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Friday, January 17, 2014

HIGHWAY 29- FAIRIES



 
“ Mom, do fairies exist” , Bia asked, stuffing her books into her bag, she was getting late for school and the only bus that came near her house to take her to the city was due to arrive in 5 minutes. She had asked her mom time and again to get her a bicycle, so that she could go to school on it.
“ None that I know of, but I do know that you will miss the bus if you don’t get leave now”, said Laura looking at her daughter.
“ Aw mom, please get me a bicycle, please please pretty please”, Bia pleaded looking expectantly at her mom.
“ Bia I’ll think about it , you are getting late for school, hurry up”
Bia rushed out of her house. The bus was standing 5 meters from her gate. She ran and boarded the bus. Her house was located on the highway and the school was at the town square and the only mode of transport from her house to the school was this bus. She had to be on time everyday to catch the bus, because if she missed it the next bus would come after 2 hours and she would be late for school. This bus dropped her at school an hour before her school started. She used to hate sitting at the school gate with no one other than the school watchman to speak to. That is why she wanted the bicycle, so that she could go to school on her own terms. She was  really irritated with the fact that her mom was still not ready to give her a bicycle. After all she was 9 years old now. It was about time mom stopped being so worried about her. But then worry came naturally to mom. She worked with the police force and she sees all kinds of crimes and accidents happening everyday, so it was natural that her mom would not want Bia to be riding a bicycle to school, not when the travel to school required her to ride on the highway. Highway 29 which was notorious for accidents and kidnappings. But then again even Naomi came to school on a bicycle, and she lived 2 blocks down their house. She could go with Naomi. The police force has made mom a worry bug, Bia frowned.
Laura was still thinking about her daughter’s demand when the phone rung.
“ Hello, Laura, leave whatever you are doing and rush to the station”, Commissioner Rowland McHenry said from the other end, there was an urgency in his voice.
“ What’s happened Rowland, what’s the urgency”, Laura asked trying to sound normal. She knew commissioner McHenry never sounded that urgent unless there was areal emergency.
“ The girl , Beth , ya the same one who was kidnapped last week, well Patrick found her body lying by the highway”
“ I will be there”, Laura said , she rushed to her car,
On the way to the station all kinds of thoughts went through her mind. The girl Beth Minnows was from Bia’s school. She was 4 years elder to Bia. Laura had been worrying about Bia since the time Beth was kidnapped. She had been kidnapped on her way back home. Beth travelled with Bia on the same bus, but had missed the bus that day and decided to hitch a ride home. That turned out to be her last ride ever. That was one of the reasons she was not ready to give Bia a bicycle. Never on the highway.
She rushed into to the commissioner’s office. Rowland McHenry was looking very grave and serious and reading some papers in front of him. He looked at Laura, motioned her to sit down.
“ Well, Patrick was on routine patrol this morning when he found the body, they tied her up, slit her wrists and let her bleed to death there”, he said still looking at the papers.
“ Any leads”, Laura asked
“ Not that I know of, but I have asked Patrick to come down so that we could get more details”
“ Poor girl, poor poor girl”, was all Laura could say, her daughter’s safety was of prime importance to her now.
Inspector Patrick walked into the room
“ Sir I found a laundry bill, lying near the body, so I went and checked with the laundry about it, that bill belongs to a Mr Newton Laurence”
“ Have you questioned him”, Rowland asked
“ Yes, he was partying with his friends last night and all four of them have vouched for him”
“ any ways keep an eye on him”
Bia ran out of her school gate. She had football practice today so she got a bit late. She did not want to miss her bus home, that would mean she would have to wait for two more hours before she could get the next bus. She saw the bus leave just as she managed to reach the stop. No Bia frowned.  She saw Naomi happily cycling away. She called her.
“ Any new leads”, Laura asked going through the files of the case. She saw that Patrick had just got a call on his desk and looked startled.
“ No leads, another kidnapping”, he said
“ Where” Laura asked looking alarmed
“ On highway 29, we have a witness who says he saw four men forcing two girls into a car and driving away”
“ I need to see the witness”
“ He’s sitting inside the station on the highway, we are going there now”, Patrick said putting his gun into the hostler.
Laura and Patrick got into the car, switched on the siren and drove towards the Highway patrol Station.
