M A X
When I wake up the first thing I feel is pain. My head feels like someone has taken a sledgehammer to it. I open my eyes, expecting to see a dungeon. My vision is a little blurry at first, but my eyes soon focus enough for me to see the sky through a window above me.
The clouds roll by, a stark contrast against the navy sky. Was it evening? I had no idea.
I sit up, glancing around the tastefully decorated room. Gold accessories line the dressing table at the bottom of the bed, a large ornate gold mirror stands proudly in the room's corner. I swing my legs out, letting out a groan as nausea sweeps over me. I drop my head between my knees, waiting for it to pass.
The door opens, and I don’t even bother lifting my head up. Whoever it is doesn’t deserve my attention. I needed to focus on getting better, otherwise I hadn’t a chance of getting out of here alive.
The voice sounds slightly muffled, as though it was speaking to me through a pillow.
“Max, lift your head up.”
Fingers lift my chin roughly up, and I recoil when I see the dark eyes of Yan staring at me with amusement.
“You hit your head hard last night.”
I do not understand what he is talking about, but I don’t trust him. He scans my eyes with uncertainty.
“Oh,” I frown. “What do you want?”
Yan grins, crouching down in front of me.
“Honestly? I needed you as collateral. Just to make sure the money is clean. I’ve sorted most of it now, so it’s almost time for you to go.”
I remain still, my eyes falling to the dark purple bruise on his chin.
Whoever did that deserves a medal.
“Where’s my sister?”
Yan shrugs, widening his eyes. He stands up straight, glancing around the room. My heart hammers in my chest when he speaks.
“I released her yesterday.”
I shift on the bed as he strokes his chin.
“Let me go,” I plead, hating how vulnerable I sound. “We’ve paid my sister's debt.”
“I’m not an unfair man, Max,” Yan crosses over to the bed, sitting beside me. The bed dips, pushing me towards him. I scramble back, wincing with pain. “As soon as I know the money is clean, you can go.”
“Can I at least make a phone call?” I ask, lifting my hand to the back of my head where I find an unfamiliar lump. “God, my head hurts.”
Yan nods, reaching over to examine my head. I move back, slamming myself against the headboard of the bed. His fingers still in the air between us, his eyes darkening.
“I’ll get you some painkillers. You hungry?”
He stands up, waiting for my answer. I’d rather die than eat anything this man made me, but my head is thumping. I need strength.
“Yes. The phone call?” I press, earning myself a sharp look.
“This isn’t the fucking police station. I’ll get you some food.”
I flinch at his response, but I wasn't exactly expecting him to acquiesce.
With that Yan leaves, and I immediately ease myself back onto the pillow. I try to recall the last thing I can remember, but it’s pointless. I know who Yan is, and I know I was meant to meet him to give him money for my sister. According to Yan, that much had happened.
There're no windows in this room apart from the skylight, so I assume I’m in a loft. I pull the duvet up to my chin, shivering slightly. My eyes closed, and the next thing I know I’m being rudely awaken by a plate clattering on the bedside table.
“Tablets,” grunted a female voice. I take them from her hand, barely able to push them into my dry mouth. “Water.”
I open my eyes, noticing the woman in front of me was familiar. I couldn’t place her though. Instead, I turn my attention to the food beside me. It was a simple cheese sandwich, but I devoured it regardless. There was an apple beside it, and I sank my teeth into it gratefully. It was crisp and tangy, and I sucked at its juices with a moan.
The woman smiles coldly. “I saw your man last night. Bet he fucks like a stallion.”
I froze, my eyes finally meeting hers.
Her eyes, darker than midnight, flashed with fury.
“When you’re out of here, you better not tell a fucking dickie bird about what happened. Or I’ll cut your tongue out and shove it up your pretty boy’s arse. Yeah?”
Goosebumps line my skin, and I know not to cross this woman. She loved Yan or had some kind of loyalty to him.
“I just wanted to save my sister. I didn’t ask for this,” I swallow, letting the apple fall back onto the plate beside me.
“Your sister is a whore,” she spits. “She tried paying her debts off with her pussy. Who does that? Whores.”
Oh fuck, Alex.
“Let me go,” I plead. “I won’t tell a soul, I just want to go home.”
“I want you to go home. In a fucking body bag. But Yan thinks it is unnecessary.”
She turns then, her tiny body moving quickly away from me. I want to say something else, but my head is far too fuzzy. The woman leaves the room, slamming the door behind her. I gulp down the water, before noticing the bathroom on the other side of the room.
I force myself to get up, my muscles throbbing. I stretch them out as best as I can, before taking care of my business in the bathroom. There’s no mirror in here, but there is a shower. I eye it up hesitantly, deciding against it. As nice as it would be, I didn’t know who was watching me.
I’d remain clothed.
The room was bare of anything else, so I climbed back into bed with sheer exhaustion. My brain was too tired to think, and I needed to heal.
I tried not to think of how I had ended up as Yan’s prisoner- when Cain and Harry had been right behind me throughout. Tears pricked my eyes when I thought of Cain.
Had that beastly woman really seen him last night? Where was I? I refused to imagine his arms wrapping around me, mumbling in my ear that everything would be ok.
It’s not OK, Cain.
My eyes close, and I fall into a restless sleep, searching for my sister.
Where are you, Alex?