The October night was cold, freezing cold. It was only going to get colder as winter came closer and closer. I didn’t know how I was going to survive as I worked the streets at night. How was I supposed to attract guys when I couldn’t show as much skin as I usually did?
I rubbed my exposed midriff to try to warm it up. At least my shirt was long sleeved.
I looked over when a car slowed at the curb. I slowly started walking in that direction, but the car quickly peeled down the road. I sighed and checked the piece of shit watch on my wrist. It was already 1:00 AM and I didn’t want to be out here much longer when it was such a cold night.
I decided to start walking back in the direction of my apartment. I wrapped my arms around myself and started humming a song I had stuck in my head. Maybe if I saved up a little bit of money I could buy a cheap MP3 player. I hadn’t heard music much except when I was giving guys blow jobs in their cars. It would be nice to listen to something I was actually a fan of.
As I started walking into the shitty part of town, I made sure to keep my head down. It wasn’t that I ever worked the streets in a nice part of town, but the location of my apartment was fucking scary and I hated it. I always kept my head down and got inside as quickly as possible.
I felt a creepy, crawling feeling on the back of my neck. There wasn’t anyone in front of me, so I slowly turned around.
All I saw was a black car slowing at the curb. I paused and waited to see if they were going to move closer to me, but the car stopped.
I turned back around and kept walking. I kicked a rock further up the sidewalk and then someone roughly grabbed my arm out of nowhere. I gasped and looked up at the buff guy holding my arm.
“How much for a turn, slut?” He asked and his putrid breath hit my face. He was scary with his gang tattoos, greasy hair, and he was most likely on something.
He flicked my long blonde hair with his fingers and I tried to pull away. “Um, I can give you a blow job for twenty bucks.” I didn’t want to say no to his advances when it would be so easy for him to literally snap me in two.
“Twenty bucks? Are you fucking serious? For a blow job? I’ll fuck you for fifteen.” He tugged on my arm like he was going to try to take me into the alley a few feet away, but I dug my shoes into the sidewalk.
“No. I— I can’t do that. That’s not enough.” I hated saying that, but I was not going to let a guy fuck me for only fifteen bucks. That was not going to pay my rent or put food on the table. I shrunk away from the sneer on his face and tried to pull my arm away again.
“No? Listen here, you dirty fucking whore,” he said and I whimpered at his words. “You don’t get to tell me no.” He quickly stuck his hand down at my pants, but he did not like what he found there because he gasped and removed his hand. “You’re a dude,” he said with a disgusted look like I had been trying to keep it a secret.
It wasn’t my fault that I looked like a girl. People had told me that maybe I wouldn’t hear that so much if I cut my hair, but I liked my hair long and I wouldn’t cut it just to look more like a boy.
I knew he was about to hurt me and I was bracing for the pain, but then he suddenly let go of my arm and took a step back. I looked at him with wide eyes as he stared at something behind me.
He looked back at me for a moment and said, “If I see you around here again, faggot, I’ll kill you.” Then he jogged down the sidewalk.
I watched until I could barely see him anymore. What the hell was that?
I turned around and saw that same black car very close to me. I stood stalk still and watched it warily, but there was no signs of life from inside.
I turned away from it and continued heading for my apartment.
I heard the tires of the car behind me rolling over the asphalt and knew that they had slowly started to follow me. The guy from before was no longer a threat, but whoever was in that car was and I went into fight or flight mode. And I would always choose flight.
I took off running. I ran as fast as I could down the sidewalk towards my apartment. I quickly turned a corner and paused to catch my breath.
I took a chance and slowly peeked around the corner.
The black car was gone.
I rubbed my chest, my esophagus burning from the cold air. Had I been totally paranoid? Maybe the car wasn’t following me at all. I felt foolish after that as I walked the rest of the way home.
I walked up the rickety stairs to my apartment and entered to see a cloud of smoke hanging over the whole front room.
I waved my hand around and coughed a little as I shut the door behind me. I saw Ricky and some of his friends lounging around on the couch and floor as they smoked cigarettes. But by the looks of it, they had been smoking something else. I could tell from the pipe and other paraphernalia on the coffee table.
