Ryder, book 1 of Ryder

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I sat in my jet watching the clouds fly by. The only thoughts in my head were of my parents. I was on my way back to my childhood home. I wanted to buy the place and I had to see if I could get the family that owned it. To take a deal and sell me the home. I didn’t really know what owning the place would do for me, but I have been wanting to do this for years now. The police have always been convinced that it was just a random home invasion, but I knew better than that. I knew my parents were involved with the wrong people in some way shape or form.

I was too little to remember any of my parents’ friends and I had no grandparents. It was like I was just left with this void and I was never going to figure any of this out. I would end up going to my grave before I would figure any of this out. All this did was make me even more angry.

My limo is parked in front of my old home. I sat in the car just looking at it. It hadn’t changed much and I was remembering everything. Jason ended up coming with me and he sat quietly next to me. “Are you getting out or would you like me to handle this?” I thought about it for a moment. I was prepared to offer this family anything to get them out. I turned and looked at Jason.

“I think I’ll let you start.” Jason nodded at me and got out of the car. I watched him walk up to the front door and ring the doorbell. A young woman answered the door and then I turned and looked at the house next door. I could see her playing on the wrap-around porch. Her dark hair bouncing off her shoulders. A smile came to my lips, and that’s when it hit me. The night I was dragged away from my house. Her parents stood on the porch and watched everything go down. Fuck me, all I could ever remember was her name. Danica, I couldn’t remember her last name or even the name of her parents. Maybe they had answers? Jason came walking back to the car. “Well?”

“I gave them an insanely high offer. They took your card and they will call you.” I nodded and looked back at the house. We drove off and checked into a hotel. I needed to give the family some time to think about the offer before we headed home.

“Do you remember me telling you about Danica?”

“You mean your little friend from next door?”

“Yes, her parents were pretty close to my parents. I’m wondering if they might know anything?”

“Didn’t the police talk with them?”

“I really don’t know.”

“Are you thinking about trying to find them?” I placed my face into my hands.

“I can’t remember anything about them.”

“That makes things harder.” I looked over at him.

“Don’t you think I know that?”

“Well, what do you remember?” Jason asked me as he took out his computer.

“Just Danica’s name and the fact that they lived next door.” Jason nodded at me and started to type. About an hour or two later. I had fallen asleep and Jason woke me up.

“I have some information. It’s not much but well, her parents are dead.” I sat up and rubbed my eyes and then looked over at him.

“Dead? How?”

“It looks like the family packed up and moved only a short time after your parents were killed. I found this article.”

Mr. and Mrs. Harris were killed in a car accident today. The two passed away from their injuries.

“The only thing is there is no mention of a daughter. Even in their obituary, it says nothing about a daughter.”

“Do you think maybe you have the wrong people?” I asked.

“No, John and Mary Harris were the only ones who owned the home the same time your parents owned their home. It’s them alright, but I can’t seem to find anything on Danica.” I felt lost once again. What the hell was going on? “Oh, and the family that owns your home called while you were sleeping. They are willing to take your offer. We are going to sign all the paperwork tomorrow at one. Then the house is all yours. I felt a shiver of fear set inside of me. I feel a lot of things. I go through more emotions than most people do on a daily basis, but fear is never one of them. I haven’t felt fear since I was a teenager. The first ten years after my parents were killed. It was the hardest for me. I couldn’t sleep and when I did all I could see were my parents faces the night they were killed. Fear was all I knew. I was scared all the time thinking these fuckers were trying to find me so they could kill me too.

I cried out for my mother every night. I was put on all kinds of medications and even constant therapy sessions but nothing seemed to actually work. At sixteen my fear turned into anger. That didn’t make sleeping any better, but I wasn’t scared anymore. In fact, I left the system and ended up being the one people fear the most. The only time I get any real sleep Is when my dreams are filled with her. The little girl from next door. Now my focus has seemed to move from my parents to wondering what happened to her? Now I needed to find her. “Jason, I need to find her.” He sighed and went back to fucking with his computer.

Danica’s POV,

Sitting on this bus was getting old as I decided it was time to try and find Ryder. I have been following him with the news for as long as I can remember now. I knew he lived in Manhattan, New York. I just had no idea where. I knew what I needed to tell him was either going to get me killed or help me to get away from them. Either way I was tired of running and now I was willing to put my life in Ryder’s hands. I wasn’t even sure if he would remember me. Ryder turned out to be a ruthless cold hearted man. A man just like the people I was running from. He had the right to know what I knew.

The closer I got the more scared I became. It wasn’t like I had never known what real life would be like. My life has never been my own. I was handed over to Draco when I was only five years old. His men and his wife raised me. I had found out that my parents had been killed in a car accident and that I would never be returned to them. I was devastated and I always felt like the people I was with had something to do with it. The truth was something that I never found out about. Only I knew what had happened to Ryder’s family. Something I had heard the night they were murdered. The night my life ended and I was handed over to these people. In the beginning I was treated pretty good actually, but the older I got the more of my freedom was lost.

I have always kept what I knew to myself. Even though I was questioned about it constantly. I never said a word. I felt like it was the only thing keeping me alive. I had learned at a young age that my uncle, Draco, is a very powerful man. I have seen more deaths in my life that I should have never seen. I knew what they could do to me. I was seventeen the first time I ran away. I had only been gone three days when they found me. I was beaten and locked up for a very long time. It took everything I had just to gain some trust again. Once that happened I wasn’t locked up anymore. I tried to take my own life. That didn’t work out for me. I was found too soon and rushed to the hospital. I spent two weeks recovering from a massive overdose. As soon as I was returned to Draco. The beatings started up again.

I had to become smart about my situation. I had to learn to play Draco at his own game. I finally agreed to work with him and I was sent to training right away. Six years of training and becoming one of my uncles best fighters. I ran away again. I have been on the run now for a little over three years. When I know they are getting close to me. That’s when I pick up and run again, but I’m tired and I don’t have much left to give. Dying doesn’t scare me. I just don’t know how to handle this type of life anymore. Maybe Ryder is my only hope? I just hope he gives me a chance to explain.

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