The evidence is there in his hands: the DVD and notepad convincing Jack that Gray is responsible for his kidnapping and torture, tearing Jack and Jan brutally apart. But with Jack trapped in his own mind, lost to blackouts and self-harming, getting away from Gray must take a back seat to getting away from himself.
While locked away in a secret facility run by the Masters’ Circle, a new beast is unearthed from the depths of Jack’s tormented past. Martin only comes out to play when Jack needs to hide, a psychopath as capable of ruining Jack’s life as he is of defending him. Martin is the repository for Jack’s most horrifying memories, protecting him from the bloody tasks Jack can’t handle. Martin’s purpose is to drive everyone Jack fears – or loves – away, before they get the chance to hurt Jack again.
Now Jack hurts more than he ever has before, Martin is back, and Jack has to figure out what Martin knows that Jack forgot, before it’s too late. (M/M)
“Jack, take a deep breath. Hold it for two counts. Exhale.”
“I know how to fucking breathe.” Considering the aggression behind that, no one jolted or looked away. Most people got the fucking hint to back off well enough; looked like these bastards couldn’t take a hint. As a Master Dom, Gray had taught me breathing relaxation techniques when I was a late teen, then I’d taught it to other Doms and subs through the years. I didn’t need reminders on how to handle stress and panic from a few fucked-up quacks. Fifteen footsteps and I’d make it to the door. I’d counted that, but couldn’t remember when, Deep breath. One damaged fuel pump, two damaged fuel pumps… release.
“Excellent control, Jack,” said Halliday. I looked back at him. “I’m Philip Halliday,” he added. “I specialise in Cult psychology, in particular psychological reconditioning, but my specialist areas also incorporate all personality disorders,” he added, then nodded at Dr. Morgan.
“Jack,” said Morgan, coming over. “I’m just going to repeat these details, and part of the care plan is for Craig to repeat the same information every few days—”
Christ, back to fuckwit territory.
“Your case history supports a history of violent blackouts, also recurrence of Teenage Dissociative Identity Disorder. You’re under analysis for Section 2 or 3 of the Mental Health Act, depending on how your disorders present themselves. You have a trademark of being unaware of ‘walking’, where a secondary personality by the name of Martin makes his presence known. Yes?”
I didn’t reply. It didn’t need one.
“There’s also a recent diagnosis of absences.”
“One observed episode over the past two days,” said Craig, softly, and Halliday nodded.
“Jack, you’re under my primary care,” said Halliday as Morgan moved back. “I’m known as your Approved Mental Health Professional and all decisions relating to sectioning will come from me.” He gave a hard sigh. “Because there has been raised concern over how fragmented your memories are over what’s happened—”
“This information will also be repeated. For two weeks you were held captive by a group of men who used rape, BDSM-style techniques, also ketamine and opiates to try and recondition your mindset regarding your perception of OCD and Conduct Disorder. All carried out in a replica setting of your own home.”
“Work,” I snarled. I really wanted fucking work now. Not talk, not about Jack shit, not when Gray’s shit topped mine. I waited for that sad-ass look off Craig; everyone had been giving me that sad-ass look lately. But Craig kept his expression trained, which was fucking fine by me. “Jack,” he said calmly. “Anything you feel uncomfortable doing, you just let me know, okay? Yes, I’m here to ensure your meds are followed and that you’re not harm to yourself or anyone around you, but I’m also here to let you have the space you need to breathe.”
“Yeah? I get my own special corner and training mat to piss on too?” The pathway to the door looked longer and longer by the minute. Not helped as Halliday came over.
“Ease down. Craig undertook the search whilst you were sedated, but he needed to ask just to judge your reaction. I need to know my staff can touch you without your restraint. Restraint is the last call.”
“You fucking wrestled my ass to the floor, then drugged me up. That was your first call.”
“You hit members of my staff.”
“They were fucking touching Jan. Nobody fucking touches him, not without my permission.”
Halliday nodded. “And when Mr. Richards got close to you, do you remember what happened?”
I fell quiet. The smell of vomit long since washed away; Jan’s grief over being pushed away wasn’t.
“Scent association, Jack. Jan is a trigger at the moment. You were both held together and he knows the ramifications of that. It’s why he’s backed away. Now, Dr. Reis needs to examine you. Nothing will happen that you will not know about beforehand.” He fell quiet for a moment, then—“Jack.”
Breathing hard, I frowned at Halliday.
“Are you aware you were scratching at your hip whilst we were talking about Jan?”
I resisted looking down.