Sand Village is a city not unlike other cities in the United States. It’s not as populated as say New York, not even close, but it’s still a decent size city with a population of about 950,000 people. The majority of the natives will say, if asked, that the area is horribly cold and snowy in the winter months, and far too hot during the summer. Spring and autumn just seem to blend into summer and winter. Sand Village and the area around it is a mixture of woods and fields with working farms. The closer you get to the actual city itself the closer together the houses are. Lovely and cramped suburban neighborhoods start springing up with kids running all over the place during the summer, playing in the snow in the winter, and running and riding through all sorts of mud and wet leaves the rest of the year. The downtown area is about eighteen city blocks total and it’s gorgeous, but somewhat overpopulated. Even so, the feeling in downtown Sand Village is one of a small town, mom and pop type atmosphere on most days. Although there are quite a few chain retail stores and shops in the downtown area, they are all located in the older buildings. The older buildings downtown still stand in their original spots. A whole slew of people got together for a fundraiser and raised the money for the remodeling of the buildings to meet current standards. The housing doesn’t end in the suburban neighborhoods though, there are actually more apartment buildings in the downtown area than there are businesses. There are locally owned businesses. A few hobby shops i.e. collectibles, craft stores, etc., a couple of lawyers offices, a barber shop, a few liquor stores, a few different insurance establishments, and some bars as well are all locally owned. Major retail chains and shops however own the remainders of the businesses. It’s not all quite as orderly as all of that may sound, but there is one thing that the people of Sand Village are extremely proud of. They have the lowest crime rate in the state and in the four surrounding states. Despite all that is going on downtown at all hours of the day and night and the inconsistent weather, the majority of people that live in Sand Village say it’s the most beautiful place in the state, they wouldn’t want to live anywhere else. There are of course people who move away to go to “bigger and better places”, but many more of them stay.
All through the downtown streets, there are benches to sit on and trees planted in cut out circles of the sidewalk. People are sitting outside stores, just passing the day away. Shoppers are walking up and down the sidewalks looking for everything from brushes to exotic collectables. There are vendor merchants strategically placed away from each other where they will all get the best out of the pick of wanderers to stop and look at their merchandise. Tourists, owners, managers, and other workers of the shops and stores, and of course the locals are outside the buildings enjoying the unusually nice day. (Those that have a break in their consumers are able to do so.) It’s not a packed scene right now, but it’s still early; it seems quite casual and relaxed for all that’s going on in the area.
There is a college, Hartley University, on the outer edge of the north side of town. The population in Sand Village soars each year during the school months, but most don’t stick around during their winter, spring, and summer breaks. They do always come back though. Hartley College is a very popular school.
There isn’t much snow on the ground now. Thankfully, what little bit that was there has melted away since this morning. This day is amazingly warm for this time of year. There has been some snow, it has been a mild winter after all, but today is actually warm. It’s about 50° outside, when it’s usually around 30°, if you’re lucky, in February. Maybe winter is leaving early this year and spring is getting a head start. Who knows? Everyone is just enjoying the weather while he or she can.
Mary Ramirez is an attractive; 23 year old who is currently single. She stands at five feet, six inches, with long brunette hair, and beautiful blue eyes. She carries herself very well and there are men who are attracted to her, but she doesn’t like dating. Mary is a server at a cocktail bar in downtown Sand Village, called Rubies Cocktails. This is unfortunately, where she’s spending this lovely February day. It’s Tuesday, February 10, 1998.
It’s almost Valentines Day. Whoopee! She thinks this to herself while wiping down the bar top. One of her coworkers said this to her a few minutes ago, only without the sarcasm. Mary is not too excited about the holiday this year. There’s nobody to spend it with, unless the date she has coming up soon works out all right. Mostly she doesn’t care about Valentine’s Day, but for some reason this year it’s a different story. It probably has something to do with her mother’s constant need to ask her daughter when she’s going to find herself a husband. Mary knows her mother says this in a loving way and she means well by it so Mary doesn’t mind. It could also have something to do with the fact that each of her female coworkers has been talking nonstop for days now about their own V-Day plans.
Oh well, we’ll see how the date goes, she thinks as she turns to a customer who has just entered the bar.
Mary normally works at night, but agreed to fill in for a friend of hers this morning in exchange for her friend covering her night shift. Had she known it was going to be such a nice day, she wouldn’t have made that decision.