I sighed and made sure the door was locked.
“Hey, babe,” Ricky greeted me, slurring his words and I tried to force a smile. I went over to him and kissed him on the cheek. He reached around and felt my ass, squeezing it.
His friends looked to be just about passed out. Ricky looked to be about there as well.
I took the cigarette out of his hand and smashed it in the ashtray on the coffee table.
“Have you eaten?” I asked in a gentle tone and pushed back his dark, greasy hair. I used to love looking in his light green eyes. They held such mischief and I always knew when he had something fun planned for us. But I hadn’t seen that little glean in his eyes in a long time. Not since he’d got so caught up in the drugs.
He brought my hand to his mouth and kissed the back of it. “I’m not hungry,” he said. “Don’t worry about me.”
I forced a smile and then pulled away from him to get cleaned up.
In the shower, I let the lukewarm water roll over my naked body. A hot shower would’ve been nice but at least it wasn’t freezing like it often was this time of year. I enjoyed the little bit of warmth there was and relaxed.
I washed my long blonde hair throughly, spending most of my time on that. I loved my long hair and it was kind of my pride and joy—the one thing that made me feel good about myself. It hung over halfway down my back and I tried to take good care of it. I didn’t blow-dry it or put any kind of product in it. It was always silky smooth and that was what I loved about it.
When I got out of the shower, I dried off and wrapped a towel around my body.
I moved around in the tiny bathroom and looked at myself if the mirror that needed a serious cleaning.
I may have been clean from the shower, but I didn’t look much better than I had before I went in.
My skin was pale and I had dark circles around my dark blue eyes. I knew I was way too scrawny and small, but I didn’t eat well and that was to be expected.
I wiped at my under eyes as if I could erase the dark smudges.
I sighed and ran a towel through my hair before brushing it out.
I left the bathroom, glancing down the hall and getting a glimpse of Ricky on the couch—his head tipped back, obviously asleep.
Instead of waking him, I went to the bedroom and got ready for bed. I put on underwear and a large shirt before laying down on the mattress that was on the floor in the corner of the mostly empty room.
The light was still on because I always slept with it on. Even if it did drive up the electricity bill, I always slept with it on.
I closed my eyes and let out a breath. My body was always tired after working the streets at night. My ass was sore and I knew it would be even more sore tomorrow…but it wasn’t like I wasn’t used to that.
I pulled the blankets tightly up to my neck, shivering a little. Most times Ricky was in bed to keep me warm…well he used to be. Not so much anymore.
I squeezed my eyes shut tighter and willed myself to go to sleep.
I sent out a little prayer most nights, wishing that things would get better.
“I don’t want to live like this anymore,” I said quietly to myself.
After a few more thoughts like that, I pushed it all out my mind. I told myself that there wasn’t any use for wishing for things that weren’t going to happen.
Just be happy with what you have now, Max. No one is going to swoop in and save you. You’re not the princess of the story.
And you never will be.
I got more comfortable and then eventually drifted off to sleep.
After the first night I saw that black car, I saw it almost everyday of the following week.
Sometimes I saw it during the day when I went out for groceries, but mostly it was just a quick glance.
It was in the evening when it became unsettling.
It always seemed to find me—even when I went to different streets and areas of the city than I usually went to. I tried to find any way to get away from it, but it always found me.
It kept its distance and I never saw any life from inside. Obviously someone was driving it since it moved and followed me. Was there only a driver? Or were there multiple people inside?
I didn’t have the guts to approach the car…because what if whoever was inside planned to hurt me?
I tried to stay as far away as possible, but I didn’t like that I sort of had an audience now when I let guys do things to me in alleyways. It made me feel even dirtier than usual and I hated that. Were the people inside mocking me?
I wanted to know, but at the same time I hoped I never found out because that would’ve meant that the car would keep following me and whoever was inside would approach me.
No, I just hoped and prayed that whoever was inside lost interest and eventually went away.
It was a stupid wish though, because that was the complete opposite of what happened.
