Amy’s Story: The Conclusion

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[Recap:  Amy has been kidnapped by a psychopath.  Locked in a cabin hidden deep within the Blue Ridge Mountains, Amy awaits certain death… either by  the hands of her captor or from hypothermia brought on by winter’s frigid temperatures.   Sky, Amy’s wife, searches the snowy forest, desperately hoping to find Amy.  Instead, she finds their Golden Retriever, Rudy, bleeding out in the snow.  Sky does what she can to comfort Rudy, but eventually she has to leave him there alone, in order to continue her search for Amy.  Sky finally makes it to the cabin…and now she wonders what her next move should be.]

***

Love Without Reservation

Sky stood behind the protective cover of snow laden fir trees. The cabin was only few feet away, but Sky decided it best to stay hidden, just in case he was close by.
It had taken her hours to get here. Now as she surveyed the area, she wondered what she should do next. Surely Amy was held captive somewhere in the ram-shackled structure. The cabin was ancient. No smoke escaped its stone chimney, and the sod between the hand-hewn logs crumbled from the years of long Blue-Ridge Mountain winters. Sky could see clear through in places. She realized that Amy must be cold…and her heart ached. How she longed to hold Amy in her arms, and kiss away the fear that had tortured her these past months.
Sky reached behind to grab the revolver nestled between her shirt and jeans. The steel was cold, but comforting within her hand. Crouching she began her way towards the cabin, careful to stay behind the cover of the trees as much as possible.
“Hang on, baby…I’m coming,” her teeth chattering.

 

 

*** 

Amy opened her eyes. Sunlight poured into the broken window, and unfortunately, so did the harsh winter air. She regretted breaking the damn thing. Amy had never been so cold. Her body shook uncontrollably in its effort to fight off hypothermia.
Amy looked up to the window, and for the one-hundredth time, wished she could climb out of it. She knew this was impossible, for she had already tried standing on the pee-bucket, and even on the tip of her toes, her fingers were short of the ledge by a good three inches.
Amy tried to stand, but her body refused to comply. With each attempt she always fell back upon the mattress. After the fourth try, she laid in the fetal position, her thin blanket barely big enough to cover her. She began to cry, but as the minutes ticked away her cries turned into laughter.
“At least my god-damned ankles have quit hurting…they’re too fucking numb to feel any pain,” thought Amy, and laughed all the harder.

Such irony that she should die from her own hand and not that of her captor’s.

 

***

 

Sky slipped herself against the cabin’s wall and began to inch her way towards the front door. Again, she surveyed the area. The absence of the snowmobile gave her hope. She prayed like hell…that he had left. She knew he would return and realized she only had a small window of time to get inside, get Amy, and get back into the cover of the forest.

