I wonder...... What mysteries does this door contained? I hummed as I paced in front of the door. I've never thought that there would be a hidden door like this in my house.
Well, it never hurt to investigate it a bit right? I opened the door and immediately, I heard chain clinking against each other. Is the door locked? It wasn't, the door creaked open easily, nothing obstructing it.
Then what was that chain? Immediately, my doubts were cleared. The light creeped into the room through the door, I could barely see a small figure, probably a child, shaking.
The chains clinked against each other again, and I saw the shackles on the child's wrist and legs clearly. Who would do this to a poor child?
I walked towards the child, although slowly and softly so I wouldn't frighten the child more. When I was close enough, I could make out the face's features, it was a boy. His sobs were so soft that you would've doubt whether you've heard it in the first place.
"Hey." I started off with a soft greeting, trying to make him stop crying. That didn't work, I could still hear his sobs, and my heart softened.
Maybe a soft and warming touch would help? I embraced him slightly in my arms, hoping that he would know I have no intention to hurt him. I could feel that he tensed up, he didn't relaxed until a very long time.
His sobs stopped and I tried asking him again, a bit coaxing "Hello, I'm Sarah. What's your name?" The boy hesitated before he responded, stuttering "A-A-lex."
"Alex," I can't say it's a nice name when almost a million other guys have the same name as him "Are you alone up here Alex?" It wouldn't be wise to ask him question like 'who brought you here' or 'how are you alive' that raise his guard up.
"N-no, the-ere used to be a man who gave me food." A man who gave him food? Is it the ex-owner of this house that died recently? No wonder I got the house dirt cheap.
"Do the man still come?" Alex lightly shook his head "N-o, it'-s be-en a few days." Only then, did I realized how thin he was, how feeble he looked.
"Come with me, let's get you some food." I took his head, but the clink of chains reminded me again, "Wait here." He nod his head, his eyes shined brightly at the mention of food.
"Here" I came back no long later, a bowl of porridge in my hand "Eat slowly, you must've been starving." The boy wolfed down his meal until I warned him "You'll get stomachache if you do that." Then, he slowed down his speed, slowly savouring the porridge I brought him.
"Thank you." For the first time, he didn't stutter. I could feel my heart ache, how much has he gone through to feel safe with just a bit of kindness?
"Don't worry, from now on, I'll take care of you." His eyes shined, voice hesitant, "Really? Forever and ever?" His pinky finger reaching out. I smiled, at least he still has a child's innocence "Forever and ever." I entertwined my pinky finger with his.
"But first, I'll ask somebody to unlock these for you, how about that?" I could see his face visibly pale, his body subconsciously trembling. I failed to consider that just because he warmed up to me doesn't mean he's okay around other people.
" I'll just do it myself." His body stopped trembling, relaxed. From that day, I have been watching videos on how to open a lock. I've failed dozens of time before one day, I heard a click, and the shackle opened.
"Now that we finally got that out of the way," I said, brushing the dirt of him and myself "Let's go out." I took his hand, wanting to lead him out of this room but he didn't budged.
Oh, I forgot, maybe as early he can remember, he has been in this room, he doesn't want to step into an unknown place where he has never been.
"Okay, I won't bring you out yet. But when you're comfortable enough to do so, tell me okay?" I was prepared to leave the room when a small hand tugged at my sleeve "I'm sorry."
"You don' t have to be sorry, I understand." I pacify him, hoping that he won't be depressed. He was standing in the light, his head that was always hung low, rose up to look me in the eye.
I realized, this boy is a beauty! His perfectly shaped eyebrows, long eyelashes sway as he blinked his emerald eyes, his white hair though messy just amplify his beauty.
"E-em..." His killer looks even got an old lady like me stuttering, but he didn't say anything. He hugged me, with his face buried in my stomach. This was what he actually wanted to do. I sighed, lightly patting his head.
The days passed peacefully like this, everytime Alex refused to go out of his room so I thought “Let's bring good things from the outside to rouse his desire to go out”.
His dull and bleak room was now bright, the walls painted with light blue. Toys and interesting things like globe, compass and books littered the floor.
