Every now and then Jan would sit up and take a quick peek at her surroundings. She saw the sign for the Garden State Parkway but the area was unfamiliar to her. This was not by his house, she knew that. It was further out judging by the amount of trees. He lived closer to the NYC so it was more industrial. They had tied her up again at a road stop because she had tried to kick the window of the car out. As it was it was just a feeble attempt. The glass was the type that was made to withstand crashes etc. so her kicks couldn't even make a dent. They had raped her again in the back seat of the car and this time she had almost blacked out but that release escaped her too. She did manage to do one thing though. When they had taken her out so she could go to the bathroom she had taken off her ring and dropped it on the grass by the car. It was the ring her father had given her when she was younger and as much as it hurt to leave it there she knew that her dad would want her to. So she said a prayer to her dad as they pulled away that someone would find it and bring her home.
Phil pulled into Noah's driveway and jumped out of the car. At his door he rang the bell repeatedly but no one answered. He knew he had to get inside somehow so he went around to the back door and forced it open. The house was a mess but it was an organzied mess. Obviously Noah couldn't care less about the things he owned. Phil looked around the house for something, anything which would help tell him where they might have gone. He found a note pad by the phone with an address on it. It was in Pennsylvania, about another 2 hours from here. It was a wild shot but it was all he had so back he went into his car and drove off towards Pennsylvania. After driving about an hour he decided he had to stop for gas and to go to the bathroom. His mind was full of racing thoughts and if he hadn't looked down at that moment he would have missed it entirely. By his foot was a ring, Jan's ring! He was overjoyed! This meant that he was on the right track. She was trying to tell him that she was still alive. With a new sense of purpose he got back in the car and headed back out.
She could hear the change of the road under the tires. It went from a paved road to either dirt or gravel, she couldn't tell which. Suddenly the car stopped and she was hauled out and onto her feet. She looked around. In front of her was a small cabin. Everywhere else she looked was trees with no sign of civilization. She knew that this would probably be the last place she would ever see so she tried to drink in the beauty of the forest but they opened the door to the cabin and shoved her inside. Her face hit the ground filling her mouth with dust. The place had obviously been abandoned a long time ago. She squinted in the darkened room to try to make out the surroundings. There was a filthy bed, an old refrigerator and some lamps, that was about it. They picked her up and threw her onto the bed, knocking up a cloud of dirt when she hit it. They tied her to the rails and she had no energy to try to stop them. Then, they had her again. Her eyes stared out of the dingy window at the fading light as they forced themselves on her. She felt nothing. She was beyond pain and sorrow, she was deep into herself now, in a place that they couldn't touch. Phil was the only one to ever see that part of her. And now she clung onto that memory like a warm blanket on a cold night, wrapped herself in it and passed out.
Phil found the exit for the address he was seeking. Getting directions from the local gas station, he pointed his car east and allowed himself to go from calm determination to white hot rage. He could feel it inside of him, like a switch being thrown. It was a new sensation for him; he wasn't the type to allow that sort of mindless energy to well up. This time though he had no choice. He thought of Jan being hurt. Thought of her crying in pain. He heard her voice in his head calling to him and nothing else mattered.
"Is she dead?" the one guy said to Noah. "Nah, she just fainted is all. Take the lantern and go down to the creek and get me some cold water to throw on her. No fun fucking a limp doll" The heat was almost unbearable in the cabin, no breeze moved through it and they were all feeling the effects. "And get some extra for a long drink for us too, damn it's hot in here!" he bellowed as the guy lit the lantern, grabbed an old pitcher and scurried out the door.
He drove up very slowly, turning his lights out as he went. Now it was almost pitch black in the forest and he had to rely on his senses to keep on the dirt road. Phil could sense a clearing up ahead but he dared not put his lights back on. He stopped the car and quietly got out. He could hear the sound of running water just a few yards to his right and he could see the light from a lantern right by it. He walked over toward the light, his steps quiet and graceful from years of surfing and swimming. He knew how to step to the rhythm of nature and barely made a sound as he approached the running water. He could see a man kneeling down at the waters edge, scooping water into a pitcher. Phil didn't know what to do. For all he knew this could just be an innocent man getting himself a cool drink. So he waited, watched and listened. Suddenly and to his horror his cell phone rang in the car. The man turned and looked up toward Phil, obviously aware now that he was being watched. Phil caught site of the guy when he held up the lantern and he couldn't believe his eyes. Standing there at the water was one of his neighbors in the building and, more importantly one of Brynn's friends! A horrible thought began to take shape in his mind. Could all of this be Brynn's doing? Is she involved in this at all? He didn't have the luxury of pondering it any further because the man was heading his way.
Jan woke suddenly and looked around. She noticed one of the guys was missing and it was only Noah there now. "Why are you doing this to me Noah?" she asked him. He looked at her and she could barely recognize this evil person who stood in front of her. How could she have been so blind before. "Well I guess it doesn't matter if I tell you or not since you aren't going to be around much longer anyway" he said, making her worst thought a reality. "Your boyfriends wife paid us good money to get you out of the picture" he smiled, "and we were more than happy to oblige" Jan's mind reeled. Boyfriends wife? Brynn is behind this?! She couldn't believe what she was hearing. She knew that Brynn was the jealous type but she didn't think she was capable of something so hidious as this. Noah approached her and got right in her face. His breath smelled of beer and having him so close repulsed her. He grabbed her face in his hand and kissed her roughly, his tongue snaking down her throat making her gag. He just laughed at her, totally gone was the man who she thought was a good and decent one. 'I have something else that can make you gag even worse' he leered. She began to wish she hadn't awakened.
