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Thursday, May 8, 2014

I Stole Evil - Chapter 24

 My only instinct was to try and protect my daughter…

…but first, I had to find her.  The thought of seeing her again after all of these years…after all that had happened was almost too much for me.  I would be forced to face up to the biggest mistake I’d ever made.

But, I had to fight back my emotions.  No matter what I had done in the past, my job was now to keep her safe. 

I had to get to her before Carmina decided to.

I could hear Carmina rummaging around downstairs.  I dressed quickly and went down to confront her. 

“Where is she?”  I snarled as soon as I was face to face with her.

“Who?”  She asked innocently in the same tone that she was accustomed to fooling everyone else with. 

“My daughter!”  I yelled in the opposite tone.

“Um…but, I’m your only daughter,”  Carmina said as if speaking to someone who had lost their mind.

I marched up to her at a pace that indicated that I wasn’t in the mood to play with her.  She stared at me showing that she wasn’t the least bit intimidated. 

That only made me angrier.  “If we’re going to play this game, you need to at least give me a shot at winning!”  I demanded. 

Carmina smiled slightly as if I had said the most asinine thing she’d ever heard.  Her tone matched her expression, “It was game over 20 years ago.  We’re just going through the motions now.”

“Carmina…I swear to God, if you hurt her!”

Carmina stepped back as if she was afraid of me…which I knew she wasn’t.

“I’m hurt mother… how could you threaten to hurt me…your only daughter?” 

“Carmina…your manipulation tactics don’t work on me anymore.  I need to know where my daughter is!” My patience was gone and Carmina knew it. 

Still, she wasn’t about to give in,  “Oh… it still works, or we wouldn’t be here having this conversation.”

Carmina continued, “This is a small town.  If you want to know where your daughter is…find her yourself.”

Carmina walked passed me and headed up the stairs.  I should have known she wasn’t going to make the whole situation easy on me.  But she was right, Midnight Hollow was a small town so locating my daughter shouldn’t be too hard. 

I just wondered how long I had before Carmina went after her. 

I hurried over to the computer.  Since I knew my daughter’s name, I figured that all I had to do was search an online directory for every Christina in town. 

When I actually got online, I realized that Christina was a fairly common name and not everyone was listed by their actual name.  Some were listed by just their initials.  I didn’t know my own daughter’s last name, so I printed out the list of addresses for every Christina or person with a C in their initials that lived in town. 

I set out visiting every address that I had written down.  

 I knocked on door after door.  Some people weren’t home, so I made a mental note to try those houses again later. 

Some locations were obviously wrong.  My heart sank each time a person came to the door that wasn’t my daughter.

I knew that time was winding down. 

Eventually, I began to run out of addresses to try.  I realized too late that not everybody in town would be listed in a directory. Some people opted out of such public listings.

I was almost ready to give up.  Midnight Hollow wasn’t very big, but it was too big for a door to door search; that would take months. 

It was getting late.  I was hot and tired and ready to give up.

But, I decided to try one last house before ending my search for the night and trying again the next day. 

I rang that one last doorbell, expecting any face, except the one that I actually saw.

The woman who answered the door was very pretty, with chocolate brown skin, shoulder length hair and an eye patch over her right eye.

I was staring at my biggest regret.  It was her… I had found my daughter.  My adult daughter that I made the mistake of abandoning in the hospital 20 years ago.



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