Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

The Broadcast

I need help. I think my daughter is in danger and I don’t know how to help her. I am currently trapped in traffic on the A2, and I can hear them, all of them, but especially him, that snake that we trusted, I can hear them hurting her. I don’t know what to do.

I’ve tried calling my ex wife but she never answers my calls, and nobody else in the wedding party is picking up. They don’t realise that we don’t have much time to save my little girl’s life. Nobody is listening to me! Will you listen? Please? I’m begging you. She is going to die if nobody acts, and I’m stuck here, having to listen to those bastards torture her. Please someone help me,.

I’m going to tell you everything that I know, and if any of it sounds familiar, or you have any idea who is behind it, please message me or tell me how I can get to her.

It’s on the radio. I was driving to my daughter’s engagement party. It’s in London, and I meant to leave at Three so I could get there just before Five, but I left late, and there’s so much traffic and… that doesn’t really matter, I suppose. It’s just another time I couldn’t be there on time for her… I… Anyway. It was about half four when I heard it. I’d just left Dover, and I was stressing, so I thought I’d put on the radio, and see if it could relax me.

Almost everything was static, and as I hit the first wall of traffic, I continued flicking through to find something I could listen to. I was about to give up when I heard a man’s voice.

“It really is an art form.” He said. His voice was smarmy and posh, like something off of Radio 4, but it seemed to be my only option, so I stuck with it. Staring ahead with a sigh at the traffic as he went on. “There is true beauty in the demise of one so delicate.” He droned on, but I was zoning in and out while imagining how disappointed my daughter Sophie would be at her estranged, idiot father spoiling her day, again. I’d always disappointed her. The drinking. Playing away on her Mum. I don’t even know why I did it. It was stupid, immature shit, but I was older now, looking my life in the eye and trying to be better. This was my chance to show her that I would be the Dad she needed, and now, I don’t think I’ll ever have it.

I’m sorry, I need to focus on what happened. I just can’t stop thinking about her. She probably thinks I don’t care, but that’s all I can do right now. She’s such a great kid… not a kid anymore though. I’m sorry. I keep going off track.

He said “She is almost done with her transformation.” And at that moment, I could hear something in the background. It was like someone was trying to scream, but couldn’t quite get it out. I looked down at the radio then, confused and a little concerned about what I’d tuned into. Maybe one of those artsy dramas they do? Maybe some kind of play?

I wish.

“One more dose of the gas should do it.” He continued, and this time, the scream broke through. I could hear a girl. She screamed like her life depended on it. I could hear her struggling, and a commotion as the man tutted with a deep sigh. “Why do they always do this?” The girl kept screaming, and seemed to be putting up a fight. Whatever it was, I was creeped out, and I reached towards the radio to turn it off. As my finger reached the button, I froze.

“Dad, help me!” My blood ran cold and my body was full of chills. It was Sophie. My daughter. That was her voice. Do you get what I mean now? This is why I need your help. They’ve got my daughter, and somehow, I can’t even begin to understand how, they know that I’m listening.

I kept it on, and I listened to try and find any signs of where they were or who was behind it, but I’ve got nothing. I know how crazy I sound. I know that you’ll be listening to this and thinking I’m a stupid old drunk, and most days I am, but today, I swear to you, I’m stone cold sober, and I know that my daughter is in danger.

She called out for me again and again, but she was… somewhere, somewhere that I don’t know if I’ll ever find, and I was trapped in traffic, where I still am.

I began calling all the numbers I had for anyone who might have seen her that day. Her Mum. Her Aunts and Uncles. Her Brother. None of them responded, and the radio rang with the laughter of the man, with more joining him as Sophie’s voice faded.

“She’s enjoying the gas now.” He whispered, the hiss of the gas joining his voice on the broadcast. “Silly little Sophie was so desperate for a man to love her, she just fell into her trap.” I slammed my hands on the steering wheel, frustrated that I couldn’t reach her, and running out of options as I glared at the last few contacts on my phone. “Your daughter was so easy, Frank.” That’s what he said about my little girl, and I just lost it. Yelling back, like a mad man as their laughter seemed to surround me.

It did no good. She was still trapped, and I was still sat in traffic, shouting at the empty air around me. I bawled and hollered with no sign of stopping, my frustration and shame pouring out into the empty car, until my phone began ringing in front of me.

It was Lawrence, her fiance. I felt hopeful, at last. I’d never met him, but he made Sophie happy, and everyone in the family adored him. He was a copper, who used to work up North, but had come down South later in his career, moving from the Kent force up to The Met. I should have questioned why he moved around so much. I should have questioned why he was so damn charming to everyone. I should have questioned why he’d proposed so quickly.

I answered instantly, and he just laughed. His laughter cascaded from the phone, and from the radio. My body was white hot with rage for a moment and then chilled to the bone.

I had trusted him with my daughter. I’d never even met him and I’d trusted him with her.

We really knew nothing about him. They’ve only been together for six months. He looks so much older than her in pictures but she was always smiling. She looked happy. I didn’t want to spoil it because she looked so happy.

I’ve never been able to protect her.

Not from me, not from him.

He’s still laughing. He won’t stop laughing, and I can hear all of them too, all of those men, laughing, but I can’t hear her anymore. I can’t hear my little girl.

I think he’s going to kill her. I don’t know what the gas does but she goes quiet when they give it to her. They keep bringing her in and out of consciousness and laughing, all the time, always laughing. I don’t know why they’re doing this to her.

Her name is Sophie Jacobs. She’s from Dover, but she lives in London. She’s twenty four and has brown eyes and brown hair. Please, please help me find her.

