groomed

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic

Submitted: October 19, 2017

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Submitted: October 19, 2017

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Groomed

 

Set in this new century, full of technological devices and advances, an ordinary family, who lived two blocks away from the centre of an ordinary city, started having problems on an ordinary day. But it was not a typical problem.

One Monday morning, the family got up at half - past seven, as usual, to do everything their routines asked them to. However, Jane, the fourteen-year- old girl, did not want to go to school as her routine dictated, and argued with Charles and Carol, her parents, about that. As she was a very intelligent student, they decided to let her stay at home, since they thought that she deserved a little break from school. What they did not know was that their decision would bring trouble to the family; they could not even imagine what their daughter was planning to do.

The day before, their little and innocent child had arranged an online date to meet a stranger through a video call on Monday afternoon and she definitely could not meet him if her parents were at home. They did not allow her to meet or talk to strangers, since they thought that everything was changing for the worse in a technological world where teenagers were being raped, kidnapped or disappeared by arranging face to face meetings with people that they had just met in social networks.

Nevertheless, as Jane had planned, she stayed alone at home to have the anxious online date that she was waiting for. “Oh, I am so anxious; this guy is very kind to me; I really like him. Besides, he is very handsome and he is 14 years old as I am”, she thought. She was very excited as this guy had the same preferences she had, he liked the same music band: “False Guitars” and he seemed to be eager to see her.

 

Two hours passed and Jane was sitting in front of the computer waiting for her handsome guy to answer her call through Facebook. But she did not receive any answer from her date, she felt disappointed and sad. “I am sure that something must have happened to him”, she said to herself.

Four hours later, her parents and her little brother, Tony, returned home. All of them seemed to be tired but Jane did not care about this; she was very angry. However, she could not explain the reasons of her anguish. Her parents did not understand why she was in such a bad mood after they had allowed her to stay at home. Although they asked Jane, she did not tell the truth. Jane realized that she needed a different excuse to stay at home the following day and wait for that call but this time she could not convince her mother to stay. She had to find the way to meet her date so Jane decided to leave a message to him on his Facebook page. “I will be waiting for you at Liberty square. 12:30 am “she wrote. Without thinking about the consequences Jane told Carol that she would arrive late because she would go to a friend's house to complete her homework. “It is the first time I lie to my mother” She thought, and she left the house. Time passed slowly for Jane at school. Once she could finally leave the school she ran to the square to meet her boy, but again he was not there; she felt even more disappointed than before. While she was waiting, a man sat beside her and asked questions; he seemed very interested in her and Jane was uncomfortable with this. Although she knew that she may be in danger, she stayed to see if her handsome guy arrived.

What Jane did not know was that, as she was speaking to this strange man, one of her mother’s closest friends was passing by with her car. She saw Jane talking to a stranger and felt a little unease about it.

-Should I tell Carol or not? I should stop by her place and tell her about it.

And there she went, to meet Carol.

Carol was doing her things at work, brooming the sidewalk, when she saw her friend’s car turning around the corner. She dropped the broom and approached her friend, relieved to have a break from work.

-Hey Summer, what are you doing here?

-Carol, isn’t Jane supposed to be at home by now?

-What time is it?

-It’s… Let me check… 12:50

-Yeah, she should be at home right now… why do you ask?

-Because she was at Liberty Square, the one near her school, talking to an old man… Did you know about that?

-Oh my, no! Thanks for telling me, I’ll call Charles right away

-I hope it’s nothing serious. Take care.

-Bye

 

Carol rushed inside to grab her phone and call Charles. But as she was dialing, something inside told her that it was already too late.

Meanwhile, the man was telling Jane that he knew a nice place to have tea nearby. He invited her to go there, but she refused instantly. She had a bad feeling about this. However, the man insisted on persuading her. “Sure you don’t want to come? ‘False Guitars’ are performing today. They are a very popular band nowadays”. When Jane heard this, she sprang up from the bench seat excitedly. “Are you kidding? You should have started from there! Of course I’m going with you”. She didn’t have the possibility to analyze her decision. She was shocked by what he said to her. She had completely forgotten about her original date. She did not even realize that the boy did not exist. Suddenly, she was in the stranger’s car going somewhere. The man drove for about an hour. Jane was beginning to feel uneasy. Her mother’s speech was starting to bounce up and down somewhere inside her mind. “Don’t talk to strangers” “Be careful who you trust” “Take care of yourself”. She was scared and she felt she had been selfish with her parents because she hadn’t taken care of her life and she hadn’t taken their warnings into consideration. “I think I shall go home. Could you take me there, please?” I’m not feeling very well”, she said. The man grinned back at her unpleasantly. “You’re not going anywhere”, he answered. Eventually, Jane started to shout hysterically as she realized what was going on. In an attempt to calm her down, he pulled over his car and drugged her. Everything was obscure when she woke up.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

She did not recognize the place but she began to analyze it by tiptoeing around. There was a door and a small window. Unfortunately, both of them were locked. Suddenly, she listened to some voices outside one of the doors. So in an attempt to listen to the people who were talking from the other side of the door, she eavesdropped behind it: “We need to hurry up and sell her. We must take her out of the country today before someone finds her.” After eavesdropping this conversation, she was getting really desperate when suddenly, she found out that her telephone was still in her pocket. She dialed her mother’s telephone number clumsily and waited to hear her voice. “Hello?! Jane?! Are you there???”, asked her mother desperately. Someone opened the door. “What the hell are you doing?! Give me that!”, the man grabbed her phone brutally and hung out. Carol began to cry hysterically as she had heard the man yelling at her daughter. She was at the police station with Charles. The police officer had been registering the call so in a way, he relieved Jane’s parents the moment he told them that. “We will find her”. They rushed to the location where the call came from. In the meantime, the men were planning a way to escape from there. They were packing everything up and destroying Jane’s phone when the police arrived. The police found Jane locked up in a disgusting room, they rescued her and took her home with her parents. As soon as Jane saw Carol and Charles, she hurried up to hug and kiss them. She went through such a horrible and shocking situation that the only thing she wished was to be with her lovely family.

Once at home, Jane talked for hours with her family, she promised them and herself that she would never do something like this again, and she would dedicate her time on social nets to help other teenagers who may be in her situation. Not only did she realize how fragile she was in front of a screen and all the damage technology might cause but also how beneficial it may be at the same time, if responsibly used, as it helped the police to save her life.




The End


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