Holding his breath Shon waited for his heart rate to slow down. A tap on his shoulder had him looking up into Greg’s scared and determined face as he joined him behind the bushes. Holding a finger up to his lips Shon pointed towards the parked van. The sounds of digging slowed and stopped. It was now or never. “Stay here,” he whispered hoping the man had sense enough to listen.
Keeping to the shadows Shon advanced up on the men. Standing behind a tree he watched as two men dumped a girls body into the shallow grave. The sight made Shon somewhat sick to his stomach, swallowing several times the taste of bile thick as it caught in his throat. He hoped he wasn’t already too late to save the girl. Uttering a silent prayer hat he wouldn’t have to his son that his love was gone Shon jumped from behind the tree shouting “halt Police” pointing his gun at the unsuspecting men. Two of the men stopped startled while the third ran into the woods.
Knowing he couldn’t chase the fleeing man Shon held his gun steady on the two remaining men. “On your knees,” he commanded gun unwavering in his hands. He heard Greg approaching through the bush grabbing the handcuffs he brought with him he tossed them to Greg “put these on our guests” nodding towards the men staring wide-eyed at the gun. Neither of the men acted like hardened criminals and once they were pressed with questions Shon hoped the answers would explode from them as their guilt got the better of them. Shon had dealt with this kind of criminals before. The bottom feeders, the ones with no real useful knowledge of the people above them, expendable, a dime a dozen, useless all the way around.
He watched as Greg maneuvered around them hearing the satisfying clink of the handcuffs being secured around their wrists. He watched as Greg looked over the edge of the hole behind the men. Watched as the man stopped breathing as he took in the sight of his beautiful daughter lying discarded, staring blankly up at him. Fury heightened the color on his cheeks as he charged towards the nearest man “why?” he screamed.
The man shook as he cringed away from the palatable anger and the gun that never wavered from them. “She knew too much” one of the men stuttered losing his nerve first.
“Shut up you idiot,” his companion shouted.
“I’m not going down for murder” the man flinched under the murderous glare the man gave him.
“Shut up” he repeated causing Shon to wonder if the man could be a rung up from bottom feeder.
Evelyn held her son’s hand in her own as silent tears trickled down her cheeks. Never had she sen her son so quiet, so still. He should be so full of life, excitement about his being a dad for the first time, for his wedding…not lying here hooked up to machines, clinging to life. “Come on baby. Wake up for mommy,” she kissed his cheek hoping to find any kind of spark.
Sitting back she continued her vigil. Unpleasant memories came to mind of when she did this very same thing years ago when Shon had lain in a coma. She couldn’t help but wonder if her and her children were doomed to be forever hated for who they were. The had a right to live like everyone else. Not for the first time she wondered if it had been the right thing to have children. If she hadn’t her little boy wouldn’t belying here good as dead while her grandson struggled to live. Raising her son’s hand up to her lips she murmured “come on baby wake up for mama.”
He didn’t want to but he did anyway. He was halfway to the light when her voice called to him. It was calm, soothing, beckoning him to turn around to make the long difficult journey back the way he had come. It was dark, so dark he didn’t want to leave the light. Something in the voice made him want to obey. Sighing he turned around putting the light to his back and began the long tortuous journey back. Would the journey be worth it? He hoped so; otherwise why would the voice want him, beckon to him. Either way he would find out.
Keeping a wary eye on the handcuffed men Shon said “stay away from the edge.”
Looking down nodding Greg almost cried out in pain and anguish. “Miranda” his voice sounded strangled. Pacing the ground in front of his daughter muttering under his breath. Stopping eyes red, swollen and crazed “you killed by baby,” he screamed charging for the men, hands outstretched, fingers still as he wrapped them around the closest of mans throat. “You killed her” he squeezed cutting off the man’s oxygen. “My beautiful baby girl” he cried squeezing harder until the only sounds coming from the man were gurgles. “Why?” he screamed.
“Greg let him go” Shon shouted at him “killing him won’t bring her back.” He tried to break through his fury induced haze but nothing he said had any affect.
