Chapter 42:

Cannibalism (9)

Don't Die, Will

Keren was standing outside in the cold. Not because it was necessary, rather because she wanted to. She was waiting for Nolan to show up so that she could “take care” of him without any unnecessary problems.

Where is this kid? She thought to herself, he is never this late.

She looked at the sky, no snow or whatsoever. So, it was less cold than usual. Suddenly, she felt like she heard something. Initially, she believed she was merely hearing things. But the quiet atmosphere helped her to realize that she wasn’t mistaken after all. Slurred sound, coming from inside the house.

Owen must be ‘’playing’’ with his toys, she smirked.

Owen; her brother, might act like a normal person but inside, he was a monster. He was the one actively getting the food “prepared” for the table. Keren was sure that his brother was enjoying himself more than ever. The sound didn't diminish; instead, it became clearer as time went on. Just then, she felt like she heard her name called. She looked back at the door, waiting to clarify if she was mistaken. Not so long after, she heard it again, her name being called.

She got in the house. With small steps, she approached the source of the sound. It stopped before she could reach the basement door, so did she. She stood at her place not knowing whether to go inside or not. Normally, there wouldn’t be any problem with it. But it often annoyed Owen in a really bad way if someone interrupted while he was working and Keren was aware of that. She heard some chatter. She was uncertain whether Owen was the one talking to the captive individuals. She grabbed the doorknob as she heard footsteps coming towards the door from the other side. Expecting to see Owen in front, she opened the door. But what she saw was the least thing she was expecting to witness. David, just a few steps away. They were mutually surprised. They stood still for a split moment looking at each other’s eyes, trying to cope up with the matter. Keren pushed David and started fleeing from the spot. David hit Arthur, who was just behind him, they both fell on the ground.

“Fuck!” Arthur shouted.

“Don’t let her get away!” Nolan also shouted.

“God dammit!” David got up and ran for her.

Ryan taped their mouths again. He didn’t want Keren or Owen yelling at him.

Henry was asleep. He was tired after talking too much. He couldn’t be blamed for that as it had been a while since he talked so much. He knew that he was a burden to the family. Everyone was waiting for him to just pass away, at least that was what he thought. Keren and Owen weren't always around. The only person whom he got to talk with was his youngest son as it was his job to babysit his father. He was somewhat happy to talk to other people who weren’t a part of his family.

Olivia sat still on her chair. Her body felt numb, asleep. Sitting there all day for hours, it was a torture on its own away. On the other hand, Emma was calm and quiet. Because she knew that she was there for a reason.

If things are going according to the plan then we’ll be out of here in no time, she thought. Just need to wait a little longer.

According to the plan, someone would come bursting the door open. They’d take out Ryan while he was still off guard. Henry was disabled, so there wouldn't be a problem with that.

As simple as that, she thought while looking at the door. Any moment now.

Her wish came true as the door opened with great force from the other side. But she wasn’t expecting one of the siblings to do it. She was confused, so was everyone in the room.

Keren ran directly at Emma into the room. She grabbed her, pulled out a knife from her pocket and pressed it against Emma’s throat.

“W-what’s wrong?” Ryan asked.

“Get away from the door! Stay back!” Keren shouted to her brother.

“Huh?” Henry woke up, “What the hell is happening?!”

What? Emma was surprised with this outcome. This wasn’t meant to happen!

Olivia stood there still, confused.

Just then, David rushed in. He stopped when he saw Keren holding Emma with a knife pressed against her throat. His eyes followed everyone in the room. When Arthur came rushing, David stopped him.

“Stop right there!” Keren warned, “Move a muscle and I’ll cut her throat open.”

David made a gesture to tell her to calm down, “You wouldn’t wanna do that.”

“Oh I sure want to,” she smiled, yet she was nervous too.

“Lower the knife,” David said with a calm and low voice, “We can sort this out, okay?”

She smirked, “You take me for a fool, don’t you buddy?”


“Ryan,” Keren said, “Untie her from the chair.”


“Do it!”

He nodded and started untying her.

“Now, bind her hands together behind her back,” Keren instructed.

