The road climbed effortlessly before them, under the cover of night, as the car’s lights picked a save path for them over the gravel. Next to Jay, Clayton stirred in his seat as the moon rose in the heavens, now slumbering, dreaming of another day past. Looking over to the passenger side Jay felt lost in a flood of emotions. “For so long you did not bother me. Why then now?” The car came to a silent halt next to a 24 hour rest stop. The lights flashed in the window as the owner nodded in his sleep. The bell clanged as Jay entered and headed over to the cashier. “Excuse me.” The clerk slowly opened his eyes and gave a yawn before he fully realized a customer stood before him. “Can I just use your bathroom?”
“Sure, of course. It’s right over there, sir.”
“Thank you.” As silently as he came in Jay left the clerk, disappearing into the restroom.
The car was dark as when Clayton awoke form his slumber to find his brother gone. Turning in his seat he found the girl still lying on the back seat. He got out and walked around the car before he realised that he couldn’t just leave her there alone when she was so heavily sedated. Getting back into the car he found her struggling to sit up again. “Don’t try and sit just yet. It’s late, try and get some more sleep.”
“Where are we?”
“Honestly, I have no idea.”
“O.” She rubbed her eyes before looking up at him again. “I never got your name.”
“It’s Clayton but I doubt you will remember that. Judging by the look on your face.”
“You’re funny.” A faint smile touched her lips. “I’m Erica.”
“A pleasure I’m sure.” She steadied herself against the door as she pulled her legs from under her. Rubbing her wrists as she stared absentmindedly out the window, Erica noticed Jay’s shadowy figure heading back to the car as she turned her gaze back to her hands, neatly folded in her lap.
“Does it hurt?’’ She looked up at him again with a look of confusion in her eyes. “Your wrists. It looks like the ropes are cutting into your flesh.”
“Yeah a little but I’ll survive. I hope.” The door opened again as Jay slid in behind the wheel and the first signs of rains became visible on the windshield. “Do you think that maybe we can loosen the ropes binding her hands a little?”
“But the ropes are starting to cut her wrists.”
“If she keeps her hands still it won’t.”
“You really aren’t going to even try and meet us halfway? It’s not like I’m asking you to untie her completely.” Jay stayed silent for a while as he waited out his anger.
“Do you know where we are?” Stunned by Jay’s sudden question Clayton took a look around as the landscape rolled past. “Can’t say that I do. Why?”
“We use to live here. Back when....”
“When Lucinda was still alive.” Jay fell silent, back into his own little world.