“I love you, son. Go find our girl.”
“I love you, too, Pop. And I promise, I will.”
I hang up the phone and grip it tightly in my hand. I’ve never lied to my dad before, and I’m not about to start now. I will bring Jay home.
Paige and Miles walk up to me.
I get up off the floor and look to the both of them. “The name Spencer mean anything to you?”
There’s a noise outside the door, and I tense when I hear shouting. My body is stiff from being on the cold concrete, but there’s no choice other than the filthy mattress. I’m aching and cold, but I’m not so far gone that I’m willing to crawl on it and pick up whatever diseases are lingering.
I feel Summer wake up at the sounds. We’ve been huddled up in the corner, trying to stay warm, but there’s only so much we can do to prevent the chill from seeping in.
“What’s going on?” she asks, looking at me with wide eyes.
“I don’t know. Just stay calm.” I don’t want her to panic. I keep seeing it in her, so close to the edge.
She’s like a skittish horse that’s been thrown into a crowded street. Anything could set her off, and I want to make sure she stays as calm as possible. I can handle whatever comes our way, but I can’t do that if I have to worry about her and how she’ll react.
There’s more shouting, and then I hear a loud bang like a door slamming. Then our metal door is flung open, and the big guy in a suit from before looks at us.
“Get up. It’s time to move.”
I replay every CSI I’ve ever seen, and all of them are screaming at me that it’s not a good sign if you have to go to a second location.
“Why?” I ask, not getting up.
The big guy comes into the light, and I see he’s got blond hair and ice-blue eyes. They chill me right to the core, and I want to crawl farther back against the wall. My mouth has gotten me into trouble for most of my life, and right now I have to remind myself that it’s not the time to sass.
He reaches inside his suit jacket, and when he pulls it out, there’s a gun in his hand. A big black gun that scares the shit out of me.
“Is there going to be a problem?”
Summer starts to shake, and I stand up, blocking his view of her. “There’s no problem. We’ll come,” I say, reaching behind me. Summer puts her hands in mine and gets up off the floor. “Please put the gun away. You’re scaring her.”
He looks past me, and something flashes in his eyes. I don’t know what it is, but instead of putting the gun away, he holds it up and points it at Summer.
“You come with me,” he says, and I step in front of her again.
“I said we’d come together.” My voice is shaking now, my fear of being separated setting in.
Just then there’s a noise behind him, and he glances back as Spencer walks in.
“We’re all going together, Jay,” Spencer says, coming over to me. He wraps his sweaty hand around my upper arm and squeezes it so tight I know it’s going to bruise. He yanks me to his side and grabs my face. “You’re going to sit in the back seat with me. She can ride up front with Michael.”
Michael grabs Summer’s arm in pretty much the same hold Spencer has me in. Only he holds the gun against her ribs and walks her ahead of me. I move my feet as fast as I can to keep up, but Spencer still has a hold of me. He grips my arm with one hand and moves his other hand from my face into my hair. The pain in the back of my skull is nothing compared to the panic I feel as we walk through the building and I lose sight of Summer.
The place they brought us to has narrow hallways with lots of turns. I think for a moment about breaking free of Spencer’s hold, but I don’t even know if could get away before he would catch me. The place is set up like a maze.
I decide to be calm and bide my time. There has to be a chance for escape. If he’s taking us to another location, we must be going outside. There has to be people. One chance is all I need, and I’ll make my move.
Just as I have the thought, I hear a scream from up ahead. The sound of Summer’s fear races down my spine, and I cry out for her.
“Summer!” I shout, and Spencer elbows me in the ribs. The pain makes me gasp for air, but he doesn’t stop pulling me by the hair.