This is just the first chapter. I hope you like it!
It was an ordinary day at Willow Creek Forest National Nature Preserve. The tourists had come, admired the beauty, opened up their wallets, and left. Only three people had disappeared, but no one knew who yet. Roll call in the morning would show which families grieved and cursed at the sky. People wouldn't stop them in the streets, because it would bring back the pain of their own lost loved ones. You see, Willow Creek is plagued by a mysterious being that stole people to use for their own purposes. Once gone, they were never seen again. My father was a detective assigned to the case, one of the many. He would leave, and come back days later, with bloodstained clothes and a limp. I was always afraid that he would collapse when he walked through the doors, so I would help him walk to the couch. It would terrify me, and I would always watch him to make sure that he wouldn't collapse mentally, and that I would be an orphan. Part of the reason that dad worked as hard as he did was because mom was one of the many taken. One of the first. Ever since he has been focused on revenge. All he wants is to take down the threat and neutralize the enemy so that others don't have to feel the pain of losing another loved one. It almost killed him, and he probably would of killed himself if not for me. I was his only reason for living now, and I would never be put intentionally in the path of danger. I didn't watch the news or read the paper like most people my age, but sometimes I did help Dad solve a case or two. That was always fun, at least for me. I'm pretty sure I gave him more than a few gray hairs because of my recklessness. Haha. Dad read the paper everyday, and even though I didn't I just couldn't ignore the bold, flashing title.
FOREST MYSTERY REMAINS UNSOLVED
When will this reign of terror come to an end? That is the question that
many people are asking lead detective, Gary Hawthorne. The answer is
always the same. "We don't know." Too many people have disappeared
for everyone's taste. Concerned citizens demand that a search party
search for the missing loved ones. On page five, you can find a list of all
the missing people starting from longest ago to the most recent. I feel
for the families of the lost. In a recent turn of events though, police have
found footsteps and, believe it or not, a human hair at the scene of one
of the crimes. Forensics teams are hard at work analyzing the hair but
experts say that it will be a while before they can be absolutely sure of
the identity. Lets just hope that Detective Hawthorne is on the brink of
making that crucial discovery that will lead him to close the case.
"Yes, Nicole?" I had to swallow. Would he even consider my offer?
"I'd like to help you on the Willow Creek case." I was carefully watching his face. It went from tan to red to purple. "Dad?"
"How can you ever think that I would let you help me with the Willow Creek case? All my best men are stumped and you're just a girl. A smart girl, but you're inexperienced as a newborn. I cant bear losing you like I lost your mother. No, Nikki, you cant help me." I knew he would say something about that. I was armed with all the cases that I had solved.
"The Range River Rover. Twenty people reported seeing a strange figure in the night covered in a red liquid. On later examination, we declared the liquid as blood. We followed the faint trail of barely crushed leaves and little drops of blood and rescued 4 abducted women long thought to be dead. I tracked him, Dad. The Bloody Bandit. A cold case suddenly brought to the light when I found a vital clue in our backyard last year. A white handkerchief stained with a brownish red color. Most of it was dirt, but some was blood. Without that clue, he would still be a free man." Dad sighed.
"I know you're better than my men but its just too dangerous. I want you to be safe but his case is brutal. I cant lose you. I'm sorry, but no."
"Dad, please." he looked into my eyes, perhaps looking for a sign that I wasn't completely sure. I stood my ground and stared back into his. Dad sighed again.
"Okay, I'll take you with me. But if I feel that its too dangerous, I'm bringing you right back home." I gave him a hug. He felt tense, but it was something I was used to. I went into my room and packed my bags. Lightweight black clothing including a long sleeve black formfitting top and black jeans that hugged my body. A sheaf for my favorite knife went into the bag, followed by my on-duty handgun. I also packed some dehydrated food and a lot of water. Waterproof boots and a heat retaining sleeping bag were the last things I put in my bag. I looked around the room, making sure I didn't forget something before my eyes caught a glimpse of silver. I set my bag down and went over to my desk. There lay a silver heart shaped locket that had been my moms. I put it on without a second thought and felt the cold metal touch my warm neck. It lay in the hollow of my throat. Perfect, I thought looking in my mirror. I looked like a total bad ass. The black showed off my paleness, but increased the vibrancy of my fiery red hair. My eyes flashed twin emeralds and my tall, willowy body full of curves was outlined in this outfit. Oh yeah, bring it on. I locked my windows, locked up my valuables, closed the door and walked downstairs with my duffel bag.
"Ready Dad." he looked at me and sighed.
"You look so mature, Nikki. So much like your mother." tears welled up in his eyes. "You're even wearing her locket." he smiled, but the tears came anyway. I hugged him and waited until the tears stopped.
"I love you, Dad. I always will."
"Love you to, Nicole. Remember, if I feel that it's too dangerous, I'm bringing you home immediately." he looked into my eyes again.
"I know, Dad. Lets go." we loaded up the car with the tent and our bags. We brought about $50 for food and water. We also packed a water purification devise. We were ready for anything. We set off, and that was the last time I ever saw my house again.