One step at a time, Sky was careful to hold the gun with both hands; ready to fire if need be.
All of a sudden Sky felt the ground meeting her face. The gun flew out of her grasp, and landed on something hidden just beneath the snow. Sky heard a faint “click,” felt a gush of wind, followed by a loud clap. Shocked, Sky stared at the tripped bear trap only inches from her face.
Fear of what could have happened coursed through her veins like hot lava, and then she began to tremble. The gun still quivered upon the bear trap’s trigger. Afraid to move, Sky let her gaze travel down her body to see the culprit of her fall: a split piece of fire wood. No doubt it had been purposely placed there to serve as a booby trap for anyone trying to save Amy.
Slowly, Sky got up, careful as to where she put her hands, knees and feet. She bent to pick up the gun, and put it back in the waistband of her jeans. She picked up the piece of firewood and used it to test the ground in front of her before each step. Finally, she made it safely to the front door, and was surprised to find it unlocked.
Sky cracked the door, to peek inside. Through the crack she was able to see a fireplace overflowing with ashes, a tattered couch, and what looked like a pile of rags on the floor by the couch. She leaned in a little more causing the rusted hinges to protest. They squeaked with even the tiniest move, so, she opened it just wide enough to squeeze inside. She stood in silence for a long while. Hearing nothing, she felt confident her presence was unknown.
Sky surveyed the contents of the tiny room. The kitchen to her right consisted of a tiny refrigerator, small enough to sit upon the wooden counter. Two hot-plates were a few inches away. A cast-iron, fry pan rested on one, and a coffee pot on the other. A tiny table for two was tipped over, and its companions…chairs, plates, and glasses lay shattered on the stone floor. Sky shifted her gaze to the left to rest once again on the tattered couch.
Stepping quietly, she walked over to the couch to inspect the pile of rags that lay on the floor. They were red-stained with what she knew to be blood. Her heart sank because she knew it had belonged to Amy.
A darkened hallway, only a few feet away beckoned her.
One small step at a time she inched closer. She reached for the gun and once again it felt good in her hand. She knew she would have no trouble killing that son-of-a-bitch. On sight she would put a bullet between his eyes. On second thought, she decided she would shoot his balls off, first. That should suffice as suitable punishment for attempting to rape Amy. The ass-hole needed to suffer, and suffer LONG, before he entered Hell.
Stepping into the dark hallway, Sky had to wait a moment for her eyes to adjust.  She barely made out a small door only four feet tall to her right. A closer look assured Sky, that it was padlocked. Her heart raced. Perhaps Amy was inside. All of her instincts demanded she charge the door, but common sense warned that there was cabin left to explore, and that the son-of-a-bitch could be hiding around the next corner.
After another couple of feet Sky saw a door on her left. This door, unlike the other, was regular sized, and had no padlock. She stopped and put her ear to the splintered wood and could hear no sound coming from inside. With her ear to the door, she glanced down the hallway. It ended with another door that led outside. It too was padlocked.
Slowly she opened the door and peered into a dark room. Sky had the gun ready to fire, but nothing came at her. Once her eyes adjusted she could make out a bed and a tiny dresser. Save for that, the room was empty.
Confident there was no one else in the cabin, Sky hurried back to the four-foot padlocked door.
“Amy…?”
“Amy…honey, are you in there?” Sky whispered.
In vain, Sky pushed and pulled on the door.
A little louder than before, Sky repeated her question.
“Amy…AMY…ARE YOU THERE?”
Sky paused a second with her ear to the door, trying to hear any sound of life. Very faintly, Sky thought she heard a groan, but it was followed by complete silence. Thinking it must have been her imagination, she started to call for Amy again but was cut short by the sound of a shaky voice.
“Skkkkk…. I’m heeeeee….re…”
The sound of Amy’s voice kicked Sky’s adrenaline into overdrive. She lunged at the door with all her might, and felt it give some, but not enough to dislodge the lock.
“Fuck…” she cursed, and threw herself once again into the door. The wood groaned in protest, but still she was unable to break through.
Frantically, Sky looked around for something to use to pry open the lock. She thought of the gun, but decided against it, fearing the sound would alert the psycho if he were close by.
“Amy…I’ll be right back. I’m going to get you out”
The shaky voice from the other side of the door said, “…ple…please…d…don’t le…le…leave me…”
Sky heard the desperation in Amy’s voice and it broke her heart.  “I’m not leaving you…I promise…I’m coming back…”
Sky went to the kitchen and scanned the area for something to use. Not seeing anything of value, she looked around the living room. Her eyes rested upon a set of wrought iron, fireplace tools.
“That’ll work!”
Sky grabbed the poker and rushed back to Amy. She put the pointed end into the loop of the pad-lock, and leaned downward with all her weight. The metal screeched in protest, and she felt it give a little. Encouraged, she did it again, and this time she was rewarded by the sound of the busted lock hitting the stone floor.
Sky burst open the tiny door. She fell into the dark room and desperately searched for Amy. Amy lay shivering uncontrollably, five feet in front of her. Sky went to her, pulled her close, and enveloped her within her arms. She rubbed her vigorously, trying to stimulate heat into Amy’s frigid body.
Amy wanted to cling to Sky, but her hands were too cold to move. She was numb from head to foot, but somehow, she was able to move her trembling lips enough to say…“I…lu…luvv…u…” Her eyes filled with tears that spilled over her cheeks.
Sky gently wiped away Amy’s tears, and leaned in to kiss her softly on the lips. After the kiss she pulled her closer and whispered in her ear…“I love you more.”
Sky helped Amy from the room, and took her across the hall into the small bedroom. She laid Amy on the bed, covered her with a blanket, and then lay beside and held her until she stopped shivering.
Sky searched the dresser drawers and found shirts, hoodies, sweatpants and a pair boots underneath the bed. They both dressed as warmly as possible, and then headed toward the front door.
On their way out the door, Sky grabbed a broom, and used it to test the ground in front of them just in case there was another bear trap.
Amy still hurting, and extremely weak leaned heavily upon Sky. It was slow going but finally they made it to the edge of the forest. Sky felt it a milestone, so she breathed a big sigh of relief.
“We’re going to make it,” she said to Amy, and couldn’t help but smile.
A distant sound of an engine caused Sky’s smile to fade.

