Warning: This story contains material which is violent and graphic in nature. Readers please be advised if you are not comfortable with this type of material please leave now.

"Hurt"

The music was throbbing, the bass pumping so hard I could feel it in my stomach. Bodies moved all around me in a sweating, twisting mass. No one paid any mind to anyone else. Manson's "Disposable Teens" came on and everyone began stomping and slowly contorted their faces in time to the screaming angry lyrics. There seemed to be a level of pride in being a member of yet another generation called "lost" or "useless." It felt like a rite of passage to join in the angst.

There was an overwhelming scent of skin and blood hanging over the dance floor. Pulses were pounding and time had lost all meaning. Somehow, things had reached back through history all the way to prehistory until the dawn of time - something about dancing in a frenzy blinded people and turned them completely in towards themselves.

As the music slowed and a song with less bass came on, the floor emptied out a little, giving more room to breathe and move. I closed my eyes and just felt the lights on my eyelids. I stood swaying back and forth for a few moments, finding the beat for me to dance to, when I felt a hand on my shoulder. It was heavy, and cold. Ice cold.

I spun around and my eyes flew open, as I stood face to face with Josh. Six and a half feet tall, and 250 lbs, all muscle and titanium where knees and hips had been replaced, he smiled coldly at me. I shivered and knew better than to speak first.

"CeeBee," his smile was nearly a sneer and he gripped my shoulder harder. "What a lovely surprise to find you here. I had heard that you were often seen here but hadn't yet had the pleasure of bumping into you." He offered me his arm and I hung back, silently begging the crowd to hide me. He didn't like having to come after me, and roughly grabbed my arm. "Now CeeBee, that's no way to behave to an old friend. Come on, let's play nice." Some heads were turning towards us and I let my eyes plead with them. They must have figured it was a lover's quarrel though, because they all looked down or turned away again. Josh dug his nails into the soft flesh of my arm and started to twist, tearing the skin slightly. "Play nice, CeeBee, and this will be over with soon." I looked around me - there were five of Josh's "friends" with us. Fighters who were paid in hard drugs and sex to follow him around and enforce situations for him. I had no choice. I had to go with them. It was my only chance of making it out of the club whole.

Josh led me into a hallway, down a flight of stairs, and into a cold basement room beneath the club. The bass still pounded down from above our heads, and my pulse had sped up to match it. As we entered the room, Josh swung me around to face him. I could smell the whiskey and beer on his breath and saw a pack of pre-rolled joints in his front pocket. The fighters behind him closed and locked the door, then threw a piece of wood across it as a reinforcer.

"It's been a long time, baby," his words came out slow and think, like they were trying to fit around his tongue. He moved his hands down to my waist and pulled me closer to him, grinding his crotch into mine. I looked away, disgusted, and tried to pull back involuntarily. The next thing I felt was a sharp sting across my face as he backhanded me. "You know better than that, bitch," he growled at me. I stared at the floor as he forced my hips back and forth along his own. He turned me around to face my back and marched my legs stiffly towards the table at the far end of the room. Along the walls were assorted couches, chairs, and ashtrays. It wasn't hard to see that this was the room the club's regulars partied in privately. The longest table was next to the back wall, and had a low shelf underneath it. We were headed right for it.

"Josh, we don't need to do this," I tried to talk to him, to find even the slightest bit of sobriety and the man I had known years ago. His only reply was to bite down on my shoulder, hard. I knew it was hopeless - any traces of the Josh I had known were gone. I let myself be led to the table, and felt him bend me slowly at the waist, and place my hands onto the smooth varnished wood. I fought the tears building behind my eyes, trying to think of another way out. He was moving slowly, so I knew I could get away from him when I had to, but his fighters were a different story. They were all perfectly sober and not happy about it. I looked up to the ceiling and saw some piping, and then an open space. It looked like an open vent shaft. I knew I couldn't fit into it, but if I could get onto the piping and scream, maybe someone in the DJ's booth would hear me. I knew we were somewhere beneath it in this room.

