I think most people called him the Wizard. To me he was just a monster because there was no way that a guy that keeps an 18-year-old girl in a shed for 23 hours a day was going to win kindest person of the year.
Although the shed had a window so it wasn’t as bad as it seemed.
Who was I kidding? It was no way to live.
I lived in the shed for as long as I could remember, unable to remember anything else. Even remembering that my name was Lucy was challenging.
I gazed out the window, biting down on one of my nails.
The descending sun meant it was almost time for dinner. Not that it mattered or anything, as I was still a prisoner no matter how I spun the situation.
A cloud crackled through the air, making a plate and glass of water appear on the table.
Did I mention the shed also had a table and a chair?
I shuffled over to the table, shoving the piece of toast into my mouth in one sitting.
You would have thought I never eaten a meal before. The water was a different story, as I’d have to make it last the whole evening.
A popping sound exploded across the air, causing my plate and glass to disappear.
Oh well! Morning would come around before I knew it, and I’d get more food and water if I were lucky.
A shadow slashed by the window hours later since a daily evening check was another part of the routine.
It was nothing for me to be flattered about though since the Wizard didn’t even bother to come in and talk. Although it was probably a blessing he didn’t come in and force conversation, as I got enough of a glimpse as it was from his glowing red eyes that reflected out at me from the window.
Most people would’ve gone mad at the thought of being held captive indefinitely, but not me. I was biding my time until I could break free.
Rays of sunlight arrived uninvited into the shed, causing me to rub my eyes the following morning. The door opened, as if on cue, which meant it was time for my exercise hour. I darted out of the shed, scanning the property. The tower stood out at the opposite end of the maze, towering in comparison to the size of the shed.
I guess it wasn’t enough for the Wizard to physically dominate me by holding me captive. He also had to do it by architectural design.
Birds zipped through the air in unison, chirping, as if to remind me of a past life I couldn’t quite remember. I would’ve smiled if I hadn’t stopped caring a long time ago.
I wasn’t completely off base since there was nothing more revolting than a tease because it was as if the outside world was almost within my grasp.
I ran straight into the middle of the maze, navigating every twist and turn while I made sure to speed past the snakes, refusing to give them an opportunity to bite me.
I came to what should have been an exit. But there wasn’t one, as there was no way out of the maze no matter which one of the four directions you navigated through.
It was another way for the universe to have a twisted sense of humor. Check that. It was the Wizard who had the sick sense of humor, not the universe.
Go ahead, judge me, as I must have appeared dumb to run through the maze and try to escape if I already knew the outcome.
But maybe, just maybe, this time would be different. I closed my eyes, believing in the possibility that my wish would come true.
The train honked, waking me up from my dream before rolling into the train station while slicing through the fog.
I scurried off the train, pushing my way through the crowd of people.
“It’s good to see you, Lucy,” said a man’s voice as I stepped off the platform and onto to the ground.
I flashed a smile. “You too, Javier.”
A missing poster containing a picture of my face popped out at me in the distance, causing me to roll my eyes. Someone must have forgotten to take the poster down or something, which was odd because I had been home for over a year now.
The wind whistled in the background, pushing a different poster towards me.
I glanced at the paper, realizing it was a poster of another missing girl. I only hoped she would be found sooner than I was. Four years was a long time to be missing.
“It’s nice your parents allowed you to visit me.”
I flipped my hair over my shoulders. “Well, you are my boyfriend.”
He grabbed my hand while we trekked towards the parking lot. “I know, but they’ve been kind of strict lately.”
“I guess they don’t believe my story…”
Javier glanced at the scar on my right arm. “How did you get that?”
I averted my gaze. “I don’t want to talk about it.”
“Okay. No problem.”
I swallowed the lump in my throat. “You believe me, don’t you?”
“Yeah. I do. But they never found the man, Lucy.”
“That’s because they aren’t looking in the right spot,” I said. “And his name is the Wizard.”
“Was he the one that gave you the scar?” Javier asked.
“What do you think?”
I’ll give Javier one thing: he had more patience than my therapist. But I knew the truth, and for now that was enough.