I spend a day at Morton Plant Hospital, which is part of the greater Bay Care Health System.
People send me notes and flowers, thanking me for nailing the shooter. But instead of being proud of myself, I still feel guilty for failing to watch Timmy more carefully, which allowed him to be lured away. I need to apologize to Tracy for my momentary lapse in care. Actually, I’m not even sure what to say to her, except this: I can’t find an excuse for myself and can’t expect her forgiveness.
Michael comes in, sits by my bedside, and starts reading poetry to me. Boy, this feels so good.
I talk little, just smile at him from time to time, wondering what I would say if he asks me about my promise, the promise I made to share my closely-held secret with him when he arrives in town. Now that I’ve lost my baby, that secret amounts to a moot point. I’d rather bury it deep inside.
But Michael doesn’t ask. Perhaps he’s waiting for me to mention it. Or else, he already knows.
Just a couple of weeks ago—which at present, seems far away—I was too stirred up by that fever of mine, that excitement, which had been caused by my impulsive move to Clearwater. At the time, I figured I might stay here even longer than the end of winter break.
Far from UCI Campus, free from the pressure of exams, and away from everyone I knew, I thought I could make a life for myself. I could start healing. Back then, the remedy seemed simple: all I had to do was distance myself from those closest to me, so I could set aside my previous experiences. My rape. My coma.
Now, I find myself seeking a cure from that remedy.
Where do I go from here?
(Volume II of Ash Suspense Thrillers with a Dash of Romance)
The last thing Ash expects when she lands in Clearwater, Florida is to be stalked by a troubled teenager. If that's not bad enough, she is caught in a shooting spree next to the nearby elementary school. The cops think it’s an attempt at mass killing, but Ash wonders if the only victim was specifically targeted by the killer. Will she manage to identify him and have him arrested before he comes after her?