Welcome to my first story in nearly a year! I hope this is to your liking; criticism is welcomed and greatly appreciated! Enjoy!
Disclaimer: I do not own Predator, Fox does. No money is being made, so don't sue.
Stifling heat pressed itself against my body, slowly rousing me up and out of unconsciousness. A low moan of discomfort rose from my throat and escaped in a soft hum. My perceptions distorted as I took control, my internal world fragmented by the broken shards of confusion. Minutes became hours, my awareness dim and limbs heavy. All my concentration focused on breathing. Yet pain ultimately revived me.
My head throbbed, an angry pounding that drummed within my skull just behind my closed eyelids, which in turn scrunched themselves involuntarily against the ache. Unusually stiff when I dared to steal a deeper inhale of the humid air, I cautiously began to stretch, muscles protesting from the sudden introduction to motion.
Steeling myself against the discomfort of the headache that hammered my head fiercely like a drill, I forced my hands to my eyes and pressed sweaty palms against them. After rubbing the sensitive lids a few moments, I removed my hands, slowly opened bleary eyes, and gasped.
White. All I could see was white. I'm blind! my aching mind screamed in a panic as I struggled to see beyond the single ghostly sheet of strange swirling substance. As quickly as my unrelenting headache would allow, I sat straight up, and immediately regretted it.
Lightheadedness struck me hard, almost knocking me back down as a bout of nauseating dizziness consumed me. If it wasn't for the fact one hand was firmly planted on the unusually warm floor to keep my unsteady body balanced, I probably would have fallen back down. Taking some breaths to calm myself and still the violently spinning room, I relaxed a little.
The room slowly ceased its mad tilting enough for me to gaze upon a mysterious grayish-white, thick fog-like mist that covered the floor. I was immersed in the odd fog that covered me entirely from the chest down. The fog did nothing to help with the unpleasantly humid atmosphere, seemingly adding to the dreadful humidity. A mild, slightly unpleasant odor wafting upward from the misty fog filled my quivering nostrils and I pulled a face of disgust. It was then I noticed that I was behind metal bars, that the small area I currently occupied looked suspiciously like a prison cell.
Another wave of discomfort passed over my tense form, and I rubbed my aching temples in hopes of relieving some of the pressure. What happened? Where am I? Thoughts like these flashed through my mind as I tried to recollect past events leading up to this moment.
Try as I might to remember everything in detail, whatever transpired up until this point was still foggy to me… I distinctly remembered I had been alone in my bedroom one fateful night, running a comb through snarly, unyielding brown hair, still damp from a recent hot shower while vaguely listening to some music on the radio, despite the fact that static fuzzed out every few words. A favorite song ended, leading to a commercial. I'm not sure why I remembered the commercial announcing the time: eight-thirty.
I didn't think twice about the interference, why it was suddenly acting up when it was on a relatively crystal clear station, nor did I notice the breathy clicks and rattles outside my window, until it was too late. The sound of my dripping hair ripping and pulling from the teeth of the small black comb had drowned out the lesser creaking noise of the window behind me as it had been pulled open very slowly. I had failed to see anything in the reflection of the large mirror I stood before, paying attention only to the tangled locks my comb was trying to separate.
Without warning, a massive arm had encircled my torso and yanked my small frame against a larger one. Everything after that was a blur of pumping adrenaline as I struggled and kicked desperately, my bare feet knocking things off of the dresser as I was lifted upward, still in a death grip.
Bottles of perfume and other trinkets were broken and thrown askew as I reflexively kicked, desperate to defend myself somehow against the perpetrator. Still, I had not uttered a single scream in my panic as the overwhelming pain of the huge arm pinned me tighter against the massive body, limiting the supply of oxygen to my lungs.
After some chemical in the form of a powder was placed under my nose so that I had been forced to inhale it, I felt faint and dizzy and all fight began to involuntarily leave me. The sensation was fearsome, as my arms ceased struggling and became dead weights, and the weird feeling traveled swiftly to my legs until they also became too weak to continue their thrashing.
