By: Mia L. Hazlett
They only allowed me to explore the top floor of my prison. I really didn’t know where I was. There were no windows. It had the layout of a small hotel, except everything was white. I knew I was upstairs because of the small stairwell at the end of the bleached hallway. No stairs went up, but there were at least three, maybe four flights, which went down.
I didn’t explore the hallways as a leisurely stroll. Over the past, I’ll guess and say two weeks, I carried an extremely large heavy duffel bag on my shoulders. Every two days they added more weights. They started me heavy, and I could safely say it now exceeded my own weight.
I came into the hallway the next morning for my routine weight walk. The difference this time, the bag was alive. The noise was muffled, but my bag now hopped and moved across the floor. Maniacal ordered me to pick it up and begin my routine. I obeyed. Whatever it was calmed as I picked it up. Two steps in- it went frantic. I was ordered not only not to drop it, but to also run. Again, I obeyed- until I dropped it.
It only took seconds to pick it up again, but now it was wild. My routine consisted of down the hall and back twenty times. I was up to thirty-five right now, and sweat stung my eyes. My momentum was gone and my bag had no sign of life. At fifty he let me stop. I wanted to drop the bag, but I remembered it was once alive.
Footsteps came and opened the bag. The pit bull took small breathes. It was a dog, but when I looked in its eyes, I recognized that fear. I had seen that fear in Hope’s eyes. They taped around his muzzle and he was probably close to suffocating. Footsteps walked to the end of the hallway and opened the door to the small stairwell. Maniacal cut the tape off his muzzle as a sat on the floor in front of them. Exhaustion possessed every cell of my body.
I was ordered to go to Footsteps. Still out of breath and feet from the stairwell, I heard Maniacal yell, “Attack”, and turned to see the pit bull running at me. I don’t know how I made it down the first flight of stairs, but as I reached the third, pit bull was closing the gap. There were two more flights coming at me fast as skipped stairs and still maintained my speed and balance. I heard a yelp as he lost his balance and fell down the flight directly behind me.
Fear and adrenaline battled inside me for the next two seconds as I ran out of stairs and slammed into the cement wall. Before I could recover, there was a loud blast and a final yelp. Footsteps appeared with a gun and ordered us back upstairs. I carried the dog up five flights of stairs and collapsed on my bed.
Before I fell asleep, Maniacal spoke into his phone while looking at me, “She’s ready.”