Wednesday, June 09, 2010

Wednesday Writings #13 - Caught

Today's "Wednesday Writing" is a continuation of a story started a few weeks back.

Since it's continuing to move on, I figure I may as well link to previous posts and create a sort of 'table of contents' to make it easier to follow along or catch up:
  1. Morning Machinations
  2. Communication Between Friends
  3. Daydreaming Decisions
  4. Off to the Park
  5. Driven
  6. Coming Home
  7. Revealing Photographs
  8. Just a Dream?
  9. At the Tower

My 'wednesday writing' posts were initially created as a writing exercise for me to try and keep myself motivated and on track by making sure that I spend at least 30-60 minutes each week (with the follow-up goal to turn it into a daily writing practice). These writing sessions are more the "just get it out" variety...not worrying about polish/editing/etc but just making sure I'm actually writing. Still, I hope they're at least enjoyable. Definitely feel free to provide any feedback or thoughts. While these aren't polished works, I'm always open for general critiques.

And, without further ado, here's this week's episode.

Thanks for stopping by.


Gabby breathed as deeply as she could with a cloth bag over her head. She closed her eyes through the darkness and tried to force herself to calm down and let her logical self take hold. Quickly she acknowledged that there was no immediate method of escape. Handcuffed, gagged, a bag over her head, laying on the floor of an elevator with three strong men standing over her. No, to say escape was unlikely was a serious understatement.

So instead, she lay still and tried to take in the situation. She felt the movement of the elevator as it continued descending. To her right she heard Julie continue to scuffle along the floor. To her left, she felt the pressure of a leg and foot right up against her own hip. She imagined how the elevator looked with two girls violently contained on the floor while three beefy men looked on. She hoped that the elevator doors would open and expose the horrific scene to some office worker who would miraculously come to her aid.

Unfortunately, when the 'ding' of the elevator bell finally came, the doors opened to a world of silence. A cool rush of air rushed in and sent goosebumps up Gabby's arm. She began rolling to her right side when a pair of strong hands grabbed her and hauled her to her feet. No words were spoken, but a soft push and firm hands on her shoulders indicated that she was expected to walk.

As she tentatively stepped forward, nervous about tripping, she heard Julie's muffled and gagged voice shout something. Next came a quick flash of sound and a soft male groan. Suddenly, the hands on Gabby's shoulders pulled her back and became a pair of arms holding her tight against her captor. A crashing of metal and wood exploded to her right followed by yelps and cries from Julie.

"Cut that out you! You're the expendable one, you know. It's you're friend we need, not you." The man's voice was quiet, but forceful. There was a hint of an accent, but Gabby couldn't place it.

"Just toss her over your shoulder and bring her along." Gabby recognized the second voice as the man who had first entered the elevator and had tried to strike up smooth casual conversation. He too had a slight accent she hadn't noticed earlier, just the smallest hint of German or some other European background.

The arms around her loosened and gave her a nudge to start moving forward. Behind her, Gabby heard Julie continue to struggle as she was evidently hefted along with the group. Ahead of her, a door clanged open. A moment later, she felt the temperature drop again and a she noticed a slight echo had begun to accompany the noises around her. Next, she heard keys jangling followed by the sliding of a van door being rolled open.

With hands guiding her, Gabby climbed up into the van and scooted across a hard floor covered with thin carpeting. She felt a thump beside her followed by the sounds of shuffling. She slid towards the noise and was comforted to feel Julie's arm squirming on the van floor next to her. Julie's muffled voice tried to say something and she began to thrash slightly. Gabby just leaned closer to her friend and softly pressed her body against what she imagined was Julie's side.

The van door clanked shut. To her rear, a door opened and Gabby felt the motion of someone climbing in and settling a few feet behind her. To the front, more doors opened and the van shifted as the other captors climbed into the passenger and driver's seat. The van roared to life and Gabby had to brace herself against Julie to keep from falling over as they began driving.

"Sorry for the discomfort girls. Just a short drive and then we'll get you better settled. I really wish it didn't have to be this way Gabrielle, but as you know, sometimes our hand is forced." Gabby was almost certain the man's accent was German now. It was barely noticeable but somehow with each word he spoke, his voice felt more and more familiar. With the growing familiarity, a nagging sense of knowing started to grow. She felt as though she should know this man. As though they'd perhaps met before.

After a few minutes and a number of twists and turns, the van came to a stop and the engine was shut off. After the doors were opened, Gabby heard Julie being led out and then hands came to Gabby's arms and guided her out of the van. The hood was pulled off Gabby's head and, squinting through the blaze of light, she was surprised to see that they were outside. She quickly looked around, hoping for a jogger or someone who might see her plight and come to her rescue or, at the very least, call the police.

They seemed to be in a park of some sort but besides the five of them, no one else was around. A brown van with deeply tinted windows was parked next to a pond. Large pine trees packed tightly together stretched to the sky. Across the pond, a path disappeared between the trees. To her right, she saw Julie staring defiantly around her, biting hard at her gag and lashing against the hands of the man holding her shoulders.

