As I went through my teenage phase, I wanted nothing more than to be alone. Seb and the team occasionally drove their way into my little inner circle that consisted of Netflix, food, and my own self, but parents used to be a big no.
My parents and I even had a rough patch for a few months with dad frequently getting concerned about the drop in my grades due to the time I dedicated to football and mom getting concerned about how our schedules would affect our health. Unfortunately for her, her children were just being way too idiotic for her own good.
Of course. Of course, they had been right. Because when I decided to go into one of the top universities with a scholarship in hand, they didn’t look at how well I played football, they looked at my grades. It was only when Seb died that I realized if I wanted to somewhat end up somewhere, I was going to have to listen to what my parents said for once.
And, honestly, thinking back to it, I have no idea why I used to get so annoyed at their concerns. They did what they had to and said what they said for our own benefits. And we were just alive, shrugging their words off our shoulders and continuing our lives as we always do.
The road to becoming adults was always just so. . .irrationally annoying.
At least I wasn’t a total brat to them. It was just sometimes that I would get, as much as I regret it, a little. . . unreasonable.
Even it was only a mere two to three years earlier, the guilt of being one of those annoying kids-- even if it were only for a short while-- always weighed down on me. The only comfort that came to me was when Diana shared her own stories with me where she was being totally illogical with her parents too. Considering Diana was the sweetest and genuine person one could ever set eyes on, her stories made me feel a lot, lot better.
It happened to the best of us, it seemed.
Maybe then 15-year-old Sam would scoff at how much 19-year-old Sam missed her family.
It was like life was ripping them away from my hands. One by one.
First, it was Seb.
And now. . .now they took mom.
Who next? Dad?
My hands trembled and my face turned into a ghostly shade of white as I stared the empty space she had been an exact minute ago. And even as the gravity of the situation dawned upon me, I held dad’s hand tight. I wasn’t going to let them win.
But I didn’t even want to play.
I was so tired. I was so exhausted.
I didn’t want to lose anyone else.
I wanted my mom back.
She was right here. . .
A hand came down on my shoulder. “I can’t imagine what you’re feeling, kid. But we are going to find your mom. The entire police department is on this case,” he tried to reassure me. “They blew up a freaking police car and are dealing with drugs, kidnapping, and murder. When we find them, they’re never getting out.”
I could only nod. “Can we help look? I can’t just stand here idle--”
“It wouldn’t help, Samantha. Look. If you want to help maybe we should start with what’s first. That interview. This is getting bigger every passing minute and we need to take action soon. But to do so, we need all the information we can get.”
Mom must be so terrified. She must be alone and scared. . .what were they doing with her? Was she even. . . no. She had to be okay. She had to.
I snapped out of it. “Huh? Yeah. Ask me what you need to,” I confirmed, trying to regain my composure.
“Now, I would usually take you to a secluded area to interrogate you, but not only do we not have time to do that, half the department is also on leave today. However, it is your right to request anything as of such and I will not hold you against--”
“I don’t have a problem with that,” I cut him off, my mind still floating in the possibilities of where mom was and what they could be doing to her. “Really,” I added for more emphasis as Mr. Lint looked unsure.
With a quick nod, he turned the recorder in his pocket on. “Okay, let’s just sit down inside to make sure the outdoor noises won’t affect the recording.”
Not even a minute was spared as soon as we got seated and the questions shot at me at an impeccable pace. It started off pretty basic. “What is your name?”
“Relations to Mr. Sebastian Anderson?”
“Sister. Twin sister.”
“How did you receive the clues?”
“I was left clues in things only the two of us would have or remember.”
“And what gave you the signal to go looking for these clues? Any incident of such?” his eyes bore into mine as he held an impassive face.
“Yes. I was kidnapped about two days ago. It freaked me out. They told me that they’d been watching me-- observing me-- for a long time now and gave me a time span of three days to give him the evidence which I am assuming is the flash drive I handed over to the police.”
