Jim opened the door, and walked inside. He looked around; the house appeared just as it had when he left it for work, earlier that morning. The blue curtains that his mother had insisted for him to buy, and the dishes still left dirty in the sink. He put his coat on a chair that was standing in the doorway, and proceeded in. He was tired; twelve hours of work had worn on his body. “I have to get a new job.” He thought to himself, the job he had at the moment was extremely tiresome and it wasn’t exactly easy. At the moment he was working at a local company, the company sold iron pipes, rubber pipes and about anything you would ever need when installing a pipe. This, though was heavy work, it meant he had to carry large iron pipes to and from trucks, the company was still a small one, and they couldn’t afford any machines to make the job any easier. He carried on and was on his way up the stairs, when he heard some weak scratching sounds. “What was that?” he thought to himself, curious. “Maybe it was just the neighbour’s cat again, on the roof.” He carried on up the stairs, but then the scratching sound emerged again. “Hello, is anyone there?” he called out. No response. Now, Jim was curious and he decided for himself to investigate where the sound was coming from. He went up the stairs and stopped for a second to listen for the sound. Nothing, he moved on through his bedroom, and then he tapped lightly on the roof to see if he could conjure up any response. There it was! The scratching sound, it was coming from the attic. He walked out of his room and grabbed the grip that was hanging down from the roof, and then he pulled down the ladder leading up to the attic.
He climbed up the ladder and looked around in the dusty old attic. There was a fireplace in the middle of the attic, it was covered in dust, he rarely ventured up here, and when he did, it was only to grab a few old books. In one of the corners there was a wardrobe, though there appeared to be two sets of foot-steps leading to it. He felt a strong shiver crawl down his back, nobody had the key to his house, other than him, and the footsteps looked fresh, it surely would have been covered up again in dust if it was his footsteps from the last time he was here. The footsteps stopped at the wardrobe. “That wardrobe could surely fit one, maybe two people inside.” He thought to himself. He decided to take some precautions; he went down and found his baseball bat sitting, edged towards the corner of his room. Then, slowly he climbed up the ladder again, but this time he also noticed some blood on the edge, where the ladder ended. He shivered. This time he could also see his footsteps blending in with the other two. As he slowly proceeded towards the wardrobe, he could see small drops of blood around the wardrobe; he could also see some blood on the handle, and the edge of the door where the two parts of the wardrobe closed. Shocked he considered calling the police, but the adrenaline had already caught up with him, he decided to open up the wardrobe, and look inside. Grabbing around the cold handle of the wardrobe, he got some of the blood on his hands. Ready to strike with his bat, he quickly opened the door of the wardrobe. Dust flew everywhere and when it cleared he could see a young girl, no more than seventeen years-old lying edged up against the wall of the wardrobe.
He stopped up and looked at her, she had some blood on her face, dripping from a cut in her forehead and what appeared to be bruises all over her body, she was dazzled and didn’t speak to him. Her eyes were shifting back and forth quickly, and she was slowly swaying back and forth. Her skin was pale and she looked starved. “My God, are you alright?!” he called out, dropping his baseball bat to the floor and attempting to help her up. She didn’t answer him, and she tried to fend off his arms when he tried to help her up. “It’s alright, I won’t hurt you.” He reassured her. She calmed down and looked up at him; he grabbed her arm and lifted her to her feet. “What has happened to you? And how did you get into my house?” he asked her. She didn’t respond, just shook her head slowly. “Either way, let’s get you downstairs so that you can get some clothes, and something to eat, it’s freezing up here.” He helped her down the ladder and then again down the stairs, to his kitchen. He gave her some tea to drink, and then he said to her “I’ll be right back; I’m just going to see if I can find some clothes for you, we can’t have you sitting here in your underwear.” He went upstairs and looked through his drawers for some clothes. He found a t-shirt and some jeans that he thought wouldn’t be too large for her. On his way down, he stopped and leaned towards the wall. “I have to call the police, and I wonder what has happened to this poor girl.” He shook it off, though and then he continued downstairs where she was still sitting on the chair, the cup that had contained the tea was now empty. “Here’s some clothes for you.” He said, and gave them to her. She didn’t respond at first, but then she quickly grabbed them. As she was getting dressed he asked her “What has happened to you?” She didn’t respond. “You don’t talk much, do you?” No response. “Either way, I’ll be calling the police, and we’ll see if they can find out what happened.” She didn’t respond to what he said, but she pointed towards the cup. “You want some more tea?” He asked. She nodded in response. “I’ll see if I can get you some food as well, while I’m on it.” He smiled to her, and got to it.
While she was eating, and getting her warmth back he decided to call the police. Be brought up his cell phone and called them.
“This is the London emergency line, how may I help you?” The operator asked him.
“I’ve found someone, in my house; she appears to be hurt and unable to talk.” He told the operator.
“Does she need an ambulance?” The operator asked.
“I don’t think so, but could you please send someone to take her away?” He asked.
The operator then asked him where he lived, and they dispatched a patrol car to pick her up, and find out what happened.
“So you just found her like this, in your attic?” the police officer asked him, sceptical.
“Yes, I’m telling you! It’s the truth, I just got home from work and I heard what must have been her scratching the wardrobe, you see it can only be opened from the outside.” He told the police officer.
“We’ll check our missing files, to see if she’s been reported missing, hopefully we’ll find out her name and address there.” The police officer told him. “Thank you, I hope you find out what happened.” He responded.
Later that day the investigators were still there, in his house they were taking samples of the blood and found out that there was in fact blood from two different people, and they concluded that the other set of footprints were so large, that they’d have to originate from a male. Then at some point he saw a car pull in, outside his house. A police officer got out, and entered his house. He went directly to him and said: “We’ve found out why she isn’t talking, she’s a mute.”
“A mute, I see, well that does explain quite a few things.” He said, for some reason this didn’t surprise him.
“We thank you for your help in this investigation, your answers have been most helpful.” The police officer said, and left. In reality he hadn’t answered any vital questions, so he didn’t understand how he had been helpful, but he said “Of course, officer.” And locked the door as they left his house. He was curious, though of what had happened to the girl, he suspected that she might have been violated, and raped, as she did seem very scared. But he couldn’t know for sure, as the police officers revealed very little, and she obviously, didn’t tell him anything.
A few months passed, and he started to give little thought to the incident, but, it was still on his mind. Then, as he was venturing home he decided to pick up the day’s newspaper. On the front page it said; “Serial rapist, shot and killed during police raid.” This sparked his curiosity and he went on to read it. In the newspaper he found a picture of the girl he had found in his attic, there it also said how she had got there. “During interviews with the girl the police found out that she had been able to escape from the rapist, confused and scared she had ran through the neighbourhood, and got into a house using an open backdoor.” This explained a lot to him, she had probably thought that the rapist was still chasing her, but why hadn’t there been any blood in the hallway? When he came to think about it, he thought that maybe she had knocked her head coming up the ladder, or when closing it, he did remember the blood on the edge. Why hadn’t she called out for help though? He didn’t know, but he continued to read the newspaper. “The woman was one out of twelve mute girls, under the age of eighteen to be kidnapped and raped by this man, she was the only one who managed to escape and survive though, the others suffered death through starvation, the man had no intention of keeping them alive.” Jim was disgusted by what he read, and threw away the newspaper. He stood there, disturbed and at the same time, happy that the girl had managed to escape, and that he had found her, triggering an investigation. There were still many unanswered questions though, and he would keep thinking about it, for years to come. “At least” he thought to himself, “that one girl managed to escape.” He then picked up the newspaper, and found out her name. “Jillian.”