A Story Of Dark Pasts, Secrets, Crime & Betrayal
If I could commit murder and get away with it, I’d have killed this spineless sonofabitch eons ago, dragged his body to the wild, and leave his worthless carcass for the vultures, but I couldn’t, and he knows it too.
He knows if I had wanted him dead, I’d have done it years ago. “Protecting my past and marriage is the reason you’re still alive. You promised we’d never cross paths again, I’d like things to remain that way.”
“A marriage built on lies, secrets, and deception, Raven, is not worth it. I won’t disrupt the walls of lies you’ve built unless you refuse my offer. Some things call for broken promises. ”
My fingers twitched to wrap around his neck, but I held back my rage and tongue. “Raven is dead, Kola. You know it. That’s why your plan won’t work. How much do you need to get off my back and find someone else for the job? Name a price and I’ll set up a meet?”
He paused for an eerie second, his breathing even over the line. “Raven is my price, Antonia. I need her back.”
“You can’t have her. She died the day you betrayed her trust and left her to fend off the hounds on her own. I survived. The day I thought I lost it all was the day I was reborn.”
“I have a good life, a beautiful kid, and an amazing husband who’ll love me with his life. I won’t lose it because of a woman who lived for the thrill of the chase and nothing more. She dead and gone.”
“Why didn’t you seek revenge for what I did?”
I have thought about that for the longest time and have always come up with only an answer. “Because I married the man who saved my life, no questions asked.”
“I can’t pull this job off without you. One last thrill. That’s all I ask. I’m ready to hang up my boots for real this time. But I owe my handler one last job before I do.”
“Find someone else, Kola. I’m done for good.”
“Then you leave me no choice,” he said and clicked off.
My blood boiled and my temples throbbed because I knew what I coming. Worse still, I knew what I had to do, and I didn’t like it one bit.
“Don’t do it. It’s not worth it.”
I yelp, startled. “Daniel! What are you doing up?”
He wraps his robe around him, walking down the stairs with a pained look. “I could ask my wife the same thing, seeing as she’s been sneaking around the house taking calls at off hours of the night.”
“It’s nothing. I’m coming back to bed.”
He shook his head, cupping his hand behind his neck, his gaze searching. “I’m not blind, not deaf, Tonia. Everything you said over the phone, I heard.”
“Do you think I know you’re not who you’ve been lying about who you claim to be, yet I asked no questions because you proved to me that I had nothing to worry about. What changed? Why now?”
“Nothing’s changed. My past is long buried behind me. There’s no need for you to fish in toxic waters. I assure you, it’s fine.”
Just as he began to say something, I hear a soft clang upstairs, coming from one of the rooms. It was so subtle I wouldn’t have picked it if my senses weren’t on overdrive.
Then it clicked, and I paled.
I tore through the stairs, dashing toward my daughter’s room. “No!” I scream, at the empty room. Rushing out with Daniel on my heels. I raced towards ours, slid on one knee beside our bed, and pulled the berretta from underneath it, racing past my stunned husband toward the entrance.
I rushed out of the gates, searching the streets frantically. Even as I did, I knew I was too late. They are long gone. My Jasmine. He took her right from under my watch.
My wrangled cry tore my lips as pain assailed me, making my hands shake. I dashed inside and grabbed my phone, my blood boiling with uncontrolled rage.
He picked after the first ring. “I knew you’d -,”
“If you touch a strand of hair on her head, you’re a dead man.”
“Mummy!” I heard Jasmine scream into the phone, and my knees buckled. I crumbled to the floor, the pistol clattering away from my loose grip. “Jasmine!” I yell back, but her voice was already muffled and lost.
His voice came back on. “Give me what I want and you can have your feisty little kitten back. I won’t harm her if you give me Raven.”
My control snapped and my heart was consumed with fury. “You want Raven? She’s coming for you, Zeus.”
I smash the cellphone on the floor, clambering to my feet, ready to go to war. “You’ll need this,” Daniel said, handing the weapon to me. “Do what you’ve got to do to get my daughter back.”
I took it from his trembling fingers, making a move toward him. He steps back, hands raised. “You got us into this mess. You got our daughter involved in this. All I ask is that you get her back in one piece.”
It tore my soul that I repulsed him. “You’re not even going to ask me what’s going on?”
“I gave you five years to talk to me about it. You chose to keep it to yourself because you didn’t trust me enough. Saying it now isn’t going to change anything. Saying it now won’t bring Jasmine back, will it?” he yelled, for the first time in six years, his eyes bristling.
“No! But I’ll bring her to us safely. I promise. I’ll make sure nothing happens to her.”
His eyes hardened as I spoke, his bristling gaze settling on mine. “You better do, Tonia. You may not have trusted me with your past, but I’m trusting you with our daughter’s life. Bring her home in one piece, or don’t bother returning at all.”
“I mean it, Tonia. Jasmine is my life. If anything happens to her, you are dead to me.”