Tucker’s heart sank. She had a good lead on them, and she never slowed down.
Pick up the phone! Answer the phone! He mentally tried to persuade her as he sped his way back to town.
He hit the Bluetooth in his helmet and called Brad who informed him that “She has the tracker in her purse, and of course her cell phone. She is heading straight home.”
“Keep me updated.”
His next call was to Boss. Boss started right in, “That crazy girl is heading straight back for the bee hive. You sure picked a wild one with her. I sure hope you’ll find a way to tame her” he finished with a chuckle.
Tucker was in love with that girl. He didn’t want to tame her, he wanted to help her reach her dreams. He wanted to keep her safe, especially right now.
He kept his bike maxed out until he hit the city limits. He knew she had stopped a block behind his gym, and he headed straight there. He found the Durango, but it was empty. Then he noticed the Monster’s sedan, and his heart sank.
He jumped off his bike and tried to look for clues. He looked first in the Durango. Her purse was tucked under the seat, the gun was missing. Good, hopefully she has some protection.
He then went to the sedan. Dirty. Filthy was more like it. He checked under the seats and looked in the back. Even through the window he could see the items in the back. Rope, duck tape, knives. It made every hair on his body stand straight up.
He looked around and headed to the gym. The back door was open, and he cautiously took a step in. The whole place wreaked like gasoline.
His phone rang, it was Taylor. “They just left the gym and headed across the street. We lost track of them.” He had called earlier and was informed that the creep was in the gym, pouring gasoline. He knew that, too. He would rather the building burned and the Monster was arrested for arson than for him to hurt Ann. He could replace the gym. He couldn’t replace Ann.
He jogged across the street and looked around. Where would they have gone? He knew she had a natural tendency to head for nature, so when he saw the signs for the wildlife reserve park, he knew where to look first. He jogged ahead, and got to the edge. As he approached a trail, he saw someone coming down it. Tucker instantly recognized him as the attacker from the other night. He waited for the attacker to come out to the clearing and Tucker confronted him.
Tucker knew Boss wouldn’t be far behind, and that Brad had taken off for town as soon as he heard Ann had gone off in a stolen SUV. Brad would be there in record time, should anything get too complicated.
He managed to learn that the attacker had just left the woods and that the Monster was in the woods, alone. Tucker wasn’t sure if he should believe that last part, but it confirmed his suspicions. Boss came up just as Tucker was finished his interrogation, and Boss took the attacker back in the direction of his truck.
Tucker headed back down the trail, much more cautiously this time. He could hear voices, and he stopped in an attempt to hear what was being said.
“You bitch, when are you ever going to see things the way the rest of the world does? You should be so lucky as to have me even consider you, yet you walk around, arm in arm with that low life who makes a living beating people bloody. We could be happy together. I could buy you anything you want…”
He had finally heard the voice of the Monster, the slurred, ugly, evil voice, speaking such garbage about him and Ann. He quick texted Boss and Brad, and he crept in closer, trying to get a better view of the situation. He knew Ann had a gun, and he wanted to stay out of the way of any flying bullets if that time came.
He encroached on the small clearing in the woods, staying back far enough so as not to be seen and hidden behind a scrubby old bush.
He could see the awful scene. She was tied to a tree in the middle of a makeshift camp site. He could see sleeping bags, a cooler, flash light, an athletic bag that looked like it may have come from his own gym, and the Monster pacing around his beautiful woman. He looked closer and he could see that she was bloody, bruised, dirty, and barely alive. He wanted to storm in there and kick that bastard’s ass from one end of the county to the next, but he first needed to ascertain where the gun was. He didn’t want Ann accidentally getting shot in his rush. Patience. Come up with a plan. Follow through.