The Great Escape… A Short Story
July 7, 2018
I lay awake in the flimsy bed for what seemed like the hundredth night in a row although it had only been my third night here. In this unfamiliar place I couldn’t seem to find rest and at this point I was fine with that. My uneasiness had allowed me the time to construe a plan. I couldn’t remember much of anything and how I’d arrived here plagued my mind every time I laid down but my time was almost up. My escape was near.
I prayed for rest, for my mind to simply stop thinking – for sleep to overcome me as I knew what today was. I tried hiding my eyes as the sun peeked through what appeared to be a window in the far-left corner, my time to prepare was up and I hadn’t gathered the rest my body required in order for me to be at my best. I chastised myself for not better preparing myself for my escape but the sleep I found would simply have to be enough.
There wasn’t much I had figured out in the three torturous days other than the fact that someone had taken me – against my will, to some foreign place I knew nothing about. I’d tried wrapping my mind around why someone would want to take me? Who would want to take me? Why was I here being held as an animal in a cage – unable to roam free as I pleased, stuck in a box sized room that didn’t allow me any privacy. My mind racked with countless questions I lacked the answers to.
I quickly did a once over of my body as I had the days prior and my suspicions were confirmed as I rubbed my hands across my face. My eyes were crusted over. Tears stained my face. My clothing was appalling and the smell radiating from me was one I would never get used to. I appeared as someone other than myself. It seemed as if I were having an outer body experience.
I awoke from a deep slumber to the sounds of an unfamiliar voice awakening me with a tray of food at the foot of the bed. Alarmed and frightened I quickly jumped up as the unfamiliar man made a quick exit and adjusted the locks on a door that was not familiar to my eyes. Instinctively I ran towards the door; towards my escape, but I was crushed as the final lock was administered with a loud thud. Twisting and turning the knob as I attempted to break free tears pooled my eyes as I slid to the ground.
Confusion etched across my face I scanned the room through cloudy vision as my eyes ran like a faucet. Scanning the room that I was held in I attempted to calm myself to reflect on how I’d arrived here. I replayed the last encounters I remembered from the night before however nothing came to me that seemed out of the ordinary, but something strange had taken place.
I’d gotten off work a few minutes early to have drinks with a friend of mine from college. Her husband would be returning for the first time in three years since enlisting in the military and she choose to share her last free night with me. She suggested we meet downtown since it was a closer distance from my job as she planned to leave early to prepare for her husbands arrival. Skipping lunch to ensure I would be out of the door on time left my appetite open and I was ecstatic that she’d suggested somewhere close.
When I arrived I quickly found her seated with two drinks and a variety of Sushi. My mouth watered as I scurried to the table to indulge in some much needed girl time. We stayed for well over an hour as we chatted and ate on the entree’s while catching up on the current events of each other’s lives. We’d indulged in a few too many martinis before deciding to part ways and making our drive to our homes for the night.
On my drive home I contemplated the book I would read during my unwind time tonight. Arriving home I made my way to ran my bath for the night. Quickly storing my essentials in their rightful place and I sauntered to my exquisite bathroom and climbed in my enormous tub with a new book and a tall glass of white wine. I lit the candles I had lining the enormous tub and laid my head back on the pillow I’d had installed for nights as such. I figured it was a wise investment as this happened to be my Friday routine.
I’d risen from the tub after an hour long soak session and fallen asleep rather quickly after lathering myself with my homemade lotion. I’d remembered locking up and setting my alarm before I climbed the steps to my next level. My windows were closed and locked since the summer heat had started raining through over a month ago. There was nothing that stood out as being out of the ordinary.
Coming back to reality I did a once over of my body to ensure that I hadn’t been harmed. Quickly realizing the clothes that I had fallen asleep in, in my very own bed were still hugging my body my mind began to race again. I skimmed the room as my stomach began to rumble and peered down at my bare feet at the sight of the food before me. I could distinctly remember feeling stuffed to capacity when I’d left the restaurant the previous night so it was unbeknownst to me as to why I’d felt like I hadn’t eaten in a week.
For the third time my eyes skimmed over the measly tray that rested on the atrocious floor. With each glance I felt more nauseous than the time before. What lay in front of me – not even one item was recognizable to anything I’d ever eaten before. Angered, disgusted, and confused I kicked the tray away with more force than I’d intended. The contents splattered over what appeared to be a dresser. As my stomach advised me that my decision was made in ill will I made way for bed.
Nothing made sense.
As I sat my mind raced, attempting to place a finger on what could possibly be happening. I’d gone through countless scenarios however I couldn’t seem to figure out what had gone wrong and I was quickly reaching full on panic attack mode. I was hungry, cold, and alone.
Frazzled, I sprang from the bed no quicker than I’d sat and forced my legs to move towards the door. I was afraid but I wanted out of this strange place, I had a bad feeling inside that this was not a good place to be. I wanted to know why I was here, what was going on. Nothing much mattered other than the fact that I wanted to get home – I needed to get home, but my captors had other plans.
