Missing – Part 17 (Day 20) A Story A Day

Missing is part of an ongoing story, which I aim to turn into a novella – a prequel to Brothers in Arms (Book 3 of the Morgan and Fairchild Series). I’m taking part in the StoryADay September 2015 challenge, though, as I’m working on a continued tale, it’s not strictly a story a day. It’s more a story within a story.
Recap: Justin Chambers, part of the team at Morgan & Fairchild, is approached by a friend who needs a favour. Justin accepts the missing person case, and agrees to look into it in his own time. Elsewhere in the story, Holly wakes in an unfamiliar room with no memory of how she got there. She soon discovers she is being held in an abandoned airfield, and her life is in danger. But Justin isn’t the only one with a mission. Andrew Butcher has been assigned to find Holly and, though he has strong ties to Morgan and Fairchild, he has his own team.

“Goddam it.” Andrew jumped from the SUV’s passenger seat before the vehicle came to a complete stop, and sprinted toward the collision site.

To his left he heard the sound of gunfire, no doubt originating from the hanger where he’d sent a team. It didn’t break his stride but he did approach the lead vehicle with caution, despite the flip and slide he’d witnessed. If the driver or passenger were still conscious they were probably armed.

Andrew spared a glance toward the SUV responsible for the interception, just as members of his team began to pour out. The front end had taken some damage, but the Murano had held up pretty well.

Signalling to two of his men to take the front, he approached the rear of the van with two at his back. The Peugeot Boxer was on its side, the front end facing back toward the hanger. Andrew squinted, listening to the chatter in his ear before he gave another signal and moved in.

When they opened the rear doors, Andrew scanned the interior and counted six bodies. He heard muffled groans, sounds that were hidden behind cloth sacks. One of the six, a female, was also bound at the ankles and wrists.

Andrew jumped inside, his eyes surveying the scene before travelling back to the female. She was sprawled at an odd angle, her body still. The sight chilled his blood because he knew, somehow he knew who he would find when he removed the sack.

Giving the signal his men moved to the others, speaking in soothing voices as they checked for injury and announced their presence. Andrew didn’t say a word. He bent to touch two fingers to the exposed patch of skin on the girl’s neck and waited for a response. There was a pulse, but it was weak.

As gently as he could, Andrew removed the cloth covering her head and felt the punch of recognition. He’d memorized the photograph, so regardless of the changes he knew it was Holly Carpenter.

He controlled the blast of anger which heated his blood, and barked out orders into his mic. There was a hint of panic in his voice, but also frustration. Andrew knew they were too late the moment they had arrived on the scene. The bastards had cleared out and, though they had saved six lives today, they had failed to take down the operation. How many had they lost, he wondered. How many kids had slipped through their fingers?

His mind whirled as he checked Holly’s injuries; his hands soft, even though his thoughts were hard and cold. She had a nasty cut on the right side of her temple, and her hair was damp and sticky with blood.

Andrew wanted to gather her into his arms, to carry her out of there, but he didn’t move her. Not until the paramedics arrived on scene. So he took her hand and listened to the reports from the rest of his team.

Thanks for stopping by.


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