12. Harsh reality
All the narrow streets of the little Sicilian town looked the same. I really had no idea where I was going. The few people I came across didn’t appear to be particularly friendly or helpful. As soon as I asked them if they spoke English they would mutter something in Italian and wander off. I started to think that Vincent had told everyone not to help any young Americans who happened to cross their path. That was paranoia right? It had to be. He didn’t even know I had planned to escape. I doubted we would have even left the villa if I hadn’t pissed him off by declining his advances.
I was beginning to panic slightly. The sun was beginning to creep lower in the sky and I hadn’t even found out where I was, let alone the location of the nearest Embassy. I would need to find somewhere to sleep if I didn’t find out soon.
I came to a junction. If you could call it that. The roads were still narrow. I just had to decide whether to go left or right.
I decided on left. The road I had been on had been bending slightly to the right. If I went right again, I might end up back where I started.
As I walked down the road, I scanned the buildings for any sign of a bar or a hotel, where I could find out where I was. There was none.
As I carried on walking, I suddenly stopped in my tracks.
A dark sedan car was driving towards me. When I say driving, I mean crawling. The windows were completely tinted, so you couldn’t see inside.
My heart started beating wildly against my rib cage. I’d seen no cars at all, now suddenly a black car with tinted glass windows. Was I being paranoid again? I didn’t think so. I turned around, only to see an identical car heading towards me in the other direction.
I glanced back at the first car, which had now come to a stop. The doors slowly opened and two men got out. They were huge, and completely dressed in black. Just like the guards at Vincent’s villa.
I took a couple of steps backwards. They were going to kill me, I was sure.
Adrenaline surged through my body. Well they could try. I wasn’t going to go down without a fight. I didn’t believe for one second that my dad would want me to stay with Vincent, even if what he said was true about him killing someone, which I highly doubted.
I glanced at the other car, it had also stopped, but I couldn’t see a sign of anyone getting out. I was my only chance.
I turned towards it and ran.
As I made it past the front doors without them opening, I thought I was home free. I didn’t see the thug standing behind the car until it was too late. His arms snaked around me, pinning my arms to my sides.
I started to kick and struggle.
“Get off me, piece of shit,” I hissed.
The man chuckled.
“Piccola cosa feroce vero?” [Feisty little thing aren’t you?]
Then I started to scream.
“Help me, someone. I’m being kidnapped.”
I’m sure I saw a couple of curtains twitch. I was about to scream again, when his hand clamped over my mouth.
I guess it was some sort of survival instinct that made me do it. In hindsight it probably was a mistake.
I bit down hard, managing to sink my teeth into the fleshy part of his hand, by his thumb.
He yelped and snatched his hand away.
“Cagna piccola fottuta!” he growled. [Fucking little bitch]
I screwed my eyes shut, and cringed waiting for the strike as he raised his bleeding hand.
It never came. Instead I heard a voice I vaguely recognised.
“No Mario, non deve essere danneggiata.” [No Mario, She’s not to be harmed]
I opened my eyes to see the man who had originally kidnapped me, back in the abandoned house.
“Mi ha morso, cazzo!” He hissed. [She fucking bit me]
The kidnapper rolled his eyes, then he walked towards me. He pulled something from his pocket and shoved it in my mouth. Then he tied it in place.
“You certainly no how to make life difficult for yourself, don’t you, gattina,” he smirked.
I tried to scream through the gag, but the sound was just muffled, so i tried to kick him.
He put a stop to that as well, by tying my ankles together.
Then he looked at Mario, and smirked.
“lega i polsi, poi mettila nel bagagliaio.” [bind her wrists, then put her in the trunk]
Mario unwrapped his arm from around me, but before I had a chance to try and use my hands he grabbed my wrists and bound them behind my back.
Then he popped the trunk.
I tried to scream and struggle, but the bindings and the gag put paid to that.
My eyes must have shown my fear, but the man who appeared to be in charge, just smirked.
Did he have no compassion? Of course he didn’t. What did I expect? He was working for a sadistic mob boss after all.
Mario lifted me up and put me in the trunk of the car. I whimpered, and tears started to trickle down my cheeks.
Mario was about to close the trunk, when the first man raised his hand. He reached into his pocket, and pulled something else out. It was black material. Then I realised what it was. It was a hood. The sort you see in films when they are about to execute someone.
I let out a muffled sob, and tried to pull away. It was no use. He pulled the hood over my head, then I heard the trunk close with a thud.
I heard the engine start, and the car began to move. I wriggled around trying to free myself, but it only caused the ropes to dig into my wrists. I silently sobbed. What had I ever done to deserve this.
When you’re in complete darkness you lose your grip on reality. Time becomes fluid. I had no idea how long I had been shut in the trunk for. I could hear the engine hum, and feel my body jar against the sides as the car hit a bump, or took a corner too fast. It could have been hours on minutes. I had no idea.
When the car finally came to a stop, I was half relieved and half terrified.
Relieved because it meant I wouldn’t be knocked around anymore. Terrified because I didnt know my fate. I just hoped that if he was going to kill me it would be quick.
I heard the trunk open, and i felt the cold air on my arms as i was roughly manhandled out of the trunk. I didn’t put up a fight. So far it hadnt got me anywhere.
