I wasn’t stupid. Despite the fact that I wasn’t tied up and the door was unlocked, I wasn’t foolish enough to believe I could fight my way out. Not with my broken wrist and healing ribs. Both of which I knew would not be healed at the week’s end. Not unless he pulled someone like Larkin out of thin air. My heart panged.
No, I told myself I wouldn’t think of such things. I had to focus on nothing but getting out of here. Larkin, who had to be alive, could weave his way into my thoughts later. What if they’d hurt him irreparably?
I stared at the grey ceiling, my eyes tracing one of the larger cracks to the wall. By the end of the week, I would be insane.
The door creaked open and the man entered. I shivered as he smiled and shifted backward until I hit the headboard. My ribs protested as fear sped my breathing.
“Dizelde. I’ve brought you food.”
He offered a glass of milk and a full plate of differing edibles. I remembered my father’s use of food against me and knocked the plate so the food hit his stomach and dropped to the floor. I would use food against him. I wouldn’t eat. I’d rather starve.
He paused, staring at the milk. His brow came down and he placed it firmly on the table beside the bed. He pulled the chair that was next to the door to the middle of the room and straddled it, facing me.
“Do you not remember one of our father’s firm rules?” he asked, his eerie eyes staring into mine.
Our father’s? Our?
“Do not waste food. I cannot fathom how that wasn’t as drilled into you as it was me.”
He frowned at me and then, slowly, it turned into a satisfied look. “You didn’t know, did you? He said that he would bring us together when you were a little more cooperative but he didn’t have enough time, and obviously didn’t tell you naught about me. Dear Dizelde, I’m your older brother, Tristan. Different mothers, of course, but the similarities are there.” He tapped the corner of his eye. “Will you be more obliging now that you know we’re family?”
I didn’t think. I reached and grabbed the glass of milk, smashing it against the side of the table. I pushed myself forward and pointed the jagged ends towards him. To my disgust, he smiled.
“I expected no less. I’m unlikely to have children but I’ve always wanted to follow in our father’s footsteps. At least I’ll be able to put some of his techniques to use on you. Now put that glass down before you hurt yourself.”
I pushed myself through the pain and lunged towards him. He raised his hand to capture mine but I swerved around it. He was caught on the chair and, despite his attempt to manoeuvre back, I managed to slice his cheek with the sharp edges. His arm went around my waist and he wrenched me backwards, down onto the floor. I lost my grip on the round glass and it rolled underneath the bed. My brother’s hand went to his cheek as he scowled down at me.
“Stupid girl,” he hissed. “You’re lucky we’re family.”
An IV was his answer to my protest against food. I still felt starving but I wasn’t going to dehydrate any time soon. He’d injected me while I’d been sleeping, though, of course, the needle had woken me up and he kept the needle in place with a lot of bandage and a plastic shield that stopped me from pulling it out. The only issue was I now felt even weaker, despite my healing, and escape was becoming a distant dream. I probably wouldn’t be able to walk to the front door, wherever that was.