She’s happy anyway, despite the gloomy mood of the moment. Tonight she has a blind date with a friend of her brothers, with which her sister-in-law set her up. According to Mary’s brother, the guy is good enough for his sister, so he honestly can’t be that bad a guy. Mary hasn’t been out on a date in a while. She’s tired of the dating scene already, so she is taking a hiatus from guy hunting. Nevertheless, she told her brother and sister-in-law that she would give this guy a shot; he seems nice enough from what she has heard about him. Her brother told her that he’s 26, with dark hair, green eyes, and a stocky build. He’s hot, according to her sister-in-law. He works with a computer company in the security department. He does Computer Security, not company security. Mary’s brother cleared that point up for her quickly. Obviously, the man isn’t stupid. He has brains. That’s a step up from her last date. The new man’s name is Gregory (Greg) Powers. He has a nice two-bedroom apartment that he lives in alone. Mary and Greg are planning on meeting outside of the Sand Village Bar and Grill at 9:00 tonight. She’s actually looking forward to this night out; she has been working a lot lately. It will be nice for her to get out. If she can just make it through the rest of her shift, she’ll be fine. There’s only three hours left and it feels like it’s taking forever.
While Mary Ramirez is working a different shift than normal at the bar, someone sits in a Caprice outside watching her. The car has been there for about twenty minutes and nobody has exited or entered it since it pulled into the parking space. The woman inside the car is gathering and dealing with last minute details for her upcoming work. When Mary gets to her destination tonight, she won’t be meeting the man she’s supposed to meet. She won’t get the chance. She is the upcoming work and she’s going to be a fun job to do.
Finishing the surveillance, the woman behind the wheel folds the laptop computer shut, puts it in the passenger seat, starts the car, and drives away. Driving the car straight out of downtown and then turning onto the highway, the driver heads towards a cabin set deep in the woods. That’s where the woman will take Mary and there are a few last minute details to attend to before the fun begins. This is going to be a great night; finally, it starts.
Driving her 1990 Cavalier into the parking lot of the Sand Village Bar and Grill, Mary looks around to see if she can locate the Blazer her date is driving. It is twenty to nine and she prefers to be early. Not seeing Greg’s SUV, she parks the car and keeps it running for the heater, its colder now and dark outside, but she puts the window down so she can have a cigarette. It’s a bad habit and she knows that. What can she say? She loves it. In addition, even though it's cold, she likes the cooler air. She prefers colder weather to warmer. Mary flips through some CD's in her car, finds one, puts it in her portable, and plugs the portable player into the car lighter. Turning the radio up and not paying attention to anything but the CD, she is listening to and the cigarette she is smoking, she doesn’t see the person walk up next to her car until it's too late.
Walking up to the car quietly, the abductor tries to stay out of the sight of the victim. There’s nobody around now, which is good luck. It's dark outside and the parking lot is full of cars. From inside the pocket of her jacket the abductors gloved hand pulls out a taser gun. She then puts it up to Mary’s neck and squeezes the trigger shooting 75,000 watts of electricity through her body, just long enough to knock her out. Slowly opening the door and pushing Mary into the passenger seat of the car, the kidnapper slides into the driver’s seat, shuts the door, and drives away.
Nobody saw a thing; nobody even knows anything is wrong. Nobody will believe what’s about to happen.
The abductor drives Mary to her new home in a cabin in the woods, she is happier than she has ever been before. Mary’s captor has a special treat for her tonight and can’t wait to get her home and start the rest of the night.
Groggy, hardly able to move, Mary tries to open her eyes. She then starts to panic after realizing that cuffed behind her back are her hands as well as her feet, and there is a blindfold of some sort around her eyes. Not sure of where she is or what is going on, Mary tries to remember what happened in the parking lot. All she remembers is listening to a CD, having a cigarette, wondering when Greg was going to arrive. She remembers seeing someone outside her window. Then, she thinks she felt something on her neck, but can’t be sure. She is so terrified that she can’t even think straight. Who would want to take her? Who would know when, where, and how to take her? This could just be a random crime. Either that, or Greg really isn’t the person she, or anybody for that matter, thought he was.
But that’s not a possibility, she thinks to herself. He’s a friend of my brother’s and my brother would not set me up with some creep.
She wants to believe what she thought, but anything is a possibility at this point. She has to calm down and try to compose herself so she can figure out how in the hell she’s going to get out of here. First things first, she has to get the blindfold off her face. She wants to see where she is and what is around her. Mary tries to slide the blindfold off by putting her head on her shoulder and pushing the blindfold up. It takes a minute, but then it starts coming off her right ear and she keeps at it knowing that it will soon slide up her head. The blindfold isn’t as tight as Mary would have thought. Nevertheless, it takes her a few minutes before it comes off and she drops her head down to knock it off her head and onto the floor.
Blinking rapidly, she tries to adjust her eyes to the new light on them. It’s not extremely bright, but after being unconscious and blindfolded it hurts to open her eyes. Finally starting to regain her sight, although it's still a little blurry, Mary looks around the room. It seems to be about the size of a living room in a nice suburban house. However, she knows that’s not the case. As her eyesight becomes clearer, she sees a huge steel door with a handle and above that a few inches is a lock. Apparently, you need a key to exit the room. There are also no windows in the room at all. The only lighting is a floor lamp in the opposite corner, which is on the second setting of three lights. Mary also notices on the wall by the lamp is a light switch with recessed lights in the ceiling. In this bedroom, it seems to be, is a nice four-post bed complete with white gauze curtains hanging down all four sides of it. This is where Mary has woken up.