“Let us leave,” David said again, “We’ll forget about this. We’ll be out of your hair, I swear.”

“Did I capture you all just to set you free? Huh?” she replied, “Now back off.”


“Back off!”

David backed off a few steps along with Arthur.

“Good,” Keren said. She took Emma with her, holding the knife against her. She moved forward a little, “Keep going.”

“Don’t do this, Keren.”

“I said keep going!”

David sighed. They both backed off a few more steps.

“Yeah, keep going,” Keren kept approaching, “Don’t stop.”

Her plan was simple, to take them where they came from, the basement. Keren kept moving forward with small steps at a time while David and Arthur were backing off, having no other choice. David kept exchanging words, But Keren wasn’t interested.

In seconds, they were downstairs again, heading to the basement. Nolan already untied most of the people. But he stopped as soon as he saw David and Arthur entering the basement.

“Goddammit, Owen,” Keren showed her disappointment when she saw Owen tied up on the ground, “You had only one job.”

David and Arthur were taken back to where it all started.

“Oh, when did you come?” Keren looked at Nolan.

Just then, Arthur rushed and grabbed Owen.

“Arthur, no!” Nolan shouted.

“I’ll break his neck in half!” he shouted, “She better put that knife down!”

“Fine,” Keren replied, “Do it.”

“The fuck?”

“Go ahead,” Keren said again, “Do it.”

“Don’t you give a fuck about your brother?!” Arthur exclaimed.

“Do whatever you want. But let me tell you this,” she replied, “If something happens to him, I’ll cut this one’s throat open.”

“You’re fucking insane!”

“You sure wouldn’t want that now, would you?”

“Put him down, kid,” David said.

“She’s just fucking with us!”

“Arthur,” Nolan said, “Put him down.”

“Fuck! Alright!” Arthur backed off, “You fucking cowards!”

“Good kid,” Keren smiled. She looked at Nolan, “You, come here. Untie him.”

Nolan slowly approached and loosened the knots around him.

Owen got up as soon as he was untied and pulled off the tape from his mouth. He grabbed Nolan by his collars and pressed him against the wall, “This little fucker! He was hiding himself here.”

“What?” Keren was surprised.

“He untied them while I wasn’t around. That other guy,” Owen looked at Marco, “He lied to us. They played us like fools!”

“So they had something going on, huh?” Keren said, “How did you figure it out, boy?

“Tell her!” Owen pressed him harder against the wall.

Nolan said nothing. He kept quiet, had no intention to speak.

“Talk!” Owen shouted again.

Still no response from him. Owen threw him on the ground. He slid and rolled over a few times.

“Calm down, Owen,” Keren said, “They had their chance. But they blew that up. Tie them up again. Keep this one here too,” she said while looking at Emma.

Owen tied up every single one of them again, including Nolan. He wasn't disappointed by how his whole fell apart just in seconds, rather he was more concerned about finding an alternative way out.

After tying everyone up, Owen punched Arthur on the face with all his strength, “Now we are even.”

Arthur had no other option but to boil with anger.

Just then, they heard a shouting from upstairs. Unclear, but the siblings were familiar with the voice. It was calling out Keren’s name.

“Father,” Owen said, “He’s calling for you.”

“Huh, I’ll go see what’s wrong. And you,” she pointed her finger to her brother, “Just because they’re tied up, doesn’t mean they’re harmless. Don’t let your guard down again.”

“Yeah, yeah. Now go.”

Keren left the basement.

“You sons of bitches,” Owen smiled, “That was a nice little plan you pulled off, almost.”

He looked at Nolan, “You’re the mastermind? Huh?”

Nolan looked at him with no emotion or whatsoever. His mind was onto something else.

“Look at that attitude,” Owen smirked, “Too bad you fucked up.”

Arthur mumbled.

“What? You’ve got something to say, huh?” he pulled off Arthur’s tape, “Say it.”

“I swear to God, I’ll break every single bone in your body if I can lay my hands on you.”

“Oh yeah, tough guy?” he said, “We’ve seen who’s stronger earlier, haven’t we? You only won because it was one against two.”

