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Authors: Shelia Chapman

Blood of the Rainbow (12 page)

BOOK: Blood of the Rainbow
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Sara knew differently. It was written in Jared’s diary, how he felt about this mystery girl, and it wasn’t her.

“I would like to
I’m the girl in his dreams, but what if I’m not? What if I’m keeping him from what he deserves? All I want is for him to be happy, even if that means he’s with somebody else.”

“Sara, you’re far too noble. If I was Jared, and you looked at me the way you look at him, I wouldn’t waste
time on dreams. I’d hang on to what’s in front of me. Something that’s
. I think I know Jared well enough to say, he feels the same.”

“It doesn’t matter anyway. He’ll probably never want to see me again.”

“My God Sara! What did you do? Try to castrate him?”

Sara smiled. “No. I guess I’m just the wrong girl asking the wrong questions.” She stood to leave.

Steve stood. “Wait a minute… I thought you were gonna chill with me till Luce got home.”

Sara sighed. “No offence Steve, but I need to be alone. I think I might go for a drive or something.”

Oh no! Oh shit! Think of something fast. Stop her!
“Hang on Sara! Did you and Jared have a fight?”
That’s good Steve. Keep her talking. Maybe she’ll change her mind.

“No, we didn’t have a fight. I could have handled that. Silence is what I can’t stand. I’ll see you later. Could you do me a favor? Would you tell Lucy I may not be back, but I’ll call her later and let her know I’m all right?”

Steve’s eyes widened. Even without meaning to, it seemed as if he’d said too much.
Oh shit! I can’t let her leave like this!
“You’re not leaving Shreveport, are you? You just got here! What about Raging Storm? It won’t be the same without you!”

Tears were starting to glaze Sara’s eyes at the thought of leaving. “Yeah, I know, and I was really starting to like it here. I can’t stay, not knowing my being here is going to mess things up for Jared. Will you tell her for me?”

Steve looked worried but smiled at her. “Sure thing Sara, but what happens if Jared wants to know where you are. What do I tell him?”
He’s going to kill me!

“Just tell him I finished reading his book and he needs to keep looking.”

Steve was confused. “Huh?”

“Just tell him - he’ll know what I mean.”

Steve stared at Sara’s back as he watched her leave. “Oh man!” he mused. “What am I going to do? If anything happens to her it’s going to be my fault, and Jared is literally going to kill me!”


Sara walked back across the street, got in her car and turned on some music. She turned it up loud, so it would drown out the voice yelling in her head.

This is a mistake Sara. Your biggest one yet!

Sara knew the voice was just her weakened will. Walking away from Jared was going to be hard, but she had to do it, for his sake and not her own.

As she pulled out of the drive, Sara didn’t know where she was going. She just felt as if she needed to go somewhere. She had to put some distance between her and Jared. She didn’t want to hurt him
stand in his way.

“How am I going to deal with this?” she mused.  The voice in her head got louder, so she turned her music up louder still. She stamped on the accelerator and headed away from Shreveport.


Sara had driven for a couple of hours, not actually paying attention to where she was. She should have paid more attention to detail; if she had, she would have realized her car was running low on gas. That little mistake was taken care of when the car started cutting out up one of the steep hills. By pumping the accelerator, she managed to convince her car to make it up the hill, and onto the shoulder.

Dreadfully, she looked down at the gas gauge, and immediately remembered she hadn’t filled-up since she moved in with Lucy, three days ago. Sara hadn’t driven anywhere, so she didn’t need to. When she left Shreveport, refueling her car or doing something sensible, like making sure she had some bottled water, hadn’t crossed her mind.

“Well this is nice,” she mused. “Sara, you’re so irresponsible, cars won’t go without gas.” She felt stupid now. She was a failure, even at letting go. Sara couldn’t even run away properly. At least she’d remembered to bring her cell. She switched it back on. Sara had turned it off when she left. She didn’t want anybody, especially Jared, calling her, until she was far enough away that she couldn’t be followed.

“No signal,” she mused. “Ok - a bad situation just got worse!”


