Keely hadn’t been in Tenneson long. She’d only managed to find a cheap hotel room to rent the week she’d been there. There had been no luck in the job search, and it wasn’t the first time that she had reconsidered her decision to leave Brownsville.
While sitting in the café, she stared at her phone trying to figure out whether she should call her dad. Deciding against it, she pocketed her phone and took a drink of her coffee. She resisted the urge to scream out when it burnt her tongue. When she set the coffee cup down, she fought back tears. It wasn’t from the burnt tongue that made her want to cry; it was just what fueled it. The truth was that she had been feeling lonely and stupid for her impromptu decision to leave her dad behind. Of course, she still believed it was the right decision, but she really missed her dad. She was all he had left.
She wiped away a tear and grabbed her purse and coffee. She left the café and wandered out into the city she barely knew. The sky was a mixture of purples and oranges with the black of night edging its way into existence. Dark purple clouds floated on the sky. She took in a deep breath inhaling exhaust from the car that passed by as soon as she did. She coughed and thought of home. This wouldn’t have happened there. She turned to her right and walked back towards the hotel feeling lonelier than ever.
The closer she arrived to her hotel, the darker the sky grew. She’d never been particularly fond of the dark, considering the legend she’d known since she was capable enough of understanding what the Double Dare Bridges were. Their monster not only haunted the night it haunted every thought of every person in Brownsville.
Right before arriving at her hotel, someone grabbed her from behind. She screamed as something sharp pierced her neck. The dark night became darker. She felt elated and scared all at the same time. Her purse fell to the ground, and her knees threatened to buckle beneath her.
Something tackled Keely to the ground. She tried to scream, but she couldn’t find her voice. The sharp object was ripped from her neck, and all of the pain she should’ve been feeling from the start coursed through her neck and down her spine. Soon, the street lamps faded into oblivion, and right before her hearing left, she thought she heard people fighting.
She woke in bed, neck stiff and muscles sore. She groaned as she sat up.
“You may want to lie back down,” a deep voice said from the shadows. She screamed. “Don’t be afraid,” he said. There was something in his voice that suggested she could trust him, but a feeling lingered telling her she shouldn’t.
“Who…who are you?” she asked. “Where am I?”
“You’re safe. That’s all that matters.”
She sat up abruptly in bed. Her head swam. “Tell me what’s goin’ on. Now.” She rested her head in her hands to keep the room from spinning around her.
“You were attacked.”
“What?” She looked at him.
“You probably won’t remember all of it. Our victims never do.”
“Who are you?”
“My name’s not important.”
“I want to go home.” She wasn’t entirely sure if she meant her hotel room or Brownsville, but either way, she wanted out.
There wasn’t any sunshine coming into the room, and she wondered if it was still night and how long she’d been unconscious. A small lamp beside the bed was the only light source in the room, and off to her left was another room that she assumed was the bathroom. The room was furnished about like her hotel room was. She was in a bed in the center of the room. The mysterious stranger who’d kidnapped her sat at a round table with two matching chairs. The screen of a laptop lit up his face. He had sharp features and dirty blonde hair that fell in his eyes as he stared at the laptop. He was handsome but looked a good bit younger than Keely.
“What’s your name?” she asked again.
He paused for a moment and then answered, “Milo.”
She wasn’t sure if it was a fake name or not, but at least she had something to call him.