Chapter Thirty (Part Two)

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"You're doing great, Hadley," said Detective Rosas as she placed a hand on my shoulder. "We're almost done for the night."

I winced. Sharp pains exploded through my body.

"Sorry," she apologized removing her hand quickly.

She grabbed a pen from the pocket-sized spiral notebook in her hand.

"Tell me your last memory one more time," she said in a calm voice.

I closed my eyes. Trying to keep my hands from quaking, I clenched the thin sheet covering my body. "I heard shouting. Pops and Caden were screaming at each other. I ran to the top of the stairs, I wanted to see what was happening, but I got dizzy. I tried to reach for the hand rail and that's the last thing I remember."

Dr. Sheeley knocked on the door before sticking his head in. "Detective, she needs rest. You have two more minutes."

Detective Rosas shifted her weight and drummed the pen against the notebook. "Hadley, you've been through a lot. I want you to know that you're safe. We have officers posted outside your door and police are looking for Caden right now. I'll be back to visit you in the morning and we'll have our sketch artist stop by tomorrow as well."

My eyelids felt like five-ton granite boulders and holding them open soon became impossible. As I faded into oblivion, Caden's face flashed through my mind, plunging my subconscious into nightmares.


"I think she's awake," someone whispered.

"Shhhhh! You don't want to wake her," another person replied in a hushed voice.

Slowly opening my eyes, I took in the strange surroundings before my eyes landed on two familiar faces.

"Mom? Dad?" I croaked.

Tears filled my mother's eyes as she jumped to her feet. "Oh, Hadley!" She wrapped her arms around me, squeezing a little too hard.

I inhaled sharply, causing my mother to immediately release my upper body.

"I'm so sorry! I didn't mean to hurt you!"

Tears streamed down my face. "I missed you both so much!"

My father embraced me in a gentle hug. "Had Bear! We knew you would come back to us!"

My mother wiped the continuous stream of tears falling from her eyes. "We will never let anyone hurt you ever again. I promise!"

Caden's face flashed through my mind, causing me to flinch.

"Are you in pain?" asked my mother. "Should I call the doctor and get you pain medication?"

I shook my head. "It's okay."

"Detective Rosas asked us to give her a call once you woke up," said my father. "But we wanted you to rest. The doctor won't tell us what he treated you for, but he said you had surgery last night."

"I fell down the stairs," I admitted quietly, afraid to share more information.

My father wiped away a stray tear before it could roll down his cheek.

Averting my glaze, I chewed on my lip nervously.

Knock, knock, knock.

Dr. Sheeley entered the room. "Good morning." He smiled as he made eye contact with my mother and father.

My mother smiled back. "Thank you for taking care of our daughter!"

"Your welcome, Ma'am." He tucked a clipboard under his left arm. Turning his attention toward me, he studied my face.

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