Escape and Captivity
I woke up with a shock to the sound of guns blazing in the distance through the burning heat of the night. The lump of wet cloth that had been my bed and home for as long as I could remember was my only possession. I wrapped it around my sweating body. Suddenly there was a piercing scream and all was still. I sighed. I was used to this every night and I didn't want to imagine who had been struck down this time. He would never take another breath or hold his beloved in his hands. With this thought I quickly glanced at my brother who lay peacefully asleep next to me. Reminding myself that I needed the sleep, I took one last look around the room and saw every one else was fast asleep. I lay still and dreams flooded my mind…
The freezing cold water instantly drenched my clothes. It hailed onto my eyes like pebbles and stung like fire. My nose and mouth were flooded, therefore I couldn't breathe. It took my mind half a second to realize this before I jerked my body forward and spat wildly onto the ground. Some of the other inmates were shouting about my hygiene but their voices were muffled and a lot worse was on the ground anyway. When I had finally got all the putrid water out of my body the man bellowed. “Get up! Or I'll make you get up the hard way, Jhun!” A thought went through my mind. “If pouring a bucket of icy water on your head isn't the “hard way” than I had better watch out.”
I shook the sleep out of my eyes; all the other workers filed out of the room and I was left alone. I pulled on my only clothes which were basically rags. I thought of my life and was encircled by memories.
I lived in Hong Kong with my mother, my father and my brother. We led decent lives with a helper in a comfortable apartment. My brother, Mike, was thirteen and I was fifteen when it all began. Firstly, my dad started acting strangely. He always stayed late at work and when he came back he was silent as if something troubled him, little did we know how important this would become in our lives. One day I overheard my parents arguing over my dad's job.
“Why, there are plenty of normal jobs?” My mother asked.
“I have no choice, I can't quit they won't let me!” My dad shouted back.
“Then why can't we make a run or tell the police. I can't live with this!” My mum shrieked back.
“Trust me, all will turn out well.” He said soothingly.
“NO IT WON'T!” She screamed. “AND YOU KNOW IT WON'T!”
After this I went up to my bed and lay there thinking of what they could be talking about. My parents had never argued before and I couldn't understand how this had happened. I woke my brother and told him everything. He told me not to worry, all would turn out well he said, using my dad's words. I couldn't sleep that night and I lay restless; tossing and turning.
It happened the very next day; my dad didn't go to work and my mum had red eyes from crying. We didn't dare ask what was wrong. As usual we went to school but I couldn't concentrate and by the end of the day I was so sick of hearing the teachers moan. “Earth to Jhun, are you there?” All I could think of was my mother and my dad's job. My dad had always been a banker; I just couldn't get my head round it.
The next day it was Saturday; my dad usually slept in but today he was wide awake with his briefcase in hand. I heard a car roaring in the distance while I asked my mum for some breakfast. She looked worried. I cautiously asked, “What is wrong?” She opened her mouth to say something when the window behind me shattered. For the first time in my life I heard a gunshot. The bullet whizzed through the air at paranormal speeds and it hit its target. Without warning there was blood everywhere and my father lay shaking on the ground. My mind couldn't focus as a billion questions sprang into my mind. I wanted to cry or something but the shock was too great. My dad finally lay still and the blood flow eased as the expensive carpet became redder and redder…
My mother screamed and screamed. Again I wanted to do something but I was frozen to the spot. The scream pierced the atmosphere like a sharp blade and my instincts went wild. I threw myself behind the kitchen table. After a few chaotic seconds another bullet tore through the window this time hitting my only other parent. Through all the terror all I could think of was that I was an orphan. Consequently, Mike leapt into the room but instantly howled with fear as he, with a lot more bravery than me, ran straight to the house phone and rammed in the three numbers. Before I knew it another bullet entered our home. I didn't know what I was doing as I jumped up and charged into Mike, a millisecond later the silver bullet smashed into the wall where his head had just been. My brother had had a nasty hit in the head from my momentum, so I had to call the ambulance on my own. I could only spit out three words before I fell unconscious to the floor: “He-l-p, P-p-parents deat-d”.
When I woke up I found myself in a horrible white room that stank of disinfectant and looked like an average hospital. I tried to move my body but something metal dug into my arms, when I glanced down I saw that I was naked and that there was a metal bar securing my arms. My heart beat went berserk as I remembered the terrible happenings of the Saturday. I thought of how long I had been here; a day, a week, a year? I heard a siren in the distance. I looked through a small barred window. I failed in my intention to locate where I was but instead I saw the blue and white lights of a police station in the distance. A kindly looking man walked into the room, he was wearing a doctor's costume and he held a sinister needle in his hand. When he saw I was awake he immediately proclaimed, “Hi I'm James.” With a heavy Irish accent he said, “Welcome to the Philippines!”
