Part One: In Deplorable Company.
‘This is a secured government building. How did you break in?’
He’s in full control of this conversation. It ebbs and rises as he sees fit. He alternates between using his tongue or his fists to communicate. I in turn respond well within my disposition with silence, grunts of pain or the occasional insult against his mother. I’ve crossed paths with men of his ilk before. I’ve been through worse than him.
The conditions could have been worse, of course. Not to say I enjoy being suspended in the air with my arms clamped and chained to opposite walls of the room, and a cup of coffee would have been nice too, but I’ve been in worse positions. One room I was exiled in once, I stretched my hand before my eyes and could not see it. When people talk of purgatory, I remember that place.
This place, it’s nothing. This man, he will tire. They always do. He does, and he leaves.
That’s when I whisper to my arm, ‘Mif-tahun.’
There are exactly seven hundred and twenty nine locks in this entire building. I can feel each one of them, but right now I need to focus on just two.
The process has always been painful, it’s never not been, but I need to be rid of these chains.
Then it gets worse.
In my haste, I drop my newly acquired key. It clinks mockingly as it kisses the floor, then rolls away and disappears into a drain in the floor.
I swear in exasperation.
Right then, let’s try that again.
In case you're wondering, Part Two is over here!