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April 6, 2010
Mom had gone out to dinner with her boss and his wife. She said that if she didn’t mess it up, she was practically guaranteed a promotion. Her boss just wanted to see how stable she was now that she was going through a divorce before giving her the promotion. I was fine with that though. This way I had the house to myself for the rest of the night.
I really hadn’t taken much advantage of it though. All I’d been doing for the past forty-five minutes was sitting on the couch, trying not to stare at my cell phone, which I gripped closely in my hand. I was just so anxious for the police to call back though. I really wanted to find out who had been stalking me. The curiosity was killing me.
I tried to focus on the TV, but it was all just a blur of color and sound to me. I’d already tried calling Cole’s cell phone three times, leaving him two voicemail messages telling him to call me back. I knew he didn’t have any signal since he was fifty thousand feet in the air, but calling him helped keep me busy. It helped pass the time. Plus, I was beginning to worry whether he was really safe or not.
What if this stalker of mine had an accomplice? And accomplice who had followed Cole onto the plane to kill him if need be. What if when the accomplice got off the plane he had a new text from my stalker telling him to murder Cole. For all I knew, Cole could be killed within the hour. My stomach knotted up at the thought.
I was seriously frantic now. I couldn’t just sit here and wait for the police to call me. I needed to call them. I needed to make sure that they were successfully tracking my stalker down. So I flipped my phone open, just about to punch in 9-1-1. But before I got the chance to, it began to vibrate in my hand. Sure enough, my caller I.D. read ‘Westchester Police Department’.
I answered it immediately. “Hello?” I said into the phone, my heart racing.
“Hello, miss Mongolia.” the same deep voice from before replied. “This is officer Neilson from the Westchester Police Department. I spoke to you earlier about the anonymous text messages you’ve been receiving on your cell phone.”
“Yes, I remember.” I said. “So have you tracked down the guy who’s been sending them yet?”
He made a noise that sounded partly like a sigh and partly like he was clearing his throat. As soon as I heard it, I knew I wouldn’t be receiving good news. I bit my tongue as he began talking. “Well we’ve tracked down the cell phone that the texts had been sent from. After finding the number, we were able to find out who the owner of the phone is. It’s Michael McKnight.”
Will had been right all along. Of course it was Michael. After all, he was the psychopath who’d tried to murder me with an ice mallet. Why the hell wouldn’t he stalk me and send me creepy text messages, threatening to kill my boyfriend? That was definitely something Michael would do.
“I thought it might have been him.” I uttered back, feeling hot rage prickling up under my skin. “Well if you were able to track the cell phone down, can’t you just go to wherever it is so you can find Michael and arrest him?”
“You see, that’s the problem…” he said to me. He made that half-sigh-half-clearing-his-throat noise again and I knew I was in for some more bad news. “The cell phone…it’s somewhere in your house.”
My heart stopped. My breath got caught in my throat. My chest got tight. My mouth went dry. My grip on the phone tightened until my knuckles turned white. My eyes darted around frantically, as if Michael might pop out and try to kill me with that ice mallet again.
“Miss Mongolia?” Nielson said into the phone. “Are you still there?”
I swallowed back the lump in my throat and tried to speak. No words came out though. My mouth was so dry that it made it hard for me to form and words. I eventually choked out a hoarse, “Yes,” though.
“You need to get out of the house right now, alright?” he commanded, his voice taking an authoritative tone.
“Ok,” I squeaked, rising to my feet shakily and heading for the front door.
“Is there anyone else in the house with you?” he asked me.
“No,” I said.
“Alright, good. We’re on our way over there right now so just go over to a neighbor’s house until we get there.” he told me. “Bye,”
I hung up the phone just as I was shutting the front door behind me. Michael was inside me house. I felt like I was going to throw up. I needed to get as far away from this house as possible. But I needed to stay close by for when the police came. I needed to follow officer Neilson’s instructions and go to a neighbor’s house. But my house was on the corner, so my only neighbors were Mr. and Mrs. McKnight. There was no way in hell I’d go over to their house.
But what if Michael was to come out of my house once he realized I was no longer in there and kill me? I couldn’t just stand outside and wait to be murdered. It was really dark out, so I probably wouldn’t even see him coming if Michael snuck up behind me.
Mr. and Mrs. McKnight were nice enough. They seemed to like me when I’d met them too. I was sure if they knew I was in danger, they’d let me in. I just wouldn’t tell them that the danger was their son. If I did, they’d be pissed. So I hesitantly approached their door and rang the doorbell.
“Evalynne?” Mr. McKnight said when he answered the door. “You’ve got to be kidding me,” He looked me up and down, as if he were making sure that I was really there.
“Um, could I please come in for a minute?” I asked him, feeling incredibly awkward.
“I guess so,” he replied, looking beyond confused. He stepped away from the door so that I could step inside, shutting it behind him. “So why are you here exactly?” he wondered aloud.
“Well, I’ve been getting these threatening text messages lately from some unknown number. So I called the police and they tracked the cell phone back to my house. They told me to leave the house and go to a neighbor’s immediately while I wait for them to get here.” I explained.
“Oh my God,” he exclaimed, his eyebrows rising in shock. “That’s awful! Are you alright?”
“Yeah, I’m fine.” I assured him. “Just really freaked out,”
He nodded in understanding and an awkward silence passed between us. I couldn’t help but notice him eyeing my cheek. The one with the purplish-blue bruise on it. His gaze traveled from there to my neck. Under my collar, the fingerprints from Will trying to strangle me were still visible.
I wondered if he’d heard about the situation with Will yet. He had to have heard about it. The police had to have called him and his wife in for questioning. I smiled back at him, and nonchalantly tugged at my collar, trying to hide the slightly bruised marks.
He blushed and averted his gaze immediately. “Are you thirsty?” he asked me. “We have water, iced tea, soda…”
“I’m good for now,” I replied. I glanced out the window, flashing red and blue lights catching my eye. The police were here…thank God. “Well I think the police are here now, so I’d better get going.” I said to him.
“Ok, well it was nice seeing you. I hope everything goes well.” he said.
“Thanks. Bye,” I turned and walked out the door, happy to be out of that house. It still had an eerie vibe to it. Ash had lived there. Lori had lived there. Michael, Will, they’d both lived there too. It was freaky to be standing in the same living room that those four people had once been standing in.
“Miss Mongolia,” a police officer said, approaching me as I made my way over to my driveway. “I’m officer Nielson,” he informed me. “We just sent some of our guys in to do a search on your house. If he tries to escape, there’s an officer standing guard on each side of your house.”
“Ok,” I replied, feeling a whole lot safer now. Officer Nielson told me that he’d wait with me until the phone was found and I accepted his offer gratefully. A voice masked by the sound of static came out of Nielson’s walkie-talkie. I couldn’t tell what the person had said, but apparently Nielson could.
“Alright, bring it on out.” he replied, speaking into his walkie-talkie. Then he turned to me, “They found the phone.”
I walked up to the front porch with him as two police officers came out of my house, one of them holding a clear plastic bag containing a sleek Blackberry. His nametag read ‘Officer Griffen’.
“Here it is,” Griffen said, handing the bag over to Nielson.
“So where’s Michael McKnight?” Nielson barked back at him, peering over his shoulder, trying to look for Michael.
Officer Griffen bit his lip, looking tense. “We searched the entire house. He’s not in there.”