The comforter, sheet set, pillowcases, and bed trim are a matching flower pattern. It's not gaudy or loud. It's actually pretty. Against the wall to the left of the bed where she lays is a tall dresser with six drawers, next to that is a smaller dresser that doubles as a vanity mirror, and make up area. Against the wall to the right of the bed sits a TV, DVD player, and VCR. The TV is about 27 inches and the DVD player and VCR look brand new. The electronics sit on a wooden entertainment center that has cupboard doors, Mary assumes this contains movies, and shelves as well which are all empty. She has no reason to believe that any of the things in this room work, but it does look elaborate, so she isn’t sure. Opposite the bed and a few feet from the floor lamp is a door with a night light on in the room. Mary scoots over on the bed as best she can to try to get a better look at the room. What she sees, she can’t believe. It's a bathroom. There’s just enough light for her to see the size is big; there’s a toilet, sink, shower, and separate bathtub. The sky blue walls in the bathroom match the walls in the bedroom. Mary bets the bathroom has shampoo and conditioner, soap, and anything else she might need.
There is no way this is really happening, Mary thinks to herself. Who kidnaps a person and then sets them up in a room like this? This is crazy. This has to be a joke…but it can’t be. You’re handcuffed stupid. Nobody who is playing a joke on you would handcuff you. This person isn’t somebody who’s looking to surprise me with a million dollar check.
Mary shakes her head trying to turn her thoughts from negative to positive. She understands that right now she needs to think positive if she’s going to get herself out of this. She has to; nobody knows where she is or what happened to her. She is her only hope. Mary doubts she will be talking her captor into letting her just walk out. Good, my humor still works; Mary thinks to herself and tries to smile. It’s not a very convincing smile, she cannot even see it and she knows it's not convincing.
“I will not let you do this to me. I will get away from you, and then I will make sure that you’re caught. I swear to you I will.”
Mary isn’t sure this wasn’t a statement to try to convince her that she will be ok. She starts looking around for something to help her free her arms. One thing she doesn’t understand about this room is how she is supposed to use these things or anything other than the bed when she can’t move. She certainly doesn’t want to have to face whoever did this to her, but she knows it's just a matter of time. Maybe when that time comes she’ll have a plan ready. She needs to think of a tactic to talk her way out of her restraints. It’s worth a shot. Mary realizes she has to try something and starts to think.
The woman is looking at Mary on the color TV in the Monitoring Room. The woman smiles at the tenacity that Mary puts into trying to get the blindfold off her face. Although, she really shouldn’t have to work that hard, the blindfold sits loosely around her head. The captor has hidden cameras in three areas of this room. One is at the foot of the bed in the right hand corner where the two ends meet. You can see the whole bed, plus this end of the room when the curtains are open around the bed. They are open now for the sleeping princess. The second camera is in the doorway of the bathroom. It has a full view of every inch of the bathroom; it’s impossible to hide in there. You can’t hide anywhere. The third camera is located in the corner of the left side of the room with a full view of the bedroom. Again, there’s nowhere to hide that the camera cannot see. The captor has strategically placed a mirror in the room that will enable the underside of the bed to be visible. Therefore, even if someone were trying to hide under the bed it wouldn’t work. Why would anyone do that anyway, while locked in a room with no way out, except to open the door from the outside? Hiding under the bed isn’t going to change that. Beside the cameras, there are microphones all over the room and an intercom system installed so the two can speak to each other. It’s mostly so she can listen to her victims.
Still sitting in the Monitoring Room the woman is contemplating her next move. The abductor does not want to be seen by the victim yet. She has hidden a key in the room somewhere. Mary is about to receive her instructions on how to find it. Pressing the intercom button for Room 1, the captor starts speaking to Mary.
“Hello Mary, how are you feeling?”
Suddenly Mary, in her bedroom, hears a woman’s voice. She is looking around the room trying to find where the voice is coming from. Her heart is racing a mile a minute.
Realizing the voice is not from a person in the room with her, she says, “Hello? Who are you? What do you want with me?”
“That’s not important right now. What is important is how you’re feeling. I'm very concerned with your well-being. To be completely honest, you don’t look that good right now. You look uncomfortable too. Would you like to get out of those hand and feet cuffs?”
To Mary the woman’s voice sounds sympathetic. That is somehow scarier than if the woman were yelling at her. How is that possible?
“Do you need to use the restroom? Is that what you want?” asks the woman.
“Yes, please. I need to go bad. I can’t hold it anymore. If you could just come in here and unlock me, I swear I won’t try to get away or try to hurt you,” Mary says hoping this will work, but on some level knowing it won’t end up the way she wishes it would.
