- Hunted: Prologue
- HUNTED: Chapter One
- HUNTED: Chapter Two
- HUNTED: Chapter Three
- HUNTED: Chapter Four
- HUNTED: Chapter Five
- HUNTED: Chapter Six
A scowl grows on Finn’s face before he pulls out his cell phone. He taps the screen a few times before putting the phone to his ear and walking outside of the hospital room. He attempts to shut the door but it snaps back open, slightly. Getting off my chair I move towards the door, slowly, because my arm is in a sling and my body is incredibly sore. Technically I wasn’t even allowed to be out of bed.
“Have you been to the Watson residence?” He was asking into the phone, “There was a big party over there, which means a lot of cars, the perp had to know which one was hers specifically.” He paused and after a minute, “Yes, I know, but something isn’t right about this.” He sighs and listens before adding, “The girls had plans to stay at the Watson residence overnight, which means someone at the party either tampered with Ms. Rose’s car or the perp had intentions of making his move after the party the following day. I think we need to check out Cory Watson’s house and the cars of Jaxon Hart and Waylon Rossen.”
My heart begins to pick up speed as I make way back to the hospital bed. What did all of this mean? Who would be following me? And why?
“Sorry about that, I had a hutch, you could say, and wanted to speak with Avery about it.” Finn says coming back into the room. He sees me struggling to get back on the bed and hurries over to help me. He picks up my small five foot three frame and lifts me onto the bed.
“What’s your hutch?” I ask as he moves the blankets around me and helps adjust my pillow until I am completely comfortable.
“I’ll let you know if anything comes of it, otherwise don’t worry about it.” He says with a soft smile, tucking a loose strand of hair behind my ear.
I nod and then bring my fingers into my mouth tracing my teeth.
How, could I not worry about, especially if someone was following me?
“Get some rest. I’ll be back tomorrow.” Finn says before leaving the room.
I was ashamed to admit it but after Finn left I fell asleep thinking of him. It amazed me that he knew how to breathe life back into me after such horror — after such pain. More then that, he made me smile — something I wasn’t sure I would be able to do again.
I couldn’t seem to get over his eyes, those clear blue-green eyes. Never once had I seen a black man with blue eyes. He made me feel normal, beautiful even.
My mom always told me that beauty is achieved, not genetic. In other words she was firm believer in self-made, store bought perfection. I think she said this because her daughter was born just shy of beautiful, a mutant if you well. It was her way of trying to make me feel pretty but never once have I taken her actions as a compliment. Dad tells me I’m the green apple in a sea of red ones. A unique find, an acquired taste. In the end all I ever felt was less then. Never greater then.
I was born with white hair. Not silver, gray, or blonde, but white. My hair was also over-the-top thick. The type of thick that broke hair-ties on an everyday basis. My natural part weighs heavily on my left side so I always have hair covering the right side of my face. Like I said, wearing hair-ties doesn’t go over well for me. My eyes are a dark blue and my skin is similar to a porcelain dolls. My lips are blood red at all times, as if I am wearing a lusty lipstick. The weirdest part is that my eyebrows and eyelashes are dark brown, so I get asked if I die my hair all the time. I don’t. At first the doctors said I was likely born with albinism but I never showed any other signs of that. I personally think that my hair and skin have the absence of melanin because my eyes and lips soaked it all up.
Nonetheless, thinking of Finn’s darker skin and blue-green eyes somehow makes me feel more common than rare. Which was stupid reasoning, I knew, but it was a comforting excuse to dream about him.
I woke up to the sound of heals clicking around on the floor and hushed voices.
“I don’t think it’s a good idea Parker.” My mom was saying. I kept my eyes closed so I could listen in, eavesdropping is bad habit I have yet to break.
“Honey, she will be fine. They are her friends, friends who are grieving too. She needs them and cutting her off isn’t a good idea.” My dad said in his usual way-to-calm-for-his-own-good voice. Dad was a walking, talking, breathing juxtaposition. By all accounts was he a tree-hugging, save the word hippie. He was a vegan, only wore naturally made clothes, hardly ever cut his hair, which meant he had the man-bun at forty-five, and was constantly using his “medical” card as the ultimate excuse to get high all the time. He did all of this while maintaining his mathematician career. He was a certified genius and highly sought after.
Mom sighs, “I guess you are right. I would really hate for her to be overwhelmed. I feel it is too much too soon.” Mom, on the other hand, was a worrier who constantly obsessed over being perfect. She was the ballet. Not just a dancer, but she lived and breathed the art of dance. She used to be a ballerina in the New York City Ballet but then she discovered that she was carrying a child, much to her surprise and dismay. So she gave up her dream to raise me in rural Montana where Dad was born and raised. Lucky her. Now, mom owned the best ballet studio in town, The Dance Collective.
“Hey.” I mumble, entering the conversation.
“Darlin’.” Dad says softly.
“How are you feeling?” My mom stands up and brushes the hair off of my forehead.
“Like I have been shot.” I reply sarcastically.
A silence passes over us. It’s something that I have noticed over the past few days, no one knows what to say to me anymore. Not that I blame them. It isn’t like we can talk about college, or track, or who I might go to senior prom with. Everything has a been painted black, tainted.
“I want to see my friends.” I finally say.
“Honey, I don’t think…” My mom starts to reply.
“No, it is a good idea.” I quickly interrupt, “They lost Juliet too, she was best friend and Jax’s girlfriend. I need to see them and if you don’t let them see me it’ll be like they lost me too.”
My mom sighs, “But I don’t want to overwhelm you. Your emotions are everywhere right now and I…we…are afraid your mind will fracture.”
My eyebrows shot up, “My mind will fracture? Seriously?”
“Darlin’, your mom is worried about you. This is the second tragedy to happen to you and last time didn’t go over very well. We just want you to heal.” My dad interjects before mom and I enter into one of our many arguments. Dad has always been the peacemaker due to his freakishly calm nature.
I sigh, “I was younger then and I had Juliet to help me. Friendship is powerful thing…losing Juliet is killing me…”My voice breaks and my throat tightens. Without warning the tears coming roaring out of me and my whole body shakes. “Please, I need to be around people who knew her like I did, who miss her like I do, who love her just as much. Please.” I whisper.
My parents silently grab my hands, mom on my left and dad on my right, a silent agreement.