ENDS

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25- Ride

Iris's P. O. V.

It was already late evening when Mrs Phoebe, Meredith and I arrived back at the McConnell household. My eyes had been swollen and red from all the tears I had been shedding despite Mrs Phoebe's words and merediths efforts to console me.

A smile didn't just feel right, I needed my baby back.

We climbed up the porch and I did the honors of knocking. It was only a few seconds before Megan came peeping through the eye hole and threw the door open as soon as she could.

" Thank goodness you're okay " she said as she looked me in the eye knowing fully well that I had been crying but I guess she doesn't want to mention it.

I gave a very brief smile before by stepping her and walking into the house, leaving her to exchange pleasantries with the guests I had brought over.

" My lord.. I was so worried. I'm so sorry if I said something wrong yesterday, I just.. I kinda overstepped my b-" Hunter's mom was seated in the living room and the moment she set her eyes on me she jumped to her feet tried to apologize but I had to cut her short.

" No.. Its nothing. He's your son and one way or the other you deserved to know, so you did nothing wrong. I just wanted to get away for a while " I replied and managed to give another brief smile before heading towards the stairs.

I could still hear the clatter of discussions going on downstairs, and from the sound of it, it seems like everyone had all gathered in the sitting room to meet the guests.

It was an opportunity to hop into the shower and take a really long bath.

While in the bathroom, little flashes of Louie kept going through my mind. I easily remembered the day she had said her first word.

Megan's grandma and I had gone shopping and I definitely carried her along. We went looking for a new set of pyjamas for Louisa, so when we got to the store we had seen so many outfits which we liked but didn't know which to select.

Mrs Holly had made a joke of how she wished Louisa was old enough to choose for herself and I playfully decided to give it a try.

We watched her scan the outfits as possible as she could and after a small cute smile, she uttered the word "buu" even though she was looking at the color black.

And that was how Louisa got her blue-black onesie.

She loved that outfit so much that when she got bigger than it, she wore it on her favorite teddy.

Jiggles was the sexiest teddy bear to have ever walked the surface of the earth, according to Megan.

I smiled but a tear rolled down my face once again. So many little thoughts were causing quakes in my head.

I think I'm more bothered about if she had eaten breakfast or if she isn't being sexually molested than she being brought home. Not that I don't want her home with me but I just want her safety wherever she is.

I wasn't so sure how long, but I'm certain it could pass for an hour on how long I had been in the bathroom. Crying really helps whilst away time.

It was time to come out and most certainly ask about the progress to the case. So far no one had told me anything about bringing Louie back and it was particularly disturbing.

Hunter said he had a meeting with Mr Reid today, even if it wasn't successful the least he can do is to tell me how far plans have gone.

After cleaning up and putting on a plain blue T-shirt with black joggers, I left my bedroom to go find Hunter, or at least anyone who could help me out with what's going on.

Descending the stairs felt a lot more comfortable than ascending. Why? I also have no idea, but it just felt easier.

I got to the ground floor and everyone was seated in the living room asides Hunter and his Dad.

" Darling let me get you something to eat" Mrs McConnell says to me as she stands to her feet and weakly, I smile at her.

" Thank you but I'm okay "

She looked crestfallen at my reply and I'm sincerely hoping she doesn't think my lack of appetite has anything to do with her.

" I just need to find Hunter first I guess " I continued, hoping it will make her see reasons not to feel disappointed.

" oh.. Yes. He said he had to be somewhere, although he didn't mention where "

" Can I see Mr McConnell? " I don't know why but I have a feeling I don't like what I'm about to find out.

" He's in the bedroom dear " She replied with a smile and I only nodded and went to find Mr McConnell.

Suddenly the hallway felt too short because in no time I was in front of Mr McConnell's door and saw myself bracing up for whatever I was about to hear.

Two taps on the door and it took seconds but I was able to hear a 'come in' soon enough.

Deep breaths.. Deep breaths.

For fucks sakes why am I so scared?

I hate that my guts are yelling out something's wrong. Please let Louisa be okay.

After pushing open the door, I walked into the room and saw Mr McConnell seated at the edge of his bed while going through some papers in his hands, looking somewhat frustrated.

I watched as he flipped through the first file in his hand and glanced through another like he was either searching for something or trying to make comparison between the two. Next he stood to his feet and walked towards his mini shelf at the side of the room to withdraw another file. Then he walked back to the edge of the bed once again and repeated his initial actions.

