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The Journal (Part 9)
At the fourth Coffee House we went to, we sang the Flying Purple People Eater song. We, of course, had on our Free Hug shirts. After we were done singing, Zelda sang Be My Escape by Relient K. She then proceeded to pull me on stage, get on one knee, and propose to me with a Ring Pop. I, of course, accepted.
Yeah, that went over well.
It took us the rest of the night to assure people we were totally kidding and completely straight, and even then we knew some people didn’t believe us. The price I pay to be Zelda’s best friend is far greater than people realize. I mean, that night I lost my sexuality.
How would you feel if your best friend stole your sexuality?
That’s alright, though, since I was even when I made her play Spin the Bottle with my cousin and her friends. All of them are girls, and they like girls. I have nothing against that, but I felt better after she kissed one girl, freaked out, and dragged me out of the house with her to go skate.
Noah took one step closer. One step. That’s all it took for me to right myself and push back away from him. He took another step, and I moved back further. I kept my eyes on his feet and hands, not even caring what his facial expression was. His hands never moved, although they were fisted. His feet just kept moving towards me at a slow, even pace.
Eventually, I hit the wall. So, I was on my knees, had a wall at my back, the bed to my left, and Noah two feet in front of me. My only escape was to the right, and that would just back me into another corner because Noah is faster than me. I finally let my gaze drift up to his face, and that’s when I whimpered like an injured puppy. I was dead, and it was going to be slow and painful. Then they were going to kill Zelda. Or maybe they’ll kill Zelda in front of me making sure she‘s in pain so I hear agonized screams, wait a few days, and then kill me slowly and painfully.
Noah unclenched one hand and reached for me. I ducked my head, getting into a turtle position and tensing until I was sure the Hulk himself couldn’t unravel me. I expected him to hit me, but he never did. Instead, he simply said very quietly, “You need to behave, baby girl.”
“I will,” I whispered, close to tears. With what they did to Zelda, Noah’s past with slamming me into walls, and the pattern of raping me when I misbehave as Black-Eye just did, it was a surprise I was still basically acting like myself and spinning lies while being completely scared to death. “I will.”
“No,” he replied, matter-of-factly, “you won’t. That’s not your style, SweeTart….”
I swallowed, a knot forming in my stomach. My pulse pounded in my ears. This was going to be bad. This was going to be really, really bad.
Noah’s hand grabbed my wrist, and I let him pull me to my feet in a demonstration of being a good girl. I knew it wouldn’t work anyway, but it was worth a try. I saw light glint off metal, and suddenly something cool touched my neck. A gasp escaped from between my lips, accented by Noah’s menacing whisper.
“But it will be soon.”
At the fifth Coffee House we went to, we sang The Sailor Song by Toybox. We had our shirts on.
That was a fun night. We ended up pushing all the tables out of the way to make a space for Zelda and I to wrestle over who got the last mint hot chocolate. Some random person ended up getting it, but we amused the whole place for about ten minutes and we got fifty dollars each from our friend, who bet that it would be a tie at the end of round five. She won a hundred fifty dollars total.
We combined our money and used that hundred bucks to get tons of crayons and coloring books. They amused us through the few weeks of Christmas break, and then through every break and weekend until July.
Wrestling was banned from Coffee House after that, and once again, more people knew us. We were making a name for ourselves simply by being ourselves. How many people can say that?
I give all credit to Zelda, though. She’s usually the mastermind.
I’m a little disappointed that that’s the last interesting Coffee House, though. Every one after that was simply we wore our shirts, sang, and hung out. Nothing interesting enough happened to be mentioned.
Oh well. That’s how the cookie crumbles.
I closed my eyes, listening to the silence and the light breathing from Noah. I felt the cool metal against my neck again and shivered. I could practically smell my own fear, which must be bad. I could feel the metal, and somehow recognized the feel of a knife. Pressure increased, and I automatically tried to pull away.
“Don’t move,” Noah whispered almost inaudibly. I still heard him clearly. If he would’ve spoken any louder, I probably would’ve screamed.
However, as it was, my nerves were screaming at me to move. There was a knife. The knife is sharp. It could easily kill me. One slip, and I could be dying. I tried not to move, and I almost succeeded, except when I felt the most minute pressure added. I tried to pull away again, but this time his hand grabbed a fistful of my hair and forced me to keep still. The knife fell away from my neck slightly. I still didn’t open my eyes.
