- Hunted: Prologue
- HUNTED: Chapter One
- HUNTED: Chapter Three
- HUNTED: Chapter Four
- HUNTED: Chapter Five
Officer Finn Holland:
Listening to her tell me about Jax intrigued me. No, fascinated me.
There was something to this.
I closed my eyes letting my mind play projector and her words the slides. I needed to remember every detail. Some called it obsessive, while others called it genius. I slowly opened my lids and watched her for a brief moment before I finally leaned over in my chair, “Ok, so bring it back to a couple of nights ago, if you and Jax hadn’t been acting on anything why would he break up with her?”
Lennox flashed her royal blue eyes at me before letting them disappear out of the window again. It was hard to not get lost inside her eyes. Her skin was nearly albino yet her eyes were rich with color. I was so transfixed that I almost missed her barely-there whisper, “I find ironic that you are now the only person aside from me and Jax that know our secret.”
A long silence passed between us. I wanted to be as patient as I could with her because not only did she loose her best friend but she was now haunted by the attack. Reliving guilt couldn’t have been easy.
She was staring out the window letting her thumb trace her teeth and I pulled her hand away from her mouth for the second time today and gave it a gentle squeeze, “Tell me.” I demanded as nicely as I could.
“It was the New Years party that Cory throws every year because he has a huge house out in the middle of nowhere. Ten minutes before midnight we started gathering everyone for the countdown. Most of our senior class was there so it was a huge crowd. Waylon found me at the same time Jax and Juliet did, Cory was nowhere to be found. Which wasn’t all that uncommon because he’s a bit of a man-whore.” She made a slight laugh after she said that. It was a beautiful sound.
“Anyway,” She continues, “the four of us where standing in the living room, in the middle of this huge crowd, when everyone started counting backwards from ten. Waylon was all set to kiss me even though we broke up ages ago, it was a kiss of friendship and familiarity, when someone bumped into me and made me nose dive towards the floor. Jax tried to grab me but ended up falling down with me. He landed on top of me just as everyone screamed, ‘Happy New Year!’. Jax ended up kissing me on the lips signaling off the New Year and Waylon gave Juliet a quick peck. No one thought anything of it, it was all in good fun.”
Lennox lets out a deep breath before continuing, “Ten minutes later Jax is pulling me inside Cory’s kitchen pantry, which is this huge walk-in space — anyways, we are in the pantry and suddenly Jax is telling me that he broke up with Juliet. I was shocked because we weren’t even ten minutes into the new year. He told me that he couldn’t take it anymore and that he had fallen for me. Fallen for me! Can you believe that? Anyway — After he said that he tried to kiss me again but I shoved him away, telling him that we couldn’t do anything until Juliet knew. Nearly thirty minutes later, I found Juliet crying in Cory’s bedroom holding a bottle of Tito’s. Somehow in that short amount of a time period she managed to guzzle more then half of the bottle. It was alarming to say the least — Anyways, we were planning on staying the night but she begged me to take her home.” She let out a big sigh, “To be honest, it feels good to tell someone about this, even if it is a cop. After everything that has happened over the last couple of days — all of this seems so — childish.” Lennox, mumbled the last part as if she didn’t actually want me to respond, so I didn’t.
I replayed her story in my head when the wheels starting turning, “You two weren’t planning on coming home that night?”
She shook her head, having spent the last hour talking, it was easy to see that she was drained. Easy for me to tell that she was ready for quiet.
I bit down on my lip again, “Interesting.”
Lennox furrowed her eyebrows in a question, what?
“We know that your car was tampered with but at what point during the evening? If you were supposed to stay there all night then you wouldn’t have been able to leave in the morning. Which begs the question, who would want you to be stranded in the middle of nowhere?” I stated my train of thoughts out loud, gaging her reaction.
After a minute her dark eyes seared into my own, “Cory’s house is forty-five minutes out of town, planted squarely in two hundred acres of woods. A lot of people were planning on staying over that night because of the blizzard but they would have left first thing in the morning. Cory hated it when people lingered — except for his friends, so by noon the next day everyone would have been gone — except the five of us.” She added trying to be helpful.
“Everyone?” I asked slowly.
“Yes, like I said, Cory hated it when people lingered, so every year, after his big party, he blows this horrible fog horn at six am. Everyone scrambles out and only the really drunk people would linger, but by noon Cory would have kicked out all his guests. It sounds rude but there is a reason he only throws one party a year.” She attempts to laugh at the small joke but only a weird cackle noise escapes her throat.
The wheels stop turning and a fog lifts.