I’m cold. I curl around myself, only to realize my skin is bare against the unfamiliar material. I move to cover my exposed skin but I’m stopped almost immediately, my movement halted by the ropes tying my wrists together to the bedpost.
“What in the world?!” I grumble, tugging repeatedly. Then it dawns on me. “Louis,” I seethe angrily. “That fucking bastard―” I look behind my shoulder as I hear a feminine chuckle.
“Louis indeed,” My sister approves, sighing. “That boy is a complicated one to understand,” she continues, leaning on her chair thoughtfully. “It was about time you woke up sis...I’ve been waiting on you for more than an hour,” Sophie adds.
“Oh I’m so sorry if I tried to have a peaceful sleep for once, only for it to get ruined by that lying blue-eyed motherfucker,” I snap angrily, still pulling the ropes.
“Why lying? What did he lie about?” She probes.
“He promised he wouldn’t rape me,” I reply, shuddering at the thought of what he might have done to me in my vulnerable state.
“Well I am naked and―”
“You’re naked because he was worried you’d be too warm. I think he was just looking out for you,” the brunette pauses. “He didn’t mean you any harm.”
“Why are you defending him?! How can you be sure he didn’t abuse me while I was unconscious?!”
“Because Louis doesn’t want to appear as a monster to others. He has a very sensitive side behind his sex-craving attitude.”
Oh... I get it. She remembers.
“I’m assuming you got your memories back?” I scoff, rolling my eyes.
“Yeah,” She nods, confirming my thoughts. “We need to talk.”
“Whatever.” I pull on the ropes again, annoyed. I exhale, looking at my twin once more. “Would it kill you to untie me and maybe find me some clothes,” I state irritated. “Then maybe I’d be open to talking.”
“Would it kill you to be polite?” She retorts. “I don’t have to undo the ropes. I don’t even have to pay attention to you if I don’t want to.”
“Please Sophie,” I grumble. “Can you untie my wrists?”
Rolling her eyes, she stands up and reaches to unravel the multiple knots. “There,” She finishes. I clutch my wrists to my chest, sliding deeper inside the sheets as I do so.
“And can I have some clothes?”
“I’ll go see in Louis’s suitcase if―”
“No! Not his clothing. They smell like him,” I grimace.
“We’re stuck in his room until the boys get back. Unless you can magically produce clothes, you’re stuck with wearing his.”
“Why are we stuck? If they’re gone, we can just walk out.”
“Anne...” She chuckles, shaking her head. “If it was that easy, I’d already be shopping at Target to get clothes for myself,” She sighs, standing up.
“You wouldn’t leave?” I gape at her from under the sheets. She turns around briefly.
“Why would I? What do I have apart from them?” Sophie questions, bending down to search in Louis’s suitcase near the window pane.
“You have Dad and I.”
“Yeah right,” She scoffs. “You two don’t think I’m able to think for myself,” She continues, throwing me about the same items she was wearing: a t-shirt, boxers and a pair of sweat pants. “You can change in the bathroom.”
“Or under the sheets,” I reply, taking the articles of clothing and writhing into them under the covers.
“How did you get in this situation?” My sister enquires once I’m dressed and out of the bed.
“Well Zayn sent me to Liam, who invited Louis and―”
“No... I meant how did they get a hold of you?” Sophie rectifies. I can feel her staring at me as I pace around the room thoughtfully. I move the curtains of the window aside, peering out. I realize the window was in fact a sliding door leading to a balcony that overlooked the reception area. The hotel was clearly made as a triangular prism with an empty center, the bottom of it being the lobby. That could work.
“I guess Niall spotted me at the bus stop in front of the drugstore where I needed to fetch the things for Dad...” I start, squinting down the glass pane. There was a balcony, not too far below our level. Just a little to the right. Maybe I could reach it and then do the same with the other one and the one after until I reach the ground level... “He pulled me inside the tour bus, certain I was you,” I continue, mentally evaluating the dangers of jumping down. We’re about at the fifth level so that doesn’t leave me too many suicidal jumps to do...“Liam was curious and joined Niall. Louis too, but he didn’t join in the events that followed because I was crying,” I tell her, turning around to look into her eyes.
“The events that followed?” She stammers, voice barely above a whisper. “Niall doesn’t do things like that. He couldn’t have―”
“Yes. Your dear, sweet, Niall raped me that night,” I spit. “And Liam joined in. One of the worst nights of my life.”
“It’s because of the car accident. His emotions are all messed up and he must’ve been so angry―”
I cut her rambling off, not wanting to hear any explanations. Niall had raped me and nothing she would say could be convincing enough to reduce the importance of his actions.
