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🖤 Lost in the City
She rescued him, but was he saved?
He knew he shouldn’t have had that last drink. It was one too many, as usual. Now, here he was, stumbling through the dark streets of an unfamiliar city at 2 AM, trying to find his way back to the hotel.
So damn stupid! He couldn’t get a signal on his phone, so no luck with getting an Uber. And, as he wandered from street to street, no taxis were running at this hour. He was well and truly fucked.
Tim heard men laughing behind him. They sounded just as drunk as he was, which wasn’t good. It wouldn’t be the first time he’d gotten into a fight with strangers in a strange land. But, it had never ended well. He unconsciously reached up and stroked his crooked nose that had been broken years ago.
He quickened his pace, but they seemed to be catching up. Glancing back, it looked like three young men about his size. Great. He didn’t have a chance against three guys. But hey, maybe they wouldn’t fuck with him.
Suddenly, one noticed him and shouted out, “Oy!”
He ignored them and started walking even faster, but they broke into a trot to close the distance. He came to a corner, ducked around it, and broke into a run. The alley ahead was so dark that he didn’t realize it was a dead end until it was too late.
With his face against a brick wall, he turned around and waited to see if they had followed. Unfortunately, he soon discovered they had.
The obvious leader came closer, panting, “Mate, why in the fuck are you running from us? We just wanted to talk.”
His heart was pounding, and he suddenly felt stone-cold sober. “Sorry, man. I’m a little drunk. I don’t want any trouble.”
They all laughed, but this time it didn’t sound so drunk and jolly. “Well, before, we might have all grabbed a pint together. But now? Now you made us chase you down, and we’re feeling a little pissed, aren’t we, lads?”
They all mumbled agreement and moved closer. This shit was about to get real ugly. He was glad he had good corporate health insurance. He just hoped it covered him internationally.
A husky female voice emerged from the darkness and startled all of them. “Boys, boys. What’s going on here? Do you really want to give our fair city a black eye with a tourist?”
A tall, dark shape glided closer and into the dim light of the alley. Her beautifully pale face was just barely visible in the midst of inky clothing from head to toe.
The leader barked a short chuckle. “Oh, boys, this just got a lot more interesting. Hey little dolly, you want to play with some real men tonight? We got what you need.”
Her lips curved into a predatory smile, “Oh, you have what I need, alright.”
One of the men moved forward and reached for her. She let him come closer, the smile still on her lips. He suddenly grabbed her with both hands, trying to pin her arms against her body. But, with a dark blurring motion, her arms were free, and she placed her hands on the sides of his face. With a swift twist, she snapped his neck and let his limp body pour onto the dark cobblestones below.
“You fucking bitch!”
The man on the left lunged at her, swinging a wild roundhouse punch at her ear. She ducked under his arm and slid up his body to nuzzle her face into his neck. He exhaled a quick grunt that was quickly cut off as her mouth closed over his throat. Within seconds, his twitching body dropped to the ground.
The last man standing — the leader of the pack that was no longer much of a pack — took a step back and whisked a knife from a sheath on his belt. He dropped into a defensive crouch with the knife held low.
She raised her eyebrows. “See? Now that’s why you are — or I should say, were — the leader. You’re the smart one, aren’t you?”
His eyes never left her face as he turned and cautiously stepped into a guarded position that would enable movement in any direction.
“When I’m done sticking this in your guts, I’m gonna stick you with something else. You’re gonna pay for a long time tonight.”
She flowed into him like liquid death and pulled him against her. As her mouth closed around his, he thrust the blade into her stomach. In response, she clenched him even harder against her body, locked her hand behind his head, and seemed to kiss him in a long embrace.
Muffled screams emerged from their joined mouths, and his feet kicked against the street and her legs, but he couldn’t break free.
Watching it all unfold, Tim couldn’t move. His limbs felt frozen and lifeless. He couldn’t stop staring at the grotesquely intimate struggle in front of him that seemed to last for an eternity.
The man’s legs slowly stopped wiggling and twitching. His arms fell to his sides like a lifeless marionette with its strings cut. She released him and let him fall to the dark street. She raised her face to the starry skies above — back arched like a dark feline — while her entire body shivered with delight.
Wiping her mouth with the back of her hand, she turned to look at Tim. “Are you going to be a problem, too?”
He could barely speak with his mouth gone dry, but he finally stuttered, “N-n-no. No, I’m n-not. I think I owe you my life.”
She glanced down at the three men. “Maybe. Maybe not. You can never tell with this type. Sometimes they just mug you. Sometimes they rape you. But, sometimes, they will leave you for dead.”
She brushed her hands down her jacket and flinched a little as she felt the wound where the man had stabbed her. She opened her jacket and carefully probed.
“Oh shit, he stabbed you! We’ve got to get you to a hospital!”
She laughed, “No, I don’t need a hospital. I’ll be fine in a few hours. You should be on your way. If someone heard the commotion, the police will be here soon.”
Tim looked embarrassed. “I have no idea where ‘my way’ is. I’m completely lost. I don’t know this city very well.”
She took a deep breath and let out a long, groaning sigh. “Ok, come with me. You can crash at my place for the rest of the night. Call an Uber in the morning.”
“Ummm, is that safe? For me, I mean. You’re not going to eat me or something?”
“Good lord, I couldn’t eat you right now even if I wanted to, which I don’t. You can stay here and wait for the cops to show up. I’m sure they’d love to hear your story about how these men were killed. Or, you can come with me. Your choice. I’m leaving.”
She turned to walk back up the alley. He waited for a few seconds, looking at the twisted forms of the dead men in front of him. But, he had no desire to spend the next few months — or years — of his life in some godforsaken prison in this country.
He broke into a jog to catch up with her, following her out onto the street and down the sidewalk.
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