Locked into his rage Shon’s words didn’t register in his brain anymore then the annoying buzz of a mosquito. “She never did anything to you. She didn’t deserve to die…” Blissful darkness enveloped him as he fell forward on top of the man he had been strangling.
Standing over them panting Shon looked down at the normally peaceful man. He knew he had no choice he couldn’t let the man kill with his own bare hands. He didn’t think he about about what he was doing, just hit him, hoping to knock him out until he came to his senses. He turned to look at the bottom feeder. Who knows what expression the man read on his face but whatever it was left the bottom feeder cringing on the ground crying “please don’t hurt me.”
“Get up,” Shon growled “I’m not going to hurt you.”
The man sniffed looking towards his companion “is he dead?”
“Do you care?” Shon asked incredulous
Shrugging “not really I…I just do’t want him to know.” The man stopped talking staring at the hole he had dug. “The man, the doctor wanted us to kill her. She knew what we looked like the boss wanted her gone.” The man spoke looked out into the forest with fear upon his face. “I didn’t do as I was told. I was supposed to smother her but I couldn’t complete it. When she stopped struggling and was knocked out I thought it would be good enough.”
Raising the half lowered gun Shon felt his trigger finger start to pull on the trigger “you though burying her alive would be better?” His throat worked as he tried not throw up as images of finding Evelyn buried alive in that old refrigerator came into his mind. His rage boiled he wanted nothing more than to rid the world of this parasite. A voice inside his head kept repeating ‘she might not be dead.’
Moving towards the edge he looked down at the once beautiful girl. Asleep or dead he had to find out. “If you move I’ll shoot you” Shon warned the man “I’m a crack shot so I won’t miss.”
The coward shook his head cringing further into the ground. Shon jumped into the shallow grave to check on the girl. He nearly cried out in relief upon finding a slow but steady pulse. She was alive. Leaving her where she lay Shon climbed out of the hole knowing he had no other choice. He needed to keep his hands free in case the man that escaped came back.
Reaching for his phone he made the call he should have made to begin with. Reinforcements were on the way. Soon he could unload these men with the authorities of the Riverview Police department. Miranda could get the help she needed.
“Miranda” the hoarse voice had Evenly jerking upright from the doze she had slipped into
“Robbie” she cried grabbing his hand it’s mom baby.” Tears trickled once again down her cheeks. This time from joy. Her baby was awake and coming back to her.
“Mom,” he croaked licking dry lips “water,” he groaned as the bright lights assaulted his eyes. Grabbing some ice chips she ran them across his dry cracked lips. His tongue came out to taste the cold, the moisture. “Is that better?” she asked in concern.
“Some,” he managed before closing his eyes against the glare of the lights
“Shhh baby she’ll be here soon,” she told him hoping she wasn’t lying to him. Once he was relaxed and resting again she went to get a refill of ice chips. She looked up startled as doctors and nurses ran towards the emergency room. Curiosity had her following behind them hoping it wouldn’t be anyone she knew. “Please don’t it it be Shon, please I can’t take anymore,” she pleaded to anyone who cared. Her heart almost skipped a beat when she saw the familiar dark head in amongst the emergency workers. When the cluster of doctors and patients diminished and Shon was left standing alone she ran up to him. “I was so afraid you were hurt,” she cried falling into his arms.
Kissing her full on the lips he held her tight “we found her.”
Melting into him she sighed “good I told Robbie she’d be here soon.”
Pushing her from him he peered into her eyes “you told Robbie? He’s awake?” His throat hurt from trying to swallow over the lump that had formed. She nodded at his questions before being jerked into motion as he grabbed her arms and ran towards his son’s room.
Staring down at his son’s still body he looked towards his wife “Evie you’re sure he woke up.” She nodded as she watched him move closer to the bed and sit on the edge. Shoulders heaving she watched as her husband sobbed leaning over to kiss his son’s forehead like he used to do when Robbie was little and had woke from a nightmare.
“Dad?” Robbie whispered looking up and seeing his dad leaving over him. “Where’s Miranda?”
“She’s ok,” Shon told him “she’ll be here soon.” He reached out to push his son’s blond hair back marveling at how lucky he was his son was still here “I love you son.”