The Unknown Son
K. J. Dahlen
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Book Heat Level: 1
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Sable glanced over at the empty desk in the office and wondered when Max would be back. The bullet he received from Shawn last week had done a number on him, but he survived. She had hoped the nightmare of her past was truly over now but even as she gazed at the open letter on her desk, she knew she might have one more battle to fight.
The letter was from Maggie Yost and it had come out of the blue. She hadn’t thought about Maggie since she’d left Chicago a few months ago. She’d disappeared from the hospital against medical advice after Micah died. Sable tried calling her in Cleveland but Maggie had never returned. Sable learned from Kyle Benson, Maggie’s landlord, she had called him and asked him to pack her things and put them in storage. She would deal with them later. That had happened a couple months ago. Since then he had not seen her or heard from her.
Sable was surprised by Maggie’s letter, but her surprise soon turned to dismay when she read what she had to say. The dismay turned to dread when she realized her nightmare wasn’t quite over yet.
This is the hardest letter I’ve ever had to write. I’ve never admitted this to anyone else, not even myself, but I made a very bad mistake twenty two years ago and now that mistake is going to kill me. I told you I fell in love with Richard at the same time your mother was with Micah, but that wasn’t the truth. Summer had been with Micah earlier, almost two or three years earlier. When Micah and Richard came back and Micah found out about you, that’s when I met Richard.
I fell in love with what I thought was his bad boy image. I didn’t realize what I thought was an image was the real deal until it was too late. He was a real bad person. I was caught between a rock and a hard place. I knew if I left him Richard would track me down and kill me. He told me often enough when he noticed I didn’t want to be with him anymore. I thought he was becoming lost to his own reality then he was dead. When Micah killed Richard, I knew I had to run before he could find and murder me. I saw the fight they had that day and I was witness to the murder. I knew the only way he wouldn’t kill me is if he couldn’t locate me. I had to run away and that’s exactly what I did. I moved around a lot so Micah wouldn’t find me.
It wasn’t until weeks later I found out I was carrying Richard’s child. At first I didn’t know if I wanted to keep the baby or not, but in the end I couldn’t harm my baby. My baby was the only innocent one out of the bunch of us. It was hard to be alone and pregnant, but I knew I couldn’t go home. My family would never have understood my relationship with Richard, and I wanted to keep my baby. When my son Noah was born, I tried to forget his father. I had hopes he would become my son and not a reflection of Richard.
We struggled but we had each other. Noah was such a happy child and he became the love of my life. After awhile, I guess I had forgotten about Micah. I thought I dodged the worse but all that changed when my son was ten. He became secretive and sneaky and he began looking at me with mistrust. I tried to get him to talk to me but he wouldn’t tell me what I’d done wrong. It never dawned on me I could lose him; especially not to the one person I had learned to fear more than Richard. Noah spent a lot of time away from home but he wouldn’t tell me where he was or who he was with. Then when he was fourteen he ran away. It was several weeks before I realized he was running straight to Micah.
Micah sent me a postcard about three weeks after Noah disappeared. He told me not to worry about my son; Noah was with him and he would raise him to be a man, just like his father was. He told me he would be back to settle the score with me at a later date. Every day for the last nine years I’ve had to live with the fear that one day Micah would just show up at my front door. I moved from town to town hoping to avoid the confrontation I knew was coming.
When you found me, I was almost relieved. I’m only sorry I didn’t tell you the truth, the whole truth but I had to keep certain things from you. I still had to protect my son. I prayed Noah wasn’t with Micah and for a moment I thought he wasn’t. When Micah took me to the well, he told me Noah had become the man he had hoped. He said Noah took to the life better than Richard had and if by some chance Micah died in the final battle between the two of you, it would be Noah that would finish his work; Noah, Sam, or Shawn.
I’ve been running for awhile now but it hasn’t done any good. No matter where I go I can still feel him right behind me. I don’t know if he’s really there or not but someone has been watching me. Maybe it’s only my conscience making me feel this way, but the other day I saw someone standing on the corner staring at me. I came to La Crosse to get lost in the crowds but I think Noah has found me again. I know after all I’ve done to you, you have no reason to help me but I’m begging you to please help me. I don’t want to die by my son’s hand.
Even as I write this letter I can feel him getting closer. I received a call late last night. When I picked up the phone, I heard a voice I barely remembered. He told me he was in town and wanted to stop by and say hello. When I told him I didn’t believe him, he told me I shouldn’t. He said he was here to tie up loose ends. He said he had a job to finish and Micah was counting on him to finish it.
“Nick,” she called out.
Nick lifted his head from the report he was reading. When Sable held up the letter she received in the morning mail, he pushed back his chair. Walking over to her desk, he took the letter and began reading it. A moment later he lifted his eyes from the paper and looked at her. “Are you kidding?”
Sable shook her head. “Apparently this nightmare isn’t quite over yet.”