PART I

So cold…so very, very cold…I shivered. Jingle! What was that? My head swam and a knot throbbed in the back of my head that seemed to coincide with my heartbeat. I tried to raise my head, but it was difficult and I fought to do so. I looked around. There was a cabinet in the corner and stacks of cinder blocks along the wall. And then there they were, sneering at me.

They sat in a folding chair. Seeing what held me back brought both terror and confusion into my heart. My expression made them grin. I knew I couldn't escape.

"What's going on? Help me! Please! Help!" I pleaded.

They didn't move. Their snicker echoed across the room.

"Please! Help me! What happened? What's going on? Help me out of here! Please!" Hot angry tears formed and threatened to spill. I twisted and yanked on my limbs, but it only brought spasming pain.

"No." The force of that one little word caught me off guard.

"But, why? Help!" The tears started to spill and run down my face.

Their grin turned malicious. I cringed away from it. They got up calmly and went up the stairs. As soon as they were out of eyeshot, I started pulling and shaking as hard as I could. It was no use.

They came back down and laughed. "Go ahead. Keep yanking. You'll break yourself before you break them." They turned and continued back up the stairs. I heard the door slam.

I was alone. I could hear their voice through the floor. It was hard to decipher any words, but I knew they were talking. But we were alone here! Who would they be talking to? Their footsteps creaked on the floorboards above my head.

When they came back down, in their hand, there was a bat. It was shiny and the harsh metal glinted off the crude lighting of the room, wrapped in stone.

They approached me and I tried to shy away from the bat. But they saw. Realizing what I was doing, they pulled the bat over their shoulder and sent it swinging into my stomach.


Elizabeth Andie: that's my name. I've spent my life being strong. Honestly, it's not like I had a choice, given my childhood. My parents died in a car crash when I was three years old. When I was a child, I used to hate them for leaving me alone to deal with the problems only a parent could solve. But how was it their fault that they died? It was an accident that the cars of my parents and a Polish family collided in the square. Later on, I learned to accept what had happened. It was the right thing to do.

Growing up with numerous foster families, a role model was hard to come by. They moved me around so much that I became my own hero; my own influence. I tried to stay the kid that no one wanted to mess with, ever. It was easier not to make friends because by the time I made them, I'd have to move to another family. But for me, that was easier said than done. I just seem to have an aura that I give off that drew people to me. Whenever I moved someplace different, it was like I set off an alarm in all the minds of the little children of the neighborhood. They gravitated towards me, like a honeybee to a spring flower and all of them had the strange desire to be my friend. It was hard to leave them heartbroken when I moved again, because it hurt me, too.

In high school, they all called me the "Church Girl" – funny, because it wasn't that I was a God-freak or quoted the Bible like it was my job. It was because I didn't drink, smoke, or sleep around. Without the proper role model, I'd say I made a very strong and mature decision. It was because I saw. I saw girls who were smart, who were on the Honors Society and ran to be class president, become pregnant by their abusive "Baby Daddy" and have to dropout because they couldn't handle the baby and school. I saw guys, who were jocks, had straight-As and the potential to become someone as powerful as the president, would bomb classes, drink until their livers threatened to explode, and frequented the juvenile hall. I saw people die from drug overdoses and others from drunk-driving accidents. It was sad how they could let alcohol and drugs overtake their entire lives.

But even though I didn't drink my problems away, it didn't mean I didn't have them. I found my release in working out and lifting weights to get my body into primo condition. If other girls my age wanted to be active, they'd play Field Hockey, Tennis, or Softball. Your body is your temple, of course, but I wanted to be different. There's nothing better than running until your stress melts away. I relieved my stress in mystery and crime novels. I found a passion in finding the clues that were in between the lines and trying to figure out 'whodunit' before I read the ending or the detective figured it out.

After high school, I went to college at the Branford Hall Career Institute in Windsor, Connecticut. It seemed only too obvious to pursue a career in law enforcement. Because of the huge bills from college, and now living in my own apartment, I had to work three jobs in order to support myself. I was a Sales Clerk, Librarian, and an intern at the police station nearby. Money was hard to come by. But things looked up once I won my scholarship.

Out of college, the internship I had at the Windsor Police Department offered me a full time job there as a police officer. With my athletic condition, it was a breeze during on-foot chases. In the matter of six months, I was promoted to Assistant Chief – a prestigious position. I couldn't have asked for any bigger honor.

I also loved to travel. Once every year, I'd go off on vacation to someplace outside my region; some place new. I am planning on going to visit every beautiful town the Earth had to offer, but it may take a while. It's fun. I have a keychain and photo albums brimming with memories from every place I've been.

And I've always wanted to go to England.