“Well, I think that’s more obvious to me than it is to you. You see, there’s nowhere for you to run or any way for you to get out of here without me. It’s not possible and it's not going to happen. It upsets me that you would even suggest that you have that option. You are mine now darling. There’s nowhere for you to go, unless I say so. And I don’t think I will be letting you go anywhere at all.” The woman is now speaking angrily and Mary is worried about what might happen next.
“Please, I didn’t mean anything by what I said. I was just trying to show you that you could trust me. I’ll do what you want me to do. You will get no problems from me.”
“Sweetie, you’re really not understanding what I'm saying. I don’t have to trust you and I know you will do anything and everything that I say. That’s the only choice you have because now I control your life and your death.”
A tear running down her face, trying to fight them back Mary simply replies, “I’m sorry. Please undo the handcuffs.”
Mary waits in silence for a minute, looking around the room for the location of the speaker the voice is obviously issuing from. “Hello? Are you still there?”
Now worrying more about what’s happening Mary starts to cry harder and harder. She is bawling like a little baby and she can’t help it. She keeps repeating herself trying to get the woman to talk to her one more time, but nothing works. Her captor must be coming down to her. How she hopes that’s not true. Mary is so worried now as she sits on the bed rocking back and forth she starts to pray loudly.
Talking to this victim is fun. Now Mary is upset, crying, and praying, hoping she won’t be hurt. What she doesn’t know is there’s laughter targeted at her for her current condition. A minute ago, she was so brave looking and determined. Now she just looks like one big mess. Tired of the spectacle Mary is making of herself the woman speaks once more to her about the handcuffs.
“There’s a key somewhere in that room that will undo all of your cuffs. Find it and you can release yourself. If you can’t find it, you had better try harder or you will be stuck like that for a while. Do you understand me?” Then without waiting for a response, “Good.”
“Wait, how am I supposed to get around the room to look? I can’t even walk. There’s no way I can go around this whole room and look in dresser drawers and cupboards. How am I supposed to open the drawers? Just tell me where the key is please.”
Again, there’s no response and Mary knows it useless to try talking again. The woman either is no longer around or doesn’t really care about her troubles and wants her to figure it out for herself. Either way, she’s on her own.
“This is just great. What the hell am I gonna do now?” she mumbles to herself.
Not sure of where to start, Mary sits up on the bed as best she can, pondering the best way to get off the bed without injuring herself. What the woman said is still bothering her though. I'm sure any kidnapper would say the same things…there is no way to escape, etc. Mary can’t explain to herself why she believes every word that the woman said to her. She is terrified of what is going to happen to her. Nevertheless, she also knows that she has to get herself out of the handcuffs if she’s going to have a fighting chance. Thinking some more Mary decides to just scoot herself to the edge of the bed and dangle her feet over the side. It’s not much of a fall if she doesn’t stay on her feet, which is almost impossible to do after scooting yourself off a bed with your legs cuffed together at the ankles. Besides, the floor has a thick carpet; maybe it won’t hurt too badly. Using her legs and feet for help Mary pushes herself off the bed. She immediately crashes to the floor on her knees and falls on her face, then finally rolls onto her side. She gets dizzy from the impact of her head on the floor. Her knees now hurt badly and her nose is throbbing. She swears she heard something pop in her left knee when she hit the floor. On her way down, she somehow managed to tangle herself in with the curtain on the bedside. Lying on the floor, she’s trying to figure out how to unravel herself so she can get up to search the room. She manages to use her hands to pull the curtain off the bottom of her legs, then she props herself onto her knees as best she can, which is not well, and turns herself the rest of the way out of the curtain. It takes her a few minutes and she topples over a couple of times, but still manages to unravel herself completely. She is sweaty now and a little out of breathe. She sits back down on her feet for a bit of a rest.
“Now comes the hard part,” Mary says aloud to herself. “How in the hell am I supposed to look around this room? I can’t even walk. Pull yourself together Mary. You can figure out how to do this. You can get out of these handcuffs. It won’t be hard.” Mary is trying to convince herself that she can do it. Never in her life has she remembered being so helpless and so weak, so out of control of the situation. Then again, a situation like this has never occurred before either.
