Rachel hung her lab coat on one of the pegs by the door and glanced around the room. It was empty now, but still showing evidence that it was usually full of busy people. She pulled the door open and stepped out in to the corridor beyond, closing the door behind her. She then scanned her identity card and keyed in the security code to be rewarded with the heavy clunk of locks sliding home.
As she began to turn away someone ran up behind her, pushing her hard against the door and clamping one hand over her mouth. She tried to turn, but a second hand snaked around her waist and pulled her up against a hard, male body. Rachel kicked backwards and bit down hard on his hand. Pushing against him she tried to wrench free, but he was far too strong for her. With a grunt he pulled her jaw down, holding it so that she could neither bite nor call out.
“Stop fighting me, bitch, or I will hurt you” he snarled into her ear, his breath warm and wet against her cheek. “All I need you to do is open the damn door. Do that for me and this’ll all be over.” Rachel grunted and mewled angrily, apparently trying to talk.
“Shut up and get on with it.” He snapped, shoving her away from him. She stumbled against the reader then fished around for her card. It was on the floor, not far from her foot. She bent down to collect it but he grabbed at her arm, hauling her back to the reader. “I said open it!” His voice was wavering now, beginning to sound reedy and tight.
“I dropped my card” she explained, lifting her hands placatingly. “I just need to pick it up and then I’ll unlock the door for you.” Keeping her eyes on his, Rachel slowly reached down to the floor and picked up her card; then she turned away and slid it through the reader. Her hands were shaking enough that it took 2 attempts for her to key in her security code but as she punched the final digit the sirens began to wail.
“What the hell did you do, bitch?” he snarled, all spittle and bad breath as he pushed her again. Behind him the sounds of shouting and running feet were getting closer.
“Help!” yelled Rachel. “Help me! I’m at lab…” she didn’t get to finish the sentence. The man swung his fist into her face, grabbing the security card out of her hand as she fell. Rachel’s hand flew to her nose and she shrieked in pain but he had already forgotten her and was running down the hall, away from the approaching guards.