5th September 2013
The night mist hung low over London creating golden halos atop the lampposts that dotted the side of the Thames river. A chilling wind blew in from the East, forcing commuters to hurry home.
Chloe Goodhall walked briskly home across the Millennium Bridge treading carefully as her shoes slipped on the wet metal surface. She had just had a wine-filled evening at the Tate Modern. In her attempt to be cultured she had accepted an invitation to a preview evening to view the works of an aspiring Ukrainian sculptor. The sculptor took pieces of old mining machinery and disfigured the metal until it took on the form of a human. It was the man’s idea of art, but Chloe was not sure if it was hers. He said the worker’s blood, sweat, and energy had been sucked into the metal. She felt that was stretching the truth a little too far, but maybe that’s why they had all been plied with so much wine.
By the time she reached the middle of the bridge the wind was whipping past her, cutting through her trench coat and flimsy cocktail dress. She hadn’t planned on being out so late. If she had, she would have chosen a different outfit and definitely more sensible shoes. As she neared the north side of the river she looked up and saw the dome of St. Paul’s Cathedral through the foggy glow. It was was like the North Star, guiding her home. Not far to go now she said to herself. Soon she would be at home tucked up in bed. There was only one day more to go before the weekend and even though the bitter cold she could still smile at that thought.
Nearing home she entered Carter Lane. As she passed the sweet shop on the corner, she knew that she was only thirty-two steps away from her front door. A noise behind her caused her to turn around. All she saw was a drunk staggering to lean against the wall on the opposite side of the road. She turned and kept walking.
With Chloe nearing her front door she let out a sigh of relief as she fumbled for her keys. Home at last. She reached up and pushed the keys into the lock. The door swung open and she took a couple of steps inside. As she turned to close the door the drunkard that had been staggering behind loomed in the doorway. The next thing she noticed was his right arm swinging something metallic downwards towards her face.
’What the hell…’. Her sentence was cut short as a lump hammer smashed into the side of her head.
Chloe sank to the floor unconscious. The man stepped over Chloe’s body and calmly closed her front door.
An hour later Chloe started to come around. She opened her eyes and found she was staring at her own lounge ceiling. She tried to get up, but her arms and feet wouldn’t move. Her hands and feet were secured where she lay. It felt like she had been laid on the floor in a star shape with her legs held apart and her arms placed wide and above her head. Slowly and then with stabbing ferocity, her hands and feet screamed back at her in unbelievable pain. She tried to open her mouth to scream but her mouth had been covered by tape. Behind the tape, she felt she a ball of cloth inside her mouth absorbing all her saliva. She frantically thrashed her head from side to side, tears running down her cheeks as the reality of her situation rose to a crescendo inside her consciousness. She craned her neck to the left to see what was restraining her hand. All she could see was the top of the nail that disappeared into her hand. She moaned a deep agonising moan. She started to cry again causing her nasal passages to fill with mucus. With the airway to her mouth covered she suddenly found she couldn’t breathe. She began to hyperventilate sucking on the ball of cloth that filled her mouth, but this only caused the tape to rip and pulled against her skin as her lungs searched for air. Through the pain and fear, she made herself control her breathing. She knew if she didn’t she would suffocate and die where she lay. Eventually, she calmed herself down enough that she could breathe slowly through her nostrils.
Her living room door opened and a cool air passed across her body. This then brought her to another realisation, she was naked. Whoever had just walked into the room had stripped her of all her clothes and had impaled her to her living room floor. She felt violated and utterly defenseless. She heard the person walk across the room. The man stood looking down at her through the slits of a balaclava. His entire body was covered in skintight black lycra with yellow rubber gloves encasing both his hands. On his feet, he wore black dustbin bags secured around his ankles with tape.
His eyes lifeless wandered across her body. Chloe cringed as she felt them take in every mole, hair, crease, and feature of her body, penetrating her to her core.
He smiled. Chloe’s mind raced trying to fathom out what this meant just before his left foot stamped down hard on her stomach. Chloe screamed as she felt the walls of her stomach collapse.
I am sweating. Chloe is making me work for my pleasure.
’How does that feel bitch?’ I say through gritted teeth.
I am waiting for her to recover before continuing. I have all the time in the world to play this game. Time is the only thing she has left because everything else I will take from her, piece by piece.
I look down at her. She is still screaming behind the tape, her eyes drilling into mine with complete hatred.
’Stop staring at me,’ I yell as I raise my foot again.