These chapters labeled 'X' are previews for the story. Like giving you a sample of chocolate, I give you a tase of what I am capable of. Reviews would be greatly appreciated!

Chapter XX

His face had dropped from one of gladness to cold calculation. His stare at the door was unwavering, and all became very still. In a matter of seconds, he had jerked me off the bed and practically carried me to the wall furthest to the door. His rough hand silenced any sound I made.

I've never seen him like this. Blood pounded in my ears. What is he thinking?

I took advantage of the contact he had on my mouth, and opened the flood gate. This allowed his thoughts to flow freely as my own.

I know I heard something. The thought was angry and prickled with what I could only interpret it as fear. A memory came to light. Perhaps it came from Iran or Afghanistan of ambushers and enemy fire. Richard's eyes were staring at the door.

Without warning, Richard crouched over me, pinning me to the wall. It wasn't a gesture of passion, something was terribly wrong .Moments later, there came a loud POP that deafened our ears and flew smoke in the air. Bits of wood from the door pounded against Richard body. Small grunts of pain escaped as he arched his back. The blood trailed around his stomach and threatened to drip on my bare breast.

"Richard," I said quietly, eyes wide with confusion.

The smoke screen was white and thick. Not even the skulking shadows of armed men could be seen, only heard. Stomping of heavy feet echoed in the room and their vibrations could be felt through the floor. Red beams of light aimed squarely at Richard's head and left ribcage.

He looked at me, silently asking the question. I nodded

"Nothing hit me," and I tried to manage a small smile. My heart was threatening to burst through my chest.

There was a moment of silence. Smoke began to lift into the ceiling vents and crouching figures could just be seen.

"Subjects are cornered, Sir." The man speaking was directly in the middle of the room, kneeling with a rather large machine gun held surely in his hands. The gun was sleek in exterior with a mounted scope, a red beam pointed in our direction. As visibility became clearer, twenty to thirty men scaled the exterior of the room holding their guns with the same sureness.

Richard lowered his crouch till he was almost caressing my naked body. The blood that dripped from his wounds could be felt sliding down my chest.

"Oh, dear me! We seemed to have intruded on a rather intimate moment."

Both Richard and I went rigid. A low growl could be heard in Richard's throat. The unmistakable upscale, sickly sweet tone of voice was coming from the door way, behind the gunmen. Only the silhouette of Willem's short, lean, and cruel frame could be seen through the smoke. If I looked close enough I may have been able to see the black holes he calls eyes; piercing, pitiless, and passionate.

Coward. I thought angrily. The smoke had dissipated to nothing more than a haze.

"My, oh, my Richard. Got yourself into quite a pickle, I daresay." The disgusting smile could be heard in Willem's words as he eyed Richard's naked body, bloody and vulnerable. An echo of chuckles could be heard around the room. Richard remained stoic and unmoving.

Willem's dark head angled to the left.

"Grace? Is that you? Tsk, tsk! I hoped you had more self-respect than this. I take it you are not intact any longer?" His sickly pale lips leered at me from behind Richard's solid build, but the ice still hit home in my heart.

The laughter around the room was unmistakable. My face burned red hot and I tried not to curl into a ball. Richard wrapped his arms around me in an attempt at concealment.

This is-how could all this be-I'm completely naked! Richard is naked. Oh dear Lord. Willem! His cronies areā€¦ Oh God!-everywhere! They surrounded us. Guns are-there are red beams aiming at Richard!

Willem spoke coldly. All traces of mockery gone.

"Step away from her, boy, so I may speak to her."

Richard tightened his grip, eyes burning into a spot on the wall. Underneath him, I held my breath.

"I said," he growled," step away. Perhaps, I should provide a motivation. Yes?" With a flick of his hand, there was a shuffle of footsteps.

I wanted to do something, anything. Anything to help, but I was useless to Richard. I was weak.

A gun was cocked, and I could feel a tingling sensation on my forehead as a red beam bored into my skull. Immediately, I pushed Richard aside, standing to my full height. It was an instinctual response so sudden that I nearly lost my balance. More guns were cocked and ready to fire at my flourish of movement. My pale white skin was littered with red spots of light.

"What do you want, Willem." I spat. The words came out calmer than I was expecting, and stronger than I felt.

Richard stood also, his body poised to take action. The heat radiating from his rage was a comfort. I held my hand across his chest, commanding him to stop his advance. I forced one thought into Richard's mind through my touch.

Willem has the upper hand. If either of us is injured, it will be harder to fight back.

"God damnit." He growled. Richard was beyond feeling helpless.

The cold air of the room wafted over my body and I felt a distinct urge to shiver, but I remained still. My breasts jiggled slightly as I breathed. In and out. In and out. The perverted murmurs of men echoed incessantly. Willem scrutinized me, a smile playing at his thin lips.

"You are hardly the one to be asking the questions," gesturing to his men. "Could it be your lack of morals that leads you to act this way?"

"Morals!" I practically choked on the words. "Don't you ever discuss morals with me you bastard! What you did to those innocent people should do more than attest to your sense of morals." My facial muscles were contorted and strained with a mixture of disgust and fury. The phrase 'seeing red' couldn't do the emotions justice.

I could have sworn there was an audible SNAP, like a twig breaking in half. I was gone. With no coherent thoughts to keep me logical, my feet began to take advances toward Willem. I wanted blood.

Beaming manically, Willem shot up an open hand and flicked away my fist, grabbing my throat in the same second. His movements were so fast and abrupt as I left my neck completely exposed. Willem rammed me against the adjacent wall, his palm muscles squeezing my trachea. My head ached sharply and thoughts becoming clearer from the impact.

Remove the tension on your body, Grace. Let go of your muscles and don't wear yourself down. The harder you fight, the easier it will be for him to win. Just stare him down. If you can do anything, it would be to surrender with dignity. Rather, he'll never receive the satisfaction of making you cower. The last Willem will see of you is pride, pride that will never be broken.

"My morals? Well, my sweet pet," his eyes glazed over with lunacy, "I would love to see what that tight little hole of yours would look like impaled on a rod of iron."

Satan himself couldn't strike as much fear into me as Willem had done. With a swift motion, he had grabbed a rifle from one of his cronies' hands and held it to my face. He was still holding me above ground with one hand on my throat.

"Take this as your punishment for your indiscretions, my Grace!" The barrel of the gun dropped to the apex of my legs and found its way to my entrance.

"You son of a bitch. Don't- "

"Too late." And on a cheery note he mercilessly shoved the barrel of the rifle up into my cavity,"Don't you agree?" Willem eyed his men and with our missing their cue, the armed individuals nodded emphatically.

The pain was excruciating. The rifle's barrel was covered with sharp and daggered points that cut abrasively into my flesh. The initial impact rendered me lifeless for a many moments. Tears ran freely down my cheeks as blood ran the same.

"Cow-ar-ds." My words were disjointed.

Richard was being held against the wall by four or five men, face red and panting from struggle. I hadn't heard his angry howls throughout the whole ordeal. I could see behind Richard was a dent in the wall and one crony lying precariously on the floor. I met his stare, but had difficulty seeing his face beyond the spots. The glance was meant to say 'don't make this worse for either of us,' but more than likely it had the opposite effect.

Willem's hand brushed my inner thighs and one long pale finger dabbed at the flowing blood. Eyes locked with mine, he brought his hand to his lips and indulgently gorged upon his finger. If his hand wasn't clutching so tightly against my throat, he would be eating more than my blood.