His name is Lawrence. He’s quite tall. He’s got dark hair, and his eyes always just looked kind of… black. I guess maybe it’s the camera quality? I don’t know. I’m not sure how old he is, but… there are photos of him on her facebook, you can…

Oh God, he’s taken them down. It has to be him. He’s just taken the photos down. Their profiles aren’t linked anymore. The event page for the party is gone too. It’s like he’s erasing every shred of proof that he knows her. I’m going to look like a crazy, drunk old man, but I’m not. You have to understand, I’m not losing it.

Please will you help me find my little girl? It might not be too late.

Posted in Blog, Creative Writing, Writing

Weeding – Part One

My Son is missing, but I have a feeling I know where he is. That sounds ridiculous, so allow me to explain. I don’t know his location, or the address, but I know where he’ll be. I know who he’s with.

It’s those people. Those sick, sick people.

They’ve got my Andrew. I’ve told the police but they didn’t believe me. I called his university and they said there was nothing they could do. I’ve called his phone every day since he disappeared, and today, it stopped going through at all.

He’s at The Garden. My son is locked away with God knows who, and all I know is that he’s at The Garden of The Free Children. What is The Garden? Well, that’s quite simple. It’s a cult.

The worst part is that it didn’t seem like such a bad place at first. That’s how they do it. That’s how they steal away our children. Please listen to me. Yours could be next.

Andrew came home for the Christmas break and told me all about it. He seemed so excited about this “Garden” and all the friends he’d made. I was pleased, because he’s painfully shy and he had always had trouble making friends and connecting with others, so it was great to hear that he was thriving, even if it was through a church group.

He told me that they supported each other and did volunteering, and my mind was at rest, for a little while, anyway.

I wish I’d asked more questions. That’s what I keep coming back to. If I’d have found out more at the time, I’d have an easier time finding him now.

I started to get worried a few days later, when he started sleepwalking.

He had never done that before, he was always a deep, and relatively still sleeper, but I woke up to find him stood at the foot of my bed.

I called out to him, but he didn’t look up. His eyes were closed and he was whispering. As I stood to investigate, my husband pointed out that he had earphones in. Andrew was just standing there, his eyes closed, undeterred as my husband shook his shoulders, constantly chanting all this nonsense about darkness and a Goddess.

He stayed that way for about a minute, before he just collapsed to the floor. In that moment, it felt like my heart stopped. He began chanting again, over and over, just one word.

“Darkness. Darkness. Darkness.”

He began shaking, his whole body, shaking as his eyes opened wide, bloodshot and sore. There was a horrifying gargle from his throat and then he suddenly fell back, still.

We called his name, shaking his almost lifeless body, before he snapped back to life with a smile. He had no memory of any of it. He didn’t remember the chanting, the sleepwalking, the shaking. None of it.

He was cheerful as he stood up, kissing us both on the cheek and wandering off towards his bedroom. I went after him, but he just slammed the door shut, and if I’m honest, I was a little frightened of opening it and confronting him.

I wish the weirdness had stopped there. I wish I could free my Son from this sickness but he’s consumed by these people. They’re eating him alive.

I asked him about the sleepwalking the next day, but he just told me not to worry. It happened every night for the rest of his stay, but he never had any real explanation. He’d just tell me not to worry. Every night, he’d be at the foot of the bed, mindlessly chanting, and then whenever we tried to stop him, he’d fall to the floor.

After the third time, I just stopped sleeping at night. I’d rest during the day while my husband kept an eye on him, but he went on, as normal, as if nothing was happening.

We tried to get him to a doctor, and that was when I saw a major change. He’d never enjoyed going to the doctor, nobody does, but he was never so insistent on not going. He started screaming at the suggestion, ranting about how doctors were untrustworthy and just wanted to butcher people. I’d never seen anything like it. He began packing up his things, and when my husband tried to calm him down, Andrew attacked him.

My Son has never been violent. He’s the opposite of violent. He was always a shy, sensitive boy, but as his father tried to reason with him, Andrew punched him, right in the face.

My husband fell back, in complete shock, and for a moment, there was stillness. It lasted just a second before Andrew launched across the room and began beating and choking his father.

It was like he was feral. I had never seen him that way and it terrified me. He was screaming and yelling. Not words, just noise. Guttural, wild screaming. I tried to pull him away, but there was a strength I’d never felt from him before, he just pushed me aside and continue his assault.

It took several attempts but I managed to finally pull Andrew away. As I checked on my husband, examining his bruised and bloody face, Andrew stormed out of the house, and that was the last time I saw him.

He stopped calling home, and any time I’d call him, it would go to his voicemail. I left messages over and over, saying that I just needed to know he was safe, but he never responded. I wrote letters to him. I called the university. I started leaving daily messages on his Facebook wall, until he shut his profile down. I even set up an Xbox Live account so I could sent a message to his profile there, but he closed the account shortly after.

It was like he was trying to isolate himself more and more from everyone around him, and was determined that nobody was going to reach him.

I decided to travel up to the university to see him, but he wasn’t there. His housemates said that they hadn’t seen him in days, and that he hadn’t attended lectures or seminars in weeks. They’d tried to contact him but had faced the same setbacks that I had.

Apparently, he just took off in the middle of the night, after they confronted him about his strange behaviour. He’d left all his belongings and just disappeared.

I asked them if they knew about the Garden, and their faces fell. One by one, they all explained that it was notorious around the campus. Once people went in, they never came back out.

They told me that the group latches onto vulnerable kids and pulls them in, and after a while, those kids were never seen again. None of them knew where I could find the Garden, just that a couple of girls visit the campus to recruit for them, every couple of weeks.

I’m going to wait here as long as it takes. I’m going to find those girls, and I’m going to make them take me to my Son. It isn’t much of a plan, but it’s all that I’ve got.

I called his phone again, and now I don’t even get his voicemail, it doesn’t even ring. His number has been disconnected, and all I can hope is that I find him soon.