It felt like I had been hauled over someones shoulders, as they began to walk. I had no idea who.
The chill on my arms subsided, so I assumed that I was inside somewhere.
It was a shock when I was thrown down onto something. It wasnt hard, but it wasnt particularly soft either.
The hood was ripped from my head, and I squinted to adjust to the light in the room. The light supplied by a single light bulb hanging from the ceiling. The walls and the floor were gray. They looked like stone. I was laying on some sort of bed.
The man who had originally taken me, was standing there, looking at me, shaking his head.
“If I had my way, you wouldn’t even be here,” he sighed, “but thats not my call.”
He took out a knife, and cut the ropes which bound my wrists and ankles, then he removed the gag.
Then he turned and headed towards the door.
“Wh...What’s going to happen to me,” I called out, my voice cracking.
He turned and shrugged.
“That’s not my call either, just try and get some rest.”
He left the room and closed the metal door with a clank. The I heard the sound of bolts sliding.
I sat up on the bed, rubbing my wrists where the ropes had chafed. It was some sort of cell. There was a tiny window near the ceiling, with bars on it. There was no light coming through, which made me think it was night, and dark outside. The only furniture was the bed I was laying on, and a drain in the corner.
I shuddered when I realised what the drain was for. I was glad I didnt need to pee, but the realisation hit me that if they kept me down here too long, I would probably have to.
Then with no warning the light went out.
I curled myself into a ball in an attempt to keep warm. There was no blanket, and the window had no covering. Leaving the cell open to the elements. I was just grateful it didnt start to rain.
I must have dozed off at some point, because I was woken by the sound of the metal door scraping on stone, as it opened. Then light filled the room, as the light was switched on.
I glanced at the window, it was still dark outside.
Then I looked towards the door and froze. Three of Vincents guards stood there. One I immediately recognised. Mario. His hand sported a bandage.
The two men with him walked towards the bed. I quickly sat, and scooted back towards the head of the bed, holding my hands out in front of me.
They didnt stop, they just grabbed me by my arms and dragged me from the bed.
They dragged me over to where Mario was standing.
“You really though you’d get away with this,” He hissed holding his bandaged hand aloft.
His accent was heavy. I could tell English wasn’t his first language. My thoughts immediately returned to the Italian who had tried to molest me. There was no Vincent here to save me now. Hell, he might have even sent them.
I swallowed hard.
“I...I’m sorry,” I stuttered.
He laughed, there was no humour in it.
He glanced at the men who were holding me.
“Le dispiace!” He cackled. [She’s sorry]
They laughed back.
Then his fist collided with my face.
I cried out, only for it to smash into my face again.
I felt fluid trickling out of my nose, and I tasted my own blood.
Then his fist collided with my chest, knocking all the air out of my lungs.
The two ment holding me up, dropped me and I collapsed to the floor on my knees, coughing.
I screamed as his foot, stamped on my hand.
I clutched it to my chest, as I rolled onto the floor. Then an agonizing pain ripped through my body, as his foot made contact with my back.
Then I heard the door scrape shut, and the light went out.
I lay on the cold floor, gasping for breath. In too much pain to move. I sobbed silently, as I slowly drifted into Oblivion.
A shaft of light cascaded into cell, waking me.
Pain racked my body. The metalic taste of my own blood still invaded my tastebuds. I didnt think I was bleeding but to be honest I didnt know.
I somehow managed to drag myself back to the bed. I once again curled up in a ball facing the wall and managed to drift back to sleep.
I was awoken again sometime later by the noise of the door. I put my hand over my mouth, to stop myself from crying out. My whole body started to tremble.
All through my life I had never been hit, until last night. I didnt think I could cope with another beating.
Then I heard the sound of something metal being put on the stone floor.
A voice grunted, “breakfast.”
Then the door scraped closed.
I opened my eyes, or at least tried to. Looking towards the door.
It was then I realised my eyes were actually open. My cheeks and eyes were so swollen, I couldnt see much. Just a tray with something on it.
I rolled back over and closed my eyes. I could barely breath without pain. There was no way I was going to make it over to the door. Besides, food was the last thing on my mind.
The next time I woke the light was on. There was no light coming through the window. I heard the scraping of the door.
If there was a god, I prayed to him now. They’d left me alone all day. Maybe they were coming back to finish the job.
“I understand you’re refusing to eat.”
I recognised the voice again. It was my original kidnapper.
He seemed to have some sort of authority. Maybe he was going to finish it.
I trembled, and pulled my arms tighter around my body, as I heard his footsteps approaching.
Then I felt his hand on my shoulder.
I whimpered, as he rolled me onto my back.
I opened my eyes, as much as I could, and watched as he recoiled in shock.
“What the fuck…! Who the hell did this?”
He pulled a phone out of his pocket, shaking his head.
“Vincent is going to go ape,” he hissed under his breath.
Then he looked at his phone.
“Fuck theres no signal.”
He hesitated for a moment. Then his hand gently touched my shoulder.
“Hang on in there Rosie, I’m gonna sort this out.”
Then he rushed towards the door.
He left the cell and didnt bother closing the door. I was in no condition to make another run for it. Instead I just closed my eyes and curled myself back into a ball, wishing for a quick end.