"Ooh! This is cute!" Claudia thought to herself, spotting a pretty red dress hanging from a nearby rack. She walked over and unhooked the hanger, holding her find up. She smiled, draping the dress over one arm. It was a Saturday afternoon and the mall was bustling with people shopping, like Claudia. The 28 year old chemistry teacher had decided to take a break from grading papers and kill a weekend afternoon clothes shopping.
The young woman continued browsing through the racks of clothes, until she had found three or four outfits she liked. Carrying them over one arm, Claudia headed to the changing rooms to try them on.
In the changing rooms, she found an empty room and went in, shutting and locking the door behind her. Setting the clothes and her purse down, Claudia quickly stripped off her jeans, jacket and blouse. Grabbing one of the dresses, the young woman took it off the hanger and slipped it on, turning to look at herself in the full length mirror.
Claudia struck a pose, seeing how the dress looked on her. She frowned, reaching up to brush a few strands of mousy brown hair out of her, rather plain looking, lightly freckled face. A few pounds lighter, a couple inches taller, a slightly bigger bust and…she probably wouldn't have been satisfied then, but it would be a start.
Little did Claudia know that, at the moment, she was being watched remotely by two people nearby, and while she would have been somewhat pleased by their judgment of her looks, she certainly wouldn't have approved of their surveillance of her changing or the reasons for their sinister observations…
"What do you think?" A man asked, watching the view through the secret camera showing Claudia pulling off the red dress.
"She's perfect for what we need." A woman replied, leaning over his shoulder, admiring Claudia's body.
"I agree." The man said, pressing a button on the panel…
Claudia looked up in surprise, as a sudden sound grabbed her attention. To her surprise, a small panel had opened in one wall of the dressing room about head height. Inside was a metal nozzle. She stared at it, wondering what it was for. With a loud hiss, a cloud of gas suddenly spurted from the nozzle, catching the young woman directly in the face. She cried out in surprise, accidentally inhaling a whiff of the gas.
"Oh my God!" She thought to herself in terror. Turning, she grabbed for the handle of the door, but as she reached for it, all the strength seemed to go out of her limbs. The room spun around Claudia as she sank to her knees. "What's happeninnng…" she thought, finding it hard to concentrate as the knockout gas began to take hold.
Overhead, a vent sprang into life, quickly sucking up the gas. Claudia stared in horror as a panel behind the mirror suddenly opened, revealing a narrow hallway behind it. She struggled to rise as two, indistinct figures entered the room, but she no longer had any feeling in her limbs. As they picked up the limp woman and carried her through the portal everything went black…
"uuugghh…" Claudia groaned as she slowly came to. Her head throbbed with pain, and there was a pressure against her chest. She blinked a couple times, opening her eyes. Slowly, they widened in surprise as she realized where she was.
The young woman was sitting in what appeared to be a back room, of some sorts. The floor, walls and ceiling were all of bare concrete and a naked bulb lit the room with its harsh glare. A series of metal pipes or columns ran from floor to ceiling along one of the walls. A metal door seemed to be the only way into the room.
"mmmppphh!" Claudia groaned in fright. Tape covered her lips, muffling her cries. She was dressed in only her panties and bra. Her hands were bound behind back. Rope circled her chest, lashing her to one of the pipes. Her legs were bound in front of her, tied at the ankle and knee. And the young woman wasn't alone.
Glancing over, she saw three other young women, dressed in their underwear and bound and gagged like she was to the pipes. One of them was unconscious, slumped over, the ropes holding her in an upright sitting position. The other two turned and returned Claudia's glance, their eyes wide with fear, tears welling up.
Just then, the door opened with a shriek of rusty, unoiled hinges. Claudia looked up fearfully as a strange man dressed from head to toe in all concealing black entered the room. A limp woman was slung over his shoulder. She was wearing only a brief pair of black lace panties, and a matching bra. Her hands and feet were bound with rope.
