“Pretty name,” Miles said, sliding into the driver’s seat. “Where to?” “My apartment isn’t far. If you could drop me off there, I would appreciate it.” Miles promptly started the ignition of the car and began driving per the instructions I gave him. It wouldn’t be a very long journey but I used every second to think over all the little details in my head. Making sure there was absolutely no room for error.
Because errors could mean death. However, the entire time I could feel the gaze of some of the men in the back, making my skin crawl uncomfortably. I knew what they were thinking about me.
I could tell without even looking. A pretty, vulnerable girl alone in their car? Yeah, it didn’t take a genius. But interactions like this were just a part of the job. I was used to it.
We arrived at the location I requested before too long had passed and I turned to Miles with a now more timid smile.
“My place is just around the corner…,” I started, brushing some of my long black hair behind my ear nervously. “Um… if it’s not too much trouble, would it be okay if you walked me to my door? I think I’m still a little bit shaken from earlier….”
He looked as though he were about to decline, turning his head a few times to look between his men and me. As if you could see him internally debating whether he should ditch them for another errand.
But I couldn’t allow for that to happen. “Please,” I stressed, reaching a hand over to gently touch his knee. “I would… really appreciate it.” That seemed to do it.
“Alright guys, I’ll be back in a bit.”
Two of them instantly smiled in a way that made me feel gross, the others sighed in frustration and leaned into their seats instead. I didn’t care though. They weren’t important for what I needed to do. I just needed them to stay out of my way.
“If you’re longer than fifteen minutes we’re leaving your ass here,” one of them said. Though if that threat was enough to deter Miles in any way, he didn’t let it show. We exited the car and I started leading us towards one of the larger buildings in the vicinity.
And with every step I took, I made sure to do little subtle movements to keep his attention. A sway of my hips, a flick of my hair. Anything to ensure he didn’t spend too long thinking about what was really happening.
“The elevator is accessible via the underground garage,” I said, pushing open a door to let him go in firsı. “Hope you don’t mind walking me there, Miles.”
But entering into what looked to be a rundown building under construction, I was sure he was going to notice at any moment.
Notice how there were no cars parked anywhere… nor was this even belonging to an apartment complex. “Where’s the elevator…?” he asked, slowly coming to a stop.”—Wait did you call me ‘Miles’? How did you….”
And it was almost as though I could physically see the gears begin to turn in his head, the realisation that something wasn’t right now dawning on him. …A moment I was waiting for.
Before he could turn around to face me, I came up behind him and grabbed his hair, quickly throwing him against the wall. Using enough force to do serious damage but still light enough that he should have considered himself lucky. It was far better than the alternative.
An alternative that held a more permanent outcome. No, my instruction had been clear; I was to hand him over alive. A hindrance more than a benefit and one that required more effort.
Normally, I would have just been done with it in a matter of seconds. This way required more… restraint. “What the hell?!” he yelled out in pain as I threw him to the ground.
Dammit. It hadn’t been enough. I’d held myself back too much. I moved towards him again with now more serious intent in my stride and reached down to grab him by the scruff of his shirt.
Immediately, he began struggling against me, trying to get loose, but he wasn’t anywhere near strong enough to get me to relinquish my hold. “Get off me!”
But I held on easily, lifting him up as I measured internally the right height to drop him once more.
Or maybe it would just be easier to hit him direct 4- What are you doing?!” someone suddenly yelled behind me. I instantly spun my head around towards the voice, Miles still held firmly in my grasp, and saw one of his men had walked in on us.
“Guys! Get in here! That bitch is attacking Miles!” Oh, c’mon. Seriously?
One or maybe two men would have been okay. But five heavily built men who knew how to fight?
That was concerning.
I dropped Miles to the ground again, hoping that the force was enough to keep him down for good this time, and turned my attention to the newcomers. The four new opponents I’d worked extra hard to avoid dealing with.
However, unlike Miles, I didn’t have any orders for how to handle them.