“Ok, I can do this.” After saying this, Mary gets up on her knees and starts looking around the room for the best place to start her search. Between the dresser, vanity desk, and entertainment center there are quite a few places the key could be. It’s probably not going to be in a simple spot, so she’ll have to figure out how to open drawers and cabinets from her position. Walking on her knees to the dresser Mary is contemplating how to open the drawers at the top of the dresser. She’s hoping the woman didn’t put the key in one of the higher drawers. Hopefully the woman would have assumed she couldn’t reach to top of the dresser, so she isn’t even going to try the higher ones. She tries climbing to her feet from her knees, but is having trouble keeping her balance. After trying and failing at this about four times, she gets back on her knees and turns slightly to the left so she is facing away from the dresser, she then grabs the handle with her hands and opens the drawer. Succeeding in opening the drawer a little, she scoots backwards and pulls it open more. Turning around, inside the bottom drawer she sees it’s full of sweaters, springtime sweaters that look just her size. This is weird. Grabbing each of the shirts one by one and pulling them out of the drawer is quite difficult, but she manages. However, there is no key. So on she goes to the next drawer; it’s full of jeans in her size. There’s still no key. The next drawer up is full of T-Shirts in her size, but no key. She can barely reach the handle on the fourth drawer from the bottom but manages to do so and pull out more t-shirts in her size, and still finds no key. Mary can’t reach the top two drawers so she moves on.
Tired, irritated that the key hasn’t been located yet, Mary walks on her knees to the vanity desk next to the dresser. In front of the mirror on the desk are the types of foundation, cover-up, lipstick, eye shadow, liner, and mascara she uses. There’s also a brush identical to the one that she owns as well as some hair ties and clips that Mary likes to use. There are only three drawers in this one and it should be easier for her to look through them. On the right side of the mirror, there is one big drawer. When she opens it up, she sees that it contains about fifteen different kinds of makeup. This is not all for Mary. They are all different brands and colors. It‘s almost like a collection or stock for others that will end up here as she has. This is a scary thought to Mary, that possibly someone has been in her position before and another may be after she’s gone. As quick, as she can Mary takes the makeup items out of the drawer to search for the key. With all of the makeup gone, Mary thinks that she sees a key attached to a necklace.
Pulling out the necklace Mary gets a huge smile on her face. She can’t believe that she found it already. She tries to get the key into the hole in the handcuffs, but she can’t even see what she’s doing. Turning around to see her back in the mirror, she locates the keyhole and after a minute or two is able to insert the key the proper way. When she tries to fit the key into the keyhole, it doesn’t go in all of the way. It’s too big. Mary, almost breaking down crying, drops the key and goes down onto her butt. That’s just an unbelievably cruel joke. Why would you want to torment someone with a key of the wrong size?
Even though Mary’s starting to feel drained, she forces herself onto her knees and starts looking in the drawers on the other side of the mirror for the key. The top drawer on the left is harder to open, it gives some resistance, but she eventually opens it up enough to see inside. It’s actually empty, so Mary pulls it out completely so that she can look on the inside. She then realizes that she should’ve done this with the other drawers, but oh well. It’s probably not inside the dresser or desk. The second drawer on the left has a few miscellaneous items in it. Jewelry, pens, paper, and a book Mary has never heard of, but there is no key. Sitting down to take a rest and turning towards the other side of the room, Mary decides to try the bathroom next. It’s on her way to the other side of the bedroom. Then she gets back on her knees and makes her way to the bathroom.
Watching Mary fall off the bed tangled in the curtain was quite a funny sight. What was even funnier though was seeing the expression on Mary’s face when she saw the key she thought would work. The woman laughed uncontrollably when Mary figured out it wasn’t the right key. The expression on her face was priceless. Now she’s going towards the bathroom. Hoping that she would go to this room first, the woman didn’t put the key in there. Any smart person would go to the nearest place first. Seeing this little show is quite fun for Mary’s captor. Hopeful this will last a while the woman quickly goes into the kitchen for a snack and beverage. By the time Mary’s captor is back in front of the monitors she has made it into the bathroom, has turned the light on, and is starting to open up the drawers and cabinets.
Sitting on the bathroom floor Mary turns around facing the wall with her back to the cupboards. After pulling open the two cabinets under the sink she returns to face the inside and starts looking around. Mary can’t see very well, but she does the best she can for her situation. She sees no key; however, what she does see is just as weird to her as the rest of the place is. There are various toiletries and cleaning items under the sink; toilet paper, floor cleaner, window cleaner, dish soap, laundry detergent, and a few rags. Mary doesn’t think she will find the key in here. Nevertheless, she turns around and tries to move things around, and get them out of the way.
After succeeding in knocking everything onto the bathroom floor Mary rotates once again to face the inside of the cupboard, but sees nothing. This is getting tiresome, Mary thinks. She feels like she’s been drugged and isn’t actually surprised by the thought that she probably was, a little more concerned and scared sure, but not surprised. Still, she knows that she has to press on. On her knees, Mary pulls the drawers from the sink and drops them onto the floor. All of the items in each of the four drawers are now scattered all over the place. There are cotton balls, nail polish, polish remover (two different kinds, acetone and non-acetone), q-tips, more makeup, and accessories. Brushes, combs, and picks of all sizes and styles are also scattered on the floor, including more hair accessories. Moving things around, she sees no key. Mary decides to take a break for a minute; she is still groggy from whatever it was that made her unconscious, not to mention what kept her that way for God only knows how long, and now needs a rest before she goes out and to the other side of the bedroom. She takes a ten-minute break.