Amy heard it as well, and her face turned wild with fear. Like a frightened animal she began to look in all directions for the oncoming danger. Finally, she looked to Sky. The amount of horror Sky saw in Amy’s eyes took her breath away. She had never seen Amy look so afraid.
“Oh m…my… g…god…it’s…Sa…Satan…he…s…here…to take…us to H…Hell!” Amy’s scream was shrill.  The terror was infectious, and it consumed Sky as well.
Sky looked over her shoulder to see a snowmobile with a masked rider coming towards them. Without hesitation Sky pushed Amy into the thicket around a group of fir trees.

Then she pulled out the gun, turned, and faced the snowmobile bearing down upon her. She stood in firing position…feet shoulder width apart, right leg slightly back in a boxer’s stance, knees bent with her body weight forward, all the while holding the gun with both hands.

The rider saw the gun, but refused to veer away.

Sky took aim and waited…the seconds ticked away as he grew closer…and closer. She felt sweat trickle down the side of her face, and wondered how it possible since it was so cold.
When she realized he meant to run her over, she willed herself to stand firm.

As if in slow motion she watched him edge closer, and she pulled the hammer of the gun backwards, but didn’t fire until she could see his eyes. The gun recoiled and fell out of her hands, as the snowmobile clipped her right shoulder. Sky fell and slumped into the snow. The snowmobile turned sideways, slinging its rider a good ten feet into the air. He hit hard, and lay face down in the snow.

Sky was riddled with pain, but she forced herself to get up. Slowly she limped to where the man lay. She could see no signs of breathing, so she presumed him dead.

“You died too easy,” she spoke aloud.

To be sure he was dead she nudged him with the toe of her boot, not once but twice. When he didn’t move, she squatted beside him, and rolled him over.

Blood oozed from a hole ripped in his jacket. Sky reached for the mask covering his face, and slid it up and over his head. She looked down into the face of a monster. His dark hair was long, and fell haphazardly to cover the snow that cradled his head. His eyes were closed, and a trickle of blood ran from his nose, and into his slack and pallid mouth.

She unzipped his coat and unbuttoned his shirt to inspect the fatal wound.

His flesh was ripped and torn from the bullet, however, the damage was not to the heart but more towards his upper, left shoulder. It appeared that the bullet had only nicked his collar-bone. Sky was confident it had to hurt like hell, but she was equally confident it had not been a kill shot.
Quickly she looked back to his face and saw her reflection in the blackest eyes she’d ever seen. Devoid of any white they looked like the eyes of a demon…pure evil.

Panic seized her, and she tried to move away, but he was too quick. He grabbed her shoulders and flipped her over into the snow. He pinned her to the ground with his body, spit blood into her face, and then backhanded her hard with his right hand. Using her as leverage, he pushed down upon her with all his might and stood.
Sky felt herself slipping into unconsciousness, but the thought of Amy caused her to gasp for air.

