Goodbye Peach part II This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

November 9, 2010
Amber opened her eyes slowly, hoping that it had all just been a dream. Her entire body ached and her head felt as if a wild animal was trying to claw its say out of her skull.

She tried to raise her hands to her head and realized, with horror, that her hands were zip tied to the arms of an stiff wooden chair.

It hadn’t been a dream. The men really had been in her house. They really had broken down the bedroom and bathroom doors. And they really had injected her with some unknown drug.

It had all happened.

Amber looked around the stark room. The walls appeared to have once been light beige in colour but had faded to a dirty, dingy shade of nothing. As she examined the walls, she saw the full extent of the bareness of them. And in that bareness she noticed the small settlement crack extending from the top right corner in front of her, the paint peeling on the wall to her left, and what looked like mold rising up from the floor. The concrete floor was cold against her bare feet, but the air in the room was warm.

Her head throbbed once, more painfully than before and she groaned.

“Well, well, well. Look who’s awake. Good morning, peach.” It was the same man who had spoken last night. The one with the smooth voice.

But had it been last night? She had no way of knowing how long she had been unconscious.

The man stepped into her line of sight and smiled at her. His face, like his voice, was appealing. He had dark skin and dark eyes and just the faintest hint of stubble on his chin and jaw line. As if he hadn’t saved yet that morning. He was obviously of Middle Eastern descent and there was a very faint touch of an accent in his voice.

“Who are you?” Amber croaked. Her throat was raw, as if she hadn’t had anything to drink for days.

His smile faded slightly. “You don’t get to know that.”

“What do you want form me?”

“I don’t want anything from you, Amber,” he said, taking hold of her chin. The smile was gone now. “It’s your father I’m interested in. Not you.”

Amber tried to jerk away from his touch but he kept hold of her chin. “Your father is going to make me rich and then I’m going to make him suffer.”

Amber’s heart caught in her throat. Her father’s past had finally caught up with her. Just like he had promised it never would.

“How do you know my name?” She asked.

“We know all about you, Amber Dove,” another voice said. A moment later a second man entered her line of sight. He was tall and muscular, with dark eyes, pale skin and light hair. His nose looked as if it had been broken several times and he had a gruesome scar on the left side of his face. “We know that your father is Andrew McLellond, the former arms dealer. We know that your husband is Dylan Dove. We know that you’re twenty-eight years old and that you work at Oregon State Hospital.”

“But most importantly, we know that you are the key,” the first man said.

“The key to what?” Amber’s pulse was rising quickly.

“The key to your father.” As he said this, Amber looked into the first man’s eyes and saw the angry spark of insanity that burned there.

“Why don’t you two leave her alone for a while? A third voice sounded from behind her. “Let the drugs wear off completely so she can actually understand what you’re saying to her.”

“She can understand what we’re saying just fine,” the second man said. He gazed cruelly at Amber.

“Sure, she can understand your words but she can’t actually understand the meaning behind them.” The third man responded. “The drugs are still fogging up her mind.”

The third man finally stepped into view, shoving the second man out of out of the way. He placed his hand on her neck, feeling her pulse.

“Fine. We’ll leave her for now. You just make sure that s*** doesn’t kill her. If the time comes, I want her daddy to hear her scream.”

It had been hours since Amber had woken up. She had no idea how many though. There was no way of telling time in the empty room.

Amber winced at the third man cleaned the cut on her right cheek.

“That was a stupid thing to do,” he said quietly. Amber had spat on the second man five minutes before when he had told her that they were going to make her father beg for her life. He had slapped her for this and his ring had created the gash on her face.

“I don’t care,” Amber muttered. She stared at the third man as he worked. He was older than the other two by several years, perhaps in his mid forties. His thinning hair was a pale brown and spattered with gray, making it the colour of sand. His gray eyes, surrounded by thin lines of age, had an alert look about them, as if he saw everything that happened around him.

Amber winced and pulled away from him as best she could. “Why bother cleaning it?” She asked. “Really, what do you care?”

“It’s my job to keep you alive, healthy. I don’t half a** my job. That’s why I bother.” He returned to his work, ignoring her hisses of pain as he wiped the cut with an alcohol swab.

I’ll call you Doctor, Amber thought. She had decided to name the men in an attempt to keep her thoughts straight.

The first man, who was obviously in charge, had become Boss. And the second man, the muscle, had become Sadist because he seemed to enjoy Amber’s suffering.

“What’s it like?” Doctor asked suddenly. He had finished cleaning her cut.

