Anna spent a week at home, mostly herself, and had used the time to clear up the mess Michael had made of her living room. Those days felt like an eternity ago now, after the four days she had spent prisoner in her own attic.
She was gaining weight fast, though she had lost so much during her days and nights spent in fear, you couldn't tell any more. She could never remember cooking any meals, though there was always an ample meaty feast in front of her at meal times.
She had spoken to her parents, and had arranged to go and see them today, to stop her mother worrying about her. They knew she had recovered from the illness she had told them of, and was just regaining her strength before she visited. She supposed the food had a lot to do with her weight gain, but she was happy about it, at least no one would worry about her if she appeared in her current shape.
She had been spending this particular Tuesday morning finishing repairing the last bits of damage in the front room. All at once she found herself hungry and, looking at the clock, decided it was lunch time. No sooner had the thought crossed her mind, the world was black for a while.
The next time Anna saw light, she was already seated at the table, with a hot, steaming burger in front of her. All the salad was in place, relish and a few fries on the side. She didn't question where it came from - the ground mince from which it was created was delicious - she just swallowed it in four quick bites.
Her stomach growled appreciatively when she was done, and she at once felt better. The cleaning efforts of the morning forgotten, she felt as fresh as she did in the mornings, after a good long sleep. She set off immediately for her parent's house.
Anne-Marie opened the door as soon as she saw Anna on the garden path. She was eager to see her, after such a long illness. She enveloped her into a hug the second she got within arm's reach.
'Anna! I've missed you so much, you look wonderful, are you sure you've been sick?' She enquired, looking Anna up and down.
'I've missed you too mum, yeah once the bug had gone I got better pretty fast, I've been on a high protein diet for a week, to build my strength back up.' Anna smiled, and together they entered the house.
Paul was in his office, working from home so he was sure to see Anna today. He had expected her to be living back here now, but despite everything he had thought, she was doing all right. Sure, she was still using his bank account, but jobs can take time, he just knew she was trying hard. He was proud of her.
'Anna, baby girl you look fit as a butchers dog! I knew what ever bug you got wouldn't keep you down long.' He grinned and squeezed her affectionately.
'Thank you Daddy.' Anna laughed and left her father to work.
She entered the kitchen, where her mother was preparing dinner. Taking a seat at the breakfast bar, she prepared herself for the tirade of news her mother was sure to share with her. She was surprised however, Anne-Marie didn't want to talk about just anything today.
'So Anna, have you spoken to Pete?' She looked at her over the counter.
Anna was astounded. She hadn't even thought of Pete since he accused her of lying, and she didn't really want to tell her mother about that - there was no way to do it without telling her what had happened.
'Not for a week or so, why?' She tried to look innocent as she waited to hear what had happened.
'He was really worried about you dear, he said you'd had a falling out, and he hadn't seen you for days, he didn't sound too happy about your illness.' Her mother raised an eyebrow and Anna sighed.
'Yeah we fell out over something ridiculous, you know how it is, and then I got sick. I'll call him tonight, maybe even pop round to see him next week.' Anna paused, seeing her mothers expectant stare. 'And no, we are not, have not and never will be dating. He is like an older brother to me.'
'Whatever you say dear.' Anne-Marie replied, returning to her dinner preparations.
'Will you be staying for dinner?' Her father asked, coming into the kitchen.
'No daddy, I have plans, food that simply must be eaten today or I will have to throw it away.' Anna told him smiling.
'Ah well, another time then sweetheart, I don't want you wasting perfectly good food on my account.' He always was totally set against waste.
Anna spent the rest of the afternoon with her parents, laughing and chatting, catching up on her mothers gossip and even helping with dinner. Beliar meanwhile was cultivating a plan, the fridge was looking bare and Anna still needed three weeks of food.
Michael had lasted a week in the fridge, and at the rate Anna was eating, there was nothing left now. This was good, her consumption rate showed his seed was thriving within her, but it did present him with a problem. The next time Anna excused herself to the bathroom, he took his chance.
When Anna returned from the bathroom, she was quiet and more withdrawn than she had been. She went to the fridge and opened a bottle of wine, and throughout the course of the afternoon, drank it all. This of course meant that she needed dropping off at home, and her parents were eager to help.
Just as Beliar had hoped, they both came along and made sure she got into the house all right. She was fine of course, and as soon as the outside world was shut out by Anna's heavy front door, their once doting daughter turned on them violently, breaking their skulls open with a large piece of the broken coffee table left in the hall after Anna had cleared up.
Beliar set to work clearing up the mess, to keep Anna from suspecting anything, and the next time she saw light, she was once again sitting at her table with a fine Bolognese in front of her. She didn't remember leaving her parent's house or the violence with which she greeted them with at her home. She didn't remember driving their car half way home and leaving it in a ditch, doors open and blood stains all around.
He had covered their tracks and made dinner before he let her come back to the world, determined to protect and care for the child she carried, the child whose body would be his.