Shannon blinked blearily, “Ugh” she groaned, sitting up and looking at the worried faces of Don and Hilary.
“What happened to you?” asked Hilary, eyeing Shannon critically before handing her a glass of water.
“I…” Shannon was interrupted by Don’s wife who came in the front door, pulling Deputy Royce Linden with her “I found him” she announced, turning abruptly she pushed through the swinging doors that led back to the kitchen and came back with a plain bagel for Shannon and three cups of coffee, then she grabbed her husband by the arm and lead him into the kitchen.
“So what’s going on” asked Royce, taking off his hat and sitting down.
The coffee was forgotten as Shannon told what little she knew and Hilary’s eyes had grown as large as saucers in the quick time that Shannon took to finish.
“Huh” grunted Royce, he leaned back in his seat and thought for a few minutes before saying, “I’m going to get to the station and get some guys, then we’ll go to your house and take a look around, in the meantime you should stay around town” He stood and left quickly, leaving Shannon and Hilary to start sipping their coffee and stare at each other, Shannon caved first and said in exasperation, “What?”
“You were out of it for nearly 5 minutes, you were shot at in your own home and your fiancé has disappeared” said Hilary rapidly, “I’m not going to ask if you are okay, ’cause I’m sure you’re not but… I am going to ask what you plan to do now, because we both know Royce won’t find those men anytime soon and a search would take more men than the Sheriff’s department has”
“Well what can I do?” asked Shannon, beginning to feel rather hopeless.
Hilary shrugged helplessly but before she could say anything Shannon sprang from her seat, “It’s them” she whispered, pointing out the window at two men, one who was limping badly.
“Move!” Hilary said, pushing Shannon into the kitchen, “Don, Shannon and I need to borrow your car”
Don just nodded and threw her the keys, “Good luck” he said.
Tag Archives: original stories
Shannon blinked blearily, “Ugh” she groaned, sitting up and looking at the worried faces of Don and Hilary.
Jeannette put the finishing touches to her smoky makeup and decided she was incredibly lucky her mom had helped her pick out a brand new outfit for the party tonight, she smiled as she twirled in her one shoulder apple green dress that sparkled with delicate beadwork and the ruched fabric that defined her waistline. A layer of tulle peeked out from the knee-length skirt giving an extra boost to the twirl power. Jeannette slipped her feet into her open toed pumps with the 4-inch heels that made her feel tall and willowy before heading over to check her cell phone for messages “come on Victoria! Where are you?” she whispered, perching on the window seat she sent Victoria a quick text then leant back and glanced out the window “what in the world…?” she gasped sitting up suddenly. Two dark figures had come out of the neighbor’s house carrying what looked an awful lot like a body. Jeannette shook her head and laughed at herself “probably a mannequin from Denise’s shop” she thought jumping slightly when her phone buzzed “hey, Victoria” she answered absent-mindedly, looking out the window again.
“Hi Jeannie!” came Victoria’s perky voice “I’m just running a little late, be there in five though! Promise!”
Jeannette grinned “okay, I’ll be waiting out front” she hung up and grabbed a black bolero from her closet in case it got cool later than she hurried downstairs and out the door.
“Hi Jeannette” called Denise waving wildly at her.
“Hello” Jeannette called back.
“Where are you going all dressed up?” Denise asked coming up and standing on the first step of the porch.
“Brantley’s birthday party” Jeannette replied shortly, she didn’t know why she was being rude but her senses were all screaming at her so it was a relief when Denise’s next words were drowned out by Victoria honking her horn as she swept into the drive.
“Got to go!” Jeannette said, practically leaping down the steps and jumping into the front passenger seat.
Denise sighed unhappily as her husband Steve came around the back of their house, he took one look at her and asked “what’s wrong?”
“I think Jeannette saw us” she said quietly.
“What’ll we do?” he asked nervously.
“We’ll have to make sure she doesn’t tell anyone” she replied standing up.
Steve put his arm around her and they walked back to their house.
Victoria spent most of the quick trip to Brantley’s talking excitedly about her new crush Thomas, and Jeannette nodded as though she was paying attention but it was hard when she kept getting a creepy feeling running up and down her spine as though someone was watching her.
