Sitting on a floor, covered only by several white bath towels, Abigail was uncomfortable in more ways than one. There might be 14 year old girls elsewhere that would be happy to show off their body to complete strangers, but she did not have such a mentality. Privacy, for years, had been her mantra.
She had not imagined that she would ever have to attempt in maintaining a measure of modesty using only towels whilst attached to a radiator, with a man and a woman kneeling or crouching in front of her. Despite the unusual nature of their meeting, the manager seemed to have a warm expression that helped to put her at ease. He was not like Joshua, the monster. The man was trying his best to look out of the window, at the furniture, at the floor, anywhere except at her.
With questions asked regarding her wellbeing and her need to be freed, the conversation between the manager, the cleaner and Abigail had run its course after the woman confirmed that she had already called the police.
The man had offered to try and cut her free, and to prevent the captor from gaining access to the guest house, but Abigail was quick to shake her head at such suggestions. She could see the manager’s eyes widen with her own as she could sense her own terror spreading to him.
“I’ve seen him rape and kill a girl my age. I’ve seen him hold a gun to a woman’s head to capture me again. If he comes back and you’re here you’ll probably end up dead.”
“When is he coming back?” the manager asked in a calm voice, as if he had not picked up on the suggestion that his life was in danger.
“He said he would be gone a couple of hours and he left around eleven.”
The man looked at his watch. His wrist was shaking. “It’s around half twelve. We might have time to get you free and out of here.”
Abigail was unsure. “Maybe you should just wait for the police to get here.”
The man immediately pulled a mobile phone from his pocket and began dialling a number. “They need to get here soon. The station is only down the road.” He gulped and Abigail noticed beads of sweat forming on his forehead. “They could be here in five minutes if they wanted.”
He was about to speak again when he paused. His eyes widened and his mouth hung open, combining to form a worried look. Compared to it, his previous expression seemed as calm as someone watching the tide come in.
Abigail was well aware of the reason for the worry. The thickly carpeted wooden stairs were creaking with the sound of someone ascending. Her captor had returned.