Satisfied I was under the influence of the potent drug, the intruder snatched my legs up under the crook of my knees with his other arm, and he backed away to the open window. With my last ounce of strength, I glanced in the mirror through rapidly dimming vision and saw, to the confusion of my muddled mind, cold glass eye plates set in a featureless, gray metallic mask before the drug took over my sight as well.
I must have lost consciousness after that since the last thing I remembered thinking was surely someone would have heard the struggle and would call the police, and then I could recall nothing else as I tumbled into the blessed darkness of a drug-induced faint.
My head ached terribly when I came to, probably lingering effects from whatever chemical had been used to knock me out. It mattered not how it happened; here I was right now, alone, frightened and a prisoner in this godforsaken cell, traveling to an unknown destination. At least, I think I was being moved as the floor vibrated slightly as though propelled by motion. I hadn't been told my fate or what was expected of me; in fact, I hadn't seen anyone since I woke up.
Life as I knew it was undoubtedly over, and the sting of that reality made my mood even darker. My husband had probably arrived at our home by now to discover the wreckage near the dresser that was the result of the brief yet intense struggle that had ended in me being taken. It's almost funny how when you are in the sanctuary that is home, the sensation of safety tends to lead to letting your guard down. After all, home represented a false sense of security, as I found out the hard way.
My vision began to clear and the pounding headache eased up enough for me to look around and take in my surroundings. The vast room seemed almost cavernous in size, with several large crates containing unknown cargo stacked neatly against the walls. Long chords of rope, heavy and strong, bound the crates to the floor. I suppose the crates were secured in that manner so they wouldn't topple over and break their contents. After all, the crates were massive, taller than me.
The walls were a dark gray, a depressing alloy hue you might find in a gloomy dungeon beneath an ancient medieval church, with small, lit scarlet symbols lining their surfaces, the possible meanings behind them lost to me.
Strange restless creaks emanated from the taut bindings holding the crates in place, sounding like the rustic voices of old floor boards, where a low groaning came out of other unknown sources, echoing like the softer version of a metallic roar from the inside of a massive, condemned tanker. Those noises, terrible in my dimly lit corner, caused the finer hairs decorating the back of my neck to rise. With my eyes wide, straining to see what lay in the shadows, I sent my gaze this way and that, mistrusting the area past the bars of my cell.
A soft sigh escaped dry lips and I licked them continually, trying in vain to get some sort of moisture back on them. It proved fruitless as I had awakened with a bad case of cottonmouth, my tongue and inside cheeks sticky and gross.
Another glance at my surroundings told me there was no water left for me by my abductor, and the thought of dying of thirst in this strange place caused a wave of raw fear to wash over me. The thought of dying was not one that occurred to me often in the short twenty-three years of my life, but I never once thought I'd die of thirst, alone in a prison cell. I tried to swallow, forcing a hard lump painfully down my throat which felt like sandpaper. Oh, if only I could have a glass of icy cold water to soothe the discomfort of a throat left to dry for hours with no liquid to comfort it.
I silently prayed my life would be spared, that whoever had abducted me would not allow me to die in a slow agonizing way with no sustenance until I became but a wasted shell of a woman, a ghost of my former self. Then another terrifying thought struck; what exactly did my captor want with me, anyway? I'd heard of women abducted and used for gang initiations, and the reality of that notion struck me hard like a wooden bat, the thought of it hitching the breath in my throat. I didn't want to be forced to partake in someone's fuck fest.
Rising slowly and cautiously to wobbly knees threatening to give way and send me sprawling back to the foggy floor, I shuffled forward weakly with halting movements, my legs tortuously screaming volumes as waves of burning pain coursed through them like poison. Lying too long under the influence of some strange drug had caused my lower extremities to become painfully locked and tight, as though they had been asleep for years. Had the distance been any further I probably would not have made it in my weakened state. With slightly numb, shaky hands moist with perspiration, I grasped the slender bars of the cell. In a desperate attempt to gain my freedom, I yanked at the metal reinforcements. Of course I knew this was foolish and would get me nowhere, but I had reached the point where I was willing to try anything.