As I went to raise my hand to the door it flung open knocking me on my behind. My eyes fluttered as I rubbed my head and did my best to see through my cloudy eyes. I’d taken a pretty hard fall and felt the presence of someone standing above me. No sounds radiating from their body I attempted pushing myself from my current position. Unsuccessful in my attempts to rise from the cold floor I drifted out of consciousness as I fought to protect myself.
I woke in excruciating pain the next day. Everything – every piece of my body hurt. I wasn’t sure what had taken place after I’d lost consciousness but from the way I was feeling I could tell that it was something painful and extensive.
My insides even hurt.
Unsure of what I’d gone through I skimmed my surroundings and my body as my eyes bucked out of my head. My clothes had been changed – I was now covered from head to toe. Removing the clothing my body appeared to be in perfect condition. I held no bruises on any part of me that I could see in the dimly lit room, however I ached something fierce. The room appeared different but I couldn’t put my finger on what had changed. My mind began to race again and I went into panic mode. I had to find a way out, putting all rational thoughts out of my head I ran towards the door banging and screaming countless obscenities.
No one answered.
I held my face to the door to see if I could hear anything.
I ran to the walls, feeling around for a light switch or something I could grab a hold of.
I climbed on top of the bed attempting to touch the ceiling or reach the small unrecognizable thing in the corner.
I dropped to my knees and buried my face to muffle my screams. I needed to get out – I wanted to get out. I was hungry. I was hurting. I was losing my mind. Why was I here was the main question that plagued my mind time and time again. I spent the remainder of the day attempting to find a way out – to make contact with those on the other side of the door. Scratching, clawing, begging, crying – every attempt resulted with my face in my palms and my chest heaving up and down. Sadness was quickly leaving me and I was beginning to feel the anger festering in my soul. I was going to get out of this room if it was the last thing I ever did on this earth.
The tears had worn me out and I still hadn’t received anything decent to eat so I laid down as exhaustion wiped over me. I feel asleep quickly tossing and turning throughout the night as I encountered nightmare after nightmare. I dreamed of an escape and woke out of my tear infused wishes and laid eyes on my reality.
Reality had sunken in – I had been kidnapped from my home. I’d come to the conclusion that someone at the restaurant had been watching me and followed me home. It was the only rational explanation I had since everything else had been normal to my recollection. I’d wondered if someone had followed my friend here too and if she was in one of these rooms – trapped and in fear too. I had also come to realize that the strange man had a routine – he came at the same time each day that he’d entered my entrapment. Lastly, as afraid as I was I decided that I was going to fight; fight for my life, fight for my escape!
I’d started to contemplate on how I would make contact with the outside world. I’d feared the thought of what my family and friends would think if I never returned home so I busied myself with other thoughts. Now wasn’t the time for weakness it was the time for strength. For a moment that thought left my mind as I chastised myself for being such a homebody. I was sure that no one would even be concerned until Monday rolled around and I was absent from work. Seeing as my family members knew I enjoyed my quiet time on the weekends they often wouldn’t hear from me until almost Tuesday.
After realizing that today was Monday I quickly decided to stay in the filthy bed all day. I needed to rest my limbs from the pain I felt and to conjure up an escape plan. I did my best thinking in the bed and I would need to think long and hard about what I could utilize from my past to get me out of my current situation. I knew I was a good analyzer and that was how I’d come to the conclusions I had thus far even with everything still being uncertain, I figured I would need to analyze everything if I was going to make it out of here.
Deep in my thoughts I almost jumped out of my skin as the unfamiliar man made his presence known in the room with the rattling of the tray. I had drifted so far into my mind that I was unaware of my surroundings. Strike one. I quickly scanned over his frame. He appeared to be around 6’1, 230 pounds, however his race was unknown to me as the words he rattled off were foreign to my own understanding. As I squinted through the darkness I attempted to pinpoint some of his details. I still hadn’t come across a good source of lighting in the room so I was stuck with focusing my attention on the words that rolled off his tongue in hopes that he would say something to give me a clue as to where I was.
His deadening eyes peered into mine as he announced in English that I must eat as I would start work tomorrow. Unsure of what work he was referencing my mind racked over what type of work someone in my situation could do and my body instantly froze. In this moment I knew that my time was running out. I had to escape or at least attempt to before I entered a world I would never be able to come back from.
Petrified, I played along and grabbed the tray as if I were delighted to finally see it and took a small bite. Swallowing rather quickly I asked for the bread and water he held and took it as if it were gold. I wanted to lure him further into the room in hopes of making out his features and obtaining more information about the place I was being held in.
“What type of work will I start to tomorrow?”
His brows frowned and a pained look on his face quickly appeared. He made swift movements for the door and slammed it behind him. He administered the locks in record time since I’d arrived. He was upset, possibly afraid just as I was. He held something I could use and my first step would be getting him back in this room.
Whoever this man was. He was my escape. His weakness told me everything that I needed to know.
Seeing as this plan counted on my life I figured I would need to think long and hard and rest just as long and hard. Tomorrow was a big day – a day that sealed the life of my fate. Tomorrow I would either escape from my captors or I would enter a world of the unknown. I had to go – I had to figure out the key to my great escape….