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Authors: Victor Methos

Run Away (6 page)

BOOK: Run Away
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Tate Reynolds sat in the RV
in a grocery store parking lot, smoking a cigarette laced with angel dust. Much better than anything else he’d ever taken, it gave him confidence, energy, and power—things he constantly craved.

and the third man, an emaciated guy everyone called Sticks, were inside the grocery store. Tate had told them to get sandwiches and chips, but he knew they would come back with mostly beer. They were still kids, young punks just drifting around until they got pinched again. Hiapo had done a good stretch of three to ten before, but Sticks had only spent a week inside here and there. That made Tate nervous. He’d been in just long enough to be scared but not used to being inside. Sticks might flip if the cops applied pressure.

RV door opened, and Hiapo waddled in and laid a sack on the kitchen counter. The RV, as a whole, was the nicest vehicle Tate had ever been in. This Richard really didn’t fuck around when it came to spending cash.

“Did you get sandwiches?” Tate

“A few. You want
a beer?”

“No, I don’t want a beer
, dumbass. If I wanted beer, I would have told you to get beer. I wanted sandwiches.”

“Calm down
. I got you a sandwich.”

handed him a foot-long sub. Tate unwrapped the Saran wrap and took a bite. The bread was stale, and the mayonnaise, warm. But he’d had far worse.

“There she is,”
Hiapo said.

Tate looked up to see a woman in spandex
pants and a tank top walk out of the grocery store. The muscles in her arms and chest were visible, but her boobs were huge, clearly fake. Her blond hair was bright, almost platinum, and her nails were painted black.

“Holy shit,” Sticks said. “She’s fucking hot.”

Tate took another bite of the sandwich. “Shit,” he mumbled.

“You sure we
gotta do this?” Hiapo asked.

“What? She gives you a woody and you can’t off her now?”

“Nah, I mean, woman like that. Ya know. Husband might pay more than we’re gettin’ to get her back. Ya know.”

Tate placed the sandwich down and picked up his cigarette. “That idea
ain’t total shit. But I bet some people might pay more for a piece of ass like that.” He pulled out his cell phone and dialed a man named Lee.

Yo,” Lee said. “What’s up, brother?”

Chillin’. Hey, you still know Marvin up there in the docks?”

“Yeah, why?”

“He still into girls?”


“Yeah, dipshit. He still buyin’ girls?”

“Shit, I don’t know. I
ain’t seen him for a minute.”

“Do me a solid
—go see him. Ask him if he still got the hook-up on buyin’ bitches. I got a fine one for him.”

A’ight, I’ll check and hit you up.”

Tate placed the phone down on the dash. Sharon Miller got into her car and fiddled with her stereo before pulling away. Tate started the RV and followed.






Stanton sat in Dr.
Vaquer’s waiting room. He was hunched over, staring at the floor, when her doors opened and she said, “Please come in.”

He rose and followed her inside.
The office was always the same, not a painting or stapler out of place. Some psychiatrists used the method to offer their patients consistency.

He sat down on the couch and leaned back.
The ceiling fan wasn’t on. Instead, the window was open, and Stanton could hear the traffic outside. Dr. Vaquer must’ve noticed, because she rose and closed the window before sitting back down across from him.

“Tell me about the attack,” she said.

“My chest started feeling tight. Then my vision was affected. It was like I was looking through a rolled-up piece of paper or something. Myopic. I kept blinking to make it go away like it was something in my eye. Then my thoughts jumbled, and my chest felt like it might burst open from the pressure. I passed out, but luckily, I was leaning against a tree. When I woke up, I think a couple of minutes had passed. But I don’t know for sure.”

She stared at him a moment. “Was there something unusual or particularly stressful that you feel triggered it?”

“A collar I had on a murder. He grabbed a gun from the officer guarding him when he went in to feed him. He shot himself. I got a confession out of him by lying to him that we’d found the murder weapon. When he found out that wasn’t true, he killed himself.”

