Saving Me in Secret

When I was a young girl, I used to dream about being rescued by a handsome prince in a far-off castle. Now... that story has come true. Only this story is in the middle of Chicago. I have no idea who that prince is. And he has rescued me exactly four times. Somewhere out there, my prince lives and keeps me safe. And this time, I am determined to find out who he is.


1. My Prince

In the shadows, all I saw was his hair. Nothing else. The chloroform poked my eyes and nostrils bitterly, and I could feel my consciousness slipping away. But I couldn't fall asleep. Not until I saw him for who he was. His eyes were covered with the darkness, and though his figure was slender, the confidence that exhumed from him made him seem the ultimate superhero. He bent down and scooped me up from the hard concrete floor with ease. Even as the sleepiness got unbearable, I reached up my hand and stroked his arm. "Who--who are you?" I croaked.

At first he was silent. But then he spoke. The voice, I thought. So familiar. But I can't place it. "I am who you think I am," he said softly.

My prince, I thought. Then the darkness overcame me.

* * *

Three Days Later

"Lisa," a voice said. "Lisa, get up." My eyes snapped open. Dammit. Christopher.

I pushed him aside. "Can't you let a girl have her rest?"

He rolled his eyes. "You've been 'resting' for three days now. You got a pretty mighty dose of chloroform. And I've been here so long, I don't even remember the day you got here. Honestly, you have to stop getting into trouble."

Had he been anyone else, I would have gotten angry and at least tried to beat them up. But this was Christopher--a year younger than me, me being sixteen, and so weak and gutless I would probably be able to hurt him at this moment, in the beginnings of recovery. "It isn't like I ask for it. Those back alley freaks just tend to like kidnapping me in particular for some reason." I closed my eyes. I could remember it all...I was so close to finding him this time.

This was the fourth time I'd been exploited and taken here. I don't know why it had to be me; it never happened to Mona, one of my best friends besides Christopher, though she was equally as attractive as me. Those people apparently lack originality. Every single one of them: grab me in the street, drag me into an alleyway, apply chloroform, and then I'm rescued. I actually am getting used to it. But one thing that still haunts me is the rescuer...

All four times, the same man has saved me. I don't know who he is, or what he looks like. I don't know why he has rescued me continually. Yet whenever I thought about it, all that came to mind was the prince from my dreams. The dream I had as a little girl in which I, a princess, was taken from my suffering by a handsome prince. Ah, well. This was Chicago. There were no princes, only a brave man who saved me. I don't even know if he was handsome. Yet in my mind's eye, he would have a shining crown.

"Chris," I whispered, "You know how I told you about a person rescuing me?"

"Yeah," he said back.

"It was the same person, I swear."

"No way. I mean, I'd save you, but to be able to do it four times in a row, he must beither a stalker or some sort of guardian angel."

"I know," I said. A guardian angel... Could it be? I wasn't one to believe in the supernatural, but the idea comforted me. I recalled it once again, and something twinged inside me. Something like--could it be love? How could I love a faceless man? "I'm going to find him," I said softly, almost to myself.


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