"That's right CeeBee, just relax. You teased me all those years ago when we were kids, now it's time to make good on those promises." His hands ran to the front of my dress, tearing the buttons open, revealing my black lace bra and satin panties. I shut my eyes tightly as his calloused fingers rasped over my skin like sandpaper. I tried to think of the man I had known as a child, when I was only ten and still boyish.

Josh had been six years older than me then, and I followed him like a puppy. Any attention he showed me brightened my day and made me feel lighter than air. He was handsome, tough, the head of our local gang my cousin Chris and I were in. That's where I got my nickname - CeeBee. It's actually C.B. - short for "Chris's Baby." I was truly the baby, dressed like a boy so I could stay closer to Chris, and in my mind, to Josh. After Chris had to go to the hospital after a fight, he left the gang, and I was left in it. After another year, still their youngest member at 12, I also left. Now, at 19, my past all started to come back.

When Josh's hands reached the waistband of my panties, I decided to take my chance. Lifting one leg up onto the table, I kicked swiftly behind me and stood, preparing to jump for the pipes just above me. As I jumped, I started to scream - nothing intelligable, just screaming. I wasn't nearly fast enough. As my arms started to pull me onto the piping, one of the fighters grabbed my leg and tore me down. My chin smacked the pipe beneath it and I felt my teeth crunch together sharply. I hit the floor and almost cracked my head on that as well, but just barely saved it by an inch or so. When I thought that was over, I looked up and saw a boot headed at my ribs. They were steel-plated toes, so when they made contact, I felt my ribs crack in about three places. My wind was gone and I sensed Josh standing above me again. He knelt down and brought his nose up to mine.

"Really fucking retarded bitch. You forgot everything I taught you - or you just like getting hit," he seemed to like this idea. "Yeah that's it, right bitch? You're one of those sick fucks who likes to get fucked up right before sex, aren't you?" Here he slapped me as hard as he could, considering our closeness. I tasted blood in my mouth, that hot coppery taste running from my nose down the back of my throat, over my lips. I choked a little and he grabbed my hair and pulled my head back. "You're loving this you sick little shit," he snarled at me. He kept pulling, further and further went my head, until I felt like a bow, ready to be fired. I knew my head would snap forward as soon as he let go, and I prayed I didn't snap forward into his face. It would only make him mad.

Suddenly, the hair he had in his hand twisted and my neck went with them. I screamd slightly, and thought my spine might snap. I almost hoped for it. His fingers continued to explore my body, tearing my bra and panties off right there on the floor. I tried to close my eyes, but my hair was pulled too tight - I could barely move any part of my face.

Josh started to remove his buckle and I felt a few tears leak out. For a moment, it looked like he might soften.

"You don't like this game CeeBee?" he whispered, less harshly this time. I whimpered, and he loosened his grip on my hair slightly. He kept removing his belt though. I whimpered louder, and he slapped me with his open palm this time. I bit down on my cheek and tasted more blood. My right eye ached and I knew why I was having a hard time closing it. Completely swollen, I knew it was black and blue and a deep purple.

Josh struggled with his pants, trying to keep his grip on my head at the same time. Some of his fighters had left, I noticed. Maybe they were guarding the door because of my screams. Maybe they hadn't signed on to beat a girl. Maybe their dealers had gotten there. Whatever the case, there were only two standing in the room with us now. And they were busy standing by the door, lighting a blunt and sharing it. Josh turned and looked at them, then released my head and took his pants down the rest of the way. There must have been something about the way my neck was resting, or it could have been the blood and bruises on my face, but Josh looked at me disgustedly.

"You look like shit, bitch," he said. "You fucking ruined this for me, I can't fuck you looking like that. Shit." He sounded truly pissed off and I was scared enough to stop breathing for a second. Then, he turned around like he was going to walk away, but before he did, he turned around a kicked me again, this time in the stomach. His shoes didn't have steel in the toes, so I knew he wasn't the one who had kicked me earlier. He called his fighters over then, and told them to cover me. They found a crusty blanket on one of the couches and threw it over my body, covering my face as well. I never moved. I heard all three of them walk out before I even let myself draw a breath.

Above me, in the club, the bass still pounded down through the floor. The song playing was by Nine Inch Nails. The chorus was appropriate. "Bow down before the one you serve, you're going to get what you deserve..."