1 Guilt and Anger
It was night time. Jayce Allen looked out from his room’s windows into the last quarter moon. The planet which shined the brightest in the night sky, Venus, was hanging next to the moon. He moved to the standing telescope next to his bed and looked into it. Took a few pictures of the half phase Venus, felt chilly from the window’s wind, and went back to bed snuggling into his quilt.
There were cicada buzzing sounds in the silent night but more to that, Jayce heard voices inside of his mind. He knew they were only auditory hallucinations and always kept his best at ignoring them.
His private doctor had prescribed him medication which he took every night before bed. It had been two years since he started seeing the doctor. It all started two years ago: his PTSD, auditory hallucinations, change of character, and social life downfall. Most of the nights, he would have insomnia due to fear of having nightmares of the terror of his kidnap two years ago. It was also because of this that he got into stargazing when he couldn’t sleep.
It was cold, so he stayed under his quilt and finally managed to fall asleep for two hours. Two hours without nightmares was already a long good night’s sleep for Jayce. Jayce had a sudden jump in his sleep, the feeling like he was about to fall down from a building, and woke up. At the moment he got up, sudden guilt and anger manifested inside him. He needed to get the emotions out. He got out his violin then started playing to vent those emotions out.
One room away from Jayce’s room, his father, Derek Allen, woke from his sleep because of the violin sound. Derek let out a sigh and with a shake of his head, he placed a pair of earplugs inside his ears. Derek knew his son had issues but he didn’t understand them or felt any empathy for him. All Derek could do was take Jayce to a shrink, quit school for him, and hire a private teacher so his panic attacks wouldn’t occur at a social place - it would be an embarrassment for Derek to let people know his son was crazy. A woman beside him let out a grunt. “Again?!”, she said, then reached for another pair of earplugs in the desk and stuck them into her ears. The woman was Derek’s girlfriend. She was only twenty-three and worked in Derek’s company as his secretary. Jayce was about to turn eighteen next month so she was young enough to be his sister. Jayce would rather die than to call that Barbie girl his mother, not that his father was anything near to serious anyway.
The violin was getting more intense. Tempo, beats, or notes didn’t matter, it was all about the emotions. Tears began to drop from Jayce’s eyes while he was playing the violin. He dropped his violin onto the floor. “Mom. Mom, I’m sorry….I’m sorry,” he moaned. His face twisting in pain from pain inside. Crouching on the floor, he covered his face with his palms wet from tears.
Two years ago
It was raining heavily. The servants were busily covering the garden’s flowers from the rain. Rosa Allen liked gardening and grew the flowers herself. She liked cooking and always cooked dinner for the family. A down to earth woman despite the upper social status of her own family.
She finished putting on some light makeup then groomed her lace dress in front of the mirror. She looked clean and graceful. She walked out of her room then knocked on the door of Jayce’s room.
“Jayce, you ready? We’re going to have dinner with Uncle Ron’s family at Saison Restaurant tonight,” her clear and gentle voice said.
“One sec, mom. On the phone,” said Jayce. “Yeah, okay. See you at the bridge tomorrow. Bye.” He hung up the phone.
Rosa smiled slyly at Jayce when he opened the door. “Janice? You two sure are getting very close,” she said.
“Mom, we’re just friends.” Jayce rolled his eyes at his mom.
“Nothing wrong with dating at fifteen,” she got closer to Jayce and lowered her voice into a whisper, “I had my first crush when I was ten.”
“Are we still going or not?”
“Yes, we are.” Rosa smiled and returned to her usual elegant self.
At the main entrance of the mansion, a white limo was waiting for them to get inside. They opened the limo’s door and got in.
It was quiet inside the limo. Jayce kept turning the reading lights on and off out of boredom.
“So, how’s soccer club?” Rosa ended the silence.
“Pretty fun. Coach lets me play striker. Our school team just won against Harley High,” Jayce said as he watched the view outside the window uninterestedly.
“That’s great! I’m proud of you, Jayce,” Rosa said warmly.
“It’s just a game, mom.”
Jayce looked out the window and saw trees. Lots of trees. Something was not right.
“Mom, this isn’t the road to Saison Restaurant. We’re heading the opposite way.”
Rosa looked. “You’re right. Sebastian, this is the wrong direction. Head back.” Silence. “Sebastian?” She pressed the button to lower the screen separating the front seats.
Rosa gasped. Two men in black masks were in the front seats, one pointed a gun to their heads.
“Don’t make a sound. Hand me your phones,” the man with the gun said.
Rosa and Jayce exchanged looks while handing him their phones. Suddenly, the limo halted. A black van stopped next to it then the limo’s door flung open. Several men in black masks grabbed Jayce and Rosa out of the limo. They tied their hands and feet with plastic handcuffs, blindfolded them, then stuffed their mouths with balls of cloth. They were inside the other vehicle being driven to somewhere else. Big hands gripping them tightly onto their seats.
Rosa and Jayce were brought into a dark room. It was hot and humid. Their sweaty hair was sticking like tentacles onto their faces. The end of Rosa’s lace dress was ripped up to her pelvis when she struggled with the thugs. Jayce lost track of time but it wasn’t long till the thugs opened the heavy metallic door spreading light into the pitch-black room.
One thug started to speak, “You guys wait outside. I won the dices so I go first.”
“Fuck that. Just get it done in front of us.”
“I can’t fuck in front of other men unless you’re all chicks.”
Horror rushed like a waterfall to Rosa and Jayce. Jayce struggled to get up with all his might. His voice making sounds that were filtered by the ball of cloth in his mouth. He was crying. His face was wet with tears more than sweat, but it was hard to tell anymore. Nooooo!!!
Rosa was terribly frightened too. But they were helpless.
The other thugs gathered around Jayce then hit and kicked everywhere on his curled body. Rosa’s screams were muffled up. Jayce heard some vigorous rocking sounds. Then it was still. The thugs laughed. The rocking sounds went on as if it could last forever, the most monstrous sound in the universe that would haunt Jayce forever in his lifetime.
Derek thought he had kept his family safe with the driver who was hired after selection and one bodyguard with them. He was wrong. Rosa and Jayce had disappeared for six hours. Someone had set this up providently. But who?
He had been smoking anxiously while waiting for a message of any kind from the kidnappers. He glanced at the FBI agents who were watching CCTV camera footages for clues of where his wife and son were kidnapped, but the system had been hacked. Not even their phones could be tracked yet. Useless scums. He smashed his cigarette butt into an ashtray and went out for a phone call.
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