It was a Tuesday morning when I was awoken by someone taking off my underwear. I stirred, waking up slightly but not all the way. I thought I might have been dreaming.
But when I felt pain as someone tried to enter me, I knew it wasn’t a dream. I groaned from the pain and pushed at the person behind me. I was laying on my side and they were behind me, pushing into me.
“Stop, hurts,” I half mumbled, half groaned.
“Shh,” I heard Ricky say. “Just lay still.”
I squeezed my eyes tightly shut as he pushed his whole dick into me.
I gasped from the pain, but after that, after he began thrusting, I just went somewhere else.
It was a coping mechanism that I had when a customer was especially rough.
I was able to go out of my head and into a nice place where things were bright and happy. Sometimes it felt like I was no longer in my body. I liked it that way.
I waited for it to be over and eventually I felt his warm come inside me. He let out a contented sigh and pulled out of me.
I didn’t move much. I still felt a lot of pain in my ass and I just hoped he hadn’t torn me because that meant I wouldn’t be able to work for awhile. And that meant we needed to live off what I’d saved up, which wasn’t much.
I stayed facing away from Ricky and then I eventually heard him snoring.
I continued to lay there for awhile, not wanting to move because of the pain. But I wanted to get up and shower because I could feel his come dripping out of me slowly.
I got out of bed as quietly as I could so I wouldn’t wake him up. I went into the bathroom across the hall and turned on the shower as hot as it would go…which wasn’t very hot at all.
After I got in the shower I felt my ass and pulled my hand away to see blood on my fingers.
I tried to tell myself that it was going to be okay. I would have to pay rent soon, but after that I would have about fifty dollars…I could live off that for a little bit. Just until my ass healed.
I cleaned myself throughly, wanting to get all the come out of my ass.
I don’t know if many people would have put up with the stuff that I did with Ricky. But he had been my boyfriend for three years, ever since I was fifteen and he was sixteen. We’d been through a lot together. He was the first real friend I made when I ran away from home.
Things weren’t as good with him as they used to be, but I still loved him. He just needed to stop taking drugs. He would go back to his old self once he did. I believed in him, I believed that he would get better.
After I was done in the shower, I wrapped a towel around myself and avoided my reflection in the mirror before going out into the living room. We just had a couch and a coffee table. We couldn’t afford a tv, but I didn’t much care for watching tv anyways.
I kept the towel tightly around my body as I reached for the old coffee jar above the fridge. It felt lighter than I remembered it being last time I put money inside of it.
When I opened the lid of jar and found a measly twenty dollar bill inside, I let out a loud cry.
I should have had five hundred dollars inside! Enough for rent and food for the week!
Tears started streaming down my cheeks as I let the jar fall to the floor and I stomped towards the bedroom. I flung the door opened and yelled, “How could you?!”
Ricky slowly blinked his eyes open and gave me a confused look. “Babe? What are you—?”
“You took the last of the money!” I screamed, feeling angrier than I had ever been. I wasn’t a very emotional person. I rarely cried or screamed. It took something extreme to happen for me to react this way. I liked to think of myself as a pretty level headed person, but Ricky had just brought out the worst in me.
“What did you do with it?” I asked, barely containing my rage.
Ricky still looked sleepy when he said, “I had to buy smack, babe. I’m sorry. I thought you could make more—“
“That was our rent money! How are we supposed to feed ourselves?!” I screeched.
Then he began looking pissed off. “What do you expect me to do now? It’s done, Max! I took the money and now it’s gone. You can’t get it back, so maybe you should just get over it and let me sleep.”
Not knowing anything better to do, I screamed and slammed the door shut.
I began stalking down the hallway, but then I realized I was still only wearing a towel. I had to get dressed.
I flung the bedroom door open again and walked inside, quickly grabbing something to wear. I put the jeans and a t-shirt on as fast I could.
Before I left the room, I said, “I’m not coming back. You can learn how to take care of yourself and steal money for your fucking drugs from someone else. I hate you.”
He only scoffed, not bothering with a real reply.
I scowled and left the room.
I grabbed my keys off the counter and the twenty dollar bill that was left.