“Behave,” Noah whispered, “stay still.”
I wanted to crawl into a corner and die. I wanted everything to go away. I wanted to be in my father’s arms, a little girl with nothing to worry about. I wanted to be too young to know what was going on. I wanted to be too small to even attempt fighting someone his size. I wanted to wake up and realize it was all a dream. However, most importantly, I wanted to save Zelda.
To accomplish this, I needed to give myself to them. I need to do whatever they want. It’s my only chance of my own survival. It’s my only chance of Zelda’s survival. It’s my only chance that one day someone will rescue us and life can go back to normal, or at least as normal as possible.
I needed to relax, accept my fate and forget my fear. Only then would I fully give myself to them. Only then would they be my masters, and only then would I have a chance of saving our lives.
I inhaled deeply and let my breath out slowly. I was so tempted to take a dragon breath and roar, but I kept silent. Noah’s hand released my hair. I opened my eyes, and found myself staring directly into Noah’s. The knife pressed against my skin. I clenched my teeth and inhaled again. Fear ripped through me as the pressure slowly increased, but I still didn’t move. I held my breath for three seconds. Then, I exhaled and released all the fear with it. My muscles relaxed as I imagined my fear spiraling out of me and out the door.
I didn’t move as he ran the knife over my lips, my eyes, my cheeks, my arms, and almost every inch of my upper body, cutting me once or twice to see my reaction. And yet it wasn’t until the knife paused by my ear and he whispered to me that terror shot through my veins and I wanted to scream more than anything in the world.
“Get on your knees, SweeTart.”
Two years ago, Barbie had a Thanksgiving party. Yeah, I know that’s weird, but she had one anyway. Zelda, Barbie, Mona, and I were all there, along with a bunch of our other friends, Micheal, Terry, Jerry, Tom, Martha, Rebecca, Andrew, Taylor, and Carver. Most of them are inconsequential to the story, except Taylor, Carver, Zelda, Barbie, Mona, and I. The rest were just…there.
Zelda left to go to the bathroom. I turned on Puppet by Thousand Foot Krutch. No one complained, even though getting people to keep one song on for more than a minute is a pain. I was talking to Mona about candy in general. Suddenly, Carver reached over me. He had duct tape, and I just stared at Mona as he wrapped it around me a few times, taped my mouth, and then wrapped it around a few more times. I was wondering where he got the tape.
Within thirty seconds, I could barely move my arms. I heard Zelda come down the steps, but I couldn’t call out to her or anyone. Everyone was behind me. I could hear something major going down. Luckily, the chair spun, so I used my legs to turn it towards the scene. Taylor, who is a boy not a girl, had Carver pinned against the wall. Mona and Barbie tried to pull him off. Taylor screamed, “You can’t do that to a girl!”
Suddenly, Zelda reached the bottom of the stairs. She saw me, saw the scene, and immediately proceeded to yank Taylor away from Carver as easily as if he was six despite her size. She gave Carver a shot to the gut, dropping him, turned around calmly, and started to work on getting the tape off me. She never spoke. Everyone ignored Carver, freed me, and continued as if nothing happened. I punched Carver at some point. After ten minutes or so, he apologized and gave me a hug. He’s been scared of us ever since and have warned many people not to underestimate us, especially not Zelda.
Best friends: the people who believe revenge is definitely not best served cold.
“Noah…,” I whispered, my breath coming out quickly as I gasped the word. He pulled back, lips highlighted by a playful smile and a look in his eyes that told me he was having way too much fun. Meeting that gaze, I thought of something. If they wanted me to be completely serving of them with nothing defiant in me at all, they would’ve done so when I first got here. Also, if they wanted to kill Zelda, they would’ve done that, too. So, they either like to mess with us, or we’re in high demand.
Noah raised an eyebrow. I found myself taking a small step back, my instincts telling me that whatever I do wouldn’t change what they do to Zelda, just what they do to me. My fists clenched, “No.”
The shock on his face was totally worth anything that would follow.
He slowly reached up and brushed my hair out of my eyes. He pushed me back, and I didn’t resist as he led me to the bed. I laid down when he wanted me to, and willingly put my hands above my head for him to handcuff them there.
