He can’t speak.
He sits by himself next to his old, hard bed, not speaking, even when the other kids come to tease him, probably glad that they’re not in the same group that he’s in.
He is a Special One, one of the Whores sold out each night, and rather well-in-demand because his red eyes were “exotic,” his hair “sexy,” his skin “smooth as milk.”
(The kids that mess with him are not, in fact, other Special Ones; they have their own fucking problems. None of them, however, make any attempt to befriend him, to include him in their fragile circles. He is alone, and they have each other. They do nothing when the other kids, the fucking privileged Untouched bastards, come along to play.)
He never says anything, has no voice to say anything, takes everything handed to him, abuse given by the highest bidder, abuse given by the so-called caretakers, abuse given by the children-turned-bullies (how can he blame them, he’s lower than they, and they need something to take the pain away, right?).
He used to cry, once upon a time. He was six years old, and they had just found him, curled up near a dumpster behind a McDonald’s. He couldn’t remember what happened to his mother, but he thinks she died, and he cried. He cried and he cried and the caretakers didn’t like it, so they beat it out of him. They beat each wail and tear out of him until he made not a single sound.
He can’t even speak, now.
It suits them just fine, though; if he can’t speak, he can’t complain or bitch or moan. He can’t curse at the men entering him each night, opening him up and having their way. Or at the women with their long claw-like nails raking down his skin, teasing him (and he fucking hates it) so he’ll stay hard for them, and having their way. They all coo at him and yell at him and curse at him and /laugh/ at him, and he can’t scream when they make him bleed, can’t cry when they’ve made their messes and leave him, cold and sticky and used, a mere shell of a child.
He’s scarred and his voice is gone and the other kids make fun of him for it and the clients make fun of him for it and the caretakers make fun of him for it and everything just always hurts, all the time, all the fucking time.
He’s only ten years old. He’ll be eleven soon, but he knows nobody will give a damn.
He doesn’t really hate anything. He didn’t really love anything, either. He was barely alive, barely breathing, sold out to the highest bidder each night (because who doesn’t want to fuck the freak?), made an example of each day, and this isn’t life, this is Hell.
He may as well be dead.
Sometimes, people come to this place. When this happens, the kids are all groomed and made-pretty, their beds cleaned and made up, and they spend a few days beforehand cleaning everything. And then the people come.
The people come and they open those big doors so the people can enter, and they all look at the children and smile and make comments and talk talk talk.
He usually tries not to be seen. He isn’t all that excited to be someone’s exclusive whore. It’d be harder to hide, harder to not-exist.
One of these days, however, it occurs to him.
They fucking open.
Because sometimes the children go outside to play on the rickety old playground and
The doors are fucking open.
And it occurs to him that he hates everything.
He hates everything and he’s sick of all of this shit.
So he runs.
They catch him several blocks away, after he’s run into a man trying to climb onto his motorcycle, knocking him over. He couldn’t apologize because he has no voice (beaten they beat it out of him), wouldn’t have time because they do it for him, dragging him away and he’s staring into the shades on the man’s face in fear.
The man says nothing, watches. Knows the look in the kid’s eyes (the man's a master at reading people) and grips the handlebars tightly.
He’s beaten. Again. And thrown in isolation, all by himself in a cold closet, empty and alone. He isn’t whored out, he’s been marked as a delinquent and so he’s no longer the sweet little freak, the gentle little monster who doesn’t bite or yell or scream. His brief anger and hatred is beat away and he is just a shell again, but that changes nothing. Clients still fear him.
He's oddly okay with this.
They let him out. Someone has an interest in him. They have all the papers and everything. They have a lot of money, too. They don’t mind that the little freak has a secret rebellious streak and he is terrified he is scared.
He never wanted to be someone’s personal whore.
He doesn’t get a choice though; this someone has pleased the caretakers, charmed them, apparently, and send someone to drag him out to his new owner.
It’s the man he crashed into. The one with the bike.
They tell him to say hello to his new father, snicker when he can’t even utter a squeak.
The man is blank-faced. Expressionless. It scares him. He follows him out anyways. Follows him out to the motorcycle and it’s a scary contraption, sleek and black. A helmet is placed over his head, heavy and big and the straps are confusing, so the man does it for him.
The man hops on, then, stares at him and it’s a few minutes before he realizes he’s supposed to hop on, too.
“Hold on tight,” the man says, and his voice is low and it makes a low vibrating rumble. “Gonna getcha home, Dave.”
He has a name, and it’s Dave. How could he forget it (because every night and day the names changed, or he didn’t have one)?
Dave clings to the man tightly and they take off.
He has no idea that life isn’t going to be what it has been.