She looked at the monster towering above her. His eyes were still black with evil, and a fiendishly smile split his face. This hideous sight scared the shit out of her. Then she noticed the large rock he held over his head and heard a guttural growl…

“Die, you ungodly lesbian!”

Sky closed her eyes, and waited for the imminent death blow.

A succession of BANGS ripped the cold air.

Startled, Sky opened her eyes, and watched as half of the monster’s face ripped away like the parting of the Red Sea. Amy a few feet away, stood with the gun in her hand and watched as her captor fell lifeless to the ground.
In a few steps, she moved to stand over him and began screaming, “Die you son-of-a-bitch…die you son-of-a-bitch…DIE…”

Amy emptied the gun into the other half of his face, and kept pulling the trigger long after the last bullet was fired.

[Epilogue]
Three months later…

 

Amy opened her eyes to an early morning view just beyond the open window of their bedroom. She watched as the breeze gently blew the white cotton curtains, and smiled when she felt the coolness touch the tip of her nose.

She loved her mornings. She quietly gave thanks for another day to live, and for the woman lying next to her in bed. Still asleep, Sky unknowingly spooned with Amy. Amy loved the warmth of her wife’s body. She felt the rhythm of Sky’s breath with the rise and fall of her breasts, pressed against her back.

After a while, Amy felt her stir so she turned to face a sleepy-eyed Sky. They both nestled into each other and as always, their bodies fit perfectly together. Sky nuzzled Amy’s neck. It tickled, so Amy laughed aloud.

Desiring a replay of last night’s lovemaking, they reached for one another, but before they could kiss a large bundle of golden fur pounced on top of them. Rudy barked and wagged his tail at the sight of his two moms.

He was happy they were finally awake…after all he had important things to do!

Amy and Sky laughed at their loveable Rudy, and he wiggled between them to commence operation “slobbery kiss.”

A series of “Ewwwws” and “yuckes” filled the air.

Today was going to be a good day.

 

The End

 

 

 

 

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Amy’s Story…Part 4

 

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Photo from: http://texastinyhomes.com/cades-cove-smoky-mountains/

(start at the beginning–click here )


[Recap]– Amy has been kidnapped.  She awakens to find herself hanging from rusty shackles, in the darkness of a dank, root cellar.  Cold and alone, she longs to live to see,  Sky, the love of her life, and Rudy, her beloved Golden Retriever.  Rudy was with her at the time of her abduction, and because of his love for Amy, he had lunged viciously at the monster, who was trying to take away his human.  The sound of a gun shot is the last thing Amy remembers before waking to her present horror.  She fears Rudy is dead.  After hanging, for what seemed like hours, the silence is broken by the sound of footsteps coming from the old wooden stairway, leading down into her cryptic prison.  Amy realizes she is no longer alone.  Then, with the strike of a match, Amy stares into the eyes of a psycho serial killer.   

…and now, part 4…

***

Amy’s heart seized with fear, and she was deafened by its rapid, rhythmic beating.

Then, with the strike of a match, her face is bathed with hues of warm gold.  She squinted from the shock of light, and tried to focus. The flickering light threatened to die, but a dank breeze quickened the flame, and she found herself staring into the bluest of eyes, only inches from her face.

He smiled and almost laughed out loud, when he saw his Amy’s eyes widen with recognition.  Slowly he pulled the tape from her mouth, freeing the question he had longed to hear from her…

“Why?”

There was a long pause with no answer, so once again she asked her question.

“Why?”

Her question was raspy and  barely audible, and like a razor it sliced at her dry throat.   Intense pain caused her to suck air, which only added another helping of agony.  Amy closed her eyes, in response, but the tightly shut lids did little to alleviate her suffering.  And so she opened them once again, and gazed at him through a watery glaze.

The fire, from the match, waxed and waned, but before the light died, he leaned into Amy, kissed her bloody lips, and then licked her blood from his own lips.  He smiled, and then slowly  brought the match to his mouth to blow out the only light that lit the darkness.

