My Hero In The Night

July 11, 2011
One moment she was jogging through the wooded trail with her track team, and the next she was gagged, handcuffed on a bed, and watching the ameutur video of her mother being killed. She screamed as her subdued mother's wrists were slit. The camera shook and then blacked out and she broke into sobs.

"Shut up, you b****!" The hard hand went across her cheek again, for the eleventh time that day.

Jennifer Warren was twelve that day. She was now twenty-two, and it was happening all over again. The exact same thing. Her foster mother faced the same fate as her biological mother. What had she ever done to deserve this? She didn't even KNOW this bastard. But he seemed to know her.

His appearance hadn't changed at all. He must have been at least 6'2", though he always looked like a troll giant from Jenny's view. He had long, black hair braided down to nearly his waist, and hard, greasy, callused hands. He had wide, wide shoulders that seemed to block out all light, and was always covered in grime and grease.

Jenny watched helplessly as he shucked off his jeans and limped over to the bare matress she was, yet again, handcuffed on. She was shaking in fear and sobbing in helplessness as he came closer, crowding her with his size and menace; everytime she cried out, he would slap her agian. It was half-an-hour of hell before he was distracted by a noise outside.

As soon as he was around the corner, she fought like a mad woman, yanking at the cuffs and tearing the already raw skin on her wrists. Her sobs were increasing because she knew it was hopeless; the cuffs were too tight.

Suddenly she heard shouting, the thud of footsteps. She heard what must have been the door breaking and she was bombarded by noise and chaos. Then, there were what must have been ten men trampling into the room; full uniform, guns pointed. The one in front tossed his gun to another and knelt in front of her, pushing up his helmet visor.

"Jennifer?" he asked softly.

She couldn't respond. She was shaking violently, trying desperately to cover her naked, bruised body from these unknown men. "Hey," he spoke softly as he pulled a small pack from his back, taking out a blanket and draping it over her before slamming his arm hard into the steel pipe she was connected to and breaking it. "Are you Jennifer?" he asked again, picking her up. She nodded and curled into his warm body. Why did she feel so safe right now? He jogged out of the building as the rest of the men searched it. He smiled softly. "I'm Jason, sweetie."

He placed her on a stretcher and spoke rapidly to the paramedic, but she wasn't paying attention. Suddenly she felt empty, cold. Lost. A second paramedic leaned over her and started firing off questions which she was too hazy to understand, and then he started poking and prodding her in different places. She whimpered and then screamed as he got to her lower abdomen, visions of him flashing through her mind. She couldn't think sensibly, only feeling the hopeless, helpless, empty fear of knowing what being raped is. Of being voilated, over and over and over and over.

"Hey-hey, don't. Let the female medic do it. Be careful with her," he added before jogging off.


Jenny stared boredly at the hospital ceiling, counting all the cracks in the paint. Her body hurt, her head hurt, christ, even her soul hurt. When would all this madness stop? She had moved practically across the country to get away from this beast, and he found her again. Beat her, tortured her, raped her, all without explanation.

She rubbed her eyes frantically. She would not cry again. She had already cried herself to sleep last night, she didn't need a repeat. A rap on the door brought her out of her pity-fest and she looked over. It took her a full minute to place the 6'6" man standing there, and when she did, she was shocked.

Why would...why would the Navy SEAL that rescued her come to see her? Jake...Jason.

"Hey." That one word somehow sent her heart racing, her blood rushing. What the hell? And it was all in a good way, not the fearful way that had been common this past week.

She stuttered out a response, "H-h-h-hi."

He grinned softly. "Remember me?" She didn't brave trying to speak again, instead just nodding.

She took a deep breathe. "Thank-thank you." He was standing next to the bed now, his hand hovering over hers.

"Just doing my job, sweetie. So I hear they're releasing you this afternoon."

She nodded, but then turned away from him. It was good and it was bad...she was getting out, but there was no one to pick her up. Hell, her car at her apartment, which was some ten blocks away. In the city. Of New York. And she had no money for a cab.

"Jenny? You okay?"

She sniffled and gave a weak, "Yes."

