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Without a Trace

By mayaj_hart All Rights Reserved ©

Action / Romance

Blurb

Kirsten Sands was 17 year old girl who had lost everything. Losing her parents 4 months earlier had changed her completely. At a pivotal point in her life, she meets the seemingly perfect Noah Goode. When she tells him of her plans to leave town and find out who killed her parents, he realizes that he has grown fond of her and convinces Kirsten to not go anywhere without him. Their journey, although met with some obstacles, is an unexpected one with an outcome far from what they thought it would be: Love.

Chapter One

Drip.

“I’m in here,” I screamed, fearing for my life.

Drip.

“Please, someone help me!”

Drip. Drip.

“Dad,” I screamed, tears rushing down my face.

Drip. Drip. Drip.

I scream, hoping, praying, willing someone to save me.

Drip-Drip-Drip. Drip. Drip.

I look around as the rich, oaky smell of the fire filled my room, wisps of silver grey smoke danced their way through the hazy air as if excited to escape. I felt my eyes fluttering shut, and the next thing I know, my body is heavy and I’m falling to the ground.

Drip.

The rain suddenly starts to fall all at once. I just stare out my window, not sure what I’m looking for. I sense someone standing in my doorway.

“Yes,” I asked, not turning around.

“Kirsten you need to come out of your room. Your parents wouldn’t want you to be up here all the time.” My muscles tensed. My parents...moved on...4 months ago in a fire. Police officers still hadn’t figured out how it started. I swore that it was arson, but everyone pitied the 17 year old girl who lost her parents. Thought I was crazy, I guess. Since then, I’ve moved in with my father’s sister, seeing I had no family left. By my window, there was a chair. A chair I haven’t moved from since I got here, and I don’t feel the need to.

She slowly makes her way downstairs, closing my door before she goes. My aunt doesn’t understand how much I get done up here. I’ve realized that if you’re quiet, you notice things. Lots of things. See, I even noticed how the vacant house next door has been fixed up, moved into, and there’s a guy who leaves at eight o’clock in the morning, and comes back at seven-thirty in the evening. I notice this in just 4 months. It feels like it’s been forever. I feel like the last time I saw my parents was years ago, when I was a little kid at the zoo. Looking at the elephants, I was completely awestruck by the beautiful animals in front of me. “How could something so large be so graceful?” I wondered.


“See that thing over there? That’s an elephant.” My dad tells me. “You wanna know what’s so cool about them,” he whispered into my ear.

“What,” I responded.

“Elephants never forget a thing. Just like me and your mom. We’ll never forget you. Ever.”


I look over at my clock and it reads 7:28. Mr. Vintage Volkswagen should be pulling up any minute. Almost as if he had been reading my thoughts from afar, I see his bright yellow 79′ Super Beetle convertible pull down the street. I look back over at my clock as he pulls into his driveway. 7:30...on the dot. Mr. Vintage, you never cease to amaze me with your impeccable punctuality.

“Kirs, I’m going to dinner with Matthew! I’ll be back soon!” Please, dinner this late? Not even I believe that. Matthew is Aunt Caroline’s trash boyfriend, and I swear he bathes in that cheap cologne. They just started dating a couple months ago, not long after I got here. He always looks at me weirdly. Something about him just rubs me the wrong way.

“I’ll be here...not like I’m going anywhere,” I mutter under my breath when I hear the front door close. I sigh and unfold my long body from the chair in front of my window. I toe off my shoes and lie under my comforter. Reaching over to my bedside table, I grab my remote to my TV. I stare at the big red button and smile softly to myself.


“Hurry! Get in the spaceship,” Dad yells. He picks me up and tickles me senseless.

“Dad, I’m 12 years old! I don’t play spaceship anymore!” I yell through strangled laughs.

“You don’t play spaceship, huh?” He put me down and pulled something from his back pocket. “Then what is” he shoves a red paper button in my face, “this?!” I laugh hysterically.

“THE RED BUTTON! AND I’M GONNA PUSH IT!!”

“NO! NO ONE HAS EVER PRESSED THE RED BUTTON AND LIVED! IT’S RED FOR A REASON!”

“WATCH ME!”


I sigh and haul myself off of the bed. I’m not really gonna watch anything. I carefully make my way downstairs to the living room, leaving the lights off. I sit in the chair that has a clear view of the front door. I like to be downstairs in the chair when Caroline gets here so Matthew doesn’t try anything stupid like spending the night. The rain has stopped and I slowly feel myself drifting into another dimension of constant darkness. Some people call it sleep. Sometimes I dream. Mostly nightmares, though. My favorite ones are when it’s pitch black and no one is talking. I feel like I have the world all to myself.


I wake up when I hear Matthew’s car pull into the driveway. I get out of my chair and head to the door. I open it, only to find Caroline and Matthew going in for a kiss on the porch. They jump and pull away from each other when they realize that it’s me. Aunt Care clears her throat.

“Goodnight, Matt.”

“Yes, Matthew. Goodnight.” I say with sickly sweet smile on my face.

He gives a tight smile, nods, and walks down the steps.

“DON’T BOTHER COMING BACK!” I yell.

Once we get in the house Caroline sighs with frustration.

“Really, Kirsten?! Cut it out! I understand it. Your parents died. But that was my brother in there. My brother. You think I don’t miss them? You think it isn’t hard getting out of bed every morning? I’m trying, Kirsten. I really am! But you’re not making it any easier,” I flinch at the force she delivers her words with, tears flowing down both of our faces, “I know you miss them. I know it’s hard, but you need to stop acting like no one cares about you; Like - like the world is against you. We’re on the same team. So you cannot and will not bash me. Not now. Not ever.” And she storms upstairs. I flinch once again when I hear her door slam.

I know she really likes Matthew. But, in my opinion, Aunt Caroline is trying too hard. I can tell she wants to find love. I mean, she’s not much older than me, only 26. She was my father’s little sister, forced into parenthood because they...moved on. The only thing is, looking for love is pointless. Anyone who loves you, or claims to, will leave. Unexplained. Without a trace. As if they were never there to begin with.

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Jennifer Kane Martin: I am a high school teacher, and the dialogue and inner thoughts are PERFECT. However, the lack of capitalization, punctuation, and the typos are distracting. Don't let these get in the way of a potentially good story.

JONANNA: As an avid reader it is not often I say that about a book. The plot is what was different and the twists where unexpected. This book is defiantly a page turner and enjoyable read. I can't wait to reread this novel after a little editing to finish off the shine on this wonderful novel.

SPepper: I had a hard time putting this book down even to go to sleep. The story is compelling and beautifully character driven. I hope author will make this a series.

Giuliana Cassetta: My face is full of tears, I never cried like now with a book or even a movie. I loved every single chapter. I truly don't know what to say, I'm out of words and my eyes hurt from crying. Such an bittersweet story, it's so wonderful. One of my favorites for sure. Keep it up!

Laraine Smith: Your story is both sweet and beautiful! You are a true artist! Keep up the great work! I also love the picture that you chose for your book! :)

jessiehs: This was absolutely amazing. I loved how it went back and forth between perspectives. I actually cried at the end I was so happy. This was amazing. I can't even think of another word to describe it. Thank you for writing his.

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