When I finally finished gathering my thoughts I thought of how I had gone from the hospital to the slavery camp in the middle of the Philippines, where they forced children to work. We were forced to carve wood and sew. We would be beaten for basically anything. Well I was sick of it, I had always dreamed of escaping but no one had ever succeeded and anyone who had ever attempted was beaten to death in front of us. This had only happened once but it did its job and drove fear into our hearts.
When I arrived at the work stations I was set to work splitting logs in half with a minute saw. Two other fifteen year olds that I had never seen before were working with me. Although we weren't meant to talk, one of them whispered; “Do ya really wannna to escape?”
Without hesitation I whispered back. “Course!”
He smiled at me and said his name was Stephen. When we got our only break; twenty minutes for lunch he stood next to me and he beckoned me into a corner. When I realized what he meant I went and he fumbled for something in his pocket.
Stephen took out a small bronze key which shone in his muddy hands. He grinned and said, “The key outta here.”
“Oh My God!” I exclaimed. “How did you get that?”
“Stole it from one of the guard's pockets at night.”
“Yeah, I was gonna escape with only my brother, but I need an extra pair of hands. So I was wondering if you are up to da job.”
“Definitely, but I was wondering, could my brother come he is fourteen?”
“The more the merrier, but the more risky. Yeah I guess he can but only, no one else.”
“Ok, when are we leaving?”
The tension built up as Stephen took a breath and said, “Tomorrow, night.”
I, Stephen, Mike and Christopher had it all planned out: Mike would lure one of the heavily armored guards in pretending to be sick. Then Stephen and I would attack him from behind and take his guns. We would knock him unconscious and tie him up with a piece of string we found in the work space. If all went to plan we could then find the exit, unlock it and make a run for it. Lastly, we would head to the nearest Police station and explain.
I was tortured with nerves as I woke up brother, telling him it was time. Either we would escape or die. I tried not to think about it. My brother didn't look any better, he even looked properly ill; at least this meant he wouldn't have to fake too much. He got up moaned and whined, “Ugh, I feel terrible.” According to plan a door guard got up and lumbered towards my brother, he was clearly drunk. When he got within distance he lunged and slapped Mike in the face. Boiling with anger I signaled Stephen and kicked with all my might in the head.
Next Stephen came in and stuffed part of his bed sheet into the guards mouth. His eyes were wide with wonder as he saw us stripping him of his weapons. He reached for his dagger, but because of his drunkenness his reflexes were poor. I had no trouble batting his hand away. Next I punched over and over in the face. I gasped in pain. Christopher came in with the rope and a minute later we had a trussed up and gagged guard under my bed sheets. Stephen took the gun and we headed of.
We met no opposition until we where right next to the door; when a guard came out. The man saw us and bellowed, “Help, escapers!” Stephen took the gun and smacked him countless around the head. Meanwhile Christopher and Mike had been fiddling with the lock and key. When the rusty door finally came open, there were shouts everywhere and men running around. We all ran but Christopher tripped and was sent sprawling. Suddenly a man jumped on him and pinned him to the ground. I cursed at our luck. Luckily when Stephen pointed the gun at his head he put his hands up. Stephen got up and we continued running.
I looked around at my surroundings and was surprised by how much light there was; cars whizzing around and little shops open to the few customers. The men were still chasing us and they were gaining ground by the second. I noticed that my brother was starting to tire; there were beads of sweat glinting in the half darkness. He was panting and he was a lot behind me. The road ended at a split stream and Stephen had to make a split second decision; left or right? He chose left and we picked up some speed. Without warning a man in a white coat suddenly jumped out at us. I recognized him immediately; it was the doctor, James. So he worked for the organization too.
We turned to run the other way, when a thought struck me; when I had been in hospital I had seen the police station. More and more gun men started coming out from everywhere. The shops along the road looked very inviting and a good shelter but I knew it would only turn into a shootout. My mind started to wander about my parents again but I fought it and tried to remember where it was, at the last second I came to realize that it was the right turn. I saw it and we ran flat out.
We barged into the door of the police station and an officer ran at Stephen and wrestled him to the ground. Two men behind me shouted, “Put your hands on your heads or we will shoot.” Confused I turned around and tried to explain. Taking this as a threat, the police man fired three stun bullets at my chest. I buckled and collapsed.
When I came around the others had explained and we had already been set up with foster families. The police were planning a raid on the camp, but they knew it was pointless they would have cleared all the stuff by now and left. I grimaced as I tried to move. There were bandages around my chest and a statistics meter running through my body. My brother was standing there looking sorrowfully at me. With no warning his expression changed to one of complete pleasure. I fought the pain in my chest as I stood up to hug my brother. The connection was established and nothing would stop that. I fell to the ground once again lost my conscience. The last thing I saw were doctors rushing into the room.