I couldn’t breathe as my phone powered up and her name flashed on my screen. I’m sorry. I will always love you. I quickly dialed, but it went straight to her voicemail. A car was waiting for me as I exited the airport. I handed my bags to the driver and jumped in the back.
“Where to, sir?” he asked, sliding into the driver’s seat. I gave him the address.
Panic rose as I called the security company and confirmed that Wade had been at the house and they had already informed the police.
“Why didn’t you intercept him?” I screamed into the phone. I hung up. I didn’t have time to listen to their excuses. They would feel my wrath later. I called a friend on the police force, Xavier. “Xavier, it’s Dillon. Do you have any information on Wade and Josilyn yet?” I asked, putting him on speaker.
“I am working on it, Dillon. Give me time. I’ll meet you at your house.”
Twenty minutes later, I was on my front porch pacing. Caleb had called into work and was on the phone with basically everyone he knew trying to spread the word.
“We’ve tracked the car,” Xavier shouted as he approached the house. “She’s about an hour away in an abandoned warehouse district.”
“Great, let’s get moving,” I demanded.
“Dillon, I think you should wait here,” Xavier said. “We don’t know his intentions, and you may not like what you find.”
I walked up and glared into his eyes. “I’m either going with you or on my own, but I’m going.”
He put his hands up in surrender. “Okay. Get in, but please let us handle this.”
It was the longest hour of my life. I couldn’t imagine the things he was probably doing to her. “Can we drive any faster?” I growled.
“We are driving as fast as we can in these conditions,” Xavier said with a growl.
The rain was pouring, and I couldn’t help but feel sadness seeping into me. Was someone trying to tell me she was already gone? No, I knew better. She was a fighter. She wouldn’t go easy, which meant we had at least a little time We finally entered a cluster of buildings, but we had to wait for the dogs to locate the right one. I paced, waiting to hear from the other officers. On my third lap around the cars, I could hear the barking, and we all moved. Slowly, we crept into the building, listening for signs of life.
“You bitch,” we heard being yelled from overhead. My heart stopped in those three seconds as we breached the door. What was I walking into? Would she be alive? Could she be dying? I wasn’t ready to give her up yet.
My world slowed as we walked in on the scene. The rain pounded on the windowpanes that were still intact and flowed through the ones that weren’t. The dogs Xavier had brought had caught her scent quickly. I was sure he could hear their barks echoing throughout the building and he knew we were closing in. My heart raced, and my blood boiled. “I need her to be okay,” I said, looking up into the sky. If anything happened to her, I knew I would spiral out of control. She was my light in the darkness. Of course, I knew I deserved the darkness that my soul held tightly to, but the light she filled me with was so sweet. Xavier held my arm as we walked into the room. found the bastard holding her seemingly lifeless body to his side with a knife pressed to her neck. I tried to reign in the anger bubbling inside me. I wanted him dead and her back in my arms for even just one more moment. He was surrounded, but the look in his eyes told me he had no intention of going quietly.
“Mr. Courtney, we are only going to ask once,” the deputy beside me yelled.
“Release her and put your hands up.”
I knew he wouldn’t. He planned to kill her, and I wouldn’t let that happen.
“Fat chance,” Wade called, looking around to all of us. His eyes brimmed with rage as he looked directly at me.
“You’re him, aren’t you?” he said, moving the knife to point at me.
I didn’t respond.
“How’s it feel to know she never truly loved you? I killed the love in her some time ago.” He began sliding the knife across her belly. “She’s a dark one, this one. I’m doing you a favor right now. You’d never be able to satisfy the beast that lives inside her.”
A deputy to my right called for his attention, and slowly I moved to the side and into the shadows. I could hear the officers mumble but blocked them out. She was my only focus. I crept along, my body burning with anger and fear, something I didn’t like feeling. Flashes of my childhood stopped me for a moment.
“Do you think you’re so tough because you almost killed someone?” an older boy said, walking me into a corner. “You’re nothing but a little bitch, and I plan on showing everyone.”
I blinked, regaining control. It had been a long road, but I had learned to control my emotions over time, at least until she came in my life. She’d turned my world upside down, and I wasn’t about to lose her. I stalked around, minding my footsteps so as to not draw attention to myself. I’d perfected this art. One had to learn to be invisible or stand above the rest in jail. Thankfully, the deputies kept him talking, and he never saw me coming. In a flash, I ran up behind him, slid my hand under his blade, and pulled Josilyn to me. One of the deputies fired, hitting him in the shoulder. The sounded echoed off the walls.
I pulled her to my chest and held her as I sunk to the floor. The dogs barked and snapped at Wade lying on the floor close by, but I didn’t care. A breath I didn’t know I had been holding released as I heard her shallow breaths. My love was alive and fighting for her life.
“I’m here, Josilyn. Come back to me, love. I need you,” I whispered, kissing her forehead. I held her tight. I was never going to let her go.
The Burdened Souls Series Book 1
Josliyn Michael moved back to New Orleans after a horrific attack at the hands of her husband. She didn’t come looking for love, just a fresh start with old friends.
Dillon has a past he isn’t sure he can overcome and a lifestyle he wasn’t ready to give up. When Josilyn was thrust into his arms, everything changed for them both.
The attraction was undeniable and they questioned if love was possible. Can Josilyn overcome her fear and release her demons to give love a chance? Can Dillon overcome his past and leave a life behind, or will the past destroy his future? Can love heal their burdened souls?
Hi all, I'm Jessi Mcpherson. I live in a small town in Iowa right on the banks of The Mighty Mississippi. I started writing when I was about 10 years old. Almost every girl has a journal but I not only had fun stories of the day but poems and short stories that popped in my head. I love fantasy and romance novels and read almost daily. I like to find my inspiration in everyday life. That's one of my goals is to find one thing every day that inspires me. I grew up an army brats so I have traveled to a few places over the years. I have two amazing children and a very amazing husband. They thankfully put up with crazy work schedules because being a mom and a writer isn't enough but I am also the general manager of Sidelines Sports bar in my home town. No matter how busy I find time for it all. I do hope you enjoy my books and I look forward to writing more.