Escape

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Harold speaks

Meanwhile, at the police station Harold was sitting at his desk, trying desperately to find every piece of information on this guy that he could. All his work was completed with the motivation that Dave would be sent to jail, and all of this would get better.

Than he remembered, the birth certificate, Harold had sent out the paperwork for it yesterday, and there it was, sitting in the fax machine.

Harold took a deep breath, and than got up out of his seat, when he lifted the paper what he found was quite traumatizing.

“He’s her father,” the sound echoed in the quiet halls Harold dropped the coffee in hand, and raced out the door, to Kevin's office where he had been stationed on the case.

Harold showed him the birth certificate, and they put it out on the scanner. Everyone was in a frenzy, of course the regular police seminars happened, but in this small town, the news was definitely unexpected. When the word got out, there was no stopping this scandalous mystery, and just like that newspapers, and channels were headlining the story. After days of nonstop Amelia, and Dave, the police department eventually found out about Charlie, he hadn’t shown up to work in days and no one had seen him. The dots were no longer connected, and everyone in the quaint, barley on the map town, was facing a small town tragedy.

“Charlie and Amelia Andrews missing.”

Pretty soon the whole town was buzzing about the Andrews family. Lily Andrews was under full police protection, just in case there father was in the mood for anymore guests.

But most of all Harold was going ballistic, tracking licence plates, and IDs. Coffee became an hourly thing, Harold was giving away all his time to find her, to find Amelia. He’d only just met the girl, and known her for a short time, but for some reason he felt she was as close to him as his own daughter. Harold was exhausted, with black circles around both eyes, he twitched every time an email came in, or a phone rang.

There was no new evidence, except Dave’s van, which was obviously stolen, since it was found abandoned on the side of a dirt road, there were tire tracks leaving the vehicle, and continuing down to the path. They blended in to all the other tracks, when the vehicle got to the interstate, that’s when all the clues stopped.

Harold barely slept through the night, knowing what was happening. It was the first missing persons case he’d gotten, and he was rather sensitive to the arts of kidnapping, or any child abuse for that matter. It made his stomach churn, to know the capability of any human willing to hurt an innocent child, so he didn’t sleep.

“Not until Amelia is found” he told himself.

As the minutes dragged into hours, and Harold’s caffeine intake became painfully obvious. Kevin barged into the office where Harold sat staring blankly at his computer screen, bursting with news.

“We have a lead on the apartment Dave was staying at.”

Harold nearly fell off his chair when he heard the unexpected voice at his door, but stood as quickly as he could when he heard the news.

Sleep deprived, yet alert Harold gripped the steering wheel with both hands, almost speeding through traffic to get there. It was a good thing he was in a cop car, or he would have gotten pulled over for sure. Kevin who was sitting beside him, examined the torn look on his face.

“Harold?” He whispered, “why do you care so much, who is she?”

“I don’t know, my guess is as good as yours.” Harold pushed off the question, and focussed his gaze on the road, blinking his stinging eyes to keep them from shutting completely.

“I can drive if you need me to,” Kevin observed Harold’s pale face, and gloomy expression.

“I can’t!” Harold gawked at Kevin, “every time I try I think of her, and then I feel like an idiot for taking time to nap on the job.”

“Don’t beat yourself up,” Kevin said nothing else as he turned to his window. “There,” he pointed at an old, musty, run down apartment building, on a side road off the main highway.

Harold took a tight turn, and pulled up into the parking lot. Dirt flew as the car door flung open. Harold stepped out, and Kevin glanced at him with regretful eyes.

“Your not coming” Kevin built up the courage, before he told Harold why. “Your not a cop, and if anything happened, it wouldn’t be covered, plus you don’t have the badge or protection, to help yourself if something does go wrong in there.”

Harold blew up with frustration. “I just about broke my back on this case, working over time, and early mornings, and now your telling me I’m irrelevant!”

“Just let the police handle this, until you get a badge you’re completely vulnerable, and I’m just trying to keep you safe, that’s all.”

Harold blinked back the tears that were desperate to escape his full eyes, as he plopped down into the car. “She’s just a little girl,”

“I know,” Kevin replied softly, and were gonna find her, but right now, just help from behind the desk, okay?”

“I don’t get it,” Harold squinted through the sun up at Kevin was now outside the vehicle with the window down. “Why did you bring me here if I wasn’t aloud to help?”

Kevin huffed, “to keep you updated.” rolling his eyes he turned and hurried into the crowd of officers awaiting him. Harold sat for a moment, and thought. Right away he pulled out his laptop from under the seat, and unzipped the case, opening the laptop. He searched up everything he could on the apartment. Rent, lists, history, even the landlord, he just needed to feel like he was doing something meaningful.

Meanwhile, in the building, the police surrounded room 302, guns pointed up at the door. They were almost certain that no one was home, that it was abandoned, but they were the police, they were always prepared.

“open up!”

The slams on the door pounded through the empty walls, as the door was busted down with a single boot. The guns went in first, as the actual cops followed, they checked everywhere, nothing, no one.

It was like Dave had picked up and left, he left everything behind, it looked like he was on the run. He maybe packed a bag, but that’s about it. Papers were stacked high on the desk beside the computer, it was as if the cops were supposed to find them. It was odd,

“what a stupid man, leaving all this evidence.” Kevin gossiped, “not stupid, smart he wanted to leave behind his trail in a hurry I guess better that than to take it and risk loosing something that might bring us closer.” The chef gave an eye roll and a dirty look before turning to the other room.

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