Authors: Amaris Marx
“It’s Daniel,” she said and Franz finally understood her expression.
“Are you sure?” he asked and she just nodded.
“We have to tell them,” she said and left the room. Franz followed and tried not to say anything. It bothered him that she had to see her own boyfriend was the kidnapper.
“I saw who the kidnapper is. I recognised him and I’m sure you’ll be able to find him,” Azalea said loud enough for the whole room to hear. Everyone’s attention was focused on the young teenager standing there, in the middle of the room with a now stoic expression.
“Who is he?” Lucas asked, he was dead set on finding the guy and beating him up. Azalea cringed and hesitated to tell him. After all Daniel was Lucas’ best friend. She took a deep breath and said:
“It’s Daniel. I saw him with Anny; he was getting rough with her and said she’s his. I’m very sorry Lucas. I wish it wasn’t true either.” Lucas paled and looked away. He couldn’t believe it, his best friend was the one who’d done it? Lucas was getting angry and wanted to hit something.
“You’re lying,” he seethed and charged at Azalea. He grabbed her shoulders and pushed her against the wall.
“You are lying. My best friend wouldn’t do that. He couldn’t do it. He was with you!” he shouted and Azalea cringed away.
“I’m sorry Lucas but I saw what I saw and I can assure you I’m not lying,” Azalea said and pushed Lucas away.
“And how did you see it? Are you some kind of a psychic? A witch?” Lucas asked and Azalea just shook her head.
“I’m neither. I’m a Banshee and since you’re Irish I’m sure you’ve heard of it.” Lucas laughed out loud obviously not believing it.
“I don’t believe you. You’re crazy and I’m disappointed in myself for even starting to fall in love with you,” Lucas snarled and left the room.
Azalea was left without words. Not only did Lucas yell at her, he also said he was falling in love with her. She could barely believe it. He always acted cocky and arrogant around her, saying he didn’t like her and was only around because of Anny. She took a deep breath and pushed those thoughts to the back of her mind, forgetting about them.
“We should find Anny and rescue her. We don’t have much time left,” Azalea said and everything else passed in a daze. The police officers made a plan and then divided themselves into three groups. Franz decided to stay behind because he was too old for this kind of action but Azalea joined the officers.
“You have to stay in the car. We cannot have you harmed in any way. You’re too valuable for us to lose you,” one of the officers said and left the car. Azalea watched from the inside of the car. The groups were armed and entered the house.
The house was quiet similar to the one Daniel actually lived in but it was already a bit destroyed. Something was bothering Azalea though. She saw Daniel with Anny and she was sure it was him there but she was still confused. She didn’t understand how Daniel could’ve kidnapped Anny while he was with Azalea. And how Daniel could be the one who’d killed Holland while living here, in Ireland.
‘Maybe he is working for someone or someone is working for him.’
A voice inside her head said and she actually considered it as an option.
After a while the police officers exited the house with Daniel cuffed and Anny on a stretcher. When Azalea saw them she left the car and ran towards Anny. Luckily she was awake and not harmed too much.
“I’m so happy you’re okay,” Azalea said to Anny and she smiled weakly.
“I’m okay because you rescued me. Thank you,” Anny said and Azalea shrugged.
“It’s my responsibility to keep people around here safe, especially my best friend.” Anny nodded and looked towards Daniel.
“It wasn’t him who kidnapped me. The man was older and looked like Daniel’s father, which is weird since Daniel only lived with his mom. I think Daniel was forced into this and the boss is his father,” Anny explained and Azalea nodded in understanding.
The paramedics put Anny into the ambulance and drove off while Azalea walked towards Daniel. Glaring at him she stopped right in front of him.
“How could you!” she seethed and he just shrugged.
“My father is the one who is actually at fault here. I’m just working for him and he let me have some fun with the girl. He is the one who plans all this stuff and he is the one who killed your sister,” Daniel said and Azalea just glared at him. Her stomach was rolling and nausea filled her. She was disgusted with him and with herself for actually falling at his act.
“I hate you!” she snarled and Daniel shrugged again. “Where’s your father?” she demanded and this time Daniel grinned.
“He left a day ago. He knew you’d find him and he can’t go to prison yet. He has some more business to do,” Daniel said and then the police officer pushed him in the car and drove off.
Azalea was for the second time today, left without words. A shiver ran through her body. A shiver of fear. She couldn’t believe that the real murderer was still free, that Holland’s murderer was still free.
“Azalea…” a voice woke her up from her daze. She looked up and saw a police officer.
“I’m fine,” she said knowing he was going to ask. “Let’s just go. I want to go to the hospital and see Anny.” The officer just nodded and they left.
Azalea arrived at the hospital where she saw Lucas and his parents talking to the police. She waited for them to finish before approaching them. Once the police finished the conversation and left she stepped closer to the family and caught Lucas’s gaze.
He quickly looked away but Anny’s parents noticed her.
“Azalea darling, we are so thankful for what you did,” Anny’s mom said and Azalea just smiled shyly.
“It was nothing. I had to help. After all she is my best friend,” Azalea said but Mrs. Sloane – Anny’s mom – shook her head.
“You did something while we just waited. That tells me something. I’m thankful for that.” Azalea just nodded and Mrs. Sloane pulled her into a hug.
“I should go. My grandfather must be worried. I’ll visit Anny tomorrow,” Azalea said stepping away from the hug. She waved and left.
Chapter Twenty-One – Apology
It’d been a week since the rescue and Azalea was getting tired. Every step she made out of the house, the reporters shoved their microphones in front of her. For the past week their driveway was full of reporters wanting to talk with Azalea. Somehow they’d found out about her gift and someone had told them what she did. That bothered Azalea. Franz told her that the Banshees were supposed to be a secret but now everyone in this town knew about their existence. Franz wasn’t happy about it because for some reason he was afraid that the news would spread and the whole world would know about the Banshees.
