Everlasting – Excerpt – Lori Ryan

Katelyn grinned as she turned, eager to see John, but her smile quickly dropped. She felt someone shove her from behind and immediately knew this wasn’t John. This was all wrong. She cried out in pain and shock as her body hit the door she’d just closed and she fought for some semblance of balance. All she found was confusion, panic and pain as her mind whirled.

“Time to leave, Katelyn. You don’t belong here,” came a growling voice in her ear. The person shoved her harder against the door of her studio, slamming her head into the cold metal. The arms she raised to try to block the blow were useless against the strength of the person behind her. The crack of her head hitting metal resounded in her ears. The sound alone would have sickened her but the sharp bolt of pain to her skull brought its own special nausea with it and bile flushed her throat.

She couldn’t see who was pinning her to the door. There was a hood pulled down over his face, and he pressed his arm into the back of her neck preventing her from turning to look at him. She opened her mouth, but no sound escaped. Her mind raced as she tried to control the panic setting in, but the situation was quickly overwhelming her.

She shut her eyes and tried to stop the sob that wracked her body, but she couldn’t. Fear gripped her, building deep in her belly, her heart racing as her throat constricted. She could smell the man’s breath, foul and laden with alcohol. He wreaked of body odor as though he hadn’t washed in days and the realization that he had her so completely at his mercy hit her hard. She opened her mouth to scream, but before she could, he gripped the back of her hair and slammed her head into the door. Once. Twice. Again and again and she began to pray. For what, she didn’t know. For him to stop? For her to be spared the pain, the fear. That he wouldn’t rape her? Kill her.

Katelyn held on for as long as she could, trying to raise a scream to the surface, to call for help. Then blackness swallowed her as she felt herself fall.

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