Saturday 30 January 2016
Holly wasn’t sure whether it was the throbbing in her head that made her feel ill, or the realisation that her mother had been right all along. Ross Turner was abominable. She could see that now. She could see how wrong she’d been, and she was left wondering how she could have possibly been so stupid to fall for his lies. Handcuffed to the bed, there was little Holly could do but sit and wait for Turner to find somewhere else to hide. At the speed at which he was driving, Holly figured they had put considerable distance between themselves and the police.
‘Ah, you’re awake, princess.’
His voice induced goosebumps on her skin. What had once been a delight to hear, was now crawl-inducing to her skin.
‘You were being hysterical. That’s why I slapped you.’
‘You’re concerned with slapping me, and not with the fact that you punched me? What the hell is wrong with you, Ross? I don’t know who you are.’
‘Honey,’ he began to plead with her, glanced behind him, and decided against continuing down that path. ‘It was either that, or you were going to give us away to the cops. Then we’d both be in the shit . . . far worse than you could ever imagine. So, get over it.’
‘And you handcuffed me, asshole.’
‘Again, a necessary evil. I’ve had to do some pretty evasive driving. I didn’t want you flying off the bed and getting injured. Sue me for caring.’
‘Caring my ass,’ she whispered to herself. Pushing Ross at this point, and whilst she was restrained, might not be the smartest thing to do.
He drove for an hour without speaking to Holly. She spent the time moving from the RV floor to the bed in an attempt to relieve the pressure on her handcuffed arm. Finally, just before pulling into an out of the way gas station, he eyed her in the rear view mirror.
‘When I pull in here to fill this beast up, I’ll uncuff you. But I swear to God, Holly, if you so much as breath like you’re going to spill your guts to anyone there, I’ll fucking kill you and throw your corpse in some forest that we pass for the bears to eat. Got it?’
‘Yes,’ she mumbled.
‘What? I can’t hear you.’
‘I fucking said yes!’
‘Don’t swear,’ he sniped, ‘it’s not ladylike.’
Turner guided the RV to a bowser, and cordially wave at the attendant who had come lumbering out of the store. He flew out of the seat, and raced down to Holly to uncuff her. In her personal space, he leaned close enough for her to smell what he’d had for breakfast.
‘Play nice, Holly, play nice.’ With a small hand movement, he’d released the restraints from her wrist. She rubbed at her wrist, trying to soothe where the handcuff had bitten in to her skin. It was red, and would be obvious to anyone who cared to look that she’d had something tightly wrapped around her right wrist. Their moment was interrupted by the attendant banging on the RV’s door.
* * * * *
The trailer park had been a waste of time. The woman who’d called in to report the suspicious behaviour was unsure if she’d really seen Ross and Holly, or if it had been just another strange couple who made their way in and around the countries fine trailer parks.
‘Of course it was them,’ Anderson Greene stated. ‘Who else could it have been? I’ve got a feeling about this, Julia. I think he coloured Holly’s hair hoping that it’d slow down any identification of them, and when you had the patrol officers go round, he got spooked and ran. Or, in this case, drove at the officers, endangering the lives of them and anyone else in the way of the RV.’
‘I’ve got a feeling too, Anderson.’
‘She doesn’t have long left.’
Greene pulled the car over to the shoulder of the road. He looked between his partner, and the road ahead.
‘You really think so?’
‘You have one of those special feelings you get, or is this just a regular, y’know, hunch kinda feeling?’
‘It’s not a hunch, Andy. We need to get to her within the next few hours.’
Greene reached around the back of his seat, and pulled out a battered book of road maps. He flipped through until he found the page where he’d find their current location.
‘Okay,’ he said as he examined the finely marked roads and highways. ‘This is where we are, right now.’ He held the map for Julia to see. She agreed with his estimation of where they were. ‘Now, get your funky feeling thing happening, and divine, or ask the spirits, or whatever it is that you do to get those fucking great hunches, and figure out where this asshole is taking Holly.’
Poole took the book from him, and sat it in her lap. She focussed her breathing, slowly inhaling and exhaling.
‘Is that how you do it?’ Anderson asked. He was bemused by her focus.
‘No, it’s not how I do it, you asshole. Just shut the fuck up and let me work.’
Again, Julia focussed on her breathing. She placed her finger on the map where Greene had suggested as their position, and looked at the roads and highways around it.
‘We know they’re on what was the old Lincoln Highway, the I-80, and I don’t think he’s going to deviate from that route. What we have to figure out is how far ahead of us he is, and where he’s going to pull up for the night.’ Her eyes fell on a small town a few hundred miles ahead of their position. ‘There! That’s where he’s going to pull up for the night. Right here. Get in touch with the captain, and have him call in local reinforcements. Tell him we’ll meet them there. We’re going to get Turner tonight, if it’s the last thing I do.’
Greene wasted no time in dialling the captain’s phone number. ‘You’re sure this is where he’s going?’
‘Well, no, I’m not. But I’ve got a special feeling about this. If he’s not there tonight, he’s going to pass through early tomorrow. Trust me, Anderson.’
After stilted conversation with their captain, Greene started the engine, and pulled out on to the road.
‘Boss is going to call ahead, and he’s gonna get permission for us to be tracking this all the way through to the end. He’s also calling in the F.B.I, but there’s nothing we can do about that . . . Turner’s crossed state lines, so it’s a federal case now, but before you get all shitty, he’s going to sell it to them that we continue because we have extensive knowledge of the case and the family.’
‘Anderson, do me a favour?’ Julia asked.
‘Shut up and drive. I want to catch this bastard.’
. . . To be continued . . .