Beverly reached into the second bucket and pulled out a pair of thigh high stockings. Naked and leashed, she sat down on the hard cold floor and pulled her stockings up as high as they could go.
“Very good,” it said.
“There’s nothing else in the bucket,” Beverly yelled.
The static from the intercom system went silent once again, and Beverly knew she was on her own for the time being. She stood up, the room turned from bright yellow back to blue and purple, and a short path revealed itself to her. As she walked forward, the rooms behind her turned dark.
There was no going back.
Beverly reached the end of the path, and darkness filled the space around her. There was a mirror in the room she currently occupied, and as much she didn’t want to, she decided to take a look at herself. Beverly was exhausted. The stress, the worry, the anxiety, the fear; she was completely worn out. The skin under her eyes was a little swollen an puffy-from a lack of sleep she figured. She looked down at her stomach; it was slightly sunken in. Without knowing the time or day, Beverly didn’t know when her last meal was. She was hungry though. Her flat belly was growling. Her lips were dry from dehydration. She was cold, and naked, and she smelled like urine.
Beverly was beautiful, and even through all the ugliness brought on by the kidnapping and this matrix, she was able to find a little joy in her reflection. She was lost in thought and a little delirious-swaying, as she stood looking at herself.
“Do you like what you see Beverly,” it asked.
She did, but this question put Beverly on the spot. She was now at a crossroad, and she knew it was decision time; keep fighting or submit, but how much longer could she go without food or sleep?
Too tired to even talk, Beverly nodded her head in agreement.
“Yes, I do too,” it said laughing. “Good. Good girl. Now, I’m giving you a choice. You can go left, or you can go right, but you will not walk out of here.”
Beverly decided to go left, and the room lit up red. The space around it was dark so she had to cautiously move to the perimeter, and feel her way outside the borders like she had done so many times before. She was like a blind person reaching out and feeling her way to freedom. As Beverly made her way around the red room she felt nothing but walls on the other side.
“There’s nothing left,” she shouted. “That’s not a fucking choice!”
She took a deep breath and walked through the purple and blue room to get to the room on the right side of where she started. The room lit up green. In front of Beverly, hanging down around her knees was clamp, and the clamp was attached to a thick metal chain that went all the way up to the ceiling. There was a piece of paper on the floor.
The Note Read:
I told you you wouldn’t walk out of here, however, I still gave you a choice, and it looks like you’re making the right one. After all, you’re so young. You have your whole life ahead of you. Why would you want to die in place like this? Now, I want you to get on your knees and attach the leash to the clamp.
Beverly dropped to her knees and reached behind herself to attach the leash. When the leash was secure a new path opened. Beverly remained still-still on her knees. She thought about what was written in the letter, she thought about what the voice said, and she considered her new surroundings. It was hard to see what was up ahead from her knees, but she could see herself clearly on the television hanging on the wall in the room. Beverly took another deep breath before leaning forward and letting her palms touch the floor.
The voice came back.
“Awesome,” it said. “I didn’t even have to tell you what to do! Good doggy.”
Beverly ignored the taunting voice and crawled forward on her hands and knees. Humiliation and shame washed over her as she crawled fully exposed through the purple and blue rooms. One after another, television after television; and every once in a while she would look up at the television to see if she was still on the screen. She was.
“You wanted to be a star didn’t you Beverly,” it asked. “Didn’t you want to be on television? Oh, you’re so talented.”
Beverly ignored it and kept crawling. Her knees were sore and her neck was cramping, but she kept crawling, and eventually, she came to a room where she could eat and drink. There were two bowls on the floor; dry cereal in one and water in the other. She drank and ate like a dog, and when she drank too fast the the chain would retract and yank her back. Sometimes the chain would retract for no reason at all and so hard it would pull her hands off the floor.
Not long after eating, Beverly crawled to a room with a small mattress. Her eyes lit up-she was craving sleep. It wasn’t much, but at least she was able to curl up on her side and rest for a while; and she was off the cold hard floor.
When she woke up she had no idea how long she’d been sleeping for. Still curled up on the small dirty mattress, Beverly wiped the tears from her face. She thought maybe she was dreaming-like all this had been a terrible nightmare that she’d awaken from, but it wasn’t. She laid there naked, dehydrated, and smelling like urine. The only thing different was the position of her chain. Instead of it going up to the ceiling, it was now behind her-attached way off in the darkness somewhere. Remembering not to stand, Beverly repositioned herself on all-fours. Forward was the only way to go; she looked at herself on the television screen and began crawling.
She crawled until a wall impeded her progress. The room she just left went dark-there was no going back. It was pitch black all around her. The purple and blue lights faded out until she could barely see the room she was in, but she could hear static coming from the intercom.
“Once again, you have a choice,” it said.
She heard the intercom switch off, and the room went silent. From above, a bright white spotlight accented the wall blocking her way forward. At the height of where her head was, there was a round hole. One round hole. The wall moved forward slowly-closing in on her. When it was several feet from her face it stopped, and in a panic, Beverly jumped to her feet.
“I don’t like this,” she yelled. “Stop this! This is going too far!”
Beverly let out a scream, but it was overpowered by the sound of the chain. The chain was changing positions again-going from behind her to overhead. When it stopped moving it began to retract pulling Beverly up onto her tippy toes. Then it went further until her feet were off the floor. Beverly reached up out of desperation-trying to somehow free herself as her feet swung freely. She was gasping.
The voice was back.
“Bad doggy,” it said while she hung there for a short time.
Beverly was eased back down to the floor, and the chain’s connection slid back behind her. She understood now. Life or death was the choice it was giving her, and choosing life meant she didn’t have much of a choice. She fell to her knees again and placed her hands on the floor. Obediently and seductively, she crawled like a dog-on all fours until the wall was inches from her face.
To Be Continued….