TITLE: Next To Me
GENRE: YA Historical Fiction
Sixteen-year-old Simone Burrows made a list of all the things that scared her most. Heights, the dark, enclosed spaces, feet excluding her own, ghosts - though she'd never seen one and death. It was therefore ironic, she thought miserably, lying inside the boot of the car with both her hands and feet bound how this horrific situation had forced her to confront most of those fears, in one greedy swoop.
‘Save me’ she whispered hoarsely, her face stained from hours of crying. ‘I can’t die here—not like this! Please, I beg you, help me!’ Simone listened for outside noises but only the sound of her fast breathing greeted her. It was eerily quiet out there. Where was she? Her throat was inflamed from screaming and she had no will left to shout. The man who took her, was he gone? Had he left her there to rot? Would she ever see both her parents and brothers again?
Helpless and terrified, Simone shut her eyes and prayed. It helped her whenever she felt afraid. O Angel of God, my guardian dear, to whom God's love commits me here, ever this day, be at my side to light and guard and rule and guide. Amen. Over and over, Simone repeated the prayer until her lips cracked with dehydration and her throat, parched with thirst could no longer move.
Then by chance or by fluke, a miracle happened.