“Why?” He asked as he secured my hands. I shrugged, “You can’t hurt Zelda more without killing her, and if you wanted to do that you would’ve. Besides that, anything you do to me is fine. I don’t mind.”
He tilted his head and kissed me slowly. Feeling a sudden flare of defiance, I bit his lip. He pulled back, running his tongue over his lips. I must’ve bit him harder than I thought, because I managed to break the skin, although I don’t think it’s very deep or anything. Noah’s mouth opened, ready to scream, his bottom teeth red, his eyes seeming to glow in anger. This kid has issues. I mean, I’m handcuffed to a bed, and he’s the angry one?
The door opened. My eyes flicked to the newcomer, and any life or defiance I had drained out of my system almost immediately.
“It’s hiding in the dark. It’s teeth are razor sharp. There’s no escape for me; it wants my soul, it wants my heart.”
I walked down the street, sweatshirt pulled around me against the chill air, my Ipod blaring Monster by Skillet. The words flowed up my throat and through my teeth into the air around me, my voice quiet. My feet pounded the pavement. My eyes were set on nowhere and everywhere, as was my direction. I had no where to go, no one to see. I was just walking. I’ll have it be my thirty minutes of exercise today.
“No one can hear me scream. Maybe it’s just a dream. Maybe it’s inside of me. Stop this monster!”
The street was deserted. No one was walking. There were no cars. No one was sitting on their porches. It was silent except for Monster mixing with my voice.
“I feel it deep within. It’s just beneath the skin. I must confess that I….”
My voice changed, from being light and normal to a growl as I rose my voice to a scream and knew I sounded completely deranged as the words left my lips.
“FEEL LIKE A MONSTER!”
In the actual song, the voice went quieter, the music stopped, and it sounded really creepy and like a snarl. I matched it, but in the extremely loud girl version.
A car shot out of the alley next to me. My headphones slipped out of my ears as I dove away, eyes on the little black Jaguar. My breathing sped up, my mind running through what I could do if they tried to grab me. The car tore down the street, and my breathing slowed to normal almost immediately, as did my heartbeat. I put my headphones back in just in time to hear the intro to Puppet by Thousand Foot Krutch.
My voice mingled with the little girl’s, and if it isn’t a little girl, I apologize, but I’m not researching who sings it just to be 100% accurate.
“Hold up, wait a minute, know what’s going on when Krutch is in. Move over, beg your pardon, Krutch gonna get this party started.”
I continued through the streets, my voice returning to the same volume as before, and my feet keeping a steady pace on the pavement.
Why do I feel so lonely, so suddenly?
The man was huge. As in, HUGE. I’ve seen some big people before. They’ve been six-seven or six-eight, but they were all lean, and even if they weren’t, they looked as if they were more likely to dance to Barney if they were just a foot shorter. They were so kind, and looked so kind that they didn’t intimidate even if they were standing a foot away from you and you got a kink in your neck trying to look them in the eyes.
This guy was about six-nine or six-ten, and on top of that he was ripped. As in, even his face was hard with muscle and experience in combat. His hands were huge, probably able to easily wrap around my head. He was wearing a suit, so I couldn’t exactly tell how muscular he is, but by the way he held himself and the people he so obviously commands, he has to be muscular. As in, REALLY muscular.
His skin was dark, the darkest I’ve ever seen, and he practically blended in with his suit. The suit just made him look like one of the Secret Agents you never want to mess with no matter how cool he seems to be or acts, or how nice you know he is, or how much you trust him. His eyes were dark, as well, and he was completely bald.
Noah’s anger melted immediately and he swallowed, “Hello, Don.”
Something in the back of my mind recognized the first day we were here, when Monty and Jack were talking about Don. I can’t believe I forgot about him. Well, I bet you I wouldn’t forget now.
“Noah,” Don nodded a greeting, but then he motioned with one hand to the hallway. Noah nodded vigorously, sent me a look, and hurried out of the room. My blood ran cold. I recognized the look immediately, and I didn’t like it one bit.
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"According to some, heroic deaths are admirable things. (Generally those who don't have to do it. Politicians and writers spring to mind.) I've never been convinced by this argument, mainly because, no matter how cool, stylish, composed, unflappable, manly, or defiant you are, at the end of the day you're also dead. Which is a little too permanent for my liking." — Jonathan Stroud (Ptolemy's Gate)