The strap made contact with her cheek. The metallic taste of blood filled her mouth and she swallowed, forcing down the bile that rose in her throat. She couldn’t see her tormentor.
“Please,” Kaidence pleaded, “let me go.” The figure clad in black ignored her. Instead, he picked up a corkscrew. Kaidence remembered Dan in Dallas. She’d used a corkscrew with him.
“Please…” tears streamed down her face. The masked man moved closer and all Kaidence could see were his eyes. They were blank, almost hollow. He shoved a towel into Kaidence’s mouth before covering it with tape. Then he removed his mask. Terror filled her as she waited to see who this person was.
No. It can’t be. Kaidence tried to scream. A rough hand covered her nose. The ghost squeezed tighter. I’m going to die, she thought. How can someone who’s already dead kill me?
Right before she was about to lose consciousness, the man-ghost removed his hand. Kaidence struggled to breathe, trying not to choke on the towel. She suppressed a sob. She knew crying would rob her of her already shallow breathing. Her eyes begged for mercy.
Gus–or what looked like Gus–leaned down until their noses were almost touching. He whispered, “Vous allez souffrir comme j’ai souffert”
She had heard that before and recognized the words: You will suffer as I suffered. He ripped the tape off. No one would hear her.
Kaidence screamed. An endless, terror-filled, all knowing scream. The last thing she remembered was the thing’s laugh. It’s rough, guttural sound heralding pain that even she could ever imagine.
* * *
Kaidence felt weightless. For a moment she thought she was dead. Death for her wouldn’t be so peaceful. No, she wasn’t dead. She was drugged. She struggled to focus enough to open her eyes and saw that she was in a hospital. Kaidence tried to raise her hand and found them bound to the either side of the bed. A nurse came in to check her IV; she didn’t even glance at Kaidence.
“What happened?,” Kaidence croaked. The nurse didn’t say a word. “Ma’am?” She turned so that Kaidence could see her face. It was the woman from the restaurant. The one who had cursed her.
“Did you enjoy the visit from your old friend, Kaidence?” she asked. Her pleasant voice belied the sinister look the shadows of the dim room cast across her face. “Because that was only the beginning.” She turned to leave the room.
“Wait,” Kaidence felt helpless. She didn’t want to endure whatever it was that earned her a trip to the hospital. “Just…please…will you end it for me?”
The woman has paused but didn’t turn to face her when she spoke, “After you lose your money and your mind, then you will lose your life.” She paused before exiting, “Sweet dreams.”
Drowsiness overwhelmed her. She was terrified of what waited for her in unconsciousness. She struggled, unsuccessfully against the drug that would put her under and take her back to the terror that would torment her until her last breath.