This serial story is posted weekly on Fridays in draft (unedited) format. Each installment is available for one week. If you’ve missed an installment, email me and I’ll send you what you’ve missed.
When She Cries
It had to be Patrick, Nicole thought as she shivered, half-chilled from the breeze blowing across her now damp skin and half-hot from the pain and damage he’d inflicted so far.
She’d known he was dangerous, of course, but somehow during their game of cat and mouse, she’d made the mistake of growing complacent. Of thinking that perhaps he felt the same sort of odd kinship to her that she’d recognized in him.
She’d never really believed he’d kill her. He’d even implied that if he could keep her, he would – or that’s what she’d inferred from their conversation earlier. Now she was tied up, blindfolded, naked and bleeding, whether for his own personal pleasure or that of his viewers. Maybe both.
A wave of anger at the people watching shot through her all at once. If no one watched, would Patrick still go through these ‘games’? Would he still find it a worthwhile sport to hunt and torture other humans? Or would he have found some other outlet for his need to hunt and kill?
All of those people out there watching deserved to die as much as he did. Her blood, and the blood of everyone who’d come before her was on their hands just as much as his.
If she survived…
The ropes she was attached to jiggled, and she braced for more pain. The chill of cold steel slid under one of her hands, and she would have flinched if she wasn’t bound so tightly. A slight snick sounded and the rope at her left wrist vibrated, and then fell free, hanging limp at her side. She tried to lift it, and then cried out as the blood flowed down her arm, replacing numbness she hadn’t realized was there with prickly pins and needles like she’d never felt before.
Her wrist throbbed, still wrapped with the remnants of her bonds as her other wrist was released, that arm falling too. More prickling pain replaced the deadened feeling in her right arm, and with nothing holding her torso to the net, she fell forward at the waist, her arms swinging painfully down as the rope at her hips and ankles bit tight into her skin.
She struggled to regain some sort of balance, reaching back in an attempt to grasp the net, but sheer exhaustion and the still-prickling blood flow wouldn’t allow her the luxury. She felt the blade slide under one ankle and cut it loose, followed by the other, and she couldn’t hold back another cry as her legs swung free, putting all of her weight on the bindings high on her hips.
What felt like a solid shoulder pressed up into her stomach and two more flicks of cold steel at the tops of each thigh transferred her from the net to her tormentor’s grasp, forcing the air from her lungs at the same time.
Just a few seconds later she was crumpled on the ground, feeling rough fabric under her legs slowly dampening with what could only be her blood. It took some effort, but she got to her knees – as far as she dared not knowing whether her legs would actually support her or not.
Tilting her head back, she heard the rustling of footsteps moving to the side and felt warmth from the fire against her skin.
“Do it,” she said, tilting her head slightly to bare the side of her neck. “I know you have a knife. Cut my throat and be done with it.”