She nodded. “Jon, I’m very worried about this attack. You haven’t had a panic attack in over a year. And this one sounds particularly worrisome because you fainted.”

“I know.”

“I’d like to put you on another medication. Xanax. It should help with these attacks.”

He shook his head. “I’m fine. They’re rare enough that they don’t interfere.”

“I won’t contradict your wishes
, of course, but that’s the wrong choice. It’s okay to need help sometimes.”

He was silent
for a while. “I’ve been having nightmares again.”

“What of?”

“Last night, I saw myself in a car. It was a luxury car, a Mercedes or something. I was driving it for someone else. They had asked me to take it somewhere. The road was really dark. All I could see were the lines speeding past me and darkness everywhere else. The car kept going faster and faster, so I put my foot on the brake, but it didn’t work. This red circle came on in the dash—a warning light that isn’t actually on a dashboard. I didn’t know what it was. I called the Mercedes dealership, but no one answered.”

What do you think it means?”

“I don’t know, but when I woke up, my pillow was soaked. I thought it was sweat at first
, but I wasn’t sweating. I was crying.”

“You were weeping in your sleep?”

He nodded. “I’ve never done that before.”

considered that a moment then said, “Jon, this is very important. I would like to put you on Xanax to control the anxiety attacks. And I’d like to increase the dosage for the Prozac.”

He shook his head. “Medication isn’t the answer.”

“Then what is?”

’s something… I don’t know. It feels like I’m being told something.”

She placed her hands together, casually rubbing them before leaning back in her seat and crossing her legs. “We’ve talked about this before.
Your belief in visions. I know you have a very powerful belief in God. Do you believe God gives you visions?”


“Is it just because of your Mormon faith, or do you think there are deeper reasons?”

there’s deeper reasons.”

“Like what?”

Stanton paused. “I’ve had them before.”

“Tell me about one.”

“They’re just fragments. Impressions, almost. When I was in Sex Crimes, we found some remains we couldn’t identify in an abandoned building. The most accurate way to identify a body is with dental records. Everything else fades with time and exposure to the environment. But this vic was missing all their teeth. So identification was almost impossible.” He swallowed and paused a moment. “One night, after we had already closed the case and transferred it to the Open-Unsolved files, I saw something in a dream. A young girl standing in a dress and high heels. Her hair was cut short, and her nose and cheeks were rosy, like she’d been exposed to a lot of wind or something. Her hands were up, blocking something coming toward her. And her eyes… they looked more terrified than any eyes I’ve ever seen. She knew she was going to die.

she was standing still. And I couldn’t figure out why she wasn’t running… until it hit me that it was a photo. There was a photo of her somewhere. A photo of the vic before she was killed.” He was quiet a long time but didn’t look Dr. Vaquer in the eyes. “A few months later, a trucker named Randy Gomez was arrested by the FBI for an unrelated case. But his home was in San Diego, so we were brought in on the search. They found a photograph of a young girl in an abandoned building. It was tucked underneath his pillow. She was in heels, her hands were up defending her, and the look on her face was…”

Was it her?”

“Identical to what I saw in my dream.
He confessed to killing her.”

Neither of them spoke or moved. Stanton exhaled loudly. “Can we talk about something else?”






The RV
had a smooth ride, but it was hard to hide in traffic. Tate wished he’d thought about that before following Sharon Miller. But she didn’t seem like the kind of lady who would be constantly looking in her rearview mirror anyway.

They crossed the
island, Tate always staying as far back as he could without losing her. Eventually, they reached a neighborhood Tate had never been to, large houses with immense lawns and swimming pools in the back. Shiny luxury cars were in every driveway. When he was a kid, Tate always pictured himself living in a place like that. But life had taken him another direction. He still had the desire to live there, but not the means to make it happen.

