Chapter 5 - Jack

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[Disclaimer: this chapter contains graphic acts of animal cruelty. You're welcome to skip over it if you find it too disturbing.]

I woke up in the back of a moving vehicle as it went down a rocky road. The car lurched over a particularly large obstacle and I screamed out in pain. It started at my lungs then stretched to my limbs. Something in my body was definitely broken.

The car slammed to a halt. I was jolted off the backseat, groaning in pain as I collided with the seat in front of me.  

"Is he alright?" a familiar voice asked. Who was it again?

"Yeah I think so," a reply answered him. "He's looking kinda pale though, boss."

Oh yeah, 'Boss'. I remember now.

In a groggy state I felt my body be lifted and placed on the side of the road. Were they going to leave me here? To be honest I was too out of it to care; I just felt like sleeping forever.

A sudden urge to puke rose within my throat. It bubbled up and out of my mouth, splattering onto the ground. Through my current state, I noticed spots of blood somewhere in there too. Chunks of yesterday's lunch soaked into the grass. I didn't feel too good. I'd been upside-down for too long and being upright made my head swim and my stomach lurch. Besides, the stench was pretty bad too. 

Someone patted my back hard, sparking the nerves in my body to go crazy. I doubled over and puked again.

"Get him some water," Jack said behind me.

Someone responded with a  sigh and the heavy thudding of footsteps lead away from me and back to the truck.

"My bag..." I tried to say as Jack hushed me, and forced some water down my throat. He gently laid me back down on the grass as I breathed deeply; the feeling still embedded in my stomach.

"Where's his bag?" Jack asked one of his minions.

"In the seat where he was," they replied in unison.

"Well go get it! He said he wants it!"

"Yes boss," they carried on.

Was this some kind of crazy test? How'd they know exactly what to say and when? I concluded that my mind was just screwed and perhaps I was just imagining it all. My daze was broken as my bag was thrown down at me. I concentrated on its flight path as it landed right in my spilled contents. Grossed out and wanting to throw up all over again, I grimaced as I grabbed the bag and dragged it the best I could across the grass to clean it. 

When I thought it was clean enough, I opened the bag and checked the file was still there. I was glad it was, because if they'd gone through my bag and taken the file, I would be totally screwed. It was vital they knew nothing of it.

Relieved, I lay back down attempting to ignore the burning sensation filling up my chest.

"We need to get going Jack," one of his minions said.

"I know," he said as he turned to me. "You think you're okay to go on?"

I nodded and his boys helped me up onto my feet and to the car.

Staring at the road made my head swim and my chest burn even harder. It was difficult to keep my stomach from emptying any of its content.

"I think I cracked a rib," I said as I gently rubbed my chest.

It was pointless. It only made it burn harder, which made me breathe less. I looked up into the rear-view mirror to see Jack smiling down at me. His face was full of relief and concern as I winced with pain.

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