"Now," Wescott said, after I was seated. "Make sure you do not cross that line." He pointed to the faint blue line on the floor. I was sitting in the center of a wide circle drawn onto the floor,
which was, apparently, my prison for this thing.
I'd been informed that there was some sort of laser that would trigger what Wescott had threatened me with in the car. It wouldn't affect anyone else, of course, just me. So people could come to me. I just couldn't go anywhere.
I crossed my arms and scowled at him. Silly me, I thought I might actually be relatively free while in this room.
"I cannot be responsible for what happens to you, should you fail to heed my warning on this." He started to turn away, but stopped and looked back at me.
"And at least pretend to look pleasant," he said before he walked away.
I contemplated giving him the finger, but I held back. He wouldn't see it anyway.
The night progressed and people started arriving. They were all dressed in outrageously expensive clothes, but unlike me, they looked completely comfortable in them. Like they were accustomed to wearing thousand-dollar outfits every day.
It was disgusting that these people had so much money, to be able afford those clothes and things like this, while there were people starving in the world.
I sat, bored out of my mind for about an hour, while people ambled around, watching me with obvious curiosity and fascination. They all seemed hesitant to actually approach me though. For which I was thankful. I had no desire to meet any of these shallow, callous people.
"How long is this thing supposed to take?" I asked Mark, who was standing a little ways back and to my right. The other three guards were hanging back a little further. They were spaced around me, close enough to get to me in a few seconds, but not so close that I came off as threatening or fragile.
"Another two hours," he said.
"Ugh!" I let my head fall back in exasperation. "Do you think it would look too bad if I took a nap?" I asked looking at him, upside down.
He half smiled. "Wescott probably wouldn't appreciate it. People might think you were narcoleptic."
I gave him a small smile before I sighed and sat up again. "Maybe I should have asked for an ipod or something."
A few seconds later, a small blue ipod fell in my lap. I looked up to see Mark retreating back to his spot.
He turned around and met my curious and surprised expression.
He shrugged and seemed embarrassed. "Things get boring sometimes. Just don't tell Wescott I had it so handy."
"Thanks." I smiled again before I popped the earpieces in and started exploring his music.
He had alot of stuff on there that surprised me. There was some of the more popular stuff - even some Britney Spears and Lady Gaga. And trust me, I'd be teasing him for that later.
But there was alot of the less well-known, indie stuff on there. Alot that I recognized.
It was really too bad that I'd met Mark where I had and that he was part of this. I think I could have really liked him as more than just a friend, otherwise.
The next hour was almost bearable, thanks to Mark, but I was getting bored again. The music was nice, but I'd tired of the few games on the ipod about twenty minutes ago.
I was just about to say something to Mark, when some middle-aged man, reeking of alcohol, joined me on the couch and threw his arm around me.
"So, you're the finished product, eh?" he slurred, clutching me way too close to him.
I struggled to distance myself from him, but he held me securely.
My first instinct was to free myself by hitting him, but I remembered Wescott's warning.
I guessed that becoming violent with this drunk moron would definitely count as me 'becoming unpleasant'.
I looked for him, knowing he didn't want people quite this close to me, but he wasn't paying attention. He was talking to some other excessively rich people.
I had a feeling that any action of mine would be noticed though. And he wouldn't stop for an explanation as to why I suddenly became violent.
"I wonder, were I to make an extra donation, if I could get an early trial," he said, giving me a sleazy look that left no doubt in my mind what he had in mind for his own investment.
I pushed at him and had to really force myself not to do something to make what he was implying, a physical impossibility for him.
"Sir, you need to step away," Mark said, suddenly standing over me and sounding more authoritative than I'd ever heard.
The man looked up, noticing Mark and the other two guards that had joined him.
He watched them, for a few seconds, seeming slow and unfocussed before he let me go and leaned away.
"Just getting an idea of what to expect," he tried.
"There's no touching, sir," Mark said. From his tone, he guessed the same thing I had about this man's plans for his investment, and he didn't like them. The 'sir' sounded forced and was laced with disdain.
He seemed not to notice, though. He laughed and pushed himself off the couch before staggering off into the crowd.
I glared after him, my hatred for Wescott somehow managing to grow even stronger. Weren't there enough sick perverts doing enough detestable things without Wescott enabling them further?
"Sorry," Mark said. "I should have been paying closer attention.
I shrugged, feeling awkward. It wasn't me that deserved the apology for that. It was whatever poor girl wound up with that man. Or men like him. At least I knew that wasn't my future.
If only there was a way to shut this whole thing down. No one should have to be subjected to a life like that.
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