Not wanting to leave anything unchecked in the bathroom Mary gets up on her knees and walks to the bathtub to look. Here she only sees shampoo and conditioner, some soap and body wash, shaving cream, a razor, washcloth, and a bathing sponge.
Seeing no key anywhere, she heads out of the bathroom to the only other place to look. Over to the entertainment center she goes, slowly but surely. She’s confident that she’ll find the key soon. She feels like she’s been searching forever, but isn't actually aware of how much time has passed. She has no idea what time of day or night it is either, or even what day it is. Thinking about this only upsets her more, so Mary pushes thoughts of time out of her mind. She has a feeling that time no longer matters where she is.
Getting over to the entertainment center takes some time, but she finally made it. She started by looking in the cabinet on the left. Mary uses the bed for help and crouches with her back to the entertainment center to open the door. She opens it up and turning around sees, nothing but VCR tapes and DVDs packed inside. Each shelf is completely full of movies, seemingly all in alphabetical order. Moving on to the middle, smaller cabinets that sit under the TV, Mary got back down on her knees. She turned her back once more to open the cupboard doors. Turning back towards the cabinet, she looks inside to find the key dangling from a hook right in the middle of the cabinet. Again, she has a smile on her face and her heart rate once again accelerates. That is until she remembers what happened the last time she found a key. Not wanting to get her hopes up Mary gets the key and chain it’s hanging from and grasps them in her right hand. Getting back on her knees, she starts making her way back towards the mirror on the vanity desk so she can see what she is doing. Turning in front of the mirror so that she can see where the key goes, Mary again locates the keyhole on the handcuffs. Taking her time, slowly, not wanting to drop the key, she finally gets it into the hole and turns it. She almost collapses when the handcuffs come off her left wrist and then her right. She rubs her wrists, the handcuffs were on tight and hurting her bad at this point. Quickly she unlocks the cuffs around her ankles and stretches her legs out for a few minutes. She then takes a few more minutes to massage her wrists and ankles. They are sore from all the moving around she’s done since she woke up.
“This girl just doesn't give up. That works for me. I can do more to and with her. This is more fun for me.”
Mary’s captor has been watching her and enjoying the scene the whole time she’s been at it. Witnessing Mary squirm her way around the room looking for the key has been fun. She has tenacity, which is a good quality in a woman. She has also made a huge mess of the space that the captor spent a lot of time making nice for her. That doesn’t sit well with the captor. If Mary doesn’t clean it up soon, something might happen to her, and that wouldn’t be fun, because the captor intends to have some fun with her.
“I see you’ve found what you were looking for. I’m very proud of you. I have to tell you that I thought it would take you longer than this to get off the bed and find your key. You’ve surprised me. Unfortunately you’ve also upset me,” the woman says this last abruptly.
Mary is sitting on the end of the bed massaging her arms and legs. She’s startled and jumps a little when the woman starts speaking to her.
Wondering what she could have possibly done to upset the woman she asks, “What have I done wrong? You told me I would have to find the key on my own and I did. I didn’t do anything wrong.” Tears are now coming out of her eyes, unwillingly.
“Yes, that’s true. You did find the key, and as I said, I’m very proud of you. In the process though, you’ve made quite a mess of the nice space that I set up for you. I don’t like messes and I took a long time making sure your room was perfect for you and now it looks like a tornado has ripped through it. I would really appreciate it if you would clean the place up. I don’t want to be the one to do it. You don’t want me to be the one to have to clean the room. You won’t be happy with me after that and I won’t be happy with you!”
The woman started her sentence with a nice, calm tone and finished it practically screaming at Mary. That gave Mary goose bumps and made her cry worse, but she immediately got up and went to the first place that she started looking. She didn’t want to do anything that was going to get her hurt or something worse, so she started folding the clothes and putting them back in the drawers. After she finished cleaning up the mess with the clothes, she went to the vanity desk and cleaned up that chaos. She took the time to clean all of the clutter she created, including the mess in the bathroom, and cleaned it perfectly. Right when she walked out of the bathroom towards the bed, she heard the woman start to speak again.
“Good job sweetie. That’s a very nice cleaning job. You even cleaned in the bathroom I see. You cleaned the mess up quickly as I asked. I see that you understand our situation and that’s a very good thing. It’s nice to know that you will obey me and that we will not have any problems with each other. You can go ahead and watch TV or a movie if you would like. There is cable on the TV.”
Mary wished she had the nerve to say something aloud, but she knew that it would only get her into trouble. The last thing she wanted to do was to make things worse.
A few minutes later Mary feels for the first time how hungry she is. She feels like she hasn’t eaten in days, which isn’t far off.