His movements only helped to heighten my anxiety.

"Sir? " I called out to his attention and his body jerk alone was enough to indicate that he had forgotten that he invited someone in.

" Miss Jules. I'm so sorry, please have a seat" he said as he acknowledged me but didn't bother to send me a smile as he normally would.

That is to say something serious was up.

" Mr McConnell is everything okay? " the need to know what is going on was itching at my spine.

" Yes. Yes my dear everything's fine " he started and looked at me for a while before continuing " No Jules, everything is not fine. In times like this, there's no use lying to you"

His use of words caused my heart to drop into my stomach.

"Please tell me Louisa is okay " I quietly said but it was loud enough to fill in the conversation.

" So far as I know, Louisa should be okay. Nothing's happened to her. I'm just very concerned about what my own son had said to me. Funnily he mentioned you being aware of it "

"Me? " I moved from scared to shocked at whatever I was about to be accused of.

" Hunter is indebted to a drug lord and that is why all these are happening "

I really didn't know what to reply to his statement or question? I wasnt sure.

" So you were aware? "

I think my silence was enough answers to his supposed questions and he released a breath.

" I sent you here because I trusted you and I expected things like this to be brought to my knowledge but yet you knew and you kept it away from me as well. I'm not penalizing you or accusing you that this is all your fault but I'm saying informations like these shouldn't be kept secret. Look at how such a secret has put your life and that of your daughter and my grand daughter at stake. If anything I'm not disappointed. I'm scared, because this is worse than I thought "

And I could see it in his eyes. For the first time ever since I had met a strong man such as he.

Mr McConnell was scared.

" Hunter didn't want you to know " I chipped in, hoping it would help clear why I couldn't tell him.

" And where has that gotten us? This was a wasted secret because now he had to tell me himself "

"He didn't want to disappoint you. At least that was his plan" I whispered the last part out because I needed to soothsayer to tell me how Mr McConnell feels right now.

He took another deep breath and murmured something to himself. As low as it was, I was able to hear it.

'Well he failed woefully at that'

A minute of silence passed between us before he spoke again.

" And now I've got to assimilate the fact that we've got a spy under our roofs" at this statement he released a chuckle.

No one had to tell you that he didn't find any of these amusing.

" Now I've got to dig up files that may have most likely gotten burnt with my entire house, just to get information about all the staffs I had recruited in the past ten years. If someone can give me one reason to not get angry, the odds would forever be in their favor"

What can I say? If I were him I think I'd have broken down long ago, but here he is trying to control his temper and raging emotions.

" where did I go wrong with Hunter? Just where? I gave him the right education, perfect allowance, secured job, time, affection, attention.. Yet, yet this is all I get paid back with. From what he did to you to this. He isn't even giving me time to breathe. I've honestly failed as a parent "

" No you haven't "

" Show me my works and disprove me Jules. Just take a look at what you're going through all because of my son "

" You have a daughter too. A lovely one at that " no pun intended.

" And one I love so much, but after discovering all these with hunter, who knows what's going on in Love's life that I'm also blinded to. I'm terrified of my own children "

" Hunter brought all these upon himself with his own two hands. He chose this life and it wasn't your fault because you did your best"

" But not we're all paying consequences of his sins. I doubt I'd be able to see my successes amidst this shadows"

I wanted to counter him once again but I believe it would be difficult to make him acknowledge that all this is not from his parenting, its from the choices of an immature mind.

But there was little time to chitchat. Time was ticking and with the way Mr McConnell was speaking, something tells me that Hunter isn't close by.

" Please where's Hunter? " He was the only person who could give me accurate updates about what's going on.

" He's at a place. Said he needed to do something important "

" important? Did he mention? "

" No.. But I'm aware its about that Solcus guy"

"Soldo? "

" Yeah.. Whatever his name is"

" Can you take me there? Maybe I can help him out"

He stopped and stared at me for a few seconds, most likely deciding if or if not to listen to me.

" I'm not sure Jules, at the moment you're already in too much danger"

" And I'll willingly keep getting myself involved so far as it brings Louisa back to me"

" we all want Louisa back and at the same time we want you safe"

" Mr McConnell, I can't sit back and wait for someone else to go bring my own daughter back. Please I need to see hunter" I pleaded

" Okay. Get a sweater, its a half hour ride"

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