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‘Well, this is interesting.’

I opened my eyes, which was a challenge due to my eyelashes being stuck together from old mascara. I blinked rapidly, or as rapidly as I could with my gunky lashes, and let my eyes focus on what was above me.

Radley was towering over me, looking down on me. I felt small, sat at his feet.

I looked around the room, taking in my surroundings. I could feel the carpet under my feet, the hardness of the wall behind my back. Why was I on the floor? What had happened?

Then I remembered. I’d tried to open the door the previous day, but it had failed to open. I must have fallen asleep on the floor – and now Radley was standing over me, looking furious.

I could barely bring myself to look up at Radley. His face was darkly shadowed. His eyebrows looked evilly pointed downwards from the angle I was sat.

He looked terrifying.

‘Was the bed not good enough for you?’ He bent down. I waited, waited, waited for him to hit me, or to grab me by the neck and bash my head against the wall behind me. My heart beat steadily, stealthily, as he knelt before me.

He reached out his hands, locking his palms around my knuckles. Then he stood up, pulling me up with him.

‘I asked you a question,’ he said in a flat, monotone voice. I was bemused. Had he? I’d been too distracted by my own fear to even listen to him. I tried to recall his words in my head, but before I could remember, he said, ‘Well, there’s a lot in store today, Veronica.’

He led me over to the bed gently. I sat down, staring up at him. I chewed on my lip. I could feel dry skin, ready to peel. I wanted to raise my hand up and pick at it, but his palms were still clasped firmly over my fists.

‘Oh?’ I said, questioningly.

‘Yes,’ he said. His eyes seemed to glow as he bent his neck slightly and continued, ‘I’m showing you around the house.’

‘Fun,’ I said. It came out a lot drier than I’d intended it to. I could feel Radley’s grip tightening, just slightly, around my hands. His fingertips burned my skin.

‘Yes,’ he said. ‘It will be.’ He even managed a smile.

I swallowed. My mouth was dry and my throat was sticky, but I managed to gulp down some of the fear that was forming in my throat, in the form of bitter-tasting vomit.

‘If you’re lucky, you might even get a change of clothes,’ Radley said, and then he laughed. He guffawed sincerely, heartily, right from the pit of his stomach – a full, happy laugh.

I smiled momentarily, insincerely. I didn’t want to cause any trouble.

His laughing broke off and came to a natural end. He stared down at me. ‘Well,’ he said. He licked his lips. ‘There’s no time like the present. Shall we begin?’


I don’t know what I was expecting. It certainly wasn’t this.

His house was so ordinary. In the hall were cream walls with a blue, floral border. I noticed the intricate pattern of the flowers. I wondered if he’d had a girlfriend who’d picked it out.

There were blue-themed paintings on the walls. One of a lighthouse. One of a river. They were so peaceful to look at. I wondered how he could have chosen them.

We reached a door straight ahead.

‘This is the bathroom,’ Radley said. He was holding my left wrist with his right hand very tightly, and so opened the door with his left hand.

I peered inside, before Radley dragged me in fully. A white fluffy mat sat on the floor. White walls. A white shower curtain. White towels. A white cabinet. White sink, white toilet, white bath, white shower. Everything was so white, and bright. It hurt my eyes to look at, after I’d been cooped up in that room all day.

‘If you ever need the toilet or anything in here, just shout me,’ Radley explained, before turning me around and manoeuvring me out of the room.

We turned and carried on down the landing. He paused beside a door. ‘This is my room,’ he said, after a brief pause. He didn’t open the door. I wondered what was inside. His wife, girlfriend, maybe? A gun?

He led me down the stairs. He was very slow, leaving me plenty of time to make my own way down the stairs at my own pace.

Straight ahead there was a door, to which Radley led me. ‘This is the living room,’ he announced, opening the door.

It was small and almost cosy. There was a matching burgundy armchair and sofa. A small TV set sat by the window, next to a real coal fire. It was so old-fashioned. At home, we had a 50’’ flat-screen. True, not everybody could afford 50’’ – but wasn’t flat-screen a necessity now? Why did he have such a monster of a television set? And the coal fire – that was like something from the 1940s. I felt like pointing out we weren’t in the war any more, but obviously, couldn’t.

My face must have conveyed my opinions, though, for Radley looked amused and said, ‘You don’t like it, huh?’

I blinked, returning to reality. ‘It’s…nice,’ I said, choosing a safe answer.

Radley laughed. ‘Good answer,’ he said. Then suddenly he gripped my wrist a little harder, drawing me closer to him until our noses were almost touching, and hissed, ‘You ever insult me and you’ll be roasting on that coal fire.’

His hold loosened and he pushed me away gently. He let out a long, hard laugh. He wheezed with laughter.

‘Sorry,’ he chuckled. ‘I just couldn’t resist.’ He wiped tears from his eyes.

I wasn’t entirely sure he’d been fully joking, so I just tittered nervously.

He led me out of the room, to the final door. ‘The kitchen,’ he announced.

I thought the living room had been old – the kitchen wasn’t much newer. In fact, it looked like something from the 1920s. A small, wooden table and old, knobbly wooden chairs sat against the wall. The counters were old and marble-y, the cupboard doors’ paint cracked and peeling; cringe-worthy to look at. The only new thing was the cooker – it was the exact same, electric, eight-ring oven we had at home. I pictured Rita, making a fry-up. But then she never used the oven for that – she used the grill.

Surely they’d noticed I was missing by now? Somebody must’ve noticed – even if it was just Faye, or Rita.

My daydream was interrupted by Radley saying, ‘And that’s it – that’s all there is to the evil lair.’

Then he chuckled to himself again.


A/N: Thank you all for the lovely lovely comments!! I promise chapters will be on quicker from now on :)

Submitted: March 05, 2012

© Copyright 2023 JayTheBookworm. All rights reserved.


Add Your Comments:



Fantastic- he seems like bit of a maniac with a serious superiority complex! Adored it, plese kmu! :)

Tue, March 6th, 2012 7:43pm


Haha, accurate perception. ;) Thank you so much! I'd be happy to. :D

Tue, March 6th, 2012 2:55pm


yay i was eager to read when i saw ur comment .:)

Wed, March 7th, 2012 8:05am


Hehe, thank you :)

Wed, March 7th, 2012 11:25am


Yaay I love it! You good at keeping the reader hooked ;D KMU!

Wed, March 7th, 2012 6:45pm


Thank you so much! I will do :')

Wed, March 7th, 2012 12:34pm

Taste the Rain

omg I love this book!! Radley is an awesome person. xD

Mon, May 21st, 2012 12:15am


Thank you x2! :D

Mon, May 21st, 2012 12:24pm


Would it be wrong to say I'm having fun reading about Radley?

His voice is so... interesting, like he is mocking every evil villain stereotype from the cartoons. xD

Sat, June 9th, 2012 3:04am


Haha, that's not wrong at all! xD I find it so fun writing him, haha. :) And that's exactly how I wanted him to come across - like he's making fun of the stereotypical villains, when ironically he genuinely is a stereotypical villain. xD Thank you! :D

Sat, June 9th, 2012 4:13pm


great story

Thu, November 29th, 2012 8:44am


Thank you! :'D

Thu, November 29th, 2012 7:14am

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