The Alice in Wonderland themed “curiouser and curiouser” party was well underway when they arrived and Victoria rushed over to Thomas as soon as she entered the extravagantly decorated mansion, Jeannette wandered over to the buffet table where Brantley was standing, he was rather obviously trying to look as though he wasn’t bored but at least his face lit up when he saw Jeannette and she couldn’t help but be glad yet again for her mom’s excellent style suggestions.
“Thank goodness someone interesting finally arrived!” he whispered in her ear causing her to blush slightly and she bit her lip trying not to giggle as he pulled an awful face.
“Your Mom won’t appreciate that, I bet she worked really hard on this” she reproved him slightly but he just grinned and shrugged. They both knew he had wanted to go to Disney with just a few of his closest friends but his mom didn’t ask so he got the elaborate confection of a party that they were currently ignoring as he showed her the new book his dad had sent him.
“Wow, look at these pictures!” she said in awe at the majestic rain forests that graced the pages of the large book.
“Yeah, I would love to go visit with Dad sometime but Mom thinks it’s to far away” he said regretfully.
“You’ll be graduating next Spring, you could go before college” offered Jeannette.
“Maybe, that would be nice” he agreed as the party whirled on around them.
Shannon’s blue Impala sped out of her drive and down the gravel road leading to the nearest highway, she didn’t look back but she knew they were following “how can I lose them?” she thought to herself desperately as she neared the paved road, the gravel flew as she turned away from the town of Floydada and looked in her rearview mirror to see them turn the same way, she smiled, rolling down her window and doing a quick u-turn, she passed them going in the opposite direction, her gun came up and shot out their right side tires causing them to roll into the ditch. Shannon didn’t pause to enjoy the victory but raced towards the town stopping only when she reached the local Mexican café.
A bell above the door of Don’s tinkled when Shannon walked in, Don himself looked up and grinned a toothless smile, he wasn’t actually Mexican but his wife was and she made the best tortilla soup in Texas “little early for soup, isn’t it?” he asked.
“I was hoping Royce would be here” Shannon replied.
“Nope, that new girlfriend of our deputy’s has taken to fixing him breakfast at home” Don said shaking his head at such folly.
Shannon sighed, the events of the morning were catching up to her and she suddenly felt light-headed, Don noticed her swaying and quickly pushed her into a chair “Mama” he shouted “call Hilary! Shannon’s taken ill”
A small woman hurried from the kitchen “Papa, what is it?” she asked dialing her little portable phone as Shannon blacked out.
Jenny finally stopped looking so scared when the man who wasn’t Angry/Charles brought us our coffee and Naomi introduced him as Jerry, or as she said “That’s Jerry the tech guy, but don’t ask him about computers or anything else involving science because he won’t stop talking” then she pointed at the other woman and said “that’s Faith, and you already met Charles”
I nodded to each of them even Charles but I turned back to Naomi quickly and asked “what’s going on here? And what ring are you talking about?” Okay, so I’m feigning the confusion on the last question but they don’t need to know that, just because I’ve decided they don’t intend to kill us doesn’t mean I trust them (and I’m curious!)
Naomi pursed her lips “yes, I realize you must have a lot of questions but we really do need the ring now”
“I don’t have any ring” I lied with surprising ease and waited to see if they believed me.
Charles shook his head “you have to! It wasn’t at the studio, I don’t have it and neither did Lindsay”
“Speaking of Ms. Lindsay, where is she?” I added to my list of questions. That one seemed to disconcert Charles who looked towards Naomi as though he was unsure whether to answer the question or not.
“We don’t have time for this” declared Faith impatiently “if she doesn’t have it then we’ll have to change our plans”
“Our contact won’t know us without the ring” Jerry pointed out quietly.
I almost felt guilty but since I still didn’t know who they were or what they were doing, it was hard to feel very bad.
Faith pursed her lips as though thinking “we could do the job without the ring….”
“Yeah, and get killed in the process” snapped Charles.
