Patient Twelve

Chapter Thirty-Five


I groaned and rolled onto my back. I yawned as I stretched my arms over my head. Ben was sitting on the edge of the bed. He had already gotten changed. He had on a hoodie and a scarf wrapped around his neck. His one hand was in the front pocket of his sweater, and his other hand was brushing the hair off of my forehead.

“How is your head feeling today?” he asked.

“It’s better,” I said.

“That’s good to hear,” he said.

He leaned down and kissed me. His hand came out of his pocket. Something cold wrapped itself around my wrist and I heard a click. I knew this feeling from Oliver.

I pulled away from Ben to see that he had one end of the handcuff on my wrist. I jerked my arm, but it caused the cold metal to dig into my flesh.

“Get off me!” I screamed. I swung my leg to the side and tried to kick Ben. He got up off of the mattress, and out of my reach.

Ben pulled the other end of the handcuffs around one of the wooden posts on the headboard. I fought against him, but he easily overpowered me. I kept my other hand clutched to my chest, but he managed to pry it free. He clasped the other end of the handcuff around my wrist. He stepped away from me once I was secured to the bed. He shook his head and ran his fingers through his hair. I fought against the restraints. I gritted my teeth as my wrists burned in agony.

“Calm down, Diana,” he said.

“What are you doing?” I asked.

“I have to go into town today,” he said. “I’m going to get us some food and see if I can find a way to get my hands on any antibiotics.”

“So why am I handcuffed to the bed?”

“I know what you tried to do last night. I saw the keys on the counter. It explained why you were acting so strangely.”

I took in a sharp breath. A lump had formed in my dry throat, and nausea was creeping into my stomach. Ben was going to handcuff me to this bed and leave me here. That was how he was going to kill me.


He held up his hand to silence me. I bit down on my lip. My shoulders ached as I shrunk back into the bed.

“Don’t worry, I’m not mad,” he said. “I understand you are just trying to go and see your family. You know I am sorry that it can’t happen yet. Maybe in the future, but not now.”

Ben straightened the sheets and blankets that got pushed to the end of the bed while I was fighting against him. He laid the blankets over top of me and adjusted the pillow behind my head. I kept biting my lip as he fused around me.

He sat back beside me on the bed. He grazed his fingers over the skin on my wrist. I looked up to see that it was already bright red.

“Do me a favour and don’t hurt yourself,” he said.

“Let me go,” I said.

“I can’t,” he said. “I would love to bring you with me, but I am not sure if anyone will recognize you. I can’t really trust you right now, and I don’t want you wandering through the forest and getting hurt.”

“Please, Ben. I promise I will stay in the cabin.”

“I hate having to do this, but it has to happen. I will only be there for an hour or so. Just go back to sleep.”

He leaned forward to kiss me. I rolled my head to the side so that he missed my lips. He sighed before pressing his lips against my cheek.

“I’ll be back soon,” he said.

He left the room. I listened as he walked around the cabin. A door slammed shut, and the car engine revved up.

I was finally in this cabin alone, but I was restrained. I had to get myself free and run for help. I pulled down on the restraints. The metal caused the bones in my wrists to ache. I shimmied my weight so that I could turn over onto my stomach. The chain in the handcuffs was long enough to let me move a bit. I kicked the blankets off of myself and got onto my knees.

The chain was through one post of the wooden headboard. I pulled the chain against the post. If I pull hard enough, the wood may split. My hands would be stuck together, but at least I would be able to get out of here.

I leaned back as far as I could. I put all of my weight on the chain. I just needed one link to burst or the post to come loose.

I screamed in pain as the metal cuffs tore into my wrists. I squeezed my eyes shut as the tears pricked at the back of my eyes. The fire burning in my wrist was running up my arms. I opened my eyes to see the warm blood dripping off of the cuffs and onto the pillowcase.

I stopped pulling, and I was panting for breath. I leaned forward and rested my head on the headboard. The tears had escaped my eyes and were flowing down my cheeks. I sniffled back a sob as I leaned back again.

I flinched as soon as the metal touched the open cuts on my wrist. I pulled back, and a scream surpassed my gritted teeth. I grabbed the chain with my hands and tried to get the metal off of my wounds. I pulled on the chain, but nothing would budge.

The drops of blood were running up my arms. I turned my wrists to see the thin skin surrounding my wrists had torn open from the metal. Drops fell onto the bed below me.

I gave it one more hard yank accompanied by a scream, but it was useless. I fell down against the bed. I twisted my wrist against the restraint, and a new stream of blood started running down my arms.

My salty tears covered my lips. I tried to dry my eyes on the sleeve of my shirt. I curled my body into a ball on my side.

The chain and the post were not going to break. If I kept fighting, I would tear more into my wrists. I couldn’t cause myself to bleed out while waiting for Ben to come back.

There was no clock in the bedroom, and I could not track how long he was gone. I stayed on my side and cried. I wanted to keep fighting to get free, but my wrists were screaming out in agony. Any movement caused a sharp pain to shoot up my arms.

I did not want to keep crying, but I did. I wanted to be home. I wanted to be in my bed. I wanted my Mom to be calling me down for dinner and asking me about my day. I wanted Marcy to be calling me in the middle of the night when she was bored during a night shift.

My eyes had not dried before I heard Ben come back into the cabin. The door slammed shut, and there was a rustle of plastic bags.

“Di-” Ben said as he walked into the bedroom. He stopped in the doorframe when he saw me. “Sweetheart, what did you do to yourself?”

He hurried over to the side of the bed. He grabbed my shoulders and rolled me onto my back. I gasped as my hands burned. Ben’s eyes shot up to my bloody wrists. He dug into the pocket of his jeans and pulled out the key. He unclasped the handcuffs. I cradled my hands to my chest. My shoulders ached, and I tried to stretch them out.

“What were you doing?” he asked.

It was obvious what I was doing, but I had to lie to Ben again. I couldn’t let him know I was trying to escape. I needed to keep him happy.

“I didn’t think you were coming back,” I lied. My throat was raw from crying, and my voice came out rough. “I was worried.”

“You know I would never leave you,” he said.

He wrapped his arms around me and scooped me onto his lap. He tightened his arms around me as he rocked us back and forth. He pressed his lips against my temple. I hadn’t moved my hands, and the blood was soaking through the front of my T-shirt.

“I won’t leave you alone again,” he said.

I muttered a curse and let my head fall against Ben’s chest.

“Let’s get cleaned up,” Ben said. “I got you a present I want to show you.”

I lifted my head off of him and furrowed my eyebrows.

“You bought me a present?” I asked.

He chuckled and kissed my cheek. “Yeah, I did. Come on and let me show you it.”

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