A second later I opened my eyes. Where had the alley gone? I was in some kind of room, the walls were concrete. I couldn’t see any windows.
I tried to bring my hands up to touch my face but they were stuck, I couldn’t move them more than an inch. I was tied, maybe, to a chair.
Ouch. My chest was aching. Thinking about it made the pain a lot worse, the whole of my back was just… pain. I closed my eyes and tried breathing slowly. It didn’t help much but I was willing to take what I could. Besides, the room was spinning. It was making me feel nauseous. Stupid room.
How much time had passed? It felt like none at all but my mind had slowly worked out that I had in fact fallen unconscious and been moved.
I’d been shot.
It took me a minute or two for that to sink in. It didn’t hurt as much as you would expect.
I wasn’t dead yet. Got to think of the positives. I remembered back to when I’d bought the vest. Bullet resistant he’d said. How resistant?
Well, clearly not resistant enough to stop it – I was certain it had gone through. Even if it hadn’t the force must have at least broken a rib judging my difficulty breathing.
Still, I wasn’t dead – I could breathe even if it hurt and I wasn’t coughing up blood… the bullet can’t have reached my lung.
When that’s on your list of positives you know you are in trouble. I sighed. Well, I started to sigh but it turned into a hiss of pain shortly followed by a groan.
I wasn’t in a good situation here. God I was such an idiot falling for that trap. I should have listened to my instincts and walked away.
Now I’m… what? Captured? Is that what you call it?
I’d call it fucked.
Why the hell did I ever decide to do this. Stupid, stupid me. I could be sitting at home doing… Ok, nothing much. But I’d be alive at least.
There was no way I could get out of this. I could feel my eyes stinging – just what I needed. Useful reaction there, thanks body. A wet face will really help me. Having trouble breathing? Hey, making your nose run when you can’t do anything about it! Helpful!
* * *
The door opened, the bright light hurt my eyes but all I could do was squint. A figure emerged and flicked a switch on the wall bathing me in a clinical white light.
The walls were surprisingly clean, I’d expected grime and mould in my apparent dungeon. The more I looked around the more it reminded me of a clinic, wait more like a morgue. Utilitarian. Convenient drains scattered around the simple to clean polished concrete floor.
Easy to get the blood out.
I think I would have preferred grimy.
When my eyes finally adjusted to the light I found a young man standing in front of me. He looked kind of curiously at me.
“Hello.” He said.
Did he want a response from me or what? What kind of introduction was that? I resigned myself to glaring at him.
“I’m Andreas Laas. You have been causing me a lot of trouble young lady.” Shit. The Laas family were the renown leaders of the Kolmek. Andreas looked about thirty, he must be the son of Anton Laas one of the most feared gang leader in Montreal until his death in a shootout last year.
So his son takes up the family business.
I suppose it would explain how lax the gang had become. I was willing to bet this guy hadn’t had to work a day in his life. Running a gang was like running a business empire, hard work. He was out of his depth. Everyone knew the Kolmek were losing ground against newer gangs.
Maybe I could take advantage of that?
Whatever I did, the longer I kept him talking, interested, the longer I lived.
My lack of response seemed to anger him anyway, he had started to frown.
“Who hired you? Was it the SSK? The 59s?”
Why hadn’t he just had me killed and thrown into a river already?
“Who are you? Which gang are you from?”
He thought I was from a competing gang. I suppose it looks like that. So that was why I was still alive, I was interesting. I was a puzzle that needs solving.
So in order to stay alive I had to keep it that way. A stupid idea formed in my head from a book I’d read. I didn’t have anything else so I might as well try it.
“I represent a… very private organisation. To disclose a client’s details would be very unprofessional.” I said, as calmly as I could manage. I surprised myself in succeeding. Seriously I was making up this shit on the spot. All I knew was that if there was something he wanted from me he would keep me alive.
If I refused to tell him anything then he would assume there was something to tell. As long as he didn’t work out I was just… doing whatever the hell I was doing on my own, he’s going to keep trying to get information from me. Hopefully.
But at some point he’s going to get bored and I’m going to die.
“I have… the ability to make you talk you know.” He walked across the room towards me. “It’s not the most reliable method of extracting information.” He was insufferably close to me now, leaning over me. His hand reached out and brushed my cheek gently. “But it is certainly the most fun.”
He flashed his teeth, face forming the shape of a smile like he’d seen pictures of people smiling and tried to copy it. His eyes however, they were burning with… Hunger? Lust? Something that made me regret trying to make myself interesting. Something that made my blood run cold.
“I have allies. I assure you if any harm comes to me there will be repercussions.” A bluff, he probably knew that.
I had no friends who could help me here.