“We may not have any choice” said Naomi softly “we all know how important this is”
“Actually, no we don’t” Jenny suddenly piped up “and I want to know why you kidnapped us?” she said still sounding close to tears but she was glaring defiantly at Naomi.
Jerry checked his watch “we still have an hour before we have to be there and it’s only a ten minute drive” he looked at Naomi as though asking permission.
Naomi nodded and Jerry came and sat down by Jenny “we really can’t tell you who we are but suffice to say that we’re currently working with your government to assess and neutralize possible threats to international security”
“And the ring is important because?” Jenny asked.
“As I said earlier, it’s to identify Faith to our contact” Jerry sighed “without our contact we’re going to have a much harder time getting into the room where the data we need is, Charles and Naomi will have to cause some sort of distraction which could put them in danger but if we have no choice…” he trailed off.
I was officially feeling guilty now and trust them or not, I knew I had to give them the ring but before I could reach for my bag I heard an odd whine and for the second time that day a flash of blue light and an evil-smelling smoke clogged my senses and I slumped to the ground as darkness claimed me yet again.
This is something I wrote a while ago and had several comments on it when I posted it to a thread on Ravelry, I have wrote 3 chapters so far and thought if I posted it here I might actually sit down and write more (we’ll see
how that goes! 🙂 )
I want thank Neal for doing such a great job editing this! (you made my writing in this story far better than it was originally!)
Shannon blinked at the ball of yarn she cradled in her lap as she listened to “New strings” by Miranda Lambert. She knew the song was one that always made her smile but for some reason tonight was different. Tears were starting to form at the corners of her eyes as she put the yarn to the side and stepped out onto her front porch.
The night held a soft coolness and the Texas sky was full of stars with a waxing gibbous moon hanging above her, it would have been beautiful except….. Steven hadn’t come home the night before. Steven was normally the perfect fiancé (well, as perfect as anyone could be, Shannon still couldn’t get him to agree to paint the master bedroom a light blue and trim it with greens) but lately he had been pulling away. Shannon wondered if that was normal in the months before a wedding, perhaps cold feet were to be expected? But that didn’t seem to be the case with her friend Hilary’s fiancé, if anything Rob was even more attentive than before he had proposed. Shannon sat down on the porch swing and slowly rocked back and forth whilst the stars gently strolled through the sky. Sleep came unbidden when the sun’s golden pink rays began peeping through the tree tops.
Shannon woke around noon and began to stretch slowly, stopping when she realized there was a strange black car with tinted windows in the driveway. Two men in grey suits emerged from the quietly opening doors and walked towards her. From the porch Shannon could see both men were armed, she stood up swiftly and moved in the direction of the front door. The reaction out on the driveway was that the men immediately speeded up and Shannon ran into the house, quickly locking the door and grabbing the handgun that resided in her desk drawer.
She heard a click as one of the men cocked his gun and suddenly the other rushed the door and bowled it open. Shannon retreated into the kitchen wondering what the heck was going on as the men followed her, shots rang out and she ducked behind the counter. Quickly rising up she fired without hesitation, she had always been an excellent shot, and the shorter of the two men slumped as the bullet hit his thigh. The taller of the two interlopers ignored his partner and aimed for Shannon’s head but she had already rolled to one side and jumped through into the living room. Then springing to her feet she rapidly exited out of the patio door.
The investment in pilates’ classes was now being repaid.
Sint woke slowly, swiveling his ears he tried to figure out where he was, “We’re in a cardboard box” said a little voice helpfully.
“Simon! What happened?” asked Sint anxiously, sitting up carefully he turned his head in the mouse’s direction, “I don’t know” said Simon scooting closer to Sint, “One minute we were talking and the next we were in a box”
Sint sighed, “Kakon isn’t going to be happy” he said, carefully stretching his wings in the cramped space while thinking about how to get them out.
Simon squeaked as Sint accidentally hit him with the tip of his wing, “What are we going to do?” asked the little mouse, trying to sound brave even as he moved closer to Sint.
“I don’t know” admitted Sint, rather reluctantly, “but Kakon and Nora will come looking for me when they discover I’m gone, of course we still need to be ready if a chance to escape comes”
“Okay” replied Simon, “but what if they don’t come and we can’t escape?” he asked.
