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Memoirs From the End of the World
The weather steadily deteriorated around them. RC could barely see the front of the group, where Alyx was still being marched along at knifepoint. As the temperature plummeted, her lungs started to burn with each breath. The cut on her collarbone had stopped bleeding, but she wondered if the blood clotted or just plain froze. Her feet were numb, and she worried how she would keep going. Would their captors simply get fed up with them and kill them on the spot if they insisted on stopping?
“Are we almost there?” The angry demand came from Gas Can.
“I don’t think so.” RC barely heard Alyx’s reply. “I doubt we can make it in a blizzard like this.”
“Maybe we should stop for the night,” Spiked Club said. This was the first reasonable utterance to come from his mouth. “We have a base not far from here. At least, I don’t think it’s far from here.”
Base? What does that mean? RC wondered.
“All right,” Gas Can agreed. “We’ll continue the moment the snow stops.”
After what seemed like another hour, the nearly frostbitten group stumbled into a house. RC was startled by the blast of warm air. For months on end, homes she stepped into were a similar temperature to the outdoors, with walls offering minimal shelter from the elements. This was an exception to the rule. A moment later, an overhead light blazed to life. “How does this house have power?” she dared to ask.
“Shut up!” Gas Can yelled. “No one gave you permission to speak!”
RC ducked her head, hoping the sign of submission would keep him from coming completely unhinged. She definitely didn’t want to provoke the kind of wrath he was obviously capable of unleashing.
“We have a generator.”
The whispered response from Hatchet Girl caught RC off guard. “Really?” she whispered back.
She nodded. “The overlords don’t want us to freeze to death. They have several fully stocked houses throughout the city so we always have a place to go.”
“Stop your yammering,” Spiked Club grumbled to Hatchet Girl as he shoved RC into the wall. With one hand pressed hard against her shoulder, he held her there. “We aren’t here to make friends with our prey.”
Being pinned to the wall by a violent pervert made RC feel anything but brave, but she did her best to put on a brave face. “Maybe you should keep your hands to yourself. We’re going to give you what you want, so you have no reason to hassle me.”
Spiked Club leaned so close RC could smell his rotten breath. “Don’t be silly. You’re going to be staying in our place of business, which means you need to pay a little rent. It’s only fair.” He started to unzip her coat.
A chill raced down her spine. “Get your hands off of me!” she demanded. Not that she thought her words would do any good. Even if it were just him, it would be extremely difficult to fight him off. But with all of them and their cache of weapons to choose from, it would be a hopeless fight. She just couldn’t stomach the thought of this creep touching her.
He knocked her coat onto the floor with a little flourish. “Who’s going to stop me?” Then he leaned forward, his bulky body holding her into place as he moved in for a kiss.
Spiked Club looked up to see Alyx standing there. “What did you say to me, shrimp?”
Alyx’s eyes were alight with fury. “You heard me. This wasn’t part of our deal. The deal was that I take you to the strays, and in exchange, you keep your depraved hands to yourself. If you can’t hold up your end of the bargain, I see no reason why I should follow through with mine.”
The smirk on Spiked Club’s face proved he didn’t take Alyx seriously. Not in the slightest. As if claiming a trophy, he seized her face with one hand, his other hand still wielding his deadly weapon. RC struggled to push him away, but he’d effectively pinned her. When he forcefully pressed his mouth against hers, she could only keep her lips firmly closed and wait for him to give up. His hands, his demeanor, everything about him repulsed her.
The unwelcome kiss ended abruptly when Spiked Club was knocked to the floor. RC whipped her head around in time to see Alyx standing there with his hands out, breathing hard from exertion. He’d managed to knock her attacker to the ground.
A moment of relief quickly turned to one of sheer terror as Spiked Club jumped to his feet. With club in hand, he moved menacingly toward Alyx. “You’re dead, little boy!”
RC had no doubt that one hit with that club could kill. With all manner of horrifying possibilities tumbling around in her head, she took a flying leap and plowed into Spiked Club’s side.
The world became a blur, and before she knew it, RC was lying on the ground beside Alyx, who now had a bloody nose. Spiked Club stood over them, ready to strike.
Gas Can’s shout was enough to make Spiked Club immediately back down. “I was only going to hurt them a little.”
RC sat up in time to see Gas Can shove Hatchet Girl at them. “Here, have Isabel to hold you over for the night. I’ll let you know when you can have the other one. For now, we’ll lock our guests away.”
One look at Hatchet Girl/Isabel showed how terrified she was, and RC felt a moment of overwhelming sympathy. Then several pairs of hands were on her and Alyx, and before she could even shout in protest, they were both being shoved through a dark doorway. As they landed together in a heap on the floor, the door slammed and locked behind them, leaving bathing them in darkness.
Go to Entry #20
Go to Entry #20