I stood on the kerb, shivering. A mostly undone shirt offered very little protection against the cold, and a tiny skirt even less. I could feel the pull of another shot of heroin beginning to gnaw relentlessly at my bones, making my skin creep. Someone had to drive by soon, someone…
A white car pulled up. I recognised the type- rusty, dirty, and generally a mess. I fixed my best smile on my face, and stalked over to the car. Inside was a man in much the same state as the car, and sweaty and stubbly to boot. I internally grimaced the state of the backseat I would soon be lying on- stained and ripped. Nice. I couldn’t bring myself to care too much- the feeling under my skin was too strong. I leaned over so most of my chest was on display, and said my line. “Looking for a good time?” his ugly face cracked into a leer. “You know it, sugar.” A cold shiver crept down my spine, chased by a hot rush of need for the drug. I grit my teeth, and said the tried and true line that seals the deal. “I can give you more than good, baby- I can give you the best.” With a dirty grin, beckoned me inside. I got in, and we drove away. I shut my eyes and wondered just how low I’d sunk.
When it was over, I asked for my money. He looked at me, a sort of cruel smile on his face. “No.” I looked at him incredulously. “No? But we agreed-” I rocked back as I was hit by a punch so hard, my jaw felt loose. “Well I changed my fucking mind.” He growled. He loomed over me, menacing, and stronger than I had originally given him credit for. He reached out with a nicotine stained hand big enough to crush my skull, and gripped me around the neck. I grasped uselessly at his fingers, gasping for air. He ripped unceremoniously at my shirt, tearing off several buttons, reaching inside to grab at me with an unrelenting hand. My struggles got weaker as my brain began to dim from lack of oxygen. As he yanked open his jeans, I quietly- mercifully- sank into darkness.
I felt the rumbling of an engine beneath me. I kept my eyes closed, assessing the damage to my body. Bruised, and sore seemed to be the general consensus. I feigned unconsciousness for maybe another ten or fifteen minutes, worried that if I was discovered to be conscious I’d be raped again. I felt the car slow, and felt a rush of cold as the door was opened. I opened my eyes as I was pushed mercilessly out, just managing to stay more or less upright. I watched the car vanish, and pulled together the remnants of my shirt. What next? I sank to sit on the kerb, all emotions drained except for exhaustion, pain, and the ever present need adding an underlying heat to my surface cold.
Some time passed, I don’t know how long, when I was snapped out of the haze. A cat darted across the road with an unholy screech, and I would later reflect upon the fact that my life was changed irrevocably by something as inconsequential as a startled feline.
I looked, up, eyes slightly unfocussed, the creeping feeling now like a second skin, making me shaky and nauseous. I noticed a figure, as dark as my outlook. He slid from the shadows, graceful as nothing seen on earth, and I met his clear hazel eyes. With a sense of gratitude, tinged with a slight regret, I slid into the peaceful darkness his gaze brought me.
I awoke on what felt like a bed, which in itself was something unexpected. I opened my eyes. A ceiling? Also a surprise. There was a slight damp smell in the room, and something else I was struggling to identify- something like the dry, neck ruffling smell of snakes. I could tell just by the scent that nothing warm and cuddly lived here, nothing human- well, nothing I’d ever smelled before, anyway.
I sat up. To my trepidation, there was another person in the room, just looking at me with a sort of watchful quietness. I decided to speak. I wasn’t dead, a mixed blessing, so I thought I may as well say something. “If you’re going to kill me, go ahead. Dying can only be a good thing.” I wasn’t lying either. I mean, fuck, I had already been raped once. Further abuse could be the only reason I was still alive, so if I was honest I would rather it was over quickly while my sanity and skin were still reasonably intact.
He raised a condescending eyebrow, the corner of his mouth lifted in a smirk of amusement. He asked, why, in a tone that indicated I was being incredibly dense. My resignation turned to a blistering anger. Why the hell not? Its not like I have anything to look forward to, anything to aim for in life. I was a drug addicted street hooker. That was never going to change.
“I have no intention of harming you..” he said. My scepticism must have been apparent, because he said “I picked you up to set you free, it’s just your body I’m stealing.” I was bewildered. Did he have some kind of God complex? Delusions? Maybe he lived some kind of sociopath universe where kidnap was seen as liberation? Whatever, I either wanted out right now this second, or death. Apparently, neither were an option as the man continued to sit, and do nothing.
I swung my legs over the side of the bed. He did nothing. Could it be that easy? Just- walk out? I stood up, watching for signs of opposition. There weren’t any. I took a tentative step forwards, and went flying as my heel caught on an uneven bit of floor. I let out a gasp, shut my eyes, and got ready for the impact. It didn’t come. I opened my eyes, and found myself in the arms of the stranger. I suddenly noticed just how hazel his eyes really were, and the breath left my body in a rush. He was good looking, sure, but that wasn’t it- it was Something. Escaping definition, but undeniably there.
He gently set me back on the bed. “Do you want to leave?” he asked me softly, his eyes fixed on mine, god, those eyes…
A particularly strong wave of heroin related shaking racked my body, making me realise that actually, I didn’t have a choice. I had to leave, had to get my fix. “I want-” my voice was hoarse. “I need-” He pressed a finger to my lips, making me almost melt. “I know.” His voice was soft, gentle. He seemed to understand so much… I shook myself.
I cursed myself for forgetting that this man was possibly dangerous, definitely strange and unpredictable. I had no business melting at his touch. I snapped my head away. “I have to leave. I said, standing and striding towards the door in a smooth movement. I suddenly found myself staring at his chest, feeling his voice as much as hearing it when he said “I can’t let you do that.”
A wave of deep exhaustion swept over me, contrasting with my sharp rapid thoughts of moments before. I just had time to wonder what the hell was happening to me before I was falling, to be caught once more by those strong arms...
Ha I hate this chapter.