‘Why did you bring me here?’ I asked, pulling against my shackles as hard as I could. The wooden chair beneath me creaked, but I knew that brute strength wasn’t going to get me out of this bind.
‘Because,’ came a sinister voice from the shadows behind me. ‘I wanted you to see.’
They clicked their fingers and a massive curtain began to move, revealing the huge window I’d been seated in front of, and the sun-bouncing snowy vista below us.
‘Welcome, Mister Link, to the end of the world!’ the voice cackled maniacally.
‘Hang on a minute,’ I grunted, still blinking. ‘My eyes have to adjust. I’m sure it’s impressive though, I’m excited to check out the view.’
‘Really, Mister Link? Joking at a time like this?’ they tut-tutted.
‘Oh my god,’ I gasped, as my vision cleared.
‘Yes,’ came the rasping voice behind me. ‘Now you see—’
‘It must cost you an absolute fortune in glass repair. Melbourne is an easy place to find quality workmanship, but out here has to be difficult.’
I shook my head.
‘Where are we, anyway? The Himalayas? The Arctic? C’mon, you can tell me.’
‘I tire of your nonsense, Mister Link,’ the voice said. ‘I look forward to hearing your… witticisms when you’re watching your beloved planet die.’
‘You think that would ever stop me?’ I frowned, glancing around the room, counting goons.
One, two, four… twelve—
‘No,’ I murmured, horror filling my voice. ‘It can’t be.’
‘Yessss,’ came the hiss. ‘Yes, Mister Link. Look upon my works and—’
‘Buddy, we have the exact same balustrade. Who’s your glass balustrade installer? Near me, I have this amazing guy. I think his name is Estefan? An absolute artist when it comes to glasswork–’
‘Enough!’ my captor shrieked. ‘I grow tired of these games!’
‘You know what,’ I nodded. ‘Me too. Sorry to drag it out so much, but do you have any idea how long it takes to work a paperclip into your hands when they’re tied up like this? I’m honestly embarrassed.’