Jeremy slowly turned the brass handle of the old door. He didn’t mind that it was dirtly, covered in dust and cobwebs. Surprisingly, the door gave way; creaking open. He maintained his pace, pushing it slowly. Soon enough, it was wide open, suitable for them to go through.
The scent that greeted him was familiar. It was strange. The whole house – parts that he’d been through smelled of dust and age. It was different here. The smell was feminine and it was hers. He looked around the room. His eyes slowly darting around it. She’d been kept here, she’d been in the room for days, but she was no where to be found.
His eyes caught a slender figure of a man. He was kneeling besides the window, his head bent. Who could that be? Jeremy mused, silently. Why wasn’t Purity here? What was happening? Without much ado, he hurried off to the unknown man, yanked him to himself and held him by the throat, trying to choke him. To his utmost surprise, it was Ernest.
“Where the f–k is she?” Jeremy roared, his eyes unreadable.
Ernest was taken aback when he felt a hand grab him roughly. He was unprepared to fight back. He let his cousin position his hands on his neck. That was what he wished for, he wanted death to take him away. He’d been so stupid, now she was never going to belong to him or his cousin. He displayed another act of stupidity by not even noticing the door creak and two people invaded his privacy; all because he had been absorbed in his thoughts. He was mourning his loss, his failure.
“Answer me!” Jeremy demanded, choking him.
Ernest had wanted to speak. It was impossible. Very strong hands blocked the easy flow of words in him. He remained mute, bearing the pains as his punishment for being stupid.
“Let him go,” he heard another voice order. He shifted his gaze. That was the man he had met the night he cleared the room for Purity. He had also been fooled by him – all the more reason he wished to die.
“Let him go,” Darren instructed a second time. He held out his gun and pointed it at Ernest. “He can’t speak when he’s about to be strangled. And you have no right to take a life. I can handle this.”
The anger burned more fiercly within Jeremy as he listened to Darren’s lecture. Resignedly, he removed his hands from Ernest’s throat. Darren was right. “Good thing he saved you from my wrath!” he grunted.
“I….think….. I deserved that,” Ernest responded amidst coughing gasping for air.
“Hold it!” Darren commanded, just in time to stop Jeremy from putting a punch on Ernest’s mouth. “I got this.”
“How did you find me?” Ernest questioned, unafraid.
“You should be worried about what’s gonna happen to you and not that,” Darren replied.
Ernest tittered, “I don’t care about that anyway. She’s gone.”
David sighed. Dealing with the new version of Tricia Cayson was of more importance to him. That was his promise to his late wife. “I was busy before you came in. We can talk about that later,” he spoke his mind, rejecting the offer to get busy to work.
“I beg to disagree sir,” came Allan’s voice, cutting Detective Myles off, “It does affect me personally and I need immediate action.”
“Who are you?” David demanded. He was already irritated.
“Allan. Doctor Allan,” he boldly answered, smiling.
Tricia froze on hearing that name. A million and one thoughts ran across her mind. He had come to report Purity’s case to the cops? Does he have any evidence implicating her and Ernest? Oh, no! Not in the presence of her papa. He’d lose his trust, more of it in her. He’d be disappointed in her. He’d resnt her, never love her or care for her. She had brought disgrace to him and she’d be all alone in the world.
“What can I do for you, Dr. Allan?” David asked.
Allan and Myles fully entered the room.
“This is a private investigation,” Myles informed Supt David. “Do you mind if you do this alone?”
David shook his head. He wasn’t gonna let Tricia out of his sight. Its time she started taking her profession seriously – just as he does. “Nope. Let me do some introductions,” he swiftly turned Tricia to face the men. “This is my daughter, Tricia Cayson. Tricia, meet Myles, another superintendent and a man with an urgent case – Dr. Allan.”
Tricia’s entire body quivered under the gaze of the doctor. She was short of words. Didn’t know what to say to him. She hadn’t yet cooked up a device on how to deal with him, she was facing him again. She s—-d at unplanned visits. She nodded mechanically, in replacement of her not-to-be-found-words.
Allan smiled silly. “Nice to meet you, again.”
Myles had no idea what was happening.
“You two know eachother?” David enquired.