Quinn began petting him, scratching behind one of his ears. The baku tapped one of his back feet eagerly.

        "I'm not sure it works that way in this case; we seem to be trapped in here. But Baku-san will get us out. Won't you?" Akemi rubbed his head.

        "Where's Svetlana?" Quinn looked around for her. He spotted a set of stairs nearby. One flight led down to a landing, and another led up to the floor above them. Quinn noticed that there was black water dripping from the floor above down onto the stairs, so profusely that it had practically flooded them. He tentatively walked close enough to peer down onto the landing. There was so much water running down the stairs that a rowboat floated there, idling back and forth and occasionally bumping into the railings. A man laid face down in the boat; his skin looked grey. Several playing cards floated in the water around the boat and a few more were scattered around his body. Quinn had no idea what this meant, but Rachel Keller would.

        He looked to his left at an information desk to one side of the stairs. The woman behind the desk had the black water dripping all over her, but she didn't seem to notice it at all. Instead, she read a magazine, looking bored, and ate from a box of chocolate donuts.

        Quinn backed toward the others. "This is a really weird school," he remarked.

        "Look, the elevator's opening!" Jodie cried.

        When the door opened, a bunch of people crowded out, including a young Anna Morgan pushing Samara in a baby carriage. Quinn wanted to find Svetlana; he knew she had to be here somewhere, so he ran into the elevator. Before Jodie, Akemi, or Baku-san could get on, the elevator door slid closed.

        "Hey!" Quinn yelled, seeing their surprised faces as the door shut. He tried pressing the Open Door button, but it didn't seem to be working. The elevator began to go up. "Shit."

        The lights above him flickered with an electric buzzing noise. As he looked up, he noticed out of the corner of his eye that there was a vending machine in the elevator that definitely hadn't been there when he got in. Quinn's head snapped in that direction. "Who puts a vending machine in an elevator?" he said out loud.

        With a groan, he saw that the machine was full of nothing but black videotapes.

        He hadn't put any money in it, but the tapes began to pour out of the vending machine anyway. The arms that held them back started twisting and turning out of the way all at once and the tapes dropped loudly into the tray where Quinn could retrieve them if he wanted to, but of course, he didn't. They overloaded the tray so quickly that tapes fell out onto the floor of the elevator; they piled up and slid across the linoleum to stop at Quinn's feet. He let out a whine, kicking them away.

        The elevator stopped at the seventh floor. Before the door slid open, Quinn noticed that all of the tapes had a sticker on the longest end.

        A sticker that said "COPY."

        He had no idea why, but he felt something click in his head. Quinn gathered up as many tapes as he could carry. It was like having the answer on the tip of one's tongue, but never being able to retrieve it.

        When the door opened, he stepped out into a food court area of the college. Svetlana was sitting at a nearby table.

        "Svet!" Quinn ran up, spilling the tapes on the table. "What is this doing here? I don't even think any of the buildings on campus have seven floors."

        "That's nice." She ignored him, licking chocolate fudge off her fingers.

        Quinn realized that the table before her was covered with various types of treats, some of the cartons empty like Svetlana had eaten them. She was currently scarfing down a chocolate sundae. Her mouth had a ring of chocolate around it. "That looks good. Where'd you get that?"

        "Over there." She pointed with her spoon in the direction of a little ice cream parlor, then licked the spoon and moaned contentedly.

        "Why are you up here making a pig of yourself?" he asked. This wasn't like her. "I mean, I know you enjoy a treat now and then, but..." Quinn picked up a few of the empty cartons, showing them to her.

        Svetlana shrugged. "What difference it make if I overeat? I'm gonna die anyway."

        "What do you mean?" Quinn held up one of the tapes. "We made copies."

        "I don't think that did it. We wouldn't be having this dream if it worked." She licked the chocolate from her mouth.

        Not knowing why, Quinn tried to hand one of the tapes to Svetlana. She backhanded it out of his hand. "That not good enough!"

        "Then what?"

        They both froze when a rumbling roar came from somewhere else on the floor. No one seemed to notice it but them. "What was that?" Svetlana whispered.

        She sprang up from the table when the roar sounded again, followed by the sound of ocean waves coming toward them. Quinn suddenly noticed that Anna was right there, hovering near the table. He shrank away from her. He and Svetlana moved toward the elevator.

        The ghost picked up one of the videotapes and held it out to Quinn. "You'd do it, wouldn't you?" she repeated.

        Shaking his head, Quinn replied, "I don't know what you mean."

        Anna looked at him with her weary, haunted eyes. "They were all outcasts, you know. Heptamera's Daughters. The other kids could tell they were different, and they were afraid of them." She sighed heavily. "We still suffer for it. All of us."

        Quinn pulled Svetlana toward the elevator. "Let's get away from here."

        Anna added, "His Daughters will never stop until they've made us all outcasts too." Then the room erupted with the sound of a shotgun blast, and Anna Morgan flew apart like a windswept mist.

        Holding the gun at arm's length, Dean Winchester surveyed the room. "Come on," he said to Quinn and Svetlana. "Something's coming."

        "Dean!" she cried, and ran up to him. "You're coming to save us, aren't you?"

        Quinn watched, rolling his eyes.

        He didn't answer her question directly; instead, Dean directed them to the elevator. "The stairs already seem to be flooded. We'll take our chances with the elevator. Some big bad son of a bitch is back there and it's coming this way." He pointed toward a hallway behind him with the shotgun.

        Nodding dutifully, Svetlana ran into the open elevator and waited for the others. "Come on!" she yelled at her boyfriend.

        Dean and Quinn stared at each other, one not knowing why the other gave him such displeased looks. "Go," Dean commanded, poking Quinn with the shotgun.

        One last dirty look and Quinn started to turn, but something he spotted over Dean's shoulder made his eyes widen in horror. Dean had to look.

        A huge wave of black water was coming down the hallway toward them. It seemed to move in slow motion.

        "Holy shit! In the elevator!" Dean yelled.

        Quinn didn't have to be told this time; he sped through the open door, hitting the back of the elevator and turning around with a heavy, panicked breath. Dean was in and slapping the button for the bottom floor in a second. The door was just starting to close as the wave came closer and closer.

        "Go! Go!" Svetlana screamed at the elevator.

        The door closed a bare second before the wave hit it. They could all hear the black water slamming and crashing into the closed door, and the elevator began to go down, but not without loud squeals of protest. The lights in the elevator flickered again. Svetlana, clutching Quinn's shirt in her fists, screamed in fright. He couldn't help but do some screaming of his own.

        And then the water began to seep in around the door. At first, in streams, but within seconds, came in like buckets of dark liquid death.

        Under his breath, Dean said, "Fuck."

it won't stop

The Ringu series is (c) 1998 The Ring/The Spiral Production Group. It is based on the novels by Koji Suzuki. My fanfic is more based on ideas presented in the films, which were created by director Hideo Nakata and screenwriter Hiroshi Takahashi.
The motion picture The Ring is (c) 2002 DreamWorks Pictures. The title "She Just Wanted to Be Heard" comes from a line of dialogue spoken by Rachel Keller in this movie. The motion picture The Ring Two is (c) 2005 DreamWorks Pictures. This fanfic is heavily inspired by ideas presented in the American movies, which were directed by Gore Verbinski and Hideo Nakata and written by Ehren Kruger.
I do not know if the prequel, The Ring 3, will have any bearing on this story or not until I see it.
Supernatural is (c) 2005 Kripke Enterprises, Wonderland, & Warner Brothers/The CW Television.
Everything else is (c) Demented Stuff.

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there really is a tape