He’d stopped the car in the middle of the winding road, and her in mid-sentence. It was dark, and the forest loomed over them on either side. His headlights, alone, chased the shadows away. He told her to run. Her face read shock as he slowly unlocked the doors. She slowly exited the car, silent, and with a head full of trepidation. Having never taken his eyes off the road, he didn’t start now, “If I catch you, I’m going to hurt you. Run fast, little girl.” That last part he had used a little sing-song voice, which was only a bit terrifying.
She wasn’t sure if it was the “woosh” of the car speeding away, or if the door shut by her own hand. She was still in spin mode. The high trees of the forest promised him to be a liar, but in an instant, her own fear took over. Her boots hit the few feet of pavement that she had left. She bolted. He grinned as he watched her from the rear view mirror.
He could smell her, even as he left her standing there. With the open door, he could smell the moisture in the air, and feel the coolness of the evening. She had on a thick sweater, jeans, and boots, but glancing in the backseat sunk his entire face into a frown. He wouldn’t be able to let her run as far as he wanted. He parked, straightened his jacked, and headed right for the deep woods.
She tore through the woods like a pixie/linebacker hybrid. Never had she been so light on her feet, yet taken such big, tumbling hits as this. She was going for distance. He had figured. She wasn’t the hiding type. He listened to her coming for almost thirty seconds before he broke into a full force run in her direction. The noise that he was making was overridden by hers. He wrapped her up when he hit her, full force, from the side. The impact sent them both tumbling.
After the two of them had stopped moving, he stood up and moved over her. She was making a sad attempt at crab-crawling backwards and mumbling with that fat lip she had scored. Her only weapons were the dead leaves she’d kicked up while trying to stand. He wasn’t smiling. He was grinning. He circled around her, closely.
Her mumbling became louder and it developed into a begging sob, lowering back down to her knees, as if to say that he’d physically beaten her. Her nose was pink and running. She tried to scream, but her throat was raw, from the huffing and puffing of running and falling.
She smelled so perfect for him. He just couldn’t understand what this one lacked. What to do?! What to do?! His fingers tightened into tight fists and he slammed one against his head. He took a deep breath, and then he remembered…
I don’t like it when they don’t run.
I don’t like it when they don’t play.
Pack it away for another day.
With a few deep breaths and a good straightening to his coat, he became much more controlled. Every move became more calculated. Every step seemed pre-planned. She wondered if she’d ever even had a chance.
His hands wrapped around layers of denim and boot leather, pulling her a bit at a time across the forest’s floor. Her head bobbled up and down with each little bump or lump. He chucked to no one about how agreeable and less opinionated she had suddenly become; but chloroform will do that to a girl.
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