Sharon parked in a driveway
, went to the door, and knocked. The man who answered kissed her, his hands drifting down to her ass. She went inside, and the door shut behind her.

Hiapo said. “She’s scandalous. Guess all bitches are.”

Tate turned
off the RV and took out a joint from a small plastic baggie on the floor. He lit up and took a few puffs before handing it to Hiapo, who was in the passenger seat. “You had a mama. Was your mama scandalous?”

Hiapo said, inhaling from the joint.

“Then not all bitches are scandalous, are they?”

Sticks came up front, having just woken from his nap on the bed in the back of the RV. He was rubbing his eyes when he took the joint from Hiapo. He inhaled a big pull and held it.

“What we doing?” he
asked in that high-pitched squeal stoners got when holding in smoke.

“She’s with some dude,” Tate said.

“Good. Just walk up and bust a cap in her, man.”

“Fuck no. They got gunshot residue and DNA and all that shit, man. I
ain’t riskin’ goin’ back inside.”

“So what you
wanna do?” he asked, exhaling smoke.

gonna take her in the RV and dump her somewhere in the ocean. Let the sharks have her, man. No body, no murder. That’s what this fucker in the can used to say to me. Said he killed, like, ten girls and got rid of all the bodies, so he was only in there for a robbery.”

“No body, huh?” Stick
s pulled the joint away and hungrily took a few more puffs.

“We got a
Playstation back there. Just hang out, man.”



Several hours passed. Tate smoked so
much weed that he felt slow and bloated… and hungry. But the dumb bastards had only picked up two sandwiches, which were already gone. He rose and carefully walked to the fridge. He opened it to find two six-packs of beer. At least it was something. He grabbed a bottle and returned to the driver’s seat. The beer was warm since the fridge wasn’t on.

Hiapo said, “There she is.”

Sharon Miller stepped out of the house,
and the man at the door watched her for a while. She got into her car, blew him a kiss, then pulled out. Tate ducked low in the seat and waited a few minutes before turning on the RV and following.

She seemed to be
rocketing away from them, although she was probably just going the speed limit. Tate did his best to keep up, but he was so high that he was anxious whenever he hit forty miles an hour.

“Shit,” he said. “I’m too fucking high.”

“Let me drive,” Hiapo said.

Tate slid out and collapsed into the passenger seat as
Hiapo took his place. Tate closed his eyes then felt sick, so he opened them and rolled down the window. Warm air hit his face as the RV sped onto the freeway, and he thought he might vomit.

They seemed to drive
forever before arriving at a mall. They followed the car around and parked in a wide-open space. Sharon got out and hustled into the mall.

“I’m fucking sick
,” Tate said, opening the door.

“Where you going?” Sticks
asked from the back.

“I don’t know. Food court. Get some
Sprite or something.”

“Get me a
Big Mac and some fries.”

“Fuck you. Get it yourself.”

“Don’t be a bitch. Just get it.”

Tate stumbled out
, squinting in the harsh light. He reached into the RV for his sunglasses then flipped them on. The mall was large and flat. The largest mall in Honolulu, most of it was outdoors under a retractable cover. He stumbled through the parking lot and opened the doors. The food court was right inside. He staggered around until he saw a McDonald’s.

The line moved so slowly
that he started counting the tiles on the floor. The next restaurant didn’t have a line, so he strolled over there and leaned against the counter, staring at the menu. When he felt somebody behind him, he glanced back and saw Sharon Miller standing there.

He snapped his head forward as the cashier came up to him
. “What can I get for you?”

Tate looked at the first thing on the menu. “Um, a turkey and cheese and
a Sprite.”

The clerk
continued asking questions, and Tate answered, but he kept glancing behind him. Sharon was on the phone. She was, he decided, much hotter up close. His chest felt tight, and he was starting to sweat. He turned and marched out of the food court without getting his sandwich or drink, the cashier shouting behind him.

BOOK: Run Away
6.9Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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