Chapter 5

Sara opened the door to her air-conditioned Crown Victoria, and blazing hot, humid air hit her in the face. She darned near crawled back in the car where it was refreshing; outside, it must have been at least ninety degrees. Sara got out, leaning her back against the car, moving her cell about – no signal. She walked a few feet around and away from the car – no signal. Panic started to creep up the back of her throat. She took several deep breaths, calming her nerves, so she could think this through logically.

“Great,” she mused. “Now I’m starting to sound like Mr. Spock. No, I’m not,” she argued. “If I were, I wouldn’t be in this predicament in the first place. Calm down Sara.” She knew if she panicked, she wouldn’t be able to think straight. She would do something irresponsible – like running off by herself without making sure her car had enough gas! “Note to self,” she said. “In future, when running away from love – make sure the car

“Ok, ok – think Sara! What are your choices?”

After a few seconds of inner-debate, Sara reasoned she had three choices. One - she could keep walking around and hope the cell picked up a signal.

Two - she could sit in the car until someone came along, but since she hadn’t seen a car in over half an hour, that option didn’t look particularly promising.

Three - she could get out and start walking until she found a store or a house where she could use the phone.

Sara had heard of stories, where the girls or women knocked on doors for help, and got raped or killed. Even still, this option sounded safer than the other two. If she were lucky, she would find a gas station where she could call someone. “But who do I call?”

Of course, the first person she thought about was Jared, but she couldn’t call him. Jared was the person she was running from. Even if, he still wanted to see her, he would probably be mad at her. Sara fought stinging tears, sighed deeply, and pushed that possibility aside. Sara thought about calling Lucy. She might be upset, but Sara could deal with that, or she could call Steve. He might call her stupid, but at least he wouldn’t look at her with accusing eyes. One thing was for certain, standing around wasn’t getting anything done; Sara needed to do something, or she was going to fry in this heat.

“Boy, I picked a nice day for a hike – not!” she mused. “I wish I’d thought to at
bring some bottled water with me.” Sara also wished she’d worn different clothes. At least her jeans and T-shirt would have protected her from sunburn. Her halter set wasn’t going to do that. “Then again, I wish I’d remembered to - no,” she mused. “I won’t beat myself up anymore. I can’t change it now. Now is the time to act, not for panic and regrets!”

Sara wrote a note and wedged it under her windshield wiper, telling whoever might come looking for her, which direction she went. She shielded her eyes with her arm, glanced up at the sun, and then put on her sunshades. At least she had those. They stayed in her glove compartment.

It was still a long time until dark; so hopefully, Sara would find some place before then. Surely, there had to be some kind of populated community out here somewhere. She started walking. “I’m glad I wore my sneakers this morning. Sandals or knee-boots would have been disastrous!”


An hour later, Sara was still walking, and to be honest, she hadn’t tried to flag
down. Every time she heard a car or something coming, Sara thought about stopping them, but fear ruled out, and she’d hid in the edge of the trees until it passed. Then she’d start walking again.

Sweat was dripping down the sides of her temples and under her hair at the base of her neck. She stopped and rummaged through her purse, finding a hair tie. Using it, she piled her hair high on top of her head. Sara didn’t have a mirror, so she had no way of knowing just how straight it was. She honestly didn’t care. At least the breeze could blow on her neck now – that helped.
it blew, there was hardly any at all.

Sara walked, for perhaps another quarter of a mile or so, and sat on the cool grass under a huge oak. It felt good to relax. Her feet were aching from the hot, hard asphalt shoulder. Sara reasoned it must have been at least ninety degrees, and with the humidity factor and the heat rising off the road, it made it another five degrees above that.

Her throat was parched, and her lips were getting dry. She licked them to try and keep them from cracking. Then Sara remembered her Carmex – it wasn’t in her purse. She’d already tried some bubblegum flavored lip gloss, but all it had done was dry up and leave her lips sticky, which made her even thirstier.