Arthur laughed, “Two against one, my ass. Losers like you, they’ve always got something ready to say.”

“Listen buddy, right now, your lives are in my hands. So you should be careful of what you say with that mouth of yours, alright?”

He put the tape back on.

Nolan looked around. There wasn't anything usable in his reach. Also with Owen around, it wasn’t possible to plot an escape plan either. After what happened just a few moments ago, the idea of leaving them all by themselves wouldn’t even cross his mind.

Think, Nolan, think, he thought to himself, there is always a way out.

He found Emma staring at him, hopelessly. She was tied up on the ground. He got caught off guard with her stare. She looked fragile and scared. He nodded slightly to calm her down.

It’s okay, Emma. Everything is going to be alright, he meant to say.

She seemed to get his message as she nodded back.

Nolan closed his eyes. He realized that he was never this desperate in his life. For him, everything was easy and simple. He had to carry the weight of a brilliant mind yet he never perceived himself as someone exceptional. However, those surrounding him always anticipated great things from him which he was aware of. He was indifferent to what others thought of him. That was what he learned from his father during his early years. He also learned other things from him.

Miracles can turn impossible into reality, he recalled one of his father’s sayings. He often used to say it. But Nolan didn’t really believe in miracles, he never had to.

Miracle is a made up word by the hopeless, he used to think. His intelligence was enough to overcome the value of miracles. But there are times when a miracle is the only option. Nolan didn’t realize it until then. He was hopeless. He felt betrayed by his own intellect. He was used to limitations but it was the first time he was suffering from it.

Only a miracle can save us, he wished for something he never thought of doing.

Owen yawned, “I better go and get some sleep.” He looked at the captives and smiled, “You’d really want that, don’t you?”

He pulled off the tape from David’s mouth, “You’re the leader, aren’t you? So talk.”

“All of us are tied up. You don’t even need to be here.”

“That’s true. But,” he continued, “There is something I planned to do. So…”

“Planned what?”

Owen smiled, “I guess it’s about time, huh?”

He went and pulled out a toolbox from a corner of the basement. He put it down in front of them and opened it.

“You know how predators like to play with their prey before they kill them?” he said, “Well, it’s a natural behavior for them, isn’t it?”


“Like them, I also find pleasure in a similar way,” he pulled out a piler, "It takes the taste of the food to a whole new level.”

“You’re a fucking psychopath,” David said with disgust.

“Hm, some may say that,” he said, “But it’s an art itself, don’t you think?”


“Well, it doesn’t really matter what you think. Prey’s opinion doesn't matter,” he approached David with his piler, “now, let’s see if you’ve been a bad boy or not?”

He looked at David’s fingernails.

“Impressive, pretty clean. I’ll save them for later,” he looked at Arthur, “What about you?’

Arthur tried to resist when Owen grabbed his hand.

“Disgusting! When was the last time you cleaned your nails, huh?” he said, “You’ve been a bad boy. Now I’ll have to punish you.”

“Don’t do this,” David said.

Arthur kept mumbling. He tried to move away his fingers. But Owen’s grip was too strong. He grabbed one of his nails with the piler and looked at Arthur, “Don’t worry, It hurts at first. But you’ll get used to it.”

Just when Owen was about to pull off his nails, they all heard a shouting.

“Owen! Save me!” Owen’s little brother screamed.

“Ryan?” Owen let go of the piler unintentionally and stood up. He left the basement with big steps.

Ryan was on the floor. Olivia grabbed him tightly. Her arms were around his neck. Owen reached the scene in no time.

“Owen! Her ties were loose!” he couldn’t breathe, “Save me!”

“Shut up, you piece of shit!” Olivia shouted.

“Let him go!” Owen charged at Olivia. He pushed her away from his brother. He grabbed her throat with both of his hands. Olivia felt the pressure. Her face started turning red in no time.

“You asked for it,” he mumbled ragingly.

Just then, he heard a clicking sound from behind. He turned his head slowly and looked at his younger brother pointing a gun at him.


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