“Who are the ‘they’ you’re talking about? Any suspicion? Past enmity with anyone? ”
“I don’t have a list of who could possibly be behind this, however, after that video, I can guarantee that Detective Parker is a part of this. It makes sense. He pointed all the evidence and proclaimed this to be a ‘suicide’ and stopped further investigation into the matter too.”
“Are you aware of the place you seemed to be kidnapped in? Any clues of the location?”
“It was definitely any old building. The doors creaked and the whole place smelled of burnt wood. Besides, the ground was rough. Rough concrete, possibly. Other than that, I’d been either blindfolded or knocked out for the most part.”
“Were they violent with you?”
My mind flashbacked to when they kicked my chair bringing blood to my mouth and tied my wrists so tightly that it almost dug into my skin. “Yes.”
He nodded yet again. “Any marks they left on you. . ?” he cautiously asked.
I lifted the sleeve of my shirt to reveal the bruises from the ropes. “There are a few bruises on my legs and stomach too,” I murmured in a lower voice, my eyes not meeting his for once.
“I’m sorry, Ms. Anderson. I understand how hard this is on you and respect the mental state you’re in. However, I’m going to need you to speak louder. It is important for the entirety of this conversation to be recorded.”
“There are bruises lining my wrists, legs, and stomach,” I spoke a bit louder looking everywhere but at him. Speaking about it made me uncomfortable; it showed them my weaknesses.
Weaknesses were their only weapons.
“Have they taken you in the past as well?”
I gulped. I had buried those memories deep into the depths of my souls. So deep that the memories of those nights reappeared only in my nightmares when I had no control over my body. “Yes.”
“How many times?”
I shut my eyes and took a deep breath in. “Around seven times if I remember correctly. . .”
“And why hadn’t you informed the police earlier?”
“I saw what the police had done to me,” I snapped. “I had no proof. No evidence. To them, all my bruises and scars would’ve been dismissed as self-harm and eventually I would’ve been chucked into a mental asylum.”
The policeman sighed with a regretful nod. “How did they manage to abduct you. . .seven times?”
“I don’t know. They would usually inject something into me as I would be asleep-- a drug of some sorts. It always weakened me to the extent I had no idea what they were doing to me or where I was going. All I remembered were bits and pieces of violence but I would always end up back home by the next afternoon at its latest.”
“How did your parents not notice you gone?”
“Mom and dad had both buried themselves into work for a year after Seb’s death hoping that it would keep them busy. They’d return in the evening for the most part and I would always be back by then.”
“Any faces you could identify?”
“I don’t have a definite picture in my mind, but when I sleep, there’s always this once face that haunts me. I may be able to help you draw him, I guess.”
“So there are more than one of them?”
“Oh, definitely,” I laughed as I tried to push down the lump in my throat.
The policeman nodded. “We’ll be keeping you occupied on that soon, then. Any other information that may be of use to us?”
I shook my head. “None that I can remember. . .”
“Okay, well. We’re good to go then, Ms. Anderson. I’ll inform you if we’re going to need any more information.”
I just nodded.
“We’re looking into that. The department is trying to trace back the location and see where he could have gone in such a limited amount of time.”
“What do I do to help? Please tell me. Mom’s probably scared out of her mind. She doesn’t have anything to do with this. It’s my fault,” I pleaded. “It’s my fault. I was supposed to be taken. She didn’t even know--”
His walkie talkie sprang to life with radio static interrupting the utterly useless rant I was about to get into. “I’m code six with a suspicious vehicle at the corner of 38. Following.”
Mr. Lint’s eyes shot up to mine and we both exchanged a look that reeked of hope. “Copy that,” he spoke into the walkie talkie.
There was silence after that.
“10-28,” the device spoke again. Information exchanged for quite a while between a few officers on duty and, soon, I was being ushered into another vehicle by Mr. Lint who had informed me that all the vehicles around the premise had been taken extreme caution with and had been checked.
“I’m taking you along as you are the only somewhat witness of that location. If anything at all seems familiar, you must let us know.”
“I know I’d told you this earlier, but this time, we’ve doubled our security around him. Besides, he seems very distressed. Bringing him along would not benefit anyone at this point in time.”