Several surreal seconds of weak yet panicked pulling at the bars with hands that seemed to no longer belong to me achieved nothing but an excruciating increase of pounding in a mind still slightly dazed from the side effects of the drug. A terrible ringing in my ears made me shake my aching head and grimace, scrunching my eyes shut tightly as it thumped mercilessly behind closed eyelids. With a tightly controlled sigh of mounting frustration, I touched my forehead to the metal of the bars, surprisingly cool despite the terribly hot air.
There was no use in senseless panicking since it would bring me no closer to freedom, except causing a sore throat. I was alive right now, and I had to live for the moment.
Yes, I was in a dire situation, but I had to remain level-headed if I was going survive this nightmare. Here I was, alive and mostly unharmed.
Feeling slightly better now that I was beginning to think rationally, I began to focus my attention elsewhere, like in my cell. All that was in the small cell was a thin blanket, and me. That's it.
The heat began to close its unforgiving hands on me and I vigorously fanned myself, wondering why the hell it was so unbearably hot and humid.
Thoughts of escape formed in my mind, but I dismissed most of them almost instantly. Most were farfetched, of climbing out, but there was a ceiling; of screaming for help, but no one would be able to hear me. So I felt my way around the bars… once, twice, but nothing even remotely resembled a door. The ceiling was solid with no visible openings, so I couldn't have been put in this cell through there. The metal reinforcements that caged me in here were identical, and I felt hopelessness roll over me once again.
A sob caught in my throat as the severity of my situation closed in on me, settling on my beating heart like the weight of iron shackles.
I didn't want to lose all focus on reality and panic again, but I couldn't help the overwhelming depression that threatened to crush me in the grip of despair. With my hands still loosely wrapped around the unforgiving metal bars of my prison, I sank down slowly even lower on my knees, short, unsteady intakes of breath escaping involuntarily from my dry throat.
The stinging warmth of tears blurred my vision, creating a formless mass of dark, smeared colors, which in turn allowed the approaching form to come nearer unseen, although I did manage to recognize the echoing of footfalls. I quickly dried my eyes on the sleeve of my tattered night shirt and looked up when a door that seemingly came from nowhere to the cramped cell was opened with a menacing hiss.
For the briefest of moments I was astounded I had missed this; after all, I had thoroughly caressed the length of each bar, but nothing had stood out. Everything looked and felt the same, but apparently, it was not. There stood an imposing figure, in the shape of a man but much taller and broader. My brown eyes widened and I gasped from where I sat on the floor as I took in the creature that towered above me.
I was so stunned that I didn't realize I had automatically scampered away as far as the small cell would allow, until my back hit the wall and I could move no further. Not once did I remove my eyes from his imposing body as I tried my best to become one with the wall behind me.
The humanoid was masculine in appearance, if the obvious lack of breasts was anything to go by, and was incredibly tall, too much so for me to hypothesize an accurate guess. I tilted my head far back to see way up his towering form. His body — I was still assuming a male gender — was lean and cut, with tight rippling muscles that spoke of incredible strength. There appeared to be not a single ounce of fat showing through his taut skin, which was a pasty yellow mottled with varying degrees of dark spots.
What shocked me the most was his face. Four mandibles, each tipped with a single, deadly-looking tusk covered a lipless, pink smallish mouth filled with tiny, razor-sharp teeth. A set of green eyes, calculating in appearance, were inlaid deep beneath a hooded and heavily jutting browless ridge.
Short, slender black spine-like quills went up the sides of his massive cranium, giving his huge forehead a spiky appearance on the sides. Long black dread locks cascaded over his broad shoulders and came to rest on his barrel chest. The swirling mist covered his feet, reaching just below his mottled knees.
One thing was for certain, he looked like someone you wouldn't want to fuck with.
"Ooman," the creature suddenly growled, causing me nearly to jump out of my skin. Instinctively knowing that I was the ooman, I cautiously looked into his eyes and he responded with a threatening growl that emanated from his throat, followed by a fearsome flare of lower mandibles exposing his sharp inner teeth. This display caused me to snap my eyes back to the floor, fearful to arouse his displeasure. His actions reminded me of that of certain species of wildlife… look into its eyes and the animal would perceive it as a challenge.
