Anna Maria knew that her situation was getting worse and that if something or someone did not happen to help her soon, she might not survive. She estimated that she had been locked up in a dark cellar for about a month, where only once a day she reached her captor with a little water and a hard loaf of bread, which barely managed to calm her hunger momentarily, but then made her empty stomach feel worse. She had not seen the sunlight in that time.
She had not bathed, and she longed madly to breathe less stuffy air, but everything now seemed so far away that the memories were already blurred and she raved at times believing that the life she missed was just a dream. She never imagined she could be in a situation like this and did not understand how she had reached this point.
The only thing that kept her sane was to try to remember herself before all that.Anna Maria was a young lawyer with a promising career ahead of her, with important goals and a willpower that had always put her in the first place. In every place she was in, her selfesteem was enviable and she seemed to always have luck on her side, for there was nothing she set out to do that she could not accomplish.
She was used to being in control of the situations she was involved in, and so her friends trusted her completely, and she knew that whatever plan Anna Maria was in would work out well because she would see to it that everything went perfectly. Besides, she had such a charming charisma that no one could get bored with her company. She was a great conversationalist in quiet environments and could also dance and be the life of the party. When the situation called for it. Her family had given her what she needed.
Anna Maria had gone through College without any difficulties whatsoever, and her parents had given her a beautiful apartment when she came of age. Her life seemed so perfect that neither she nor anyone else could even imagine that anything could get out of control. At the time, Anna Maria had a boyfriend she had been dating for two years. He was a family friend with whom they had always wanted to set her up, and she had not objected because the young man was very attractive and seemed to have everything to make a woman happy. He behaved well with her, never made her feel less than he did, and always made sure that the communication between them was honest and sincere, and that is why they had managed to build a relationship as healthy as few others.
Until that day, Anna Maria had thought she was happy and that nothing in her life could be more perfect. However, when she met Julian, she felt that she had always been selfdeceived. Julian was a lawyer like her, and in terms of comforts and social position, he had traveled practically the same path. He was elegant, handsome at first glance, very similar to Anna Maria in personality, but he had a dark side that no one knew about. Julian, in fact, was similar to her in every way except that he had never been happy or content with his life, despite the fact that he had everything, and even more, he carried in his heart a deep bitterness that in reality it was not known where it came from.
He was simply not within himself and was often involved in brawls and bars where he was constantly drunk or ended up appearing in unknown places without knowing how. After spending days lost in alcohol and drugs, however, his appearance did not reveal any of the demons that haunted him, and Anna Maria could not help but be attracted to him. When Julian began to seduce her by any means possible, she was the most difficult woman he had ever met. When he arrived at the office, Anna Maria seemed to him a powerful and implacable woman with firm convictions and who would not give up, who was also beautiful and intelligent, and winning her over became a personal challenge. Anna Maria was uncomfortable for several months until she realized that she had been cheating on her boyfriend in her mind for some time and believed that he no longer loved her.
So she broke up with him and gave herself over to what she felt for Julian, which was a feeling stronger than she could control. And when he finally knew she was available, he never left her alone again. Together, they began a torrid relationship that kept them locked together for weeks without them wanting to work or see their families or do anything but learn each other by heart. But when Anna Maria managed to regain some of her common sense, she realized that it was crazy to give it all away like that and that she could not leave her life behind. Just like that, she wanted to go back to work and to everything she did before, and she wanted Julian to be her boyfriend because she sincerely believed that he was the love of her life.
But it was at that moment that the first warning signs began to appear. Julian tried to disguise what looked like a prohibition to leave the house and leave him alone, and she didn’t notice. In addition, he had started drinking and using drugs when she was there, but she didn’t notice either. The love she thought she felt for him was blinding her completely. As the days went by, Anna Maria noticed that they almost never talked about themselves, their families, or their way of seeing things, but their topics were always trivial and vague.
So when she wanted them to have a more serious conversation, Julian refused and paid no attention. But that same night, drunk and shameless, he told Anna Maria that he hated his life and everyone, that he only cared about her, that he never wanted her to leave him because if she left him, he would have no choice but to end his life. A confession of intent of that caliber should have been enough for Anna Maria to get out of that relationship in time.
But everything that could worry her was forgotten when they were together, and he made her feel on top of the world, leaving everything else aside to focus on thinking that Julian was the love of her life and that she had to fight and make sacrifices for him, like seeing less of her family or adjusting to Julian’s strange schedule to spend more time together. All her friends knew that Anna Maria was in a toxic and potentially dangerous relationship, but when they tried to warn her, she ignored them and even accused them of not wanting to see her happy because she felt that now she was herself, not like before, when she appeared to be a good girl, her essence had gone astray, and Julian made her see herself in a way that was not really hers, convincing her otherwise.
Her parents tried to take her away from him. Even her exboyfriend put aside his pride and his wounded heart to talk to her, as they used to do before, with the utmost frankness and always seeking to build. But Anna Maria had become rude and bitter and closed her ears completely on the reasons that the people who really loved her told her. Then a month passed, and everything definitely got out of control. Anna Maria finally realized that this relationship was hurting her and decided to break up with him.
But it was too late. Julian was already carrying her gagged in the trunk of his car who knows where? And while she was crying from despair, Anna Maria remembered all those who had tried to save her in time and who had not listened. And at that moment, when she didn’t know if she would die or if someone would ever find her, she felt herself thrown on an icy ground, and when her sight became accustomed in the darkness, she understood that she was locked in a cellar in an abandoned lot, and that if Julian did not decide to free her, she would most likely never get out of there. And she had been there for several weeks, suffering in indecision and without hope, when she heard voices and a gunshot and feared the worst.
She thought Julian was going to kill her, but in fact, it was the police who had finally tracked him down and had to wound Julian to disarm him, for he himself had threatened to shoot himself when they found him. When the authorities went down to the basement and saw the deplorable situation in which her captor had kept her during those weeks they were shocked. They took her home where her parents were waiting for her who cried with joy and did not reproach her for not listening to them. They only had love for her. Her friends also welcomed them with their hearts in their hands and no one complained to her.
Thus the Reflection came to Anna Maria by herself which made her accept him more easily. Her family and faithful friends had more than prove to her how much they cared for her and would always want the best for her. That’s why she swore she would never again ignore their advice and would never again leave a nice clean love for an unknown one.