I stopped a moment to visit the garden that had become quite a favourite of mine. Labouring energetically in the oppressive heat were bees and little water boatman skimming gently across the bubbling pond in the corner. In the centre was a weathervane its brazen arrow pointing towards the sea: and my home. The ocean lay beyond it; an image of confusion and anger. Wavy sentinels guarded the beaches closely where all was silent and serene.
Sighing gently I went in the back entrance of the house going at once to the desk on the far side of the room. I got out the days essays and began to mark them quickly, before an abrupt knock on the door froze my concentration.
Going to the door I almost fainted when I saw the large man bearing an automatic rifle which he brandished at me aggressively. Another man stepped out of the black vehicle I could see in the background and then the two men began to communicate it some tongue that was unfamiliar and strange to me. It was then that the object came crashing hard into my head.
Semi – conscious I remember being bundled into the hungry back of the car that had opened its hungry mouth to devour me and then all light was extinguished and darkness enveloped me.
They dumped me like clay into an artists bin. Beaten until my skin was branded purple, I found myself thrown into a cell.
The cell was damp and grubby. Built of four slabs of hastily mixed concrete, cement has been brutally beaten into the gaps. There was nothing fanciful in this drab room but recurrent grey, gaunt grit upon the wall. Carved into the concrete were the tokens of prisoners gone by and as I lay there I wondered what had happened to them and whether they had died alone in this blandness.
Sprawled upon the floor was a pitiful, putrid smelling excuse of a sheet which was nothing more than a moth eaten rag. It was thin and torn in places so that the cruel, hard, floor dug into my elbows until they were red raw.
A sheet of tempered steel stood before me. It towered above me, the repressive watchmen of my prison. Guarded by lock and key at all times it contained a small grille by which my captors might push my food through. This most often consisted of nothing more than sparse amounts of stale bread and a small glass of dirtied water.
As the days wore on my condition began to affect me. My skin hung to my haggard face and my hair was matted and greasy. I longed for the countryside; the butterflies that flutter gracefully by the foxgloves in spring and the deep red crisp of the summer russet. Lying on that sordid sheet my mind was full of these infatuations. Rudely they were interrupted when the steel door of my cell was thrown open…
Forcefully I was wrenched out of my prison. They took me to a bigger room; built of the same dreary grey it resembled a small photography studio. In the centre was a small black camera upon a tripod and I was told at knife point to sit upon the stool in front of it.
“Look in the camera” they told me and I obeyed without hesitation.
The man that had taken me now put a black hood over his face and then he turned on the camera which I was gazing into curiously.
I’d seen things like this happen on T.V where the terrorist asks for the ransom in return for the safety of the hostage…
I heard the hooded man behind me begin to chant quickly his voice callous, devoid of all emotion quickening slightly as he spoke.
I shivered the sensation running cold down my spine. Even inside the glacial wind managed to pierce my skin and chill me to the core. Then without warning I heard myself begin to shout:
“Help! Somebody help!” But nobody was listening. The camera lens lay before me a passionless void of darkness. No warmth, no emotion, just blackness…
They found me a few weeks later. The Cuban Authorities had been informed of my capture by the people who lived across the road from me. They had been searching for me ever since. To the police I was just another terrorist victim, another political mistake ready to be covered up by some witty excuse. They slung me on a portable bed and I was carried off…