Then I stormed out of the apartment.
I wasn’t serious when I told Ricky that I was never coming back. I had nowhere else to go, so of course I would be back. Plus all my stuff was there.
I just wanted to be gone for a few hours and make him worry—make him miss me and regret the things that he had done.
But who knew if that would even work. He would probably just sleep through it all and not even realize I had been gone at all.
It was times like these that I really hated my life.
I usually liked to stay relatively optimistic. Things could be worse. I could be homeless like I was a couple years ago. I have a home and usually enough money to put a little bit of food on the table.
Sure, life would’ve been much better if Ricky had a job, wasn’t addicted to drugs, and I wasn’t a prostitute.
But you couldn’t have everything you wished for.
I had learned that from a young age.
I knew I had to do something to earn money for our rent payment, but for now, I just wanted to not think about anything.
I walked further away from the apartment, determined to forget about my problems for a few hours.
I walked around the city for a long time and just thought about what I should do about Ricky.
He couldn’t keep stealing the money I earned and use it for drugs. We would end up being homeless again if he did that again. I was hoping I could ask the landlord for a little extra time to pay the rent this month, but I knew he wouldn’t keep putting up with that. He wasn’t the nicest man I’d ever met.
When I was tired of walking around and I hadn’t come to any solution about what to do about Ricky, I decided to head back home.
Before going back to the apartment, I decided to stop at a little corner store nearby and get a few things to eat for dinner. I only had the twenty dollar bill left and I didn’t want to spend it all in one go, so I got a couple cans of tuna fish and a loaf of bread. It cost me less than five bucks, so I still had enough to buy food later in the week.
I took the plastic bag from the cashier and went on my way.
I began walking to the apartment, which wasn’t far at all.
I didn’t know the black car was following me until it was too late.
I had been walking close to the curb and it made it easy for someone to grab me and pull into the car.
My bag of of groceries fell to the sidewalk, the tuna cans making a clattering noise against the cement.
I struggled with a man in the back seat for a moment. I didn’t get a good look at him because I was too busy fighting against his hold on me.
I fought as hard as I could and screamed, which was just about the best defense I had with my tiny body.
But it was all for nought. The man pinned my arms to my sides and someone else in the car stuck a needle in my neck.
My surroundings became foggy and then everything went black.
I don’t know how many days passed…or weeks…or months. I had no idea how long these people had me, time meant nothing to me while I was with them.
All I knew was that I was in a haze the entire time.
I occasionally woke up. I would blink my eyes open, my head feeling foggy. I would look around at my surroundings when I had enough energy to move my head and all I saw were other cots like the one I must have been on. Other people were here with me and they all appeared to be sleeping like I was. Everyone, including me, had an IV set up by their cot and was inserted into their arms.
But as soon as someone noticed that I was moving my head or trying to get my arms underneath me to sit up, someone quickly came over to me, stuck a needle into the IV and I was out once again.
At one point, I came to while someone was giving me a sponge bath on the cot.
I was so confused as to what I was doing here and what my purpose was.
I never even had the chance to feel afraid, not since I was pulled into the black car. I was so out of it when I came to that it was impossible to feel anything. I had the consciousness to know that I needed to get away from these people, but I wasn’t afraid. I suppose that was a good thing.
There was a day I woke up and saw a large man standing over. I knew that, had I been in my right mind, I would’ve been terrified. He was buff with a thick neck and short hair. I blinked slowly, watching and wondering what he would do.
He then spoke, “This one is very pretty. He will go to the boat.”
I barely had a chance to process what he said before a woman approached me with another syringe. I shook my head as much as I could, pleading with her not to inject me with whatever that was, but of course it was useless. She stuck the needle into the IV and I quickly started losing consciousness. But I had one last thought before I did. When will this end?
When will this end?
The next time I woke up I was in a different room than before. It wasn’t slightly dark and dank like it had been when I woke up those other times.
This room was much more luxurious. I was laying in a more comfortable cot this time and there was a much softer blanket covering me. I didn’t have the IV attached to me like before and no one was quickly coming towards me to make me go to sleep again.
