I struggled against my shackles, desperately pulling and tugging at the metal wound tightly around my wrists, but it was of no use. I sigh.

"Really dude?" I yelled out into the dark. "This again? "

"There are easier ways to get me to take a break you know! There is no need for these melodramatics!"

A door at the other end of the room opens, revealing a familiar figure. I do my damnedest to glare at them, in spite of my position.

"I wouldn't have to resort to this if you just stopped working for one gosh darned minute, little sister." He eyes me disapprovingly.

"Ugh." I roll my eyes. "I swear, you pull one all-nighter and suddenly your brother goes into ultra protective mode and locks you up for a whole night. And you have the nerve to mock me!"

I grab the note to my left with my free hand, with the words encouraging my escape mocking me cheerfully. "Seriously?! What, is this an escape room now?"

My brother shrugs, completely unrepentant. "Hey, to be fair, it wasn't my idea. Mom suggested it- said you might stay in here and rest for a while longer if you had a puzzle to work on. Turning this," he gestured around him, "into a faux escape situation seemed to be a good idea at the time."

I ball up the piece of paper in my hand and throw it at him half-heartedly. He winces.

"Well. Guess it isn't?" He smiles sheepishly.

I fall back agains the wall with a huff, and cross my arms. Hints of a pout begin to appear. "I can't believe mom is in on this shtick too. Can't a scientist get any peace around here?"

It's his turn to roll his eyes. "If you stopped spending all your time in the lab instead of with us, maybe we wouldn't have to literally kidnap you to get you to sleep every once in a while."

"Whatever." I turn away from him childishly and proceed to ignore his attempts at further conversation. As usual.

He eventually sighs. "Fine, fine. I'll let you out. But you have to come to dinner with me and dad for tonight, okay? We haven't seen you in weeks. Mom misses you, you know!"

That, I wasn't ashamed to admit, got through to me, and I conceded. My older brother unlocked the cuffs which bound me to the wall, and helped me up. To be fair, it wasn't as bad as I made it out to be. The mattress Iusually slept on in here was actually fairly good, and I got some of my best sleep in this place, though I would never admit it out loud.

As the two of us walked out, I began muttering under my breath, already making plans for the next time they planned to "kidnap" me.

"I'm definitely setting up traps in the lab next time."

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