A Second ConversationMature

Several days passed. Elena tried to keep a count, although it was difficult when she wasn't entirely sure how long a day was here, having no watch and no natural light. It seemed like she'd been in the room for nine days and eight nights, but perhaps it was a little more. She didn't sleep all that much.

On the ninth night she fell asleep as normal, but she had forgotten to cover herself with her blanket. It was summer - far too warm for sleeping in all her clothes. She had taken them off, and was wearing only her vest, bra and pants - not what she would have wanted to be seen in. When she woke up, she was no longer in her room.

"Elena." The voice was cultured and upper-class. "That is your name, isn't it?"

"Yes." She opened her eyes just a crack and saw herself, lying on a carpet in nothing but her underwear. Oh, woe, woe, that someone should see her like this! "Who are you?"

"I don't think you need to know that yet, Elena. But tell me about yourself. You're a dancer, aren't you?"


"What are you doing with the resistance?"

She'd already thought of a story, having had plenty of time to think in her cell. "I didn't know they were the resistance when I got involved. They were my friends. I'd known them since I was little. I was just hanging around with them. The day before we came to the house, they told me who they really were. It was my first proper 'mission' and I ended up here."

"Can you tell us their names?" Silence. Elena said nothing. "Ah, loyalty, so tragic and so pointless. Tell me, Elena, what have they ever given you that you should be so foolish, for their sakes?"

"They were my friends," she replied, unsteady.

"I can keep you here for a very long time, but in the end most people prefer to tell me the names and get out of here. Are you sure you won't oblige? It would make this so much easier."

"I'd rather be a prisoner than a traitor," said Elena, and it was actually true. She had nothing to enjoy at home - the only thing different between her room there and her cell here was that it was quieter. There were still the oppressive jailers, her parents, still the lack of freedom...

"Ah, but would you rather be a dancer than a prisoner?" She opened her eyes properly this time, and saw that she was in front of the man that had been there at her capture. This had to be the master of the house, for there was nobody else that could look like that and wield such authority. His hair was sandy, hinting towards brown rather than blonde, and his eyes were a muddy hazel. The thing she really noticed about him was how ordinary he looked - she'd not seen somebody so normal in a very long time.

"I don't understand what you mean," she said honestly, dragging her eyes away from his face in case he got the wrong idea.

"Well, I've seen you dance. You look like you could be pretty good, given a bit more space and better clothes, hmm? How about you come up here and entertain me and the men, and then you won't be locked in that cell all day? I'm sure they'd appreciate someone with your ... talents."

"I'm not sure," she said, instantly suspicious. "I think it would be difficult to make sure they didn't try to get more from me than my dance."

The master started laughing and stared at her. "Don't worry, you won't have to worry about that. Well, at least, not so long as you're dancing..."

The End

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