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We ran to her and I checked to see if she had a pulse and if she was breathing. She was alright, but had a bruise on her head and was unconcious. I took her to the couch while Brett ran to check in Mary-Kate's room.

He ran back. "Mary-Kate's gone!" He said, worried.

Ashley started to wake up. "Wha..." she said disoriented. "Marc-Andre? Marc-Andre!" She said hugging me tightly. She was shaking and I asked her what happened?

"I don't know." She said, "It happened so fast. All I remember is hearing Mary-Kate scream. I went in her room and saw someone grabbing her. I tried to run back into my room but I was thrown against the wall. I must have been knocked out. Is Mary-Kate ok?" She looked at me with a scared look.

"She's not here." Brett said in a worried voice. "Who did this?"

"I don't know." She replied.

The phone started ringing all of a sudden, causing us all to jump. Brett ran and answered it.


"HELLO?!" I answered.

"I have your friend." A distorted voice said. "She's here with me now."

"WHO IS THIS?! WHAT HAVE YOU DONE WITH MARY-KATE?" I yelled into the receiver.

"Tsk tsk." The voice said calmly. "Careful how you speak to me, or your friend might get hurt."

I forced myself to calm down. "Ok, just please don't hurt her." I said, almost begging.
"It brings me joy to hear you like this." The voice taunted. "Would you like to speak to her?"

"Yes!" I said.

I heard him go over to Mary-Kate and take off her gag. She was crying. "Brett, please help me. I'm so scared..." Her gag was put back on.

It tore me up inside to hear her like that. "I'm coming Mary-Kate!" I yelled through the receiver, hoping she heard it.

"I'm willing to give you a chance to get her back, just because I'm such a nice guy." He mocked. "There is a message waiting for you under the pay phone outside the diner. Read it and follow it's instructions. If you have any police or military brought in on this, she dies. If you can do what the instructions say, you'll be one step closer to getting her back. If you can't, then she's mine forever!" *click*

I heard the line go dead. I slammed the phone back on the receiver and sat on the couch. I looked at Ashley who had tears in her eyes.

"Is she going to be ok?" She asked me in a shaky voice.

"I will not rest until Mary-Kate is back with us. I promise I will bring her home, or sie trying." I said looking into her eyes. She gave me a hug and then returned to Marc-Andre's arms. "We have six days left before we leave. No time to lose." I got up and ran towards the door.

"You stay here with Ashley and incase the phone rings again." I said to Marc-Andre as I put on my coat.

"But I want to help." Marc-Andre said to me. Ashley held onto his arm tightly and said "Don't go. I need you."

I looked at Marc-Andre. "You're needed more here. Besides," I said, my voice filling with rage, "this is my fight." I ran out the door to find my love.


I ran to the pay phone and sure enough the note was there. I unfolded the papaer with trembling fingers.

Hey moron,
Want your love?
Well come and find her.
Where the snow envelopes the mountains like a cold glove
and water flows as clear as glass, a crossing can be found...

-you know who

"Snow envelopes the mountains like a cold glove?" I puzzled to myself. "Water flows as clear as glass" I thought for a moment "THE RIVER!"

A car pulled over near me and a lady got out

"Excuse me Miss" I said grabbing the keys from her hand and leaping into the car "I'll return it here!" I said before speading off.

"HEY!" she yelled waving at me and coughing from the smoke of the exhaust.


I slowly eased the car to the side of the road. I'd gotten as far as a car could take me, to the bridge up the mountain a little. I was pretty sure it was the one in the note. Considering this was the only bridge around here "A crossing can be found. This has to be it!" I said getting out and looking around.

Just then I heard an evil laugh.

"Let go of me you creep" That was definitely Mary-Kate.

"Ryan? Come out and face me" I said trying to appeal to his pride.

"Come and find me" The voice returned.

"Brett!" Mary-Kate called.

Our voices echoed of the mountain peak and bounced back at us. Echoing over and over. Making everything all the more confusing.

I ran to the bridge and looked down. I decided it was best to get down there so I ran to the side and carefully lowered myself down to a lower concrete ledge. From there I lept onto the rock below.

"Ow" I breathed, wishing I'd worn shoes, but alas in my hurry I hadn't.

The evil laugh echoed around and I edged my back to the concrete and peared around the corner. That's when I first spotted him. Horizontally across from me he too was pearing round the corner.


"I'm coming"

I looked around for a way to cross the River as Ryan started descending down stream. He was urging Mary-kate to walk in front of him, holding something to her back. It glistened in the sun and with a sinking sensation I realised what it was...

Ryan had a gun!

Chapter 34

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