For the next few days, I was glad to bury myself in work.
Zach hadn't relented. He kept calling and leaving voicemails on my cell phone begging for me to call him back and 'talk'.
After about the fourth day of ignoring his calls, he seemed to get the hint and stopped, which I found weird.
Zach was not known for just dropping things and leaving them be. He never was, never will be.
He was the type who always got what he wanted, even people.
I tried not to give a second thought to his sudden change of behavior and just let it be.
"Have you talked to Dante?", Nicole asked me one day while we were wandering aimlessly around the mall.
I shook my head, "No."
"You should. You seem like you have too much on your mind and need a healthy distraction.", she said, nudging me.
I rolled my eyes, "He and I are not like that."
"Not yet, you aren't. Just give it some time and, before you know it, you two will be all over each other.", she replied, entering Express.
I chuckled at her odd logic, but to each their own.
"Michelle?", Daniela asked from the door jamb.
"Yeah, Daniela.", I replied, stopping what I was doing.
"Someone dropped this off for you.", she said, walking over and handing me a brown packet.
"Odd, I wasn't expecting anything.", I replied, taking the packet and looking for a return address, which it lacked.
"Do you know what messenger dropped it off?", I asked, playing with the metal clasp that sealed the packet.
"No, I was getting a cup of coffee and when I returned it was there.", she said before I dismissed her.
Once Daniela was back at her desk did I open the large brown packet, curious as to what it contained.
I pulled out a stack of papers, placing them on my desk. I picked up the top sheet and read it.
I hope that you like what I sent you, my love. I think you will.
I scrunched my brows together, wondering where in the Hell this package came from as I grabbed the small stack of papers.
My eyes widened as I saw pictures of myself and Nicole at Central Park last week, myself eating breakfast in my kitchen, myself walking to work.
"How in the Hell?", I muttered as I saw more images of myself doing my daily chores, walking to work, getting lunch.
The last image had a sticky note on it. My favorite.
I looked at the image and saw myself in a bra and my dress slacks getting ready for work.
I placed the images down on my desk, my hands shaking.
I tried to calm my nerves, closing my eyes, which was not working too well.
The sound of my cell phone ringing scared the daylights out of me.
"Hello?", I said, hoping I sounded calm.
"Agent Moore?", a deep voice asked.
"Yes.", I replied, my hands still shaking slightly.
"Detective Smith from NYPD. Could you come to Saint Michaels? We have something you might be interested to see.", he asked.
"Sure. I'll be there as soon as possible.", I said, closing my cell phone, telling Daniela that I was going out.
"Agent Moore, pleased to meet you.", Detective Smith said, shaking my hand.
"Likewise.", I replied.
I followed Detective Smith down the corridor to the morgue within Saint Michael's.
"What case does this pertain to?", I asked, following him inside.
"A new one.", he replied, leading me to a vacant exam room.
"Where's the body?", I asked, noticing that the table was corpseless.
"Look, over there.", he said, pointing to the medical cabinet which was partially opened.
I gave him an odd look, wondering what might interest me inside a medical cabinet.
I pulled the cabinet door open further and nearly gasped at the image taped inside.
"Oh my God.", I whispered as I saw a picture of myself with the words 'Better watch out' scrawled in what looks like blood.
"You okay?", Detective Smith asked.
"How did you find this?", I asked, turning my head away from the image which had a picture of myself with my neck slit.
"One of the interns came down to get more supplies from here and saw this.", he answered.
"How did you know it was me?", I further questioned.
"My partner came down with me, Detective Simon, with whom you have worked with before and said that the image was you.", he replied.
My heart was racing. Why in the world would someone want to kill me?
"I received a packet with pictures of myself, lots of pictures, before I came here.", I said, feeling my hands begin to tremble again.
"What kind of pictures?", he asked.
"Pictures of me going to work, eating, getting dressed. They came with a note.", I said, feeling y body go numb with nerves.
"They were delivered to your office?", he asked.
I nodded my head, feeling my chest constrict. Never ever had I felt like this. Granted, I deal with gruesome and foul things with my job but not once has it been personal.
The fear of having someone watching me and now wanting to kill me was indescribable.
With my job, I worked to put people like this rightfully behind bars, and now, I was the one being watched under a microscope.
"We'll get someone to go to your office and get the stuff, okay?", he said.
I barely registered what he said because of what was running through my mind.
"Let's get you out of here.", he said, touching my arm gently.
I numbly followed him out of the morgue and to the emergency room. I didn't register a word of what he speaking as he led me to an exam room.
I just sat on the gurney and tried to fathom who would want me dead. I didn't intentionally harm anyone. I tried to live my life in a good manner. Why me?
"Why me?", I whispered as I felt tears sting my eyes.
"Michelle?", Dante said as he entered my room.
"Hi.", I said, trying to sound strong.
"What's wrong?", he asked, taking a seat beside me on the gurney.
Even thinking about being in a hospital brought my nerves out more.
"What's wrong?", he asked again, his hand resting at the small of my back.
I looked him in the eyes before breaking down. I couldn't speak. It was like living a nightmare. Someone was out there to get me.
"Shhh.", he soothed me, his arms wrapped around me in a hug.
I felt my body shake with sobs as his attempts to calm me failed. I heard nothing as I cried. I felt as if the world I once knew was crumbling around me.
"What's wrong?", Dante asked me a few minutes later once my sobs subsided.
"You wouldn't believe me if I told you.", I whispered, looking at the linoleum floor.
I felt his finger lift my chin up to look at him, "Try me."
"Agent Moore?", a voice broke us apart.
I gave Dante an apologetic look before getting up from the gurney and following Detective Smith into the hallway.
"Do you have somewhere safe you can stay?", he asked.
"I can't go home?", I asked.
"We'd rather you not. If the person was able to get clear shots of you from home, it would not be safe for you to go there."
I sighed, closing my eyes. "I could ask my friend if I could stay with her, but he also has a picture of me with her."
"Relatives?", he questioned.
"Out of state, about a two hour drive from here.", I replied.
"She can stay with me.", Dante said, appearing beside me.
"And you might be?", Detective Smith asked.
"Her friend.", he replied.
Detective Smith gave a questioning look. "Dante is my friend.", I replied.
"If you are fine with this arrangement, then so be it.", Detective Smith began. "Before you two leave, I'll need any and all contact information."
I nodded my head, watching as Dante agreed.
"Why didn't you tell me about this?", Dante asked after giving the police all of his necessary information.
"This, all of it, just started today.", I replied.
Dante led me to the locker room where he had his stuff.
"I know that we really don't know each other, but I can promise you this, I will do everything I can to protect you.", he said, looking directly into my eyes.
I smiled weakly at him as he grabbed his things.
"Let's head out, hm?", he asked, bag in hand.
I silently nodded my head before following him out of the hospital.
Okay, there you have it. I re-read the story, what I had so far, and wanted to do something different with it. Let me know what you think about this chapter and the slight change in story line. If you guys like where I'm heading with this, then I shall continue on. If not, I shall remove this chapter and go on with the fluff. Ha ha.
School will be ending soon (beginning of August) so I will have a little bit of time off before the fall semester starts, so hopefully I'll get working on this more.
Also, 2 days until my birthday! WHOO! (dances) I'm celebrating it by going to a baseball game this coming Saturday with my best friend, so (dances again)
Leave the love. Sorry for the shortness but I wanted to test the waters per say.
Xx Elle xX