“What?” Amber asked.

“Knowing that your father sold the weapons that have killed hundreds of people.”

“It gives me a real sense of pride,” Amber said sarcastically.

He laughed shortly. “It takes a real piece of work to be in your position and still act like a smart a**.”

“Raised by a former arms dealer, remember?”

The sound of a door opening and Boss’s voice silenced the comment Doctor was about to make.

“One and a half million dollars, Mr. McLellond. By tomorrow or you’ll never see Amber alive, or in one piece, again. I’ll contact you in the morning with further instructions.”

Amber froze. Boss was on the phone with her father demanding a ransom.

Boss stepped in front of her. He was listening intently to whatever her father was saying on the other end of the line.

“It’s almost as if you don’t trust me, Mr. McLellond,” Boss said mockingly. He then pulled the phone away form his ear and Amber heard her father’s muffled yells issuing out of the phone.

Boss laughed, returning the phone to his ear. “Very well,” he sneered. “I’ll give you proof of life.”

He pressed the phone against Amber’s ear. “Say hello to daddy.”

Amber couldn’t breath for an instant. “Dad?”

“Amber? Amber! Are you alright? Have they hurt you?” Her father sounded panicked.

“Dad, I’m…” Boss pulled the phone away before she could finish.

“There’s your proof of life. If you want her to stay that way, you’ll have that money by tomorrow.” Boss closed the phone, terminating the conversation. He gazed at Amber for a moment then walked away.

Amber woke to the sound of muffled yelling coming from somewhere behind her. She hadn’t realized that she had fallen asleep but she must have been sleeping for a while. The room was almost completely dark, save a frail light that seemed to come from behind her.

She looked around the empty, dimly lit room, trying to find the source of the noise, but couldn’t see anything. The commotion must have been coming from the other side of the door that she knew was behind her.

She did her best to look behind her, straining her neck in order to get a glimpse of the door. She focused on the sounds trying to pick out words. Trying to understand what they were arguing about.

Amber’s efforts were rewarded with three phrases. “The b****,” and “We’ve got her here,” and “Why not use her?”

She turned around slowly, suddenly terrified. Those three short strings of words changed everything. They had changed her from a human into an it in the mind of one of her captors. She had become an object to be used and then thrown away.

The door crashed against the wall and light exploded into the room, making Amber flinch.

“Stay away from her, Shane!” Doctor yelled. Amber closed her eyes, trying to stay calm.

“Why should I?” It was the second man. The man Amber had named Sadist. The man Doctor had named Shane. “It’s not like Sameer is going to let her live. There’s no point in letting it go to waste.”

Amber’s eyes flew open and she gasped in pain as the second man, now called Shane, grabbed a fistful of her hair and wrenched it upwards.

“Why should I just let this go to waste?” He grabbed the arm of her chair and roughly turned it so she was facing the opposite direction.

Doctor was standing in the doorway, staring towards Amber. Stress filled his grey eyes. He took a slow step forward.

Shane pulled Amber’s hair, jerking her head up and back.

“Think about what you’re doing, Shane,” Doctor said calmly.

“I have thought about it. I’ve been thinking about it. Sameer’s going to kill her. I’m not going to pass this chance up.”

“You don’t know that! You don’t know he’s going to kill her.”

“And you don’t know that he won’t!” Shane said loudly.

“No, but I do know that if you do this, if you hurt her, he’ll kill you. Because you’ll kill her. I know it and you know it.”

“No.” Shane’s voice was losing some of its determination.

“Sameer wants her alive. He wants her father to feel her pain. You do this and you’ll kill her inside. Sameer won’t get what he wants and he’ll kill you for it.”

Shane said nothing.

Several eternal seconds passed. Amber starred desperately at Doctor. Her breath was coming shallow, jagged gasps. Shane’s grip on her hair weakened and then he let go.

Doctor stepped forward and grabbed Shane’s arm then pulled him out of the room, leaving Amber on her own.

She sat in silence, shock freezing her tears before they had the chance to escape.

I’m never going home, she thought. I’ll never see Dylan or my dad again. I’m going to die and there’s nothing I can do.

She took a deep breath. She knew what was coming now. Knowing took the fear away. She took another deep breath and gazed towards the open door. The door that would bring death.

They’re going to kill me, she thought. Then two words entered her mind. Two small, insane words.

Bring it.

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Cheshirekat said...
Jul. 11, 2014 at 2:44 pm
Tell me there is a sequel!
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