“They’ll come!” said Sint confidently.
If he had known that, at that moment Kakon and Nora were having serious problems of their own, he might have been a little less sure.
2 hours earlier
“Nora! We don’t have time to play around” said Kakon, with an exasperated sigh.
Nora pouted playfully, “you never let me have any fun” she said, but in such a teasing tone that Kakon was only just able to keep his smile in check.
“You can’t behave like a hooligan” he lectured her, “you will have my responsibilities and more when you are but a little bit older”
Nora sobered up instantly, “I still don’t believe that horrible old prophecy!” she said, “you’ll outlive us all, see if you don’t!”
Kakon shook his head gravely, “if the prophecy is wrong, than you and Sint are little more than pawns in a game that neither of you can control” he said a blank look on his normally expressive face, “if the prophecy is true? Than you will both be far more important than this old cat”
Nora sniffed, whether from sadness or because she disagreed, Kakon didn’t know but since she didn’t comment he left her alone and they walked the rest of the way to their destination in silence.
The Whole harvest tavern was the only respectable tavern for miles around, so of course on a friday night it was practically deserted and Kakon flicked his tail at a table in the back corner for Nora to sit at while he strolled up to a scruffy looking brown dog that was notorious for his rakish smile and for his ability to steal the whiskers from an animal’s snout without them even knowing.
“Captain Christen, how are you?” asked Kakon smiling at the roguish pirate captain.
“What? No “old sea dog” jokes?” asked Christen, grinning at his friend, “you must be really worried about something!” he quaffed the last of his drink and the pair headed back to the table where Nora was absent-mindedly playing with the salt shaker.
“What news?” asked Kakon anxiously.
“Not much” drawled Christen causally, “just thought you would want to know that the Mad Kitty Cat is definitely in town”
“Not really a surprise, but why would Lady Bella come here?” asked Kakon, almost to himself.
“Well, I know that too” said Christen, “she recently bought a certain book that contains secrets that only matter at the Rushing caves” he said rather cryptically but Kakon understood him and the cat’s eyes widened in horror, “She’s trying to raise the Menlin demon” he whispered, fright clear on his face and mirrored on Nora’s gray features as well.
Christen nodded, “I hope you don’t mind if I don’t stick around” he said hopping to his paws and bowing to them both, before leaving through the back door and heading in the direction of the harbor.
Kakon often wondered afterwards if Christen had known what was coming because just seconds after his departure the front door banged open and a band of cats, dogs and assorted forest “critters” came in, in front of them strutted a red fox resplendent in a long silver cape, a large purple hat with a lone black feather sticking up from it and a smirk on his face that was so wide it looked as though his jaw would split, “no such luck!” thought Nora while Kakon sent her a reproving look as though he knew what she was thinking, “Lord Nox, what a pleasure” he said coldly to the fox.
“Not a very nice welcome, was it lads?” asked the fox of his crew before turning his attention back to Kakon, “I only want what is mine” he said.
“The dagger is not your’s, it belongs to the child” said Kakon, nodding at Nora.
“You stole it from me!” huffed Nox, his eyes glittering in triumph when Nora hissed in an angry tone, “it belonged to my grandfather first!”
“Perhaps…. But it was still stolen from me” said Nox in a mock sad voice.
“Only after you had taken it from a helpless kitten” said Kakon sternly, “It’s allegiance is Nora’s and there is nothing you can do to change that”
The fox paused as though thinking, “unless..” he started slowly, “unless, I won it back in a duel”
Kakon shook his head, “no, she is to young for that”
“perhaps you would volunteer instead then?” asked Nox politely, as his men closed in on the table.
Kakon gauged the situation quicker than it takes to tell and knew he had no choice but to agree, albeit reluctantly.
“A duel it is then!!” shouted the fox jumping on the nearest table top and dancing what vaguely resembled a jig, “To the arena!” he shouted, as his men half dragged Kakon and Nora to a large field where even more animals were waiting to watch what would surely be a duel to remember.