I saw other people—both boys and girls—sleeping on other cots inside the room. As I was a coming out of the fog I had been in for God knows how long, the fright settled in.
Where the fuck was I?
Just as I thought that, I felt the room gently rocking. My eyebrows drew together and once I began getting some energy back, I sat up a little.
Still no one was coming to inject me with whatever they had been using to keep me asleep this whole time.
I brushed my long blonde hair out of my face and then got my hands under me to sit up more. I saw other people in the room slowly waking up as well. They all appeared to be just as scared as I was.
When I was able to sit up all the way on the bed, I looked out a nearby window and saw the ocean.
We were on a boat?
Why were we on a boat?
Where were we going?
And what the fuck was going on?
I wanted to crawl under the covers and hide from everything. If I pulled the blankets over my head and blocked my surroundings out then maybe all this would go away. Or maybe I would wake up again and all this would just be a dream.
As I began to shiver I realized that I wasn’t wearing any clothes, only underwear that clung tightly to my body.
I was petrified and as I saw the faces of the other people in the room with me, I knew they were just as petrified.
There were some people still asleep and I could see that some were more awake than others.
I wanted to ask questions but I didn’t want to be the first to speak.
Saying something almost made this experience more real. It was almost as if, if I didn’t talk, these people weren’t real. They were just figments of my imagination.
What would be better—going crazy or being kidnapped?
I wasn’t sure which option I would chose right now.
“Where are we?” Someone finally asked, a boy with brown hair that looked a little older than me.
We were all silent, some shaking their heads and then others not making an movements at all.
I still felt weak from whatever had kept me asleep for so long and I wondered when I would get all my strength back.
“I’m scared,” a red headed girl said meekly. She was sitting on the cot closest to mine.
I quietly said, “Me too.”
I counted twelve cots in the room, only two people were still asleep. There was nothing else besides the cots in the room. There was one door that was made of dark wood. It looked strong and not at all easily breakable. Besides, none of us in the room looked strong enough to break down a door.
But then I got an idea…What if we didn’t even need to break it down? What if it wasn’t locked?
I slowly got to my feet, still feeling weak and lethargic. But I managed to begin making my way carefully to the door.
No one moved and they only watched me with wide eyes.
Before I could make it to the door, I heard a click and it swung open.
There was a large man standing in the doorway and he looked at me with a blank expression.
I knew I was not going to get passed that guy, so I stopped in my tracks.
“Wonderful. You’re almost all awake,” the man said with a deep British accent. “You will follow me. If you don’t follow me and at any time try to run away, you will regret it deeply. Do you understand?” He asked, looking around at all of us.
Some of us nodded, but others only looked scared.
“I only want a select few right now,” he added. “You,” he first said, pointing at me. I seriously regretted standing up and trying to make it to the door, maybe I wouldn’t have been chosen had it not been for that mistake.
He then pointed at five other people in the room and he made a motion with his hand for us to follow him.
The others stood up and walked towards him, unfortunately I was first in line.
I could sense that the other boys and girls were just as terrified as I was. It was like you could smell our fright in the air.
We followed the man out of the room and into a small hallway. There were a few other men in the hallway that looked just as frightening as the first man. One of them locked the door again and the first man began leading us down the hall.
Once we were out of the hall, we were in a much bigger hallway with doors on either side that I assumed lead to rooms.
This was clearly a nice boat and large as well. I had never been on a cruise before, but it resembled a cruise ship more than any other boat I’d seen—which were always just in pictures or the ferryboats I saw down by the waterfront whenever I went.
I was too scared to do anything but follow the man. I didn’t want to know what would happen if I strayed away from him.
But apparently someone else did because a tall, slim boy made a run for it.
He began running passed us but within a second, the first man caught him and pushed him onto the ground. He grabbed his hair tightly, making the boy groan.
“You will really regret this later,” the man growled. “I won’t ruin your face now, but I will make sure your new owner punishes you to the fullest extent. You just made a very big mistake.”
A shiver ran down my spine from his words.
What did that mean?