I could hardly believe that thing had spoken a rough, guttural form of English. Fear held to bleed the warmth from my body in an instant rush and created fine shivers throughout my body, despite the intense heat.
Without warning, the imposing being reached in with a massive arm and grabbed a large fistful of my hair, aggressively pulling me out of the cell despite my cry of surprise. My eyes watered from the prickling agony that cascaded through my tender scalp, but thankfully he released my hair after I was standing in front of him. My hair fell in tangles down to the middle of my back when he let go of it and it was then I noticed that I only came up just above the loincloth that preserved his modesty. The vast difference in height only added to the growing dread.
Too frightened to complain or say something to express my indignity, I wisely held my tongue and was careful to keep my eyes lowered, staring at the strange misty fog that swirled around our legs.
The humanoid suddenly seized my chin in between long fingers before I had time to react and roughly tilted my head upward, until the back of my neck screamed in torture and I thought it would snap… I then gasped as something cold and metallic encircled my neck.
With trembling fingers, I poked and prodded at what felt like a wide, thin collar, covering a good bit of my neck with a protrusion on the front of it. It was then that I noticed a thick, tightly threaded line resembling a steel cable trailing from the extended piece. I followed the cord with my gaze and saw, to my horror, the strange being was holding the other end of the cable. His huge hand, tipped with long, deadly black talons, tightened its grip on the cord.
Dear God, it was a collar and leash; he planned to drag me like an animal!
Just as I put to and two together, the humanoid gave a vicious yank, which in turn made me to stumble forward and nearly trip over my own two feet. Seemingly satisfied with his handiwork, he then abruptly turned, long dark dread locks whipping through the air, and proceeded to walk away, forcing me to follow.
The mysterious fog-like mist swirled around us as we left what I assumed was the cargo area and I was led along a long hallway, the soft pattering of my bare feet lost to the noise of his heavy footfalls clanking against the metallic floor, the sound reverberating quite eerily in the otherwise quiet corridor. I silently wondered if he had on some sort of boots to have the floor sound off his footsteps.
Despite the fear of my predicament, the constant soft chittering irritated me to no end, but I had deeper things to be worried about than strange noises coming from his even stranger mouth. I needed a clear head to think, to ponder, but the chittering and clicking noises were too distracting.
Thoughts tumbled over one another in my mind, racing insanely fast as though in a competition to be the main one focused on as I was tugged along like a dog. Where is he taking me? What's going on? My mind continued to spout questions like these, and I shuddered to come to a conclusion. My feet were beginning to complain as we walked down the seemingly endless corridor, taking a turn here and there, until suddenly I was yanked into a small room. Fear struck me afresh when the door closed from the ceiling and trapped us in there.
To my silent relief, the floor began to move and I realized we were on an elevator, moving silently upward. When the door opened on a new level and we continued our trek through the foggy mist, I heard more of that extremely annoying chittering sound, and I looked up and gasped when I saw three more of the creatures staring at us as we passed them by. I snapped my head downward, not wanting to see the hideously ugly faces.
As we continued to down the hallway, harsh reality began to rear its ugly head. The career I had strived so hard for was all in vain; the education I had put countless sleepless hours into and invested so much money towards was over. Life as I knew it was over, and I had to come to grips with that notion.
No! my inner voice screamed defiantly. Don't give up! Fight! Adrenaline surged through my body, and I dug my heels into the floor in a bold act of defiance. The humanoid merely made a clattering sound and pulled the cord hard, eliciting a pained cry as my neck snapped backward viciously and I stumbled. Fresh tears swam in my puffy eyes, blurring my sight and turning my surroundings into formless blobs of gray and black.
He stopped before what looked like a threshold for a door frame. I quickly blinked my tears out of my eyes in time to see him press a series of round, lit buttons with the tip of a sharp claw. A strange beep sounded and then a door opened, sliding up and disappearing into the ceiling for us to enter.
A choked sigh of relief escaped my throat but when I saw where we were, waves of dread washed over me . . .
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