In the dark, he leaned into her body, positioning his left shoulder against her waist, and placed his left hand on the small of her back.  Standing slowly, he lifted Amy with his shoulder just enough to release the tension in the chains that held her upside down.  With a strong right hand he inserted the key and unlocked the shackles around her ankles.  The bloody shackles fell loose and swung back and forth from the wooden beam that ran the length of the cellar.  He pulled her close and cradled her naked body protectively against his chest.  Amy wanted to kick and bite him, but her body was so weak, all she could do was hang limp, like a rag doll.

Taking one step at a time, he climbed the stairs with ease, and exited the root cellar.  Amy shivered.  The night air was noticeably colder than that of her cryptic prison.  She scanned the area, already searching for a way of escape.  Both sides of the small path  was bordered by dense forest.  Amy squinted and tried to see beyond the trees, but pitch blackness swallowed the view, so that the only thing visible were the closest branches.

Looking into the blackness, Amy  exchanged her fear for anger, and then her anger for rage.   She wanted to beat the shit out of the son-of-a-bitch carrying her, and she wanted to kick her own ass, for being so weak.  Silently she cursed her body, for letting her down.  She hated that her head rested against his shoulder, and that there wasn’t a damn thing she could do about.  Everywhere her body touched his, recoiled with anger and disgust.

“Damn him,” she thought!  Amy’s brain crescendoed with the noise of her anger, but the only audible sound of the night air,  was the snow crunching beneath the boots of a mad man.

Once inside, he laid her on a couch, in front of a fireplace, roaring with flames.  Without hesitation, he took a soft lamb’s wool, blanket, from the back of the couch, and gently tucked it around her body.  Then he kissed her right temple and whispered in her ear, “Don’t go anywhere.”  She watched him turn and leave the room.

Amy closed her eyes; her thoughts conflicted.  On one hand, she was grateful for the warmth of the fire and the softness of the blanket, but on the other hand, she was mad as hell and wanted to kill the monster who had put her in this position.

Hearing his footsteps, she opened her eyes to see him approaching, carrying a first aid kit.  He sat on the floor and reached for her.  Amy felt the softness of his hands, as he wiped clean the blood from her wounds.  Next, he applied antibiotic cream and then wrapped each ankle with gauze and secured it with medical tape.  Amy closed her eyes and wondered why…why would he have inflicted such torture only to tend to her wounds with so much tenderness?

She felt a warm cloth being pressed to her lips.  Amy opened her eyes to see his eyes, only inches away.  His eyes were cold and hollow; and reminded her of a shark’s soul-less stare.  Fear clutched her heart, and took her breath away.  As she stared into the emptiness of his eyes, she felt herself teetering on the edge of his insanity.  Something inside warned her, there would be no return from such a fall.  In self-preservation, Amy closed her eyes and wondered why she had never noticed this madness in his eyes before.  James had been her friend.

***

Sky once again cursed, as her car fish-tailed over the ice-covered roads.  It had been three hours since she last heard Amy’s voice.  Their phone call had been interrupted by Rudy’s continuous barking; therefore, the warning of “Lock the door!” had gone unheard by Amy.

Sky righted her old Sentra, and eased off the gas a little more, realizing she would be of no help, stranded in a ditch.

“Damn it, this slow pace is killing me!”

She smacked her hand hard against the steering wheel.  She was only 30 miles away from the cabin, but traveling at turtle speed, meant it was still a good hour or more away.  Sky racked her brain, trying to think of something else she could do.  She had tried to contact the local Sheriff’s Department, but her damn cell phone had zero reception.   Mentally she kicked herself for not calling 911 before she had left the house.

After she had heard Rudy’s vicious attack, and the explosion, she knew to be a gunshot, the only thought in her mind was saving Amy.  And in the moment, it meant getting to her as soon as possible.

She realized, the rush of adrenaline had clouded her judgement, so the idea of calling the local authorities, had never entered her mind, until it was too late.  A blinding snowstorm swirled around her, and the only thing to do was to drive slowly forward.