A frown graced upon my face. No words were spoken after that. Trees passed by in a blur and I continued to unconsciously stare at people, doing normal chores and normal day-to-day activities yearning for that feeling all of a sudden.
The past two weeks included me doing just about nothing that would be described as a day-to-day activity.
In fact, the past three years of my life didn’t have any sense of normal in them with the exception of a few of my constant friends.
Maybe I wasn’t deserving. Maybe I just came with bad luck printed on my forehead.
And now mom was gone too.
Would they do the same things they do to me in that wicked, revolting place? Would they beat her up like they usually did to me?
Bile rose up in my throat again.
Would they really inflict upon her the punishments of my actions?
So many questions.
And no answers.
“Do you know how long it would take from around here?”
“If we go with the GPS, it should take us about 15 minutes more.”
“But first we need to get the tank filled up.”
He took a right as soon as he said those words and proceeded to park his car in the gas station. I racked my brain, trying to think whether there were any places other than their usual hideouts where they would be able to take mom.
When nothing came to my head, I angrily took upon the handle of the car and opened the door, allowing myself to breathe in the breezy air.
All it took was a second to breathe in that familiar air. It reeked of french fries and cigarettes. I’d been here before.
I’d been here with them.
I distinctly remember that one time when I woke up in the trunk of their car, only to be blindfolded. But this smell. This was it.
Wait? 15 minutes?
There was no way.
I was a hundred percent sure that they took no longer than 2 minutes to reach the place from here.
“Mr. Lint?” I called out, trying to draw in his attention.
His eyes shot up to me in question and he gave me a slight questioning nod.
“I’ve been here before.”
Now I had his full attention.
“What do you mean, kid?”
“I’ve been here before. This smell. . . this smell is way too familiar. And I doubt other gas stations have this smell in here. It’s odd and it’s one that I remember cringing at. There’s no way I would forget.”
“Okay, okay. . .” he mumbled more to himself. “That’s a good sign. That means we’re on the right path.”
“No, but that’s where you’re wrong.” Confusion could be seen on his face yet again, but I attempted to further explain myself. “According to your directions, we ought to reach there in another fifteen minutes, but from whatever I could gather from my memory, it barely took any time from this place to when I was taken out of the car. The maximum time, in fact, was probably just two minutes or so.”
“It’s a trap, sir. They’re misleading you. We need to go the other way to whatever your directions had planned.”
He stared at the hood of the car, trying to analyze the situation before making a call. “Alright, kid. Our car is going your way. I’m going to ask the department to split up and go both ways though. Half of them should be with us in a few for our protection and the other half would check what’s up with the car they’re following.”
With a quick, determined nod of my head, we rushed into the car.
However, this time, as the GPS pointed its arrows to a right from our current location, we shared a quick glance at each other before Mr.Lint steered the wheel to the left.
Hello, hello, hello. Now, I understand the majority of you probably forgot whatever the hell this story even is. I get it. But at this point in time, my priorities have shifted to applying for universities and that is super draining and stressful for me. The number of essays I need to write on a daily basis and the number of external exams I’m trying to balance with that along with the usual school life is just. . . extremely overbearing. I’m trying though *nervous laughter*
Yep, so that depressing tale was the update on my life as of recent. XD
I’m so sorry to keep you waiting so long. And this time, I’m not even going to try to sugarcoat it-- I’ll try my best to update as soon as possible, but for now-- again-- my priorities are applications to universities--unfortunately. Writing now falls under the ‘if I have time, do this’ list. Funny how times change. I used to be able to write a chapter every two days and now. . . *sigh*
That doesn’t mean I don’t intend to finish the book. Motive stays the same: get the book completed. It’s just that the process just got prolonged.
ANYWAY, enough of shitty talk. I hope you liked the chapter. Nothing major in this one (i was just eager to post at this point, but there is progression.)
Also, we’re finally inching towards the end of this book! I’m so excited! Just a few more chapters in and we’d be done :)))))) *look at those gorgeous double chins. I’ve definitely grown about 5 more just sitting in front of my laptop and studying at this point*
Lemme know what you thought of the chapter!