I stood up straighter, rolled my shoulders back, and quickly equipped the dagger I’d stashed away behind my dress. A weapon of choice for its maneuverability and… silence.
Things were about to get interesting. The first man came rushing towards me then, swinging for my head which I dodged effortlessly. He mustn’t have realised how agile I was since I instantly countered his attack by slicing my dagger along his side. It had been so quick that he wouldn’t have seen me do it.
“Argh!” he cried out in pain, stumbling a few feet away. He clutched at the injury, his face contorted in rage. “Who the hell are you?!”
‘Someone trained since a child to handle men like you,’ I thought internally. ‘Someone moulded to become a weapon.’
But none of these things were said aloud as I focused entirely on the task at hand.
Focused on my assignment.
I took another step towards him, intending to finish the job, but then the other men came rushing forward to his defence. I could tell by their faces that they were now scared of me; so contrasted to the looks of perverted lust they held only minutes earlier. No, now I was a threat to them, an unknown, and far stronger than they would have expected given my small size.
I wiped the dagger blade against my dress to clean it before slowly moving into a defensive position. I would need to play it safe. It was then that two of them ran towards me, probably hoping to utilise the fact I was outnumbered.
They each tried to attack from either side of me but I still managed to dodge their punches despite that. I kept moving, kept eluding their advances, all the while keeping them guarded with swipes of my weapon. But it was as we’d been doing this dance for a few minutes that something then unexpectant happened.
The tiniest sound of movement behind me.
I went to turn around and confirm for myself… but I was too late.
Before I could move even an inch, suddenly the painful impact of something hitting me across the back of my head greeted me. …And I fell to the ground.
Ringing instantly sounded in my ears, my vision spinning. I’d been too slow and had forgotten to check on Miles sooner. What a stupid mistake.
I heard as something hit the floor near me and looked over to see a broken plank of wood. This would be the cause of the cause of the damage, Miles probably equipping it from the construction around us. But this situation was still manageable. With a quick swipe of the nearest man’s legs, I could
probably regain the upper hand and try again. I just needed to stay focused. “Stay down!” one of them yelled, a foot promptly being pressed into my back.
…And then I felt it.
That pressure building up inside. One accompanied by my vision flickering to black The nauseating feeling of something threatening to take over. I needed to get back up immediately before it was too late. Right now.
Moving as quickly as I could, I abandoned my earlier plan and attempted to just stand on my feet once more instead. Only the men were not so stupid as to allow me any advantage.
They’d already seen firsthand how dangerous I really was. With a kick to my gut, they sent me straight back down before I could even kneel, and I wheezed at the air around me as a result.
No… no, no, no… this wasn’t good. This wasn’t good for any of us. Another flicker of my vision, another wave of nausea. I wasn’t going to be able to hold off for much longer. “You… you need to stop,” I choked out.
But this was only met with a round of laughter, their naivety to the actual situation evident.
“And why should we?” one of them asked. “So you can finish us off? Who even sent you?”
“Please!” I begged again as another kick was dealt to me. “Please, you need to stop or… or I won’t be able to stop myself.”
This earned me a second of confused silence. A second wasted as I felt myself approaching the tipping point of losing the battle inside.
“No, I don’t think I will,” said one of them, crouching down to look at me. “I think I’ll beat you some more and make you scream until you give me the answers I asked for. If you’re a good girl then maybe I’ll make those screams more… beneficial… for both of us.”
More laughter, more taunts, another kick to my side as I continued to squirm and try to get up. Normally, this would have been relatively easy for me to overcome, but I was now fighting two separate battles; one internally and one externally.
…But then, finally, time was up.
I could feel it now, feel as it took over my body and pushed me aside despite resisting it with every ounce of energy I had.
“Oh, God…,” I whispered.
And I looked up at the faces of the men in front of me. I looked up and told them the only thing I could to ensure that maybe I could successfully fulfil this mission another day. To give Miles even the tiniest chance of surviving this.
“Start running,” was all I said. …And everything turned black.