I had never been more scared in my entire life, but I knew I needed to be smart and wait. Now wasn’t the time to try to escape. Maybe I would regret it later. Maybe later I would wish I had been braver and gotten away sooner. But for now, I wanted to listen to this frightening man to save myself. I still felt weak and I knew I wouldn’t be able to run very far without getting tired. It would be a mistake to try anything now, right?
The man violently grabbed the boy and brought him to his feet, causing the boy to whimper.
He pushed him back into the line and the man gave us all a harsh look before continuing down the hallway.
I wrapped my arms around my bare chest and followed him.
We walked down a few more hallways and entered a few empty rooms, all which looked very luxurious—decorated in warm colors with expensive furnishings.
Finally the man leading us stopped at a door and made no movement to go inside. My eyebrows drew together in confusion as he waited for something.
After about five minutes he received a text and pulled his phone out of his pocket. He read the text and put the phone back in his pocket.
He turned to us and said, “You will walk inside, go up the stairs to the platform, and stand in a row. Don’t embarrass yourself by trying to get away. It won’t work and a more cruel buyer won’t be afraid to make you pay for it. Understand?”
I wasn’t sure that I really understood, but I nodded anyways.
He opened the door, walked inside, and stood to hold the door open for us.
Unfortunately I was first inside. It was frightening to walk in first. I tried not to take in my surroundings yet and just go where he told us to.
There was a short set of stairs, leading up to a stage-like platform.
I kept my head down.
I knew there were many other people already in the room but I was afraid to look.
I walked across the platform to stand at the other side of it, I kept my head lowered so I didn’t have to look at the people I could sense staring at me.
My heart was beating ultra fast…I couldn’t remember being so scared.
I was standing in a simple pair of underwear in front of a whole room of strangers, this was like a typical nightmare but I was actually living it. This was completely real.
The other five people—but we weren’t just people anymore were we? We were prisoners—walked onto the platform and stood in a row next to me.
There was silence in the room for a moment as we all stood there quietly. Then there were hushed murmurs as people discussed things again…maybe discussed us?
A man then came onto the platform with a microphone and said, “Well, ladies and gentlemen, I think we have an amazing batch for the first round of the auction, don’t you?”
There were quite noises of agreement throughout the room.
What the fuck was going on here?
Was I about to sold off to some psycho so they may do with me as the please?
I swallowed thickly.
I couldn’t believe this was happening.
I didn’t even hear what the man with the microphone said until he touched my bare shoulder.
“Why don’t we start off with 200,000,” he said.
200,000 for me?
A hand must have shot up because he said, “Great, how about 250,000? He sure is a beauty, isn’t he?”
I shuddered from his words. I felt like crying but I was not going to break down in front of these people.
I was stronger than that.
It seemed that it was impossible to get away at a moment like this. I was completely beaten down already, but I would persevere and no matter what happened, I promised myself that I would find a way to get away from these evil and disgusting people.
Larger sums of money kept flying from people’s mouths until someone said, “One million.”
It was said in Russian accent with a dark tone and it made my blood run cold.
“Do I hear 1.5 million?” The man with the microphone asked.
No one said anything and there was a quiet in the room that seemed as if they didn’t want to speak after the man that had just offered up one million dollars to purchase me.
“Then this lovely boy is sold to Mr Lenkov for one million dollars,” the man with the microphone said in a cheery voice.
He grabbed my arm and began dragging me from the platform, down a short set of stairs that were closest to the side of the stage I was standing on.
He began leading me through tables and I saw there were many—all round with white tablecloths. I hadn’t ever looked up when I was standing on the stage and I still didn’t want to see these people, but it was difficult not to catch glimpses of hungry eyes as I walked by.
We reach a table near the back and the man pushed me down to my knees. I was kneeling directly in front of a man, but all I saw were his knees covered by black dress pants.
The man with the microphone left us, but I could feel a few people near watching us with curious glances.
The man in front of me put his finger to my chin and forced me too look up at him.
I saw his cold grey eyes and his dark, dark hair before his cruel mouth formed something similar to a smirk. His Russian accent sounded almost malicious.
“Hello, my Sweet Kitten.”