"Welcome home Gabrielle. Shall we go inside." Gabby looked to the strangely familiar man as he gestured across the pond and started walking down the path. Warily, she followed. The man behind her had released his grip on her shoulders and came up to walk beside her. She heard the shuffling of feet on the dirt behind her and then the steady footsteps indicating that Julie was following.

As the path entered the trees, it curved to the right. Before long, she was surrounded on all sides by pine bows. Above her, the branches often extended completely over the path to hide the sky. The well groomed path continued for a hundred yards and then turned back to the left and began to widen and Gabby could see a brick wall standing beyond the trees. A few more steps and the wall grew to a house. And then to a mansion of grey-brown brick with tall dark windows, patches of winding ivy and a large wooden door with huge brass square panels in the corners.

The path forked in three directions. The group followed the one leading to the main door. The other two paths went opposite directions and presumably circled the home. Gabby's stared with wide-eyes at the size of the home. Her parents were fairly well-to-do and she'd always thought her house was pretty big growing up. But just judging by what she could see, she was sure this house was at least twice the size of her childhood home.

She didn't have long to admire the house as they were quickly at the door. The man in front pulled out a key, unlocked the door and led the group into a wide hallway. He opened a side door and led them into the largest private library Gabby had ever scene. The room was larger than her entire apartment. At the far end, floor to ceiling windows overlooked the pine forest beyond. Bookshelves lined the side walls floor to ceiling, broken only by an elegant fireplace in the center.

In front of the fireplace, sitting in a wingback chair, a man sat reading a book. Once again, a twinge of familiarity stung Gabby's mind, but she couldn't place him. As the group settled into the library and the door closed behind them, the man stood and turned to face them with a beaming smile and outstretched arms. The smile quickly faded as he fully acknowledged the situation.

"James. Certainly you didn't have them tied up the whole time did you? Come now. I know we had to create the pretext of danger, but surely you didn't take it too far."

The lead captor turned and nodded to his two accomplices. The one next to Gabby unlocked her handcuffs and helped untie the gag. The one beside Julie hesitantly inched his way towards her, trying to avoid the hatred in her eyes. He unlocked the cuffs and quickly jumped back as she flailed her arms and pulled off her gag to begin shouting and screaming. Their host raised his arms in protest and tried to calm her.

"Shh. Settle down. Settle down. I truly am sorry for all of this, but I assure you you're perfectly safe now."

Julie rushed to the library door behind her, only to find it locked. She grabbed up an umbrella that leaned against the wall and began jabbing it like some crazed swordsman.

"Perfectly safe? I don't think so. Tell your goons to unlock this door and let us go or I'm going to bust somebody's head and use it to break the door down."

She drew back the umbrella, ready to swing, when suddenly and with amazing speed, James was beside her, his arms wrapped tight around her so she could barely move and the umbrella fell to the floor with a clatter. He held her tight and softly spoke.

"Julie, I assure you that we mean neither you nor Gabrielle any harm. We would have much rather invited you here in a more humane manner, but our hands were tied."

"No! Our hands were tied! Gabby! Help me out here!" Julie twisted and strained, but James held her firm. Gabby looked on, unsure what to do. The man by the fireplace spoke again.

"Julie. Gabrielle. Give me five minutes of your time. I will personally make amends to you both verbally and with tangible rewards. I will outline my purpose for having you brought here. And then, you may either stay or go. You have my word."

Julie continued to struggle. She whipped her head back to try and pound against James. She bit his forearm and twisted her mouth. Gabby saw him wince slightly but he did not release his grasp.

"Five minutes. But first, convince me to give you five seconds. Release my friend and give me some reason to trust you." Gabby stepped forward, the anger growing on her face. The man just smiled and nodded.

"Very well. James, kindly release your hold on Julie. And Julie, please be so good as to maintain a level head so we may continue."

Gabby turned and stared with compassionate, pleading eyes at Julie. Julie struggled a moment longer than stopped and nodded. James slowly relaxed his hold and stepped back. She whipped around and smacked at his face. He caught her wrist and twisted it downward. Raising his other hand, he wagged his finger at her and gave a tsk sound, then, with a grin, he spun her back to face the host and let her arm go.

"Better. Much better. Now, please. Come and sit. And I will tell you why you are here." The man returned to his chair which he twisted to face the center of the room. He motioned to a group of chairs sitting beside a desk near the other wall and then he stood, waiting for the girls to pull a chair over towards him.

"We've gotta get out of here Gabby." Julie whispered under her breath as she pulled a chair away from the desk.

"We will Jules. We will."

The girls turned and faced the man. He motioned for them to sit, which they did. Smiling, he sat down and stared at them silently for nearly a full minute. The girls shifted uneasily and stared at one another, unsure what to do. If he had asked for only five minutes, why was he wasting so much time with silence?

"Well?" Julie defiantly broke the silence. The man chuckled softly and then leaned forward and began to whisper just barely loud enough to be heard.

"I need your help to save our world Gabrielle."


Brian Miller said...

oh this is taking a decidedly different twist...nice. keep us guessing..

logankstewart said...


Excellent writing, once again. Can't wait to see how this plays out.