Citizen Kang # 26 The Prisoner Chet Kimbrough, Congresswoman’s Kang’s chief of staff, is bound and gagged, and it isn’t because he belongs to an S&M club. There is no safe word for him.
It wasn’t as if Chet Kimbrough figured screaming would do any good. His captor had installed soundproofing fiberboard and foam about the walls and ceilings of the tiny space. A horizontal slit of a window up high on one wall allowed for a shaft of sunlight during the day, but Kang’s imprisoned chief of staff couldn’t hear any traffic beyond. Overhead, a lone fluorescent was continually on. Behind him was a door, because he had heard that opening and closing several times–as he did now.
His jailer stepped in front of the bound man and removed the duct tape he’d put around Kimbrough’s mouth. The tape was perfunctory, Kimbrough realized, used to show who was in control.
“How long?” Kimbrough asked, trying to ignore his need for water.
“We’re into the fourth day,” the other man said blandly.
“You intend to starve me to death?”
“I intend to get to the truth.”
“A little waterboarding, something like that?” There was nothing else in the room except the sturdy wooden chair Kimbrough was bound to by cable like that used on a wench, padlocked in various ways. The coarse metal strands of the cable had dug bloody ruts in his arms and legs through his clothes. He stank badly, since he hadn’t been allowed the use of any facility and had shat and pissed on himself. But he was long past feeling embarrassed about that. For, oddly, he’d shaken his fear. Now it was the slow fire of outrage burning in his gut.
“You’re a wack job, you know that?”
“You’ve mentioned that a time or two,” the man replied. He frowned, walking around the captive, clenching and unclenching his knotty hands. “You’ve held up better than I would have given you credit for, Kimbrough. All that wine and organic cheese you liberals eat, I wouldn’t have put much stock in that providing enough fortitude,” he snorted.
“I get my share of red meat, don’t you worry none.” He tried to shift in the seat but only irritated the raw areas where the cable dug into him. At least conversation was a distraction from the discomfort. “This all part of your method, is it?” he spat. “Make me mess myself, make me wonder when you’re going to bring the pain so I work myself into a goddamn tizzy and then I blather the secret ingredients to my grandma’s blueberry cobbler for you?”
The man leaned his face closer to Kimbrough. “I have to be sure.”
“Yeah, I saw Marathon Man too. You going to yank my back teeth out now?” It surprised him how sharp he sounded–that he was inviting a violent reaction other than the disturbing evenness of his would-be Deep Throat’s manner. A true sociopath or a man completely in control of his every move and emotion?
The other one gave him a puzzled look. Kimbrough should have known this hump wasn’t much for movies. No doubt the twisty tableau playing in this man’s head in high def was his own daily epic. “Look, aren’t you supposed to be the man of action or some shit? You flew into Tahiti and sent a very clear message to the head of the Shindo. Why the long drag-out with me?”