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Authors: R.L. Stine

Silent Night 2 (15 page)

BOOK: Silent Night 2
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QUIET AS DEATH

“I
want to break her arm in thirty places,” the man in the backseat said, breathing noisily, excitedly. “Then maybe my headache will go away.”

“Hey, we have a lot to do. We have to keep control, remember?” the girl called back to him, sounding very impatient.

The man grumbled a reply.

The car slowed to a stop.

“Where are you taking us?” Reva blurted out. “What are you going to do?”

“Hey, it speaks,” the girl said sarcastically.

“We told you to shut up!” the man growled at Reva.

“This cord is cutting my wrist,” Reva complained.

“Boo-hoo,” the girl replied coldly. “You'd better shut your trap, Reva.”

“I just want to know what you're planning to do,” Reva insisted.

“Say one more word and it's all over,” the girl told her flatly.

Pam bumped Reva hard, signaling for her not to say any more. Reva choked back her questions and sank into the seat.

“Pull the car back there,” she heard Pres instruct the girl.

“You checked this all out?” the girl asked him skeptically.

“Yeah. As soon as I got back,” Pres told her. “There's no guard back here. You'll see. Park it over there. Away from the lights.”

The car lurched forward.

Pam leaned hard against Reva. She had stopped trembling, but Reva could hear her frightened, shallow breaths.

“No mess-ups this time,” the man beside Pam muttered.

“Hey, no way. I'm back now,” Pres said lightly. “What could go wrong?”

The car slowed to a halt. Reva heard the girl shift into Park, then turn the engine off. “Less talk, more action,” she muttered.

“Aye, aye, captain,” the man replied sarcastically.

“Pull them out,” the girl instructed.

Car doors opened. Reva heard the kidnappers climb out.

“Where are we?” Reva whispered to Pam.

“I don't know,” Pam whispered back. “It seems like we've been driving for a long time. But I think it's just because I'm so scared.”

“Shut up! Both of you!” the man snarled. “You're giving me a headache.”

He yanked Reva out of the car. She stumbled, then caught her balance. Her shoes scraped against hard pavement.

A driveway? she wondered. Some kind of parking lot?

So this is what it's like to be blind, she suddenly realized.

The air felt cold and refreshing on her face. She took a deep breath, then another.

If only her heart would stop racing, thudding so hard in her chest.

She could hear Pam being pulled from the car. Then car doors slammed.

Reva listened hard.

Where are we? Where?

It was so quiet. Quiet as death.

She shivered.

Someone shoved her hands up roughly against her back. She cried out as the tight cords dug into her skin.

The man shoved her arms up again. The pain shot through her entire body. Then he pushed her forward. “Which door?” he called to the others.

“That one,” Reva heard Pres reply. “With the light burned out.”

Reva could hear Pam close beside her. They were both being pushed up steps.

Where are we? Where are we? Where are we? The question repeated in Reva's mind.

She could hear traffic muffled in the distance. The sound of a car honking, far away. The only other sound was the scraping of their shoes on the hard pavement.

“Oh!” Reva suddenly stumbled and fell. With her hands tied behind her, she couldn't break her fall. She landed hard on her side. Pain shot up her back. “Ohh.”

“Don't pull any funny business,” the man growled angrily.

“I can't see!” Reva wailed.

He grabbed her around the waist and hoisted her to her feet. “There's nothing to see,” he said. “Just walk.”

Reva's knee ached. She uttered a low sob. “Help me!”

The man laughed scornfully.

“Hurry up. Someone will see us,” the girl cried sharply.

The man shoved Reva forward. “You heard the lady. Move it.”

A second later they had gone through a door and were walking across a silent room. From the way their footsteps echoed, Reva could tell it was a large room.

She coughed loudly. The cough echoed all around.

A very large room.

The floor was hard. She scraped her sneakers as she walked. Not smooth. Not linoleum or tile. Concrete, maybe.

Into another room.

“Stay to your right against the wall,” Reva heard the girl urge.

Reva took a deep breath. They were walking quickly. The man had her arm, squeezing it painfully, pushing her forward.

Reva took another deep breath, trying to remain in control, trying not to fall apart.

She realized what she was smelling.

I know where we are, she thought.

I know where we are. And I don't believe it!

Chapter 28

REVA GETS A BREAK

R
eva recognized the heavy warmth of the air, the tangy sweet aroma of the perfume and cosmetics.

Someone had left the sound system on, very low. She could hear a chorus, very soft, singing “Silent Night.”

We're in Daddy's store, Reva realized, astonished.

They've brought Pam and me to the department store.

But why?

“Pres, where'd you go?” the man asked suddenly.

“Hey—no names, remember?” Pres snapped. “I had to knock out the security guard. Let's hurry upstairs.”

“See if they left the elevators running,” the man said. “I really don't feel like walking up five floors.”

“Hey, she gave you a nasty cut on your lip,” Pres exclaimed. “You should put some ice on that.”

“Good idea. Let's send out for ice,” the girl said sarcastically. “Maybe we'll order some sandwiches while we're at it.”

