Getting Even Ch. 01


This is a fictional exploration of an encounter one night in an elevator. I should have followed up…

Peter saw the elevator door closing, and jumped to get his hand in the crack. It was late, and he wanted to get to bed. A hunched figure inside, a slim girl with red hair, startled at his entrance, turned, and he smiled an apology before noticing her tear-streaked face, the terror in her eyes as she shrank into the corner furthest from him, her shoulders shaking with suppressed sobs.

He knew her: a junior lecturer in architecture, living one floor below his guest apartment. He was moved to offer comfort, but she shrank away at his every movement. The elevator slowed, and she began to scrabble in her purse, producing a key as the doors opened. Trying to exit as far from him as possible she knocked her elbow against the jamb, dropping the key, which went tinkling into the crack between the elevator and the landing. She froze, then desperately bent to try to catch it. Peter leant over and held the door open.

“I’m afraid it’s gone down the shaft. Too bad. Do you have a duplicate?”

Her face was a study in total desperation. “It’s inside…”

“May I take a look at the door? I doubt the caretaker would still be up. You may be able to call a locksmith, but at this hour…”

She shrank from him, moved like an automaton, and indicated a door. He felt it, bent to peer into the crack. “Only the one latch? We may be lucky. I will need a few things in my apartment. Do you want to wait here, or maybe come along?”

She looked fearfully around, then made a small indication that he took for assent. At his door Anadolu Yakası Anal Escort he kept talking. “Better to have at least two locks, the latch is so easy to spring if you know how. A deadlock like this, see? Then when you lose your keys you are really in trouble. So you need something big on the key ring. There, step inside… Ok, let me go first. You can sit down if you want. You don’t feel like a drink? No problem, let me just put these down.”

He came back from the small office to find her standing in the lobby, the door open behind her, tensed like a gazelle in the middle of a herd of lions.

“Now I need a knife, the kitchen scissors, and a piece of plastic…. Here, this will do. Do you see something I can decant the bleach into? Thanks. Now you cut a nice strip of plastic, like that, this bit of curve should help. And, no, I am not a burglar, but back in my misspent youth I was a Military Policeman, so I did learn some burglary tricks. And there we are. Shall we go and see… And better take my keys, don’t you think?”

Her eyes were still fixed on him, as if she expected him to pounce on her. He smiled and spoke in his softest voice. “Please, relax. I am not going to harm you. I see you are upset. Allow me to help you? Let’s go look at your door.”

She turned wordlessly, and stood looking as he expertly worked the strip of plastic between the door and the jamb. A short struggle, and they heard the ‘click’ as the latch went back. The door swung open.

She dashed in and turned. He smiled. “There you are, now, you want to change the lock, and have a deadbolt installed too, Anadolu Yakası Yaşlı Escort ok?”

She stared at him as if transfixed, a deer caught in the headlights. With the hallway light on her pale, freckled face he saw the red bruise. “My god, girl, you have been hit. What happened?”

Her hand went to her cheek, and the terror flared anew in her eyes. Peter remained where he was, but asked: “Do you have someone who could be with you? You should not be alone tonight.”

She nodded mutely, and tuned to her phone, looking at him fearfully. She called, spoke a few words, then broke into tears, sobbing uncontrollably. He took the phone from her hands as she sank onto a chair. A feminine voice was asking: “Zoe, what is wrong, Zoe? Talk to me!”

He answered. “Madame, this is Peter MacIntosh, a neighbor of your friend. Something bad has happened to her, and she needs you here. Can you come as soon as possible?”

The voice was hard: “I will get the person who hurt her… Give me five minutes. Maybe ten, my bloody car… And don’t leave her, you hear?”

He bent closer to the sobbing girl. “Zoe, your friend is coming. There now, it is all over. Do you want to go and wash your face? No, I am staying here, don’t worry.”

A few minutes later the elevator opened, and a tall blond woman stormed out. Peter kept back as she took charge of the still sobbing Zoe, then gave her a hand as she helped the redhead up. A few minutes later she was back. “You still here? Who the hell are you?”

He rose from the chair. “Pleased to meet you too, madame. I’m a neighbor, a visiting lecturer Anadolu Yakası Zenci Escort in Engineering, and I am in the University guest apartment one floor up. Number 805. Your friend lost her key when she came in, and I helped her to get into her apartment. She was in a distraught state, as you see. I am here to help. Could you find out what happened? Should we call the police?”

She shook her head. “I don’t know. Let me get her settled, then I’ll come up. 805 you said?”

Peter nodded. “She is in shock from something. She needs to be kept warm, and sweet, warm liquid would help. I’ll wait up to hear from you.”

Half an hour later there was a knock at the door.

The tall blonde marched into his lounge, gave him a hostile look, and exclaimed: “I need a stiff drink now, otherwise there’s going to be murder.”

He poured himself one to keep her company. She walked around the room, touching the objects, picking up a pair of handcuffs. “What are you, some sort of fetishist?”

He grinned. “Those are mementos of a previous military incarnation. That one was a gift from some comrades after an interesting operation, those I made myself.”

She nodded. “You said you were in engineering, I believe. We have not been introduced. Dagmar Schmidt. I’m in Anthropology. What happened to her?”

Peter took a drink. “I wish I knew. I don’t know her at all, apart from seeing her here a few times, and on campus maybe three times. She was obviously terrified by something, and she will need support, also counselling. She seemed completely broken.”

Dagmar nodded. “Some men abused her. I got that much out of her. Then she went out like a light. Sleeping soundly now. I know a little psychology, and you are right. She did attempt suicide once, a few years ago, so I am going to stay with her tonight, and maybe longer. She may have nightmares.”

Peter nodded. “I’ve seen it happen. If you need me, don’t hesitate. Here’s my card, call at any time.”

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