It was way past lunch. Sara’s stomach growled reminding her, she hadn’t brought anything to eat or drink. “That sandwich didn’t last long. Man, what I wouldn’t give for an ice cream sundae right now,” she mused. Regardless of how hungry she was, Sara probably would have bathed in the ice cream, rather than eat it. She rested a few more minutes, and started walking again. Sara had decided to try to get a signal on her cell as soon as she reached the top of the steep hill she’d been climbing.

About halfway up the hill, Sara felt her cell vibrate against her left hip. She breathed a sigh of relief.
She reached for it and stopped. “Oh God! What if it’s him?”

 Sara knew Jared would be mad. Why shouldn’t he be? Maybe it was Lucy or Steve, or even her mother. Sara would rather have talked to
of them, than Jared. She hoped for someone else, but Sara’s gut feeling screamed it was Jared. She squeezed her eyes shut, and held her cell where she could see the name on the screen through a tiny crack. Her fears were confirmed. It was him. She swallowed hard, put on a plastic smile and tried to sound cheerful – not out of breath, as she was.

“Hi Jared.”

Where in the hell are you? Sara! I’ve been trying to call you for over an hour

Sara was right. He was seething. She looked around, but nothing was familiar. “I don’t know Jared. Does it really matter where I am?” she countered.

Jared softened his voice, but only slightly. “
What do you mean, does it matter? Of course, it matters.

Sara reasoned it was his professional way of negotiating with a crazy person. “Jared I….”

You’re off on your own, in a strange place, in this heat. Do you have any water with you?
” he interjected.

Her voice was timid. “No….”

” He was yelling again.

Sara started to cry. Even with all her doubt, she’d come back to life at the sound of his voice. Jared was seething mad at her, but still, Sara took comfort that he was this close – on the other end of the line.

What were you thinking Sara? Are you trying to drive me crazy?
If anything had happened to you….

Now Sara felt guilty. She hadn’t thought about how her leaving would affect Jared. She thought about how noble she was to walk away. “No, I….”

Of all the incredibly irresponsible things you could do. Sara, it’s ninety degrees in the shade. You’ll dehydrate or have a heat stroke – whichever comes first. I’m at your car – again!
” He was starting to sound exasperated and scared too. “
Where are you?


Yes, I found your note, and I’ve gone all the way to the next town, which is eighteen miles away. There was no sign of you.

Sara laughed sarcastically.

Jared groaned. “
I fail to see what you find funny. Sara, you could die out here. What if somebody had stopped and - never mind, I don’t even want to think of that. I’m coming to get you. Where are you?

Tears were streaming down Sara’s face. Although well deserved, Jared’s anger hurt her more than she wanted it to. Yes, she was stupid. Yes, she should have made better arrangements. But right now, she would have thought Jared would have been more interested in finding her and getting her to safety than lecturing her. Sara already knew she’d messed up. Did he need to rub salt in the wounds? “I don’t know!” she cried.

Jared sighed deeply. “
All right. Don’t cry. You’ll only dehydrate yourself more. Calm down and I’ll try to calm down myself. I just can’t believe you’re doing this to me – to us – after everything I’ve told you. Did you walk in the direction you said?

“Yes,” Sara sniffed.

All right. How long have you been walking?

“I don’t know - an hour - maybe two.”

And you walked in - that’s not possible Sara! Unless you’ve made yourself invisible, I should have seen you.

“That would be my fault. I was too chicken to stay on the side of the road. When I heard something coming, I hid in the trees.”

Jared laughed. “
Sara, you silly girl. Do you have anything in your purse you can tie on a tree? A ribbon, a scarf – anything?

“Um, I don’t know – hang on, I’ll look.” She searched through her purse. “No, I don’t.”

He held his hand over the microphone and sighed. “Aargh!” Jared groaned. “Women carry the damn house in their purses, and this would be the one time mine doesn’t have anything!” He closed his eyes and took a deep calming breath.

Sara, are you wearing a bra?

“What?” she gasped.

Are you wearing a bra?
” he repeated, his voice steady, enunciating each word, he was serious.

“No – what’s that got to do with it?” She couldn’t believe he was asking such a stupid question.

BOOK: Blood of the Rainbow
2.75Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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