Once we were outside, I tore open the folded note. On it was a short
message of black cursive writing. It read:
"To the Hansons:
I hope you've said your goodbyes to Caitlyn. In an mmmbop, she's gone...
Yours truly, Chad"
Taylor read it three times, looking puzzled.
"Well what's that supposed to mean?" he wondered. I sighed.
"We gotta find Caitlyn," I breathed, "Ike was right. It was Chaz that killed Heather."
I hung my head, praying for a miracle idea fto help us find Caitlyn.
"Zac," Natalie whispered, "There's nothing we can do. We have to appear in court tomorrow.
Caitlyn's as good as gone."
"Not if I can help it. It's my fault she's gone. I have to get her back, I don't care
what it takes." I snapped back. Nat looked at me with sad eyes. She lifted my head and stared at me.
"Zac...don't do this," she said under her breath, "This isn't your fault. You didn't
know...just come home, everything's going to be fine." I shook my head. I should have known they wouldn't have understood
this. Everything that was happening was my fault, which meant it was up to me to fix it.
"You just don't get it." I told Nat.
"Zac," Taylor spoke up, "We're helpless...I mean, what can we do about it? Nothing.
All we can do is show this to the cops. That's it, case closed." I looked at him through slit eyes, my eyes filling with tears.
"But...this is all my fault." I stuttered. Tay shook his head, putting a hand on my shoulder.
"No," he assured me, "It's not. You had no control over this." Sighing, I sat down and
"I need to sit down," I choked. My head throbbed horribly as I thought about the past
48 hours. Ike was denied custody of his own child to a drug addict, Caitlyn spent almost 11 hours with us, Heather was murdered,
Chaz kidnapped Caitlyn, Ike was the number one suspect in Heather's murder. I felt like I was watching a movie, just sitting
in a crowd watching one of those movies where everything goes wrong but in the end it all works out, and in an hour and a
half it would be over. But this wasn't a movie. This was real. It was hard to admit. Sighing, I stood back up and threw my
arms around Taylor as tears raced past my cheeks. I could hear him sniffling and knew that he was crying, too. Suddenly, it
started to rain. We stayed there like we were for a few minutes before the rain turned heavy and decided to get something
to eat. It didn't take long before we found a restaurant called 'MiMi's Pizza Kitchen and Restaurant'. Stepping in, we sat
down at a small table. Looking at the menu, I couldn't stop thinking about Caitlyn. I put down the menu and put my head in
my hands, trying to force the thoughts out of my mind. I listened to the voices around me.
"Caitlyn, get up! Get up off the floor! Sit in your chair."
"No, Daddy don't!" I jumped out of my seat. I knew that voice. Chaz had Caitlyn in that
very restaurant. Apparently, he hadn't been gone from home long.