Bia couldn’t believe what had just happened. She had asked Naomi for a ride home. They were cycling peacefully chatting about school, and friends when the car had stopped suddenly in front of them. Four men had walked out of the car, pushed them off the cycle and forced them into the car. Naomi tried to shout, but the men had covered their mouths with cloth. Bia did not know what to do. She had just gone numb seeing the men. Nothing seemed to come out of her mouth. Thoughts of what mom had said started going through her head. Now she could understand why her mom did not want her to cycle home. I will never ask for a cycle, please god get us out of this mess, Bia prayed.
“ I was up on the tree”, Tom said looking at Patrick.
“ What were you doing up there” Patrick asked .
“ Well I sit up on trees by the highway and count the cars coming and going by the highway, it’s a hobby”
“ What did you see”, Laura asked
“ I told you, I saw two girls on a bicycle, one looked about 10 years old and the one riding the bicycle looked a bit older, suddenly a car came up from behind them and stopped , four men got out and pushed the girls into the car”, Tom said looking irritated.
“ Where is the bicycle”, Laura asked the Beat constable who had first questioned Tom.
He led Laura to the room where the bicycle had been kept, Laura had one look at the bicycle and she knew who it belonged to. Naomi NO she mouthed. She reached for he cell and dialed home to check on Bia, the phone was ringing and there was no answer. Bia never got home so late she thought. She was really alarmed now. She rushed outside. Patrick was still questioning the witness. She told Patrick that the bike belonged to Naomi and that she was worried about Bia. Patrick looked at her with genuine concern in his eyes.
“ We do have a lead here, he says Tom here knows one of the guys. He stays in the old farmhouse by the hill”.
Bia couldn’t see a thing. She knew Naomi was in the same room with her. She could hear her sobbing. This place was like some kind of cellar. She could hear muffled voices coming from the room above, but nothing that she could make sense of. The door opened, and two men stepped in.
“ This one, she’s the rich man’s daughter”, one of them said pointing at Naomi.
“ Cut a lock of her hair and send it to her parents”, the other man said.
“ What do we do with the other one”
“ Her mother is a Police woman  kill her”
Tears welled up Bia’s eyes. She felt scared , lonely. She wanted her mom. Please god save me. Bia thought about the conversation she had with her friend Jennifer the other day. Jennifer had told her that she has a fairy godmother who leaves gifts under her bed every Sunday and asked her what her fairy godmother left for her. Bia had told that she did not have a fairy godmother. Jennifer had laughed and said that all little girls had a fairy godmother, that’s what her mom had told her. Oh she so wished se had a fairy godmother who could come and save her now. Bia started crying. She missed her fairy godmother badly.
The man walked towards Bia, he now had a gun in his hands.
“ you know what I am going to do to you, I am going to put this gun into your ear and shoot, that way you will be able to hear the bullet moving into that head of yours, and it will teach your mom not to be to nosy in our affairs”, he said laughing menacingly. 
Bia sobbed, the man fired, the bullet whizzing past her ears. She wanted to shout, to cry out , but she could not. Both of them laughed and walked out of the room. They shut the door behind them. Bia heard another gunshot. Which other girl have they kept upstairs she thought. The doorknob turned and the door opened. Bia closed her eyes. She knew the man had come in again to shoot her. She prayed , prayed real hard that he should not see her. She prayed to god to make her invisible. A hand gripped her head, Bia went numb, she could not hear anything. She was being pulled into the darkness, there were faint noises coming from somewhere. Bia, she heard the voice clearly this time. She opened her eyes. As sense of relief flooded her face.
“Mom”, she said at last.
Laura had rushed to the farmhouse along with a team of four officers. She knew her daughter was in trouble, she had not thought about any search warrants, Patrick had agreed to back her in case they were wrong. They had just reached the gate when they heard the gunshot. She had rushed in blindly and confronted the five. Thankfully Patrick was close at her heels. He had managed to shoot at the one with the gun. The rest had knives and had surrendered looking at the police team surrounding them.
Bia slept in her mom’s room. She refused to let go off her since the time she was rescued. She looked at her mom sleeping next to her. She felt safe, very secure here. She knew nobody could touch her as long as mom was around.
Yes I do have a Fairy godmother Bia thought, I call her Mom.


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