Ignoring the other prisoners' frightened whimpers; the man carried the unconscious girl to one of the pillars and set her down. As he did, her head rolled back, letting Claudia get a better look at her. She appeared to be in her early twenties, with reddish brown hair. She had on a pair of diamond stud earrings. Tape covered the lower half of her face, gagging her like all the rest of the prisoners.
Pulling some rope from his pocket, the strange man went to work, lashing her to the pole, the same as the other women had been tied. With a grunt, he stood back up, eyeing the helpless women below him. Claudia cringed as his eyes ran over her half-naked body.
"Not bad…" the man muttered softly to himself. His voice was deep, and hard. "Not bad at all. You ladies will fetch quite a bit of money." He turned, leaving through the door. A few of the girls whimpered in fright as it slammed shut and locked with an audible 'click!' They hung their heads, sobbing quietly in the silence of their cell.
"What does he mean?" Claudia thought to herself. Was he talking about ransoming them? A few of the bound and gagged women looked to have some money. Like the newest captive, some of them still had jewelry on, earrings, necklaces, rings… "But why me?" She thought fearfully. She wasn't rich; she taught chemistry at a local Middle School! Her parents weren't wealthy. If they weren't going to ransom her, what were they planning on doing with her?
Claudia had nothing else to do but ponder that question as time dragged by, minutes becoming hours. An endless parade of nightmares flitted through her subconscious, each more terrible and horrifying then the last…
Once, an hour or two later, the man returned, carrying another bound and gagged captive over his shoulder, bringing the total number of prisoners up to six. After a few minutes, the two new captives slowly came to. They moaned into their gag in fright, finding themselves bound and gagged in a strange room with five other captive women.
Claudia figured it must have been around seven or eight o'clock by that point. The mall would be closing now, everyone, customers and employees going home for the evening. Would they realize half a dozen women had never left the mall? Would anyone come looking for them?
Suddenly, the door opened once more with a squeal of unoiled hinges, and the man returned. This time he wasn't alone, following after him with a young woman, dressed the same as him in all concealing black cloth. A cruel grin crossed her face as she leered at the trembling captives beneath her.
"The six of you," she said, pacing the line of prisoners, "are about to go on a very long trip. There's a truck waiting to take you very far away from here…one way of course!" The women moaned in fright as she announced this.
"Let's start with her." The woman said, ignoring their distress. The two kidnappers walked over to the girl on the far left. Her eyes widened in fright as she squirmed, trying to keep away from them, but bound as she was, she could do little more than struggle in vain as the woman crouched over her. "Nightie night!" She said cheerfully, pressing a cloth over the woman's nose. A moment later, the sobbing captive slumped over, drugged!
The other captives, Claudia as well, squirmed against the ropes holding them captive as their abductors untied the unconscious girl from the pole. The woman grabbed the limp girl's still bound legs, the man; her shoulders. Together, they carried her out of the room.
A few minutes later, they returned, the girl nowhere to be seen. "Her now." The woman said, gesturing to the next girl in line. She whimpered in fright, knowing what was coming but helpless to stop it as she too was drugged, untied, and carried out of the room.
As they returned, Claudia suddenly realized with a jolt of fear she was next. She screamed into her gag as her kidnappers advanced on her, thrashing against the ropes holding her in place with all her strength. There was no give to her bonds.
"Relax…" The woman said, kneeling. One hand curled around the back of Claudia's head, pushing it forward into the cloth held in her other hand, pressing it firmly over the frightened woman's mouth and nose. "Just breath…" Claudia shook her head, eyes filled with tears, trying to shake the cloth away, but the woman held it in place with a firm grip.
Claudia tried her best to hold her breath, to delay what she knew was coming as long as possible, but it was inevitable. Lung burning from lack of oxygen, Claudia suddenly inhaled deeply, sucking in the much needed air, along with a long whiff of the drugs soaking the rag. A sharp chemical smell suddenly filled Claudia's nose. Almost immediately, she began to feel light headed. Her vision blurred and it became hard to think straight. Everything went dark…