"Three teenagers have been reported missing. They are all very much seperate. Police were called three times in two days about all three of them. Their families have been informed of this and claim that none of them know each other. These four are all in the range of Cheshunt, Hertfordshire."
Michelle Redbrooke bit her lip. She had been washing up after just having microwavable pasta.
Both of her parents had left today. We'll be back soon, they had said. On Monday, they had said. Apparently they'd both gone to a friend's stag night and hen do, and were to stay over the weekend in a hotel near Cambridge.
She couldn't believe what she was hearing. The telly was on in the other room and she was listening to the evening news. She herself was in Cheshunt, now, at home.
Yes. Yeah, safe. She was fine. Completely safe.
But, just to be even safer, maybe she should call Shaun. You know, to have him round for a bit.
Besides, they could watch a Disney film together. Yeah... a film would be nice. Something cute and fluffy, like Alladin.
Straining her hands so as not to flick the soapy water all over the kitchen, and eventually dried her hands on a towel.
She yawned, and sat on the sofa, dialling Shaun's number into her mobile phone.
It rung thrice and finally he picked up.
"Hello," he grunted.
"Oh." When he heard it was his girlfriend he made sure he sounded more chirpy. "Y'alright babe?"
"Yeah, er, did you just see the news?"
Michelle, again, bit her lip. "Okay, don't worry. So I was thinking. Mum and Dad are out. Wanna come stay the night?"
She could hear by the tone in his voice he was smirking. "Yeah, nice. Be right -"
Knock knock knock.
"Who's that?" Shaun wondered.
"Dunno. Hold on." Michelle could hear her own breath.
She popped her head up from behind the sofa.
Phew. "Oh, s'alright, it's my neighbour. See you soon."
She hung up and answered the door.
"Hello!" Grace smiled.
"Hi, Grace. I got a parcel for you earlier, I forgot to say."
"Yeah, that's why I'm here."
Grace was the same age as Michelle.
"Here," Michelle said, "come in."
"Brrrr, thanks! Bloody freezing!"
"Ooh, I know!" She handed her a brown square shaped and well wrapped parcel. "Do you fancy a cuppa, Grace?"
"Oh, wow, I'd absolutely love some tea." she smiled.
Michelle walked into the kitchen and continued talking, Grace in the sitting room.
"You okay then?"
Grace wasn't quite listening. She pulled a tissue out from her front pocket and shivered. "I have to do this!" she muttered.
"Do you take sugar?" Michelle asked, walking back into the sitting room.
Grace wasted no time. She pushed the chloroformed tissue practically right up Michelle's nose. She screamed and kicked, but soon fell into a long sleep.
Knock knock knock.
"It's me Michelle!" Shaun said from behind the door.
"Shit!" Grace growled.
"Gotta get her out! Got to get her out!"
She dragged a limp and lifeless Michelle out from the back door, and slammed it behind her, Shaun now worriedly asking if she was still there.
She opened her eyes dazedly.
There was a 16-year-old behind her scratching his arms horribly, a 17-year-old in a sleeping bag next to her cradling herself and rocking back and forth, a 15-year-old girl infront of her, her eyes wildly flicking open and closed and staring at white nothingness. They were in a plain white room, and the light was dazzling.
"W-where I am?" Michelle stammered. "Wh-who are you all? Why am I here?!"
"Shh!" the others said.
"She'll come, she'll come to get us!" the Sleeping Bag Girl said.
"What?! Who?! WHO'S 'SHE'?!"
"Listen, listen to me, please!" the Arm Scratcher said. "We've been here for days. She'll come and get us if you don't please be quiet!" he whimpered.
"WHAT THE FUCK AM I DOING HERE?!"
"Shut it, just shut it alright!" the Starer cried.
Michelle burst into tears.
"Wait," she said. "Wait, okay, so, I was at home, I called Shaun, and, and Grace came, and-"
"She knows too much. We've got to stop her. Black knight to H3." The girl known as Grace said. She was in a seperate room.
The Starer stood up, somehow even blanker than she already was.
"Alicia?" the Arm Scratcher said.
The Starer, or Alicia, walked right around the outskirts of the empty room and to the door on the left. She waited.
"What the fu-" Michelle began.
There was a beep and the doors opened, letting her out. The Arm Scratcher either made an attempt to escape, or save Alicia, or both. But they snapped shut.
The Sleeping Bag Girl wailed. "Does she get to leave? But my baby! My baby needs me! It should be me! She's left, she's gone!"
"Ella, I don't think she's gone..." the Arm Scratcher said. "They've taken her."
Alicia stood in a room. There was a table with a needle on it. Being the addict she was, the poor girl couldn't resist.
When she woke up, she was laughing, and back in the room where Michelle was crying and Ella and the Arm Scratcher were trying to wake her up.
Alicia laughed. And then she stopped. She sat up completely straight.
"What have they done to her? Will they do this to us?!" Michelle said.
"But she's okay, she's fine," the Arm Scratcher said.
"Are you kidding? Look at her - she's high off her head!"
Ella said, "Joe, leave it."
And then Alicia got up, staring wildly at Michelle. "Where's my mother? What've you done to her? TELL ME WHERE MY MUM IS!"
Michelle whimpered. "I, I don't know, leave me alone!"
And then Alicia sat back down. "You're next." she said, calmly, staring at Michelle.
"What?" Michelle said.
"No!" Joe cried.
"You can't!" Ella said.
"You're next, you're next," she chanted, and laughed wildly.
"White queen to H4," said Grace. The girl next to her grimaced.
"What are you gonna do now?"
"Me? You think I'm doing this? Don't give them glory. Think about Bobby, why should they have a good life if you can't?"
The girl inhaled. "Alright. Fine."
Michelle screamed, and then stood up much like Alicia had.
"No, don't!" Joe cried.
But she, walking on the outskirts of the room, was not listening.
The doors beeped again and let Michelle out.
It was hours before the others saw her again, and when Alicia was finally sober.
And she was laughing. Wildly. Dangerously.