“Hello? Can you hear me? I don’t want to bug you, but I’m really hungry and thirsty. I need to eat really badly. Can you please get me some food? I’ll eat almost anything. I’m really, really hungry,” Mary says warily. She doesn’t want to upset the woman. She isn’t sure what will get her in trouble and what won’t at this point.
“Honey, if you’re hungry or thirsty, just tell me and I’ll get you something to eat and drink. I’m here to accommodate you and I’m here all of the time. I’m always watching you. Don’t be afraid to ask for something that you need. I don’t want to hurt you Mary; I want to make you feel as comfortable as possible,” the woman says to Mary happily.
Not sure what to believe out of this woman’s mouth and on the other hand, not wanting to starve to death, Mary asks for food and drink. “If you have it I would like a sandwich and a soda, please.”
“Don’t worry, it’ll be there soon,” replies the female captor.
Smiling at the way Mary goes about cleaning up her room after that little speech, the captor is amused. Mary really hopped to it.
After watching Mary clean up all of the mess, the woman gets back on the intercom system to speak with Mary. This is the fun part; it really gives the victim a scare when she hears the woman’s voice.
After getting Mary a peanut butter and jelly sandwich with a pop, the woman pushes the intercom button once more and says, “Your food is on its way to you.”
Hearing that her food is on the way Mary starts pondering how to escape. It all depends on how she gets the food. The only way that she can see it happening is the woman coming into the room with her. However, she supposes that the woman will put her food right inside the door and won’t have to come in. That also means that Mary won’t be able to try to get away. She thought for a few seconds and decided that she could act as if she was having some type of emergency when the woman comes to the door, just to get the captor in the room and near her. She now knows that it’s a woman holding her here, she should be able to kick her ass and get away. If she can get her into the room that is. Mary isn’t very confident in that plan though. What will she do once the woman is out of commission? She can’t open the door from her side without a key and sees no other way out of here. All of the sudden Mary hears loud thudding noises. She looks around the room from the foot of the bed where she’s sitting to see where the noise is coming from, but she can’t tell. She isn’t even sure what she heard after a few seconds go by.
Then she hears the woman‘s voice, “Your food is ready princess. Go ahead and get it.”
“Look next to the head of your bed on the left and you will see what looks like a cabinet door built into the wall. Push on it and it will pop open for you,” the woman says.
Obeying her commands, Mary pushes on the wall and sure enough, the door pops open. Behind the hidden door, she sees a dumbwaiter with a tray in it. On the tray is a peanut butter and jelly sandwich cut on a diagonal, a small plate of chips, and a can of pop with a glass of ice. She pulls out the tray and pushes the door shut.
She looks up and around and quietly says, “Thank you, I think.”
“Your welcome darling, I’m glad I could help. Anything you want I’ll give to you. Well, I’ll give you almost anything. I won’t release you, so don’t even ask. But pretty much anything else I can do,” the woman says happily. “Enjoy your food.”
With that, her captor’s voice is gone. Mary sits on her bed, with her eyes closed, clasps her hands together and prays. She prayed for her safety and that her food and beverage were not poisoned or drugged. If she is to believe what she hears, then her food and drink are safe. The woman doesn’t want to harm her, at least not by poisoning her food. Mary wonders what exactly she wants with her. Trying to get her mind off the things that could happen, Mary decides that she might as well eat while she can. She can forget about what is happening to her now and concentrate on how to get herself out of it.
Homicide Detective Andrew (Andy) Wilson has been with the Sand Village Police Department for over 20 years. He’s been a detective for over ten years, and already has a good reputation for investigating and solving crimes that other officers could not. When a call comes in to the police station about a missing person or a homicide, it goes to Detective Wilson first. In the Sand Village Police Department Homicide and Missing Persons Unit, the same group of detectives investigates both types of cases. The commissioner decided to merge the two departments, since Sand Village doesn’t get that many cases for either situation. It works for Detective Wilson. He doesn’t always like finding dead bodies. He does like stories with successful conclusions some of the time. In missing persons, there are some successful conclusions.
“Well, hey there sweetheart. How are you doing today?” Detective Wilson replies into the phone after a brief pause, waiting for the person on the other end to talk. He is speaking to a long time female friend of his, Amelia Lincoln. They have been friends for almost ten years, a great friendship at that. A mutual friend introduced them to each other, Captain Franklin and his wife Janine. The two have never dated; they hit it off as friends immediately. Andy values having Amelia as a part of his life. It doesn’t hurt that she feels the same. Well, not exactly the same as far as Andy knows, but we will get to that later.
“Good,” Amelia responds. “Tired, I’m very tired, though. It’s been crazy busy at the salon lately,” she says sighing. Amelia is referring to her salon in downtown Sand Village. It is known as Amelia’s around town, but the true name of the salon is Amelia’s Hair, Nails, and More. She has owned the salon since she was twenty-three and it is very popular in town, especially with the high school kids. She has five other people that work for her; she is the owner and manager. She got the idea from a friend of hers.
