2: BNE

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Ari turned the light on. The apartment was empty besides her and her cat Bear, who was curled into a neat ball on the futon couch. She ran a hand through her dark hair, and looked out the long door to the balcony. It was dark outside, so all she could see was her reflection in the window. 

Ari had changed her clothes, now in a sweater and a pair of shorts. She had left the club right after the encounter with that Nick guy. Penelope wanted to stay with her, but she had brought a date, so the two left to get some. 

It wasn't the fact that the guy had known her name, it was the fact that he said she was his forever, and sounded like he meant it. Ari was scared, even though she knew he could do nothing. It was just some guy who was trying to be funny. Ari scowled. He was probably laughing with his buddies right now. Real mature. 

Ali flopped onto the futon beside Bear, and turned the television on. A news reporter stood in front of the Manatelle Park, in front of the crime scene tape. "Three bodies have been found in Manatelle Park." She said into the hand held mic, her face grim. "The bodies have yet to be identified, though we've never come across anything like this before. The bodies appear to be drained of blood, and police suspect foul play was involved." 

Ari flicked the t.v. off and turned to Bear, petting the cat, and scratching under his chin. 'What is this world coming to?' Ari thought to herself, shaking her head. The light in the kitchen suddenly turned on,causing Ari to jump. 

"Who's there?" She asked, slowly getting up from the couch. The light flicked off as in response to her question. Edging slowly to the kitchen, Ari's heart skipped a beat as she pressed herself to the wall and peeked into the kitchen. Nothing. She sighed in relief, and pushed off the wall. "It's nothing Bear." She said to the cat, though it was more to make herself feel calmer. 

Ari started to walk towards the living-room when she hear soft singing from the kitchen. 

Ari paused, her back still to the kitchen, the feeling of panic overwhelming her. She couldn't move. Her breath caught in the back of her throat, and all she could do was stand there, and hear the singing get closer and closer. She felt a hand on her shoulder. It was cold; even through her sweater. That was all it took. She fainted in it's arms.


When Ari opened her dark brown eyes. The apartment was dark, she felt cold all over. She was afraid to get up, afraid to move. Like the sword in the stone, she needed someone to pull her out of the trance her body was forcing her to go through. As if in response, her dark cat Bear jumped off the light futon and near her head with a soft thud causing Ari to turn her head in that general direction. It was then that she realized that she was completely unable to move. Not because her body was in some kind of fit, but because she could feel her wrists and ankles held down by something. Ari started to panic. The soft sound of water running was now apparent to her. It was coming from the bathroom. 

Bear meowed at the window and scratched at the glass as if trying to help. Unfortunately, they were twenty stories off of the ground, and nobody could hear the cat meowing. Ari realized that quickly and opted for number two. Trying to wrench herself free by letting the panic take over her brain and struggling against her bonds. So that's what she did in fact. Ari did her best until she registered the pain in her wrists and ankles. Lifting her head, she saw the rope tied to various heavy furniture around the room that Ari wished she did not own. The rope had cut her wrists and ankles and now she was bleeding pretty bad. Her light pants were now a dark red color. She could hear him coming, heel, toe, heel toe... Ari's breath quickened. 

"Oh, my Gods, what did you do?" A familiar voice asked, as if he were talking to a naughty little niece. "Well, we'll just have to fix you up, huh?" The rope was loosened, and Ari was picked up before she realized what was happening to her. Looking up, she saw the face of the man. The same man from the nightclub. Longish dark hair, dark eyes, pale skin. Only now, he looked inhuman and sinister. Why at that moment, she had not screamed she hadn't the faintest clue. She was scared, definitely, but she didn't want to die. This man looked fully capable of killing her if he saw fit. Ari had to be a good girl if she wanted to live through this. 

It was when they got to the bathroom that Ari noticed that she didn't like this situation even more. The bathtub was full of fresh warm water. She could see the steam rising from the tub and the condensation on the mirror. He put her down on the shiny porcelain toilet. With a smile, he pulled out a small pocket knife engraved with bats. Ari wanted to say something or scream or move, but she was physically unable. It scared her more then anything. Pulling up the sleeves of his black sweater, his large forearms had tattoos on them. Ari glanced down and saw a few bats and one in the middle of his arm that held a black rose.

The knife glinted in the light of the bare bulb in the ceiling. Ari felt panic rise to her throat. He brought the knife down in a quick motion, that forced Ari to squeeze her eyes shut. A few moments later, she opened them to realize that she was unharmed, but the man in front of her was taking the remains of her shirt and pants off. He cut off her white bra and panties and threw them aside. Ari couldn't breathe properly. Grabbing her and pulling her up to him, he kissed her again and again. Her naked chest crushed between his and his arms pulling her to him. 

Then, gently, he put her in the tub, the hot water loosening her up a bit. Her first attempt at speaking was a mess, but she tried again. "Why - can't I - move?" She asked, scared for her life. 

"You can say that it's part of my charm..." He said with humor in his voice as he grabbed the bar of soap and a washcloth. He lathered the two together and began to wash her shoulders, arms and neck 

"Why are you doing this?" Ari asked, finding her voice. 

"I'm preparing you for him." He said revealingly. 

Ari closed her eyes and pretended she was somewhere pleasant.

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