These things, did not rouse his desire to go out one bit. I decided, his trauma with people might be what's stopping him from wanting to go outside, I should introduce him to my friends, so he'll know not everyone is bad.
It's gonna be a surprise! On that fateful day, my friend, Layla came. "Are you finally going to introduce me to this Alex you're always talking about?" she gushed, "Of course! I wanted him to know more people who're nice like you so that his fear of going out would dissolve slowly."
" I really wonder if the boy is as beautiful as you said." She asked with a curious glance. "He's more beautiful than those idols you follow!" It might just be favouritism, but I felt that Alex does look better than them.
"We're here." I told her, my hand reached to the door and twisted the handle opening it. Alex was sitting on the bed, unlike usually where he'll come running up to me, he was motionless.
"Alex?" I called his name, worried. He didn't respond, then I was truly worried, I rushed towards him, holding him in my arms, "Alex? Alex, wake up!" I glared at my friend, "What are you doing! Call the ambulance or something!"
Layla, she was stilled with shock, what was exactly shocking about a fainted child? After she heard me, she seemed to have made a decision, " Sarah, get away from that corpse."
"What corpse? Can't you see Alex fainted and even his heart stopped beating! Call the ambulance!" She shook her head, walking towards me, I sensed that something was wrong and yelled "Don't you dare do anything to Alex!" as I cradled him in my arms hoping to protect him as much as possible.
She stopped suddenly, reaching for the phone and dialing a number. Finally, she seemed to have gotten over her miscallaneous thoughts and called the ambulance.
Her voice was soft so I couldn't hear her clearly, but judging from the sound of the number she dialled, three digits, it should be the ambulance. "Thank God." The faster the ambulance come, the less risk Alex's life will be in.
"Sarah," Layla grabbed my attention after the call finished, "I'm sorry." I furrowed my brows "What do you mean?" An undesirable feeling roused within me, dread. She walked towards me quickly, each hand grabbed each of my arms and pulled me away from Alex.
"What are you doing? I need to be at Alex's side!" I screamed at her but I couldn't fight out of her vice grip. "Can't you see? I don't know if this is the Alex you're talking about, but all I see is a rotting corpse on that bed!" She screamed back at me, trying to reason.
"He's not a rotting corpse! He's the most beautiful person you'll ever see! He can still be save! He's not dead!"
That moment, I heard the door behind us kicked open and it wasn't the medic, it was the police troops. "Police! Please help the boy on the bed please!" I pleaded, one of them glance at the bed, before giving me a disgusted look.
Some of them even help Layla detained me, "Let me go! What are you doing? Help Alex, please!" I struggle against them, even biting. "Let me go!" I didn't know what happened next when a sharp blow hit against my nape.
When I woke up again, I was in a cell. I quickly remember what happened and shook the bars as hard as I can. "Let me out! I have to help Alex! None of you will help him!"
"Hey," one guard, Carl spoke to another guard as the hysterical woman shook the cell bars "What's wrong with the woman there? Was her child taken away from her? She kept screaming the name 'Alex'. "
The other guard, Alan glanced around before lowering his voice " I heard this from someone, that 'Alex' she was screaming about is actually a corspe. The estimated time of death is around a few years ago. She even screamed that how he's not a rotting corpse and the most beautiful person one would ever see. "
" Really? " Carl shouted in surprise." Sh! Don't be so loud." Alan motioned so that the other would lower his voice. "Sorry, but if that was the case, what is she still doing here? Shouldn't she be in a mental hospital?"
" She was, but even the most secured mental hospital couldn't contain her, she'll break out of her binds and attack discriminately while shouting something like saving Alex and no one but her is willing to help him. "
" What if she break out of here too?" Alan scoffed, " You know that new recruit?" Carl pondered before answering " The one with white hair and green eyes?"
Alan nod his head. "That one, sometimes he'll come around to pacify her and she really did listen and keep quiet! To the point of being obedient!" "Why though? " He didn't immediately answered Carl's question as his eyes flickered towards the woman screaming in her cell before he said "He looks like the Alex she was screaming about."