She heard the scrape of a chair and felt him drop into it, his height suddenly a lot less shocking. "Who's taking you home?" he asked slowly.

She searched wildly for a response, but finally settled with avoiding his brillant blue eyes and turning away from him. "Jennifer, answer me. Who's taking you home?" He never lost his gentleness, but his tone took on a firm note.

"Don't worry about it! Why do you even care?"

She heard his sharp intake of breathe, and then a moment of silence. Suddenly she heard the slam of the door and she released a shuddering breathe.

The tears slid down her face as sobs escape and she curled up onto her side, waiting for the nurse to come in.

An hour later, Jenny was released. Being wheeled out the double doors, she still didn't know what she would do. She didn't much time to worry about it though, because as soon as she was through the doors, she spotted Jason.

"Jason?" she asked tentively. Assuming that they were together, the nurse parked her beside Jason's bench and told them to return the wheelchair before they left before going inside. "What are you still doing here?"

He took a deep breathe before responding. "I figured, since you have no one to take you home, I would." He shot an annoyed glance at her bandaged injuries, as if it was her fault. That one look sent fire through her bones and she stood up, swaying a little. Suddenly his arm slid around her, a warm, safe steel band. "Slow down there, sweetheart." His warm-honey voice slid down her spine, making her toes curl. The fear of what she felt for a man she didn't even know invaded her, twice as bad because it wasn't something she had ever felt before. She forced it back.

"Let's get a move on, then," she demanded. She felt his chuckle viberate through his body as they started their way across the parking lot. Jason helped her up into his rusted Toyota pick-up and went around to the driver's side. When he started the engine, Jenny was surprised that it actually purred, as if brand-new. He must have done it himself, she thought. Incredible.

She didn't think about the fact that he didn't ask for directions or even an address until they pulled into her rinky-dink apartment parking lot. "Jason? How the hell do you know where I live?"

He killed the engine and turned to study her. "I'm a Navy SEAL, Jenny. I think I know how to access someone's records." She rested her head back on the seat, reluctant to leave.

"How come-how come SEALs were used in the raid? Why would they go in for a measly...measly kidnapper?" she whispered the last part, feeling odd to finally say it out loud.

"You don't know?" Confusion crossed his defined features. "We didn't know what would we find...Jenny, that guy was a SEAL gone rogue. There was no telling what was in the building, whether it was you or world-destructive explosives." It was obvious the betrayal of one of his own hurt, and none to lightly either.

She stared at him, dumbfounded. "No, I didn't know that. I don't know anything about that basterd, not even what he wanted, wants, with me." A tear slid down her face and she turned to get out. She heard Jason mutter something as she slipped out of the vehicle. Another dizzy spell hit her, and Jason caught her again. Damn, that was starting to really piss her off. Why was he always catching her? She studied his profile, and he grinned down at her.

"See something you like?" he teased.

"Maybe I do," she said rebelliously. That got a real smirk out of him.

They walked up to her apartment, and she fuddled with the key. Laughing, Jason took it from her small hands and opened the door himself. Shock crossed his face when they entered, and Jenny blushed, feeling like crying again. Everything in the apartement was ransacked, right down to the few books sitting on her nightstand. It was only three rooms, a bathroom, a kitchen, and a living room/bedroom. And that meant that her clothes drawers were in plain site, scattered as they were across the floor. She sighed and turned back to Jason.

"Thanks for your help, Jason. You can leave now." She gave him a small, sad smile. A crease appeared between his eyebrows, and he gave her a searching look.

"How about, I stay, and help you clean up? That way I know you don't pass out." He didn't leave room for negotiation. She cast a desperate glance around the place, and sighed.

"Fine," she grumbled. He laughed again and walked past her.

They spent the night cleaning, talking and laughing. Jason somehow got her to open up about what she had spent the last five years doing. It felt like such a relief, finally being able to talk to someone. She hadn't had a friend in what must have been ten years, and suddenly she was telling her secrets to this stranger. But she didn't care.

It became a game, a similar to twenty questions, only longer. He'd ask a question, she'd ask a question. Eventually they flopped on the couch for a break, and both fell asleep.

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