“I believe that,” Wilson says knowing how much everyone around loves Amelia’s place. “So, what can I do for my Amel this fine afternoon?” Andy is the only one allowed to call her Amel; she doesn’t like it when other people do it. She says that it’s only for the two of them.
“I was just wondering if you would like to join me for dinner this evening.” Amelia has been attracted to Andy for quite some time now. She has always kept it hidden. Every time she gets up the nerve to tell him how she feels, she backs out at the last second.
Amelia thought that she would be with her last boyfriend for a long time. But he found out that she wanted to eventually be married one day and split. She didn’t specifically say that she wanted to marry him, but she did say that she wanted to be married before she died. He left Amelia a note on the table one night that said he was sorry, but he didn’t want to stay and be in a relationship that serious. That he was too young to think about things like that. She should have known better than to think he would stick around. Luke was the most untrustworthy person she had ever dated. Not the worst by far, but still, not trusting. He cheated on her many times during their 2-year relationship. She was actually somewhat glad when she found out he was gone for good. Amelia knew that something was changing between her and Andy. She just wasn’t sure what it was yet. Then, after Luke left, she realized what it was. She and Andy were going to be together, it was just a matter of time. She doesn’t want to wait forever to be with the man she loves. Who can blame her?
“That would be great. Do you need me to bring anything over when I come? I will be leaving here in about an hour, so I could go to the store if there’s something you need.”
“Just bring yourself and I’ll be happy,” Amelia replied.
“Do you want me to meet you at the salon?” Andy asks. Sometimes he meets her there and follows her home. He’s very protective of her.
Amelia says, “No, the house is fine." “You don’t have to worry, I’m only driving home.”
“Ok, I’ll see you in about an hour. By the way, what’s for dinner?” He didn’t actually have to ask. He knew if she were inviting him to dinner, she would make his favorite because it’s her favorite too. Porterhouse steaks cooked on the grill with a side of Redskin Potato Salad and a salad with homemade Italian dressing. Amelia was probably the best cook that Andy ever knew and he loved it.
“You already know the answer to that question. Just be here as soon as you can and I’ll be waiting. I’ll see you soon Drew.”
“Bye Amel,” Andy said to Amelia as he hangs up the phone. Likewise, as with Amelia’s nickname, she is the only one allowed to call him Drew. If anyone else calls him that, he gets the meanest look on his face. It’s either Detective Wilson or Andy to everyone else. At the moment, he’s looking forward to leaving, so he packs up his briefcase and heads into his captain’s office.
“Hey captain, I’m going to get out of here. I have an appointment to make. I’ll see you in the morning,” Andy says from his captain’s doorway.
“Ok, that works for me. By the way, tell Amelia I said hello,” Captain Franklin says with a smile on his face. He’s always told Andy to try to go for it with Amelia.
“Thanks captain, I will,” Andy says over his shoulder as he is walking away. He doesn’t want his captain to see the smile on his face. Andy walks through the station to the front door, out to the parking lot, and gets into his car. He’s so excited about tonight. He just loves spending time with his girl.
Amelia would be surprised to know that Andy fell in love with her the first time he saw her. Amelia would also be surprised to hear that Andy has been thinking lately what it would be like to be with Amelia all the time. He can’t think of anything better in the world than to be with her day and night. He’s just afraid of what she might say if he tells her since there is a bit of an age difference between them. She’ll probably laugh in my face and then run for the nearest door when she finds out how I feel about her, he thinks to himself. He goes on thinking along these lines while he walks to his car.
Andrew Wilson is an excellent police detective. As a friend, he’s even more amazing. Amelia loves having him in her life. He’s a good influence for her. She would love to be with him for the rest of her life if possible. She knows that he loves her. She’s just not sure if he loves her as just a friend or will eventually want something more. She is hoping that the latter is the case. She can’t wait for him anymore. She needs him more than she has ever needed anyone in her entire life. As much as that scares her, it also makes her feel like she is flying. Every time she is with him that is how he makes her feel. Nothing else in the world matters to her when she is with Andy. Sometimes she wishes they were the only two people on earth.
The man is so attractive and he doesn’t even see it. Andy is 45 years old and doesn’t look a day over 35. He is about six feet, seven inches, and weighs around 200 pounds, lots of muscle. He works out once a week and looks great because of it. He has blonde hair, cut short like a Marine’s; he has green eyes that have this shine in them each time Amelia looks into them. He is charismatic, inviting, and hilarious. Amelia believes that he may not want to be with her because of their ages. She is only 24, so there is their age difference. However he may feel about it whether good or bad, Amelia could care less about that. He is an amazing person and he makes her feel good about herself and the choices she makes for her life. He makes her feel like she can do no wrong. She just wishes she could be with him as more than a friend. She plans to talk to him to