Time ticked slowly by, but within an hour, Sky reached the cabin, and was able to slide her Sentra to a stop, narrowly missing Amy’s parked car.  She slung open the door, and attempted to run to the cabin.  Her sneakers, lacking traction, slipped, and propelled her headlong into 10 inches of freshly, fallen snow.

“Fuck!”

She lifted her face from the snow, blew the hair from her eyes, and carefully stood up.  The cabin was quiet, and she could see the front door was ajar.  Making her way to the front porch, Sky called out to Amy.

“Amy?”

“Amy, honey…are you there?”

Sky prayed to hear Amy’s voice, but the prayer went unanswered.

Standing at the foot of the stairs, her heart sank, when she noticed the disturbance of snow, just outside the front door.    She climbed the stairs to get a better look, and her heart sank even deeper, when she saw a blood-red trail leading into the woods.

Inside, the cabin was quiet, save for the beeping of a phone hanging on the wall; its handset laid upon the table, where Amy had left it.  Sky picked up and put it back in place, and then she lifted it, and placed it against her ear.  She dialed 911 using the rotary, and waited to hear a voice from the other end.

***

Sheriff Jones picked up the ringing phone and grunted, “Blue Ridge Sheriff’s Department.  How can I help ya?”

Sky’s hurried voice filled his ear with incoherent words that meant squat to him.

“Uh…Ma’am…”  “Ma’am please…”  “Soooo… let me get this straight…”  “Who’s missing?”  “Did ya say it was yer…uh…er…yer friend?” 

Sky’s impatient voice returned, “No, not my friend, I said my wife!”

Sheriff Jones cleared his throat, and leaned his massive form back, into the comfort of an oversized office chair.  “(Ahem)…soooo how long has yer…uh…wife.. been missing?” 

“I told you, at least 4 hours!”

“Only 4 hours?  Well, now…little lady…who’s to say she ain’t  just gone out for a hike or something like at?  Besides…according to regulations, I ain’t supposed to do a thing till she’s been gone for at least 24 hours.”

Skyler screamed into the phone,

“A hike in a freaking snowstorm?  And did I mention the trail of blood??   Listen you, hillbilly son-of-a-bitch, I don’t care if it’s been two minutes or two hundred minutes, if you don’t get someone out here, I will have your ass standing in next week’s fucking, unemployment line!”

Sheriff Jones rolled his eyes, “Now…uh…little lady…there ain’t no need for…uh…such hostility.  I will send someone as soon as possible, but…uh…I gotta tell ya my two deputies are out on other calls.”

“I don’t give a rat’s ass if they’re out helping the Pope!  You send someone and send them NOW!  And stop calling me, LITTLE LADY!”

Sheriff Jones rocked his large body forward, and leaned upon a messy desk.

“All right then little laaa…uh…a ’hem…ma’am…if it makes ya feel better I’ll just come out there myself.  But with this weather, it may take a while.  Now…uh…is the best number where I can reach ya?” 

His question was answered with dead silence, and Sheriff Jones knew the little lady had hung up on him

***

Sky slammed the phone into its cradle.

She knew Barney Fife would be of no help.  Hell, he probably wouldn’t even come, she thought.

Trying to assess the situation, her eyes fell on Amy’s suitcase.  She opened it and took out a pair snow boots that were a half-size too small, but she knew they would be far better in the snow than her sneakers.  She pulled the boots over two pairs of socks, and tied the laces in a double knot.  Then she searched for a coat but had to settle for one of Amy’s flannel shirts and an oversized hoodie.

Sky walked into their bedroom, to her side of the bed, and without hesitation, she lifted the mattress and grabbed a 38 revolver that Amy knew nothing about.  She tucked the cold steel into the back of her jeans,  grabbed a flashlight, from the nightstand, and headed outside to follow the trail of blood that led into the woods.

