Tracy opened her window and she heard the woman screaming ‘Please save me, I don’t want to die’. Tracy quickly unlocked the doors and gestured the woman to come from the passenger side. The woman ran towards the other side, but before she could open the door, a hand yanked the car door open and pulled Tracy out of the car. Tracy’s scream died in her throat, she heard a woman scream just before her mouth is sealed with a tape and a black cloth fell over her eyes.
Tracy’s hands are tied at the back and she is dragged along roughly. She heard a man’s voice very close to her ears ‘Nosy Bitch, just do as you are told and you will live’. Tracy shivered with horror, everything had happened so fast that she was in a daze. She heard the painful cries of the woman; whose screams are laced with terror. She heard the man say ‘start walking both of you’, being blindfolded it was difficult for her to walk without the fear of falling down. She felt fingers gently grasping her arm and guiding her as she walked.
Tracy was sure it was the woman, who was helping her; she whispered to her “Who is this man? Where is he taking us?” The woman whispered back “He is taking us to hell.” Tracy knew she had to escape before they reached the place called Hell. She thought the best way to do was to take sudden action and catch the captor unawares.
Tracy pretended to stumble and fall down. She quickly sat up, folded her knees, and looped her tied hands in front of her by bringing her feet up and through her hands. She then yanked the black cloth from her face. The sunlight struck her eyes and blinded her for a moment; Tracy blinked her eyes and looked straight into her captor’s eyes. He had piercing grey eyes, brown hair and was quite tall and hefty. She kicked the captor between his legs and screamed to the woman “Run, now.” The man was hurt but not badly and it would not be long before he came after them.
Tracy turned and ran like the wind. She heard the sound of broken twigs behind her. With adrenaline pumping in her whole body, Tracy ran for her life. She wanted to turn back and check if the woman was following her but she was scared to lose her footing. As she ran, the trees started crowding around her, the branches scraping her arms and tearing her top. She stopped for a minute to cut the tape binding her hands by rubbing it across a jagged branch. Even in that bizarre situation, Tracy remembered her dream, the line between dream and reality had blurred.
Tracy heard something whiz past her head, she heard gunfire, and then the woman screamed in agony. Tracy turned back and saw that the woman was not too far away. There was a red stain on her left arm where the bullet had hit her. The man was holding the woman by her hair and the gun was pointing at her. She turned on her feet and started running, she heard the gunfire but Tracy was amongst the trees and the bullet missed her and entered a tree. She ran as fast as her feet could move. She knew if she went back to save the woman, it would turn to be disastrous for both of them. The best way was to get help as fast as she could.
Tracy wanted to catch her breath; she was thirsty and tired after running continuously for more than twenty minutes. She willed her feet to move. She kept running, the trees thinned out and she could hear the sound of cars close by. Relief flooded her body, Tracy burst through the trees and saw that she was on the highway and there were cars passing by. Tracy waved frantically for the cars to stop; her dishevelled appearance was making it difficult. Eventually as a car pulled over, Tracy ran towards the car, the words tumbled out of her mouth at frenetic speed. The man and woman in the car looked at her in disbelief, it all sounded as a part of a movie. They all waited for the police to come and check Tracy’s story.
The police combed the woods with Tracy and with the light fading as evening approached, it was important to move fast. They discovered blood at a spot deep in the woods. The blood trail leads them deeper inside, after walking for a few miles the trail suddenly disappeared. The police dogs picked up the trail and started circling a spot and digging furiously till their paws made scratching noises on a metallic surface.
A trap door in the middle of nowhere was an ominous sign. The police lifted the trap door and found a wooden staircase, which lead to a narrow passage dimly lit by candles. There were wooden doors on both sides of the passage; Tracy followed the policemen into the dungeon and started knocking on doors. There were screams and shouts of women from behind the locked doors.
Tracy woke up with a pounding headache, her body felt bruised and battered. She dragged herself out of the bed, made some coffee, and switched on the television. Her story was playing over all the news channels. She shivered as she remembered the terrified eyes of the women, she had never imagined that her innocent detour in the woods would help to break a ring of human traffickers who abducted women and sold them to suitable buyers across the world.
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