“The next day, which was yesterday by the way, Niall and Liam admitted to Harry and Zayn that they had found me, still thinking I was you who was role-playing.”
“Don’t worry. He knew I wasn’t you right away,” I roll my eyes, gazing down the window once more. “After that, I pretended I didn’t know you, hoping I’d spare you. But then I had to open my big fat mouth and hand myself in when they checked for scars on my wrists,” I scoff. “And that’s how Zayn got me to say a lot of things, with Louis’s fingers inside me to get the words out,” I add, shuddering. “Then, they tied me up and laid me naked in a bunk bed, before getting me out a couple hours later only to probe more answers out of me. That was followed by your appearance last night, sleeping in their arms.”
“Yeah oh,” I retort. “Maybe you can understand why I want to leave now? Barely a few hours ago, Liam and Louis were playing this twisted obedience game with me. And I wake up naked and tied to a bed! These boys are mad. Maybe you don’t have much, but anything will be better than being with them at this point.”
“Anne... You’re not going to make it if you decide to escape by jumping out the balcony,” She declares, watching me as I twist the latch, pushing the glass door open.
“Why not? You’re going to rat me out?” I say disdainfully.
“No,” She shakes her head. “They’re going to find you all by themselves. They always do.”
I stare at my sister.
“They won’t this time... Soph you should come with me.”
“No. I told you, it’s no use.”
“Why did you give up? Why would you give up on freedom?!”
“Oh trust me I still want my freedom...” She sighs, looking outside longingly. “But I think it’ll come all by itself when I have their trust.”
“So you’re willing to suffer through all their fucked up perverted games long enough to gain their trust?” I state, bewildered.
“See that’s where our perception of all this differs. Anne you need to understand...It’s all the resisting that hurts. It’s unnecessary to fight back.”
“Like I said, you’ve given up on yourself,” I tell her, placing my leg over the railing. “I’m not going to do the same.”
“Anne listen to me. You disobey: they punish you. You want to go home: you’re tormented daily by that thought. You don’t want to like what they do to you sexually: it hurts you even more. Negative thoughts make everything seem bad. You’re so focused on getting away that you can’t see or feel the good things that are happening.” Her hand places itself over mine. “I swear it gets easier once you stop resisting. Deep down, they don’t want to harm anybody. Don’t try running away Anne... You’re only making things worse for yourself,” She begs. What a major pile of bullshit.
“Bye Soph,” I end before pushing myself off the cemented block. Breath is knocked out of me as my arms grip the railings on the balcony a few feet below.
“Anne you’re completely crazy! You’re no special agent! You’ll hurt yourself! Please Anne get back up here!”
I look up at her briefly. It’s her problem. I offered her to come down with me and she refused. She can deal with them and ‘feel the good things’.
Shutting out her supplications, I close my eyes and jump down another level. The air rushes rapidly around me as I fall, only to stop myself with my hands. I wrap my arms tightly around the railing, taking deep breaths as I gaze downwards. I gulp. Three more to go. Praying for my safety, I hurl myself on the other small gallery.
Shut up Soph My foot slips on the side but I catch myself and stay firmly attached to the metal barrier. I feel the painful sting of open flesh, followed by blood oozing out of the gash I just made. It’s just a scratch. I leap yet again but this time, I land badly. I wince; squealing softly as my ankles gives out under my hurried weight. I pause, breathing raspily as I fight the tears threatening to fall.
“Anne! Please! They’ll think I helped you!” My twin pleads. “They’ll be back any minute now you can’t do this!”
Come on Anne, one last level. Biting my lip, I make my last jump and land on my feet, bending my knees immensely to lessen the impact. They hit the floor and I gasp in pain. I practically hear the pop as my left knee simultaneously dislocates itself before immediately returning to its initial position. The tears fall. I’m certain both my knees will be bruised, maybe even fractured. I doubt I can walk on my left leg.
“Help!” I cry out, trying to get somebody to notice me. “Please help! I’m hurt!” I shout again, crawling on the ground towards the front desk.
The receptionist finally spots me.
“Oh dear God! Do you want me to call an ambulance?!” She exclaims, rapidly getting out of her seat to join me.
I nod, shutting my eyes. They won’t come looking for me at the hospital. I’ll call Dad and he’ll come and get me. He’ll have to accept the fact that we can’t save Sophie.
“It won’t be necessary.”
Bile rises up in my throat as I recognise his voice. The distinct Irish accent is striking amongst all the American ones.