“Azalea, you missed a week of school. You are going to school today,” Franz said sternly and Azalea scowled.
“If you can get rid of those reporters, I’ll go to school,” Azalea bargained and Franz shook her head.
“The reporters are here because you couldn’t keep your mouth shut about it and you have to deal with it!” Franz said and passed her her school bag. “You’re going to school and that’s final.”
So Azalea went to school and had to deal with the reporters her whole way to the school. Since school was close enough for her to walk she had to. She tried to get rid of the reporters by running but it didn’t work. She only hoped that the school wouldn’t be full of reporters.
But luck wasn’t on her side that week. The second she stepped into the school, the kids were around her, congratulating her and asking her if she really was a Banshee. For Azalea, who wasn’t used to being the centre of attention, the whole thing was tiring, confusing and overwhelming.
Finally, Ruby showed up and dragged Azalea away from the crowd.
“Thank you. I felt like I was going to pass out with all the attention I was getting,” Azalea said and Ruby grinned.
“Yeah, you’re getting a lot of attention today. I guess being a Banshee has its perks,” Ruby said jokingly but Azalea just frowned.
“I hate this whole thing. I mean I like helping people but I can’t handle this attention,” Azalea said and Ruby looked at her strangely.
“You rescued Lucas’ sister. He is the most popular guy in this school. Banshee or not you would be getting this kind of attention. But what I don’t get is who told the press about your gift?” Ruby asked and Azalea just shrugged.
“I have no idea. I only told you, Anny and Lucas. Actually I was kind of forced to tell Lucas,” Azalea answered. Ruby nodded as they entered their homeroom.
“I heard that Daniel was the one who told the press. I’m also sorry about that. I always had a bad feeling about him but I never imagined this would be it. I mean who the hell helps his dad kidnap teenage girls?” Ruby said getting angry. “And to think he tortured Anny, who is by the way Daniel’s best friend’s sister,” she continued.
“You’re right and I’m sorry I didn’t listen to you when you told me not to date him. I really thought he liked me and I really started to like him back,” Ruby smiled and shook her head.
“We learn from our mistakes. I’m just glad he showed his real side early enough for you to get out of the relationship, because if he hadn’t you could’ve fallen in love and got hurt even more, than you have now,” Ruby said and Azalea agreed with a heavy heart.
“So have you visited Anny?” Ruby asked Azalea and she shook her head.
“The reporters were bugging me for the whole week. I wanted to visit her but I couldn’t. I wrote to her and texted though, explaining why I didn’t visit. I’ll probably stop at the hospital after school.”
“Do you need a ride? I’m going to see her too,” Ruby offered and Azalea nodded in agreement. They chatted a few more minutes before a shadow covered their table. Azalea looked up and saw Lucas. He was smiling a bit and it looked like he was a bit embarrassed about something.
“What?” Azalea snapped. She was still upset about the things he had said. Lucas’ ears turned a bit pink and he cleared his throat.
“I just wanted to apologize about what I said at the police station.” Azalea frowned and rolled her eyes.
“Why? You said what you wanted and you hurt me, isn’t that enough?” Lucas shook his head and sat on the chair next to her.
“I’m sorry about that, okay? I was just upset about the fact that it’d been four days since Anny went missing and no one had a clue about where she was. Also you just told me my best friend was the one behind all of this and that you’re a Banshee. It was too much information for me and I was really angry. I didn’t mean anything I said.”
“You didn’t mean anything? Not even the thing about falling in love with me?” Azalea asked and this time Lucas blushed even more.
“I did mean that…” he said embarrassed. This time Ruby burst in laughter. She was laughing so hard that the students at the neighbouring tables looked at her strangely.
– in love –
– with Azalea?” Ruby asked laughing. Lucas just blushed more and nodded. Then he looked back to Azalea and apologized again.
“It’s okay Lucas. Just don’t expect me to come falling at your feet just because of this. A week ago I realized my boyfriend was a kidnapper and it still hurts a lot. I forgive you and maybe if you try hard enough I’ll go on a date with you. Someday in the future,” Azalea said and Lucas nodded.
“Okay. I can go with that.” Lucas then looked at the table were his friends were sitting and frowned.
“I have to go back to my table. My friends want to talk to me,” he said and left.
“Well, that was strange,” Ruby said all calm now. Azalea just nodded and looked at Lucas.
“Do you think he meant it?” Azalea asked and Ruby looked confused.
“Meant what? The apology thing or the falling in love thing?”
“The latter,” Azalea said and Ruby shrugged.
“He always acted jealous around you and Daniel and I’ve never seen him blush before. So yeah, I’d say he meant it,” Ruby said.
Chapter Twenty-Two – Interview
After school Ruby and Azalea went to see Anny and were glad to see her recovering. Anny told them she’d start visiting the psychiatrist because of everything and she’d go back to school in two weeks’ time.
“So did my brother apologise for what he said?” the pretty blondie asked Azalea and Azalea nodded a small smile on her face.
“He did and I wonder why?” Azalea asked smugly and Anny giggled.
“Lucas told me what he did when I woke up and I admit I forced him to apologise to you. He was resisting a bit but when I told him that everything you said was true he finally realized how childish he was acting and agreed to apologise.” Ruby laughed and shook her head.
“Did you also tell him to confess his feelings to Azalea?” Anny looked confused at first but when she saw Azalea blush she finally understood.
“Ooh…” Anny said teasingly and Azalea blushed even more. She couldn’t help but be a bit embarrassed about it, especially when Anny said it like that.