Part 13

Antonio turned up the collars of his leather jacket, a
final attempt to block out the chill of the wind as it
whipped past his already frozen face.
He was looking out over a creek in the light of the
early morning sun. Policemen lay scattered across the
landscape, clearly identifiable by the blue of their
uniforms. Cupping his hands together he blew on the
space between them, hoping for a little more warmth.
They had been out there for hours, hours and hours and
still nothing. Not a footprint, not a shred of
clothing and most importantly no Evangeline. After the
cabbyís confession the investigation into Evangeline
Williamsonís disappearance had gone into full swing.

Bo Buchanan had issued an amber alert; she was
officially a missing person. It was obvious from what
the cabby had testified to, there was definitely some
foul play involved. A woman, in an accident that all
but totaled her cab was missing. But that was all they
had, the word of a cabby. But he had checked out,
apart from a few unpaid parking tickets Bernie Alonso
was an average guy who seemed to be legit. But his
head had taken a pretty heavy hit; he could be
delusional for all they knew.

They had looked and looked and looked, Evangeline
wasnít out here. He had prayed that they wouldnít find
her. In this cold, for as long as she had been
missing, that fate right now seemed incredibly cruel.
But then again if she hadnít contacted anyone, her
family, John then she could beÖ.

"I want your guys to double back for another sweep,"
John was beside him again, his breath visible in the
cold air. The uniformed officer beside him nodded,
shivering as he did so, the poor rookie had been
wading through the unkempt grass that populated this
part of the creek, fighting of the cold, the insects
and the bark of his boss. Antonio waited for the
officer to walk away before speaking.

"John,"

"I donít wanna hear it," he started to walk away too;
Antonio was on him without hesitation.

"Well you have to," his tone forced John to a halt.
"Look, youíve got these guys out here freezing there
butts off, combing this creek. All that based on the
word of some taxi driver."

"Somethingís happened to her Antonio, I donít know
what but itís something bad." He hunched his shoulders
as he unfolded the map that he had earlier tucked
under his shoulder.

"It doesnít make sense John. Címon man youíre a good
cop. Even you can see that." He lowered his voice in
an effort to offer some comfort. "Some mysterious man
carried her away into the night? I gotta say man it
just soundsÖwell crazy." The words werenít easy for
him to say. But Antonio knew John well enough to know
that he was thinking the same thing too. "There has to
be some kind of explanation."

John looked up out over the creek wanting to shut out
Antonioís words. He didnít know what it felt like,
fighting off the demons that offered only thoughts of
Evangelineís demise. If he let his mind dwell on it
then he would be useless. He was in a bad place,
unstable and he knew it, he had to save himself from
himself and working was the only way he knew how.

"I have to do something." In his voice Antonio could
hear the chocked back tears, a man so close to the
edge he might lose control at any time. Antonio
shivered, but not from the cold. He had had only seen
this John a few of times before, this scared, broken
and distant shell of his friend almost never surfaced.

Out across the creek a man was shouting, the two men
looked up, turning to his direction.

"What is it?" Antonio followed John towards the source
of noise. A young officer stopped to breathe his hand
outreached towards John.

"It was addressed to you." He breathed.

John didnít take the offered object; instead he just
stared at it till Antonio was forced to retrieve it
from the puzzled officer.

"ItĎs a postcard," he flipped it over, "addressed to
you." Antonio scanned it quickly, it made no sense. "I
donít know what it means."

John turned, making his way back to his car at
incredible speed. He knew exactly what all three of
those postcards meant.

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Steven Haver had been watching her sleep, studying her
features while she slept. The last shot he had given
her was starting to ware off, he could see her begin
to toss and turn. He liked watching her, she was
beautiful, different. He had been pleasantly surprised
when she had aimed that glass at Celiaís head and even
impressed when she had almost knocked Celia off her
feet. He had to be careful though, she wasnít like the
others. But that was what made her special; she would
be his final weapon, his final sacrifice.

"Evangeline Williamson."

Her name flowed nicely across his lips, making him
smile. She was perfect, not the usual damsel in
distress type that John was used to fawning over. But
that was what set her apart. That made her the perfect
candidate to do the most damage. So this was the woman
who had finally been able to break down the wall
around McBainís heart. An Ivy League lawyer, with
little luck in the love department herself. He had
found out everything he could about who and what she
was and was surprisingly intrigued.

What about her made him what to try again? What was it
about her? That, like his plan would all be revealed
in good time. Haver smiled as he thought of how much
time and planning had gone into this and how perfect
it would be. The last time he had faced John McBain he
had been week and had failed. His biggest mistake had
been in his mother, the one loose end that John had
used to against him. But that had been taken care of,
these last few years had taught him well. This time
there would be no room for error, nothing would be his
downfall. He had conditioned himself not to care. He
had distanced himself from the outside world, putting
every effort into making his way back to Llanview. He
would finally fulfill his greatest mission of all, he
would bury John McBain, and he would use the one woman
he loved to do it.
Beside him an alarm clock beeped. Haver walked across
the room to a small refrigerator occupying the almost
bare room. From it he pulled out a sealed vile and
retrieving a clean syringe he left his office and
headed down stairs to see her.

As he opened the door he was in time to see Evangeline
open her eyes. Her eyes followed him as he approached
her bedside before settling into the chair beside her
bed.

"Where am I?" she said in barely a whisper.

"Your new home." He started to pull out the vile and
tore the syringe open.

Evangeline started to pull away, retreating to a
corner of the wall. He noticed with amusement how
vulnerable and child-like she looked. Her long tresses
fell about her face making her look younger.

"I promise I wonít do it again,í she stated, "please,
no more. They make my head hurt." Her large brown eyes
darted from the syringe to the face of her captor.
"Please,"

"It wonít be too long now." He carefully plunged the
syringe into the vile, drawing out contents of the
clear solution. "This will help you, help me." Her
eyes never left the syringe. As he moved closer she
inched against the wall as much as she could.

"Heíll kill you," she scowled suddenly, deciding not
to let him see her fear.

"Uh-uh," Haver eyes seemed to stare into her soul. "He
already had his turn. Now it's mine."

Evangeline saw him reach for her and instantly knocked
the syringe from his hand. Haver turned from the
syringe to her and back to the fallen object. But
suddenly she was pushing against him, clawing at him,
wriggling under him as he tried to hold her down.
Somehow he knee made contact with his groin and at his
moment of weakness she was able to roll away from him.
She didnít know what she was doing till she fell off
the bed. She was on the ground, her belly to the
floor, staring at the fallen syringe.

Her hand reached for it as Haver swung at her. She
felt his large hands reach for her hair and
immediately she was being pulled up to her feet.
Evangeline cried out from the pain, her hands reached
backwards to her head.

"I donít want to hurt you." He breathed into her ear,
swinging her around. But she didnít share the
sentiment.

In one movement she used all her force to plunge the
syringe into his chest. And for a moment he just stood
there and Evangeline felt his grip on her hair loosen.
As Steven Haver fell to his knees, Evangeline hurtled
to the still open door. Outside it the lights were
still blinding, hurting her eyes. But that didnít
matter now as she ran and ran; sliding round every
corner, all she could do was run as fast as her legs
could carry her to safety.

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