***

(Continue to Part 5)

Amy’s Story…Part 3

(To read from the beginning visit Part 1 and then Part 2)

[Recap:  For months Amy has been stalked by some unseen predator.  Finally the police takes  someone into custody, and so Amy is able to breathe a sigh of relief.  Sky, her girlfriend, suggests a week long get-away for some much needed rest. Amy and Rudy, her golden retriever, navigate snowy roads, but the two of them finally make it to their little cabin nestled within the Blue Ridge Mountains.  Believing herself safe, Amy lets down her guard and basks in her new found peace.  But then, something outside incites Rudy.  Amy steps outside to investigate, unaware that those steps would lead her into an unimaginable nightmare.  Rudy growls…a shadow…a gunshot…darkness… 

Later Amy awakes to find herself shackled and hanging in the darkness of a musty root cellar.  Not knowing if her beloved dog is dead or alive, she tries to call out to Rudy, however, her cries are stifled by the duct tape pressed tightly across her mouth.  Confused and alone, Amy’s tears fall to the ground below her.  She hangs in the darkness, awaiting her captor, knowing her horror has just begun.] 

*** 

He pictured Amy, hanging in the root cellar.  He knew of her excruciating pain.  He had once endured the same from the hands of his father.

He would never ask Amy to endure anything that he himself had not experienced first.  No, he loved her way too much for that.

The aroma in the tiny kitchen tantalized all of his senses.  Yes, of course he could smell the perfectly charred meat, anyone could do that, but he actually saw, tasted, heard and touched the aroma as he stood with his eyes closed.  All of his senses were heightened to the point of combustion.

He had always been that way, even as a child.  At first the strong sensations frightened him, but as time passed he realized he was special, and was indeed unlike any other.  He kept this secret and told no one, not his weak pathetic mother, and certainly not his self-righteous father.  This  revelation of himself created an euphoria that often erupted from his mouth in mad laughter.  He tried to contain it as much as possible because he knew others would think him crazy.

He wasn’t crazy.  No, not in the least.  He, unlike most, was…free…free beyond any bounds of humanity.

Being different made him lonely.  He craved someone as extraordinary as himself, and so he began “the search.”  There had been so many “disappointments” through the years, but he was confident that Amy would be different.  He smiled.   He knew “the search” was finally over.

He lifted the fillets from the grill and carefully plated them upon delicate bone china.  He then poured a Vintage Port, 1997 into crystal goblets.  This particular wine, crafted from Portugal’s indigenous grapes, was thick and juicy and pared well with fillet mignon.  The steaks were resting and the wine poured; the only thing missing was Amy.

He opened the cabin door to a clear and cold night.  The aged root cellar was visible from the porch.  He stood for a moment, surveying the crumbling stone and then took a step into the night.

******  

Amy hung limp from a splintered plank, that ran the length of the underground hole.  The cellar was old.  It had been built by Scotch-Irish immigrants during the early 1800’s.  The hole was barely six feet high, so Amy’s hair fell into blood, tears, and a dank soil, that reeked of mold, and decaying vegetables.

Amy shivered.  She closed her eyes to the dark and began to picture the two loves of her life, Sky and Rudy.  Her heart ached as she pictured Sky’s smile and Rudy’s wagging tail.  She determined, there in the darkness, she would live to see them again.  Her love for them would be her survival.

A screeching sound of rusty hinges, caused her to open her tightly closed eyes.  The darkness still engulfed her.  She held her breath and listened intently.  There was a brief silence and then a faint creaking of wooden stairs.

Amy realized she was no longer alone.  She heard footsteps, slow and methodical…

One…two…three, and then a pause…

four…five…six …another pause…

seven…eight…and then breathing…slow rhythmic breaths…in and out…

Amy’s heart seized with fear, and she was deafened from the sound of her rapid beating heart.  Then, with the strike of a match, her face was bathed with hues of warm gold.  She squinted from the shock of light, and tried to focus. The flickering light threatened to die, but a dank breeze quickened the flame, and she found herself staring into the bluest of eyes, only inches from her face.

He smiled and almost laughed aloud, when he saw his Amy’s eyes widen with recognition.

Slowly he pulled the tape from her mouth, freeing the question he had longed to hear from her.

“Why…?”

***

Fear is never Lukewarm

(To continue to Part 4 visit Here)