“Okay, okay. Lighten up,” Pres told her. “Everything's going great—for once. We're going to be rich. Millionaires. Just like in the movies.”

“You and your brother are both alike,” the girl muttered. “Counting your chickens before they're hatched.”

“Cluck-cluck,” Pres replied.

“Hey, the elevator!” the man cried. “Good deal.” He pulled Reva's arm. “Get in.”

Reva was shoved up against the back of the elevator. She could feel Pam right beside her. The elevator emitted a low hum as it began to rise.

Why are they taking us to the fifth floor? Reva asked herself. What's on the fifth floor?

Children's clothes. And toys, she remembered. Yes. Santa's World is up there this year. And a children's hair salon. An inexpensive shoe boutique . . .

Why the fifth floor?

“This way,” the man said, jerking her roughly out of the elevator.

“I know where we are,” Reva blurted out. “My father's store.”

“Well, you win the prize,” the girl replied sarcastically. “Pull off their blindfolds. Otherwise we'll never get them to the room.”

Reva had to shut her eyes against the invasion of bright light. Blinking, she waited for them to adjust.
She saw Pam squinting against the sudden light too.

As they continued to walk through a narrow back hallway, the three kidnappers came into clear focus. The woman was young, Reva saw, probably not even twenty. She had a bad bleach job, her dark roots showing. She'd be nice looking if it weren't for the buck teeth, Reva observed.

And then she remembered them.

From the store a few mornings before. The dropped contact lens. The younger guy, Pres, the one with the soulful black eyes and thin, wasted look—he had tried to pull her away from the counter.

Yes, Reva remembered them both. The third one, the pudgy one with the beer belly and the red face, she'd never seen before. His eyes were darting wildly around. His lip was swollen on one side, dried blood clinging to the spot that was cut.

Pres was kind of good-looking in a cheap, trashy way, Reva thought. He sneered at Reva, sizing her up as if seeing her for the first time.

She turned her glance to Pam. Pam's blond hair was disheveled. Her eyes were red-rimmed and bloodshot. She tried to flash Reva an encouraging smile, but her quivering chin gave her away, revealing her fear.

“Move it. Hurry!” the girl urged with a scowl. “There's a security guard somewhere on this floor.”

Reva and Pam were forced along the narrow passageway behind the selling floor. Doorways led to supply closets and storage rooms.

“In there,” the man barked, shoving Reva's shoulder.

A glint of light caught Reva's eye. She gasped as she realized for the first time that he was carrying a small silver pistol in one hand.

“Yeah. It's real,” he growled, narrowing his eyes at her. “Just give me a reason to use it. Go ahead, Reva.”

The way he pronounced her name made it sound like a curse word.

Where are the cleaning people? Where are the night guards? Reva wondered. She knew the TV surveillance system was broken and being repaired. She realized that the kidnappers must have scoped out the store and known this, must have known also that the cleaners were finished on the fifth floor by this time every night.

She and Pam were shoved into a small square storage room. Metal shelves against the back wall were empty. A short aluminum ladder stood in front of the shelves. Two gray folding chairs had been placed in the center of the room.

The floor and chairs were covered with dust. Empty soda cans were strewn on the floor around the two chairs.

Some workers probably eat their lunch in here, Reva observed. But it's pretty obvious this storage room hasn't been used in some time.

The girl motioned for Pam and Reva to go to the two folding chairs.

“Can't you untie my hands?” Reva demanded shrilly. “The cord—it's cutting my skin.”

The girl
tsk-tsks
sarcastically.

“Can't you just
loosen
them a little?” Reva pleaded. “Can't you give me a break? You're going to take money from my father, right? So can't you treat me with a little respect, a little dignity, maybe?”

“Enough! That's enough!” the man cried angrily. He had been fingering his cut lip. Now his eyes widened in anger. His face reddened as he strode toward Reva.

“Danny—” the girl called warily, accidentally revealing the man's name to Reva and Pam.

“Whoa, man,” Pres urged.

Ignoring his two partners, Danny grabbed Reva's arm.

“Let
go
of me!” she screamed.

He pulled the arm up behind her.

“Danny—let go,” the girl ordered.

“Please—let go! You're really
hurting
me!” Reva pleaded in a shrill, frightened voice she'd never heard before.
“Please!”

“Danny—
don't!” the
girl shouted.

But with an angry grunt Danny jerked Reva's arm up hard.

The loud
crack
sounded like a pencil snapping.

The pain flared up Reva's arm, up her back, her neck. Everything turned white. The floor tilted up toward her.

The pain sizzled like an electric current, surging over her, surrounding her, pulling her down.

Breathing hard, Danny let go and stepped back.

Silently Reva dropped to her knees on the glaring white floor, the white walls shimmering in front of her.

Were those low moans coming from
her?

She couldn't hear herself over the deafening roar of pain.

The white pain. The white, sizzling pain.

With another low moan Reva shut her eyes.

It was white inside her eyelids. Blinding white.

The roar grew louder.

And over the roar she heard Danny say, “I really want to kill her.”

Chapter 29

BOOK: Silent Night 2
5.36Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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