The room was filled with inky blackness, and only the faintest glow of light could be seen from around the edges of the door. Once in a while, that faint light flickered, announcing the existence of someone in the hall. The sounds behind the door were mostly low and muffled, but every now and then, a shrill scream or clanking of metal could be heard. The most alarming sounds were the sudden scuffles of feet and the dragging of nails across wooden floorboards. Stifled whimpers often followed the tousles, along with deep moans and echoing groans. Sometimes the light beneath the door would abruptly disappear and then reappear as footsteps faded away. It was a lonesome place, with very little to do, but the sounds could stretch the mind, and for that, it was anything but uninspiring.
I watched the whole lot of them, the fence line sagging in protest. Each smoking and joking, eying up the classics on display. I found the sight troublesome knowing how boys will be boys, and as the cigarettes wore down, I could see their restless forms swaggering my way. Shivers ran down my spine as the jostling jokers spotted my gaze, and I tried to shrink into the backdrop, but the prowling had already begun. Darts of catcalling were hurled my way, each unsettling word, a dagger to the innocence of my soul. This act of playfulness reminded me of how a lion toys with its prey, and I knew once the hunt began, anything left of my dignity would not be spared. I tried to act inconspicuously, walking backward one trembling step at a time. But then the books I held began to slide right out of my arms, and the movement caused a chain reaction. Like red-flagged raging bulls, the whole bunch began to barrel my way. Caught in a panic, I tripped and fell, but the embedded asphalt was the least of my worries. I tried to stand but realized it was too late, the pride was already circling, waiting to pounce. In the end, my tormentors were too tough to deter and all I could do was fight with bated breath until my virtue no longer remained.