Phil slipped behind a tree quietly. He could see the guy coming straight towards him, squinting in the dark. He knew he had to do something or he would walk right into him and he would lose the element of surprise. Phil picked up a rock and threw it up over the mans head, landing behind him, making him turn around. In a flash Phil was on him, laying the guy flat on his stomach. He pressed his knee into his back and grabbed the guy around his neck with his arm. "Where is she" he demanded. He wasn't asking he was ordering. The guy squirmed under him but couldn't break free. "You either tell me where she is or I will break your neck right now without a second thought" he told him and the guy had no doubts that he would do just that. Phil had never felt such anger before. He could have easily killed this guy the way he had him and it took every bit of strength NOT to. He thought about Jan's blood on the sheet and the pain she must have gone through. He thought of how frightened she must have been and how alone she felt. He wanted vengeance, wanted to make him feel the way she must be feeling. The muscles in his arms were tight and straining against his victim's neck and with every thought of Jan and what had happened to her, he unconsciously pulled tighter. Suddenly it dawned on him what he was doing and he relaxed himself a bit. The mans head fell into the dirt and for a minute Phil thought that he just might have killed him. He was only unconscious though so he got some tie-wraps from his car, tied him to a tree and gagged him so he couldn't yell for help. He grabbed the lantern and headed upstream.
Jan struggled against the ropes as Noah pushed himself roughly into her. It hurt so much, she couldn't believe how tore up she felt inside. She didn't know if she would ever enjoy sex again. They had taken so much from her by kidnapping her. She was so independent, so alive. Now she felt like a little child who begged for death to take her. She was at the point where she literally couldn't take anymore. She had reached the limit of her endurance and she was drained of hope for any kind of relief. Her spirit was gone. As Noah lay on top of her she looked over his shoulder and thought she saw a shadow behind him. "Not again," she cried to herself "if anything that other guy was meaner than Noah" But as the shadow drew closer she could see that it wasn't him at all. She knew that silhouette like she knew the sunrise. Tears welled up in her eyes when she saw Phils beautiful face right over the guys shoulder. "Was she hallucinating now?" she thought to herself, for a minute doubting her own eyes. But then she saw him motion to her to keep quiet and she realized she wasn't dreaming. For the first time since this whole terrible experience began she allowed herself to feel hope.
When he looked down at her and saw the fear in her eyes and the pain on her face he almost gave himself away. It would have been so easy to just take the lamp and hit this guy over the head but Phil didn't want it easy. Noah didn't deserve 'easy'. He deserved to suffer the way he made Jan suffer. He was hurting her right now, while he was thinking about what to do. Jan was making small sobbing noises that could not be mistaken for pleasure. The more she did this, the more enraged Phil became. Finally he couldn't listen to her cries any longer and threw caution to the wind. He grabbed Noah by the back of the shirt and hauled him off of her, tossing him like a rag doll onto the floor. He glanced over at Jan and for the first time realized that she was tied to the bed. He looked back down at Noah with eyes that were white hot with anger. "Get up" Phil ordered him grabbing him around the neck and hauling him up against the wall. His long fingers reached around his throat and his strong arms applied the pressure needed to kill him, if he wanted to. But instead his balled his other hand into a fist and hit him hard in the stomach. If Phil wasn't holding him upright he would have doubled over. As it was, he just went limp. He shoved him into the table next to the bed, knocking over the lamp. When he pulled him up again and continued to strike him, Jan knew that she had to stop him somehow or it would go too far. "Phil stop, please stop" she yelled almost sobbing. From a distance he could hear her calling to him so he looked over at her. His face was a mask of pure hate and it frightened her. "Phil, no more" she begged him causing him to look down at what he had already done. Blood covered his hands and his shirt and he was shocked to see how close he had come to losing absolute control. Noah was curled up in a ball, his arms crossed tightly against his chest. His eyes were swollen and blood gushed from his mouth and nose. Phil sat on the floor for a moment to collect himself. The lamp had gone out when it hit the floor and all that was illuminating the room was a full moon. He got up and began untying Jan's hands and then her ankles. Just as he was taking out the last knot, he heard Jan scream and felt a terrible sudden pain in his right shoulder. With horror he realized that he had been shot and the force threw him flat on the floor at the edge of the bed. He tried to move his arm but he had no feeling in it and it just hung limp at his side. He could make out the form of the guy he tied up at the river and he didn't look very happy. He pointed the gun at Phil again but just chuckled and put it away instead. For good measure he landed a few kicks into Phil's shoulder making him almost black out. "I think it's time we got rid of you two once and for all" he said, helping Noah to his feet "you are becoming more trouble than you are worth." "But we aren't supposed to hurt him remember?" Noah said, worried about not getting paid if Phil was taken out of the picture. "After what he did to us do you really care?!" the other guy said. Phil could hear what they were saying but they sounded very far away. He could hear Jan yelling at them, could hear her calling for him so he tried to ignore the pain and focus in on her voice. He opened his eyes and watched them as they stood her up and tied her wrists and ankles again. Then they grabbed for him and lifted him to his feet. He could hear his shoulder crack with every movement and he was beginning to feel dizzy from a lack of blood. They tied him the same way as Jan and marched them outside into the night. Walking over to their car they tossed them into the backseat and started up the engine. Phil, ignoring the pain as best he could reached from behind his back and took Jan's bound hand in his. They didn't know what was going to happen but whatever it was they would face it together.