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chapter 2

Z A R A

Conversations.

I can hear conversations but I can't piece together the words. I can't understand what they're conversing about.

I'm trying to open my eyes but they feel like they've been glued shut. My eyelids feel so heavy, so tired, it feels like when I take those drowsy cough medicine.

Was I drugged?

Wait, where am I? What happened to me?

As I try to force my eyes open, a sudden burst of pain shoots through my head. It hurt so much that I thought I was going to pass out again from the intensity of it.

I think they hit the back of my head...

They?

Oh my God! I was taken by those masked group of men! But for what reason? How do I get out? What do they want from me?

Wait, is my hijab still on my head?

As I finally open my eyes, the room around me turns out to be dimly lit. I blink a couple of times, trying to adjust to the darkness while my eyes familiarize themselves with the surroundings.

The room's empty, from what I can tell. It's just blank, windowless walls, a door, and nothing else in it but me. I notice my hands and feet aren't bound together. I'm literally just sitting on the floor, against the wall.

As the situation dawns on me, my heart starts racing again, thumping so loud that it feels like it might give out.

My breathing becomes faster and faster, each intake of breath feels like I'm using up every inch and capacity of my lungs. On top of that, I feel extremely dehydrated and hungry.

Wait, how long has it been? Minutes? Hours? Days? Weeks?

Each worry stacking up on top of the other is only causing me more panic and anxiety.

I grab my head to check if my hijab is still on and I sigh in relief that it's still there, shockingly.

As I stand up or try to, my head begins to spin mercilessly. I lean against the wall for a few seconds before reaching the door.

There's no way it's unlocked, I think as I twist the doorknob.

"It's unlocked." I gasp quietly.

There must be a reason that it's unlocked. I'm obviously no threat, there's no reason they'd even need to worry about keeping the door locked.

Besides, if I try to leave would they restrain me or just shoot me on sight?

For some twisted reason, I'd rather be shot to death than have them use me for whatever reasons they brought me here.

The thought makes me shudder.

I sit back down against the wall, where I was originally sitting when I woke up.

"Just breathe, just breathe, just breathe," I whisper to myself as I tap my chest lightly as if this would help decongest the dreadful feeling stuck in my heart.1

I can't keep track of time. I don't know if a minute had just passed or a few minutes. I don't know how long I've been sitting here since I regained my consciousness.

Should I leave the room?

I shake my head. "No, no I shouldn't."

From what I assume, a few more minutes go by when I finally notice a blinking light in the corner of the room, on the ceiling.

At first, it gave me a heart attack because it moved and it was dark so my first thought was a ghost.

But the blinking red light made me squint and I realize that it was a camera.

Of course, there's a camera. Why wouldn't there be?

I stare directly at the camera, waiting for it to move again but it doesn't. Not until I start shifting.

"Oh, so it moves when I move. Fun." I sigh.

I should be in tears, sobbing right now but I'm frighteningly calm and that's never good. That means I'll combust sometime later at a very inappropriate time.

Another minute or something goes by and the doorknob turns, making me jump to the furthest corner of the room, curling up in a ball with my knees pulled up against my chest.

It's the older man who approached me first but now he's without the mask...

Okay, he's apparently not that old. Maybe in his early thirties but he looks roughed up but he isn't unattractive.

"Good to see you again, miss." He says almost mockingly.

I have nothing to reply with so I stay quiet with my eyes back on the floor.

Since the light from the hallway is now illuminating the room, I notice the dried-up red stains scattered across the floor.

I knew instantly that it was blood, making the hair on my arms stand up on its very edge.

"The name's Frank," he says.

I don't say anything.

"It's a bit rude to not introduce yourself after someone introduces themselves to you," he states as he steps closer, making me shrink back.

"Frank, no need to pester the girl so early on," a deep voice says from behind him.

"Boss," Frank quickly steps back.

"Name," The man doesn't even ask, it's a statement.

I'm so tempted to look up but my mind is screaming at me to not do so. It's as if meeting his eyes might actually kill me in itself.

I choose to stay quiet again. Not because I'm choosing not to answer, it's literally because I think I lost my voice from fear.

"I'm not asking for your name. I'm requiring you to state your name," his tone is cold.

"State your name if you know what's good for you, lady," Frank says.

"Frank," The man says the name as if it's a warning.

"Sorry, Boss," Frank takes another step back.

Whatever dark aura Frank was emitting is nothing compared to the man standing right in front of me. The man's stares feel like a million knives pointed at me, ready to shoot if I make one sudden or wrong movement. It's sending constant shivers down my body to the point where I'm frozen.

The man crouches down, resting one knee on the floor. The motion makes me stop breathing. He's much more built and muscular up close, just his size is making me dizzy. I try to glimpse up slightly but the room is still too dark to be able to make out a face.

He reaches out as if to grab something and right then, tears start gathering in my eyes.

This is the inappropriate timing I was talking about.

He ignores the tears that are sliding down my face, dripping on the floor.

"Please let me go," my voice comes out as a desperate whisper.

He ignores my pleading and grabs my necklace, making me flinch at the touch, ripping it off my neck in one painful yet smooth motion.

I hiss from the stinging at the back of my neck but hold in my cries.

He's inspecting the ring and lets out a scornful, short laugh,

"Even after all these years, you've kept the lousy ring."

"After all these years?" I repeat after him but mine came out as more of a question.

My head whips up to see the face of the man who just recognized the ring that I've literally kept close to my heart for the last four years.

At that very moment, my world stopped spinning.

My voice cracks, "Alejandro?"

- - -

Please vote and comment and let me know how y'all feel!!

Comments (3)
goodnovel comment avatar
Angela Young
like it...kind of creepy!
goodnovel comment avatar
Indera Surujballi
lively story so far
goodnovel comment avatar
Pattie Seilhamer
good so far
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