Two months had passed since the Dark Angel had taken my daughter Ruby. The Dark Angel was a new delinquent in the city of Seattle, kidnapping children of all ages and different backgrounds. Being that I worked at the Seattle Police Department, I had thought that I would be able to set up a case to find where he had taken her and arrest him for all of the kids he has taken and killed. However, my superiors denied my request seeing that there wasn't any leads to who it could be or what his next attack might be. Desperate to get the to bottom of the case after waiting for too long, I decided to take matters into my own hands.
As I was researching about possible places the Dark Angel could be located on my laptop, my phone vibrated to let me know I had two new messages. All from an unknown number.
One of the messages was a link and the other was a group of lines, all spaced out differently, as if I had to uncover a mystery word. I clicked the link which took me to a video of a black screen and words being displayed. It read “You want your daughter back? Starting now, you will do as I say in order to uncover the address where I'm keeping your daughter. You must do this without the help of the officials whatsoever. If you fail to follow my orders Ruby will ha I hope to see you very soon, that is if, you love your daughter just enough.” it read. Soon after, I received another text saying, “Visit the oldest toy shop where no child has ever set foot in and retrieve the object where you will find the challenge you will need to accomplish to reveal my location. Good luck.” Immediately, I knew I was dealing with the Dark Angel.
Confused and stressed, I threw my wooden chair across my living room, tears starting to form. I couldn't understand what I did to deserve this, why my 6 year old had to be taken from me. We were supposed to go to a toy store that day to get her a teddy bear for her birthday....That's it! Now that I recall, there was an old and abandoned toy store that I had heard about a few months ago, which is probably what “where no child has ever set foot on” meant. I grabbed my car keys and took off to get to the other side of town.
Once I had pulled up on the driveway to the toy shop I loaded my gun, just as a matter of safety and habit. I got out of my car and slowly started walking inside. There was no door, and there were shattered windows and toys covered in dust and grime.
I was looking for the object the Dark Angel had told me about when I heard a floorboard creak behind me. Without thought, I grabbed a baseball bat that was lying next to me since I had idiotically placed my gun down while observing the place and swung it as hard as I could to the person behind me. Surprisingly, the man that had snuck up on me, caught my hit with his right hand and chuckled. “Next time, don't let your opponent see your weapon. I'm Blake by the way.” he stated.
“What are you doing here?” I inquired, squinting my eyes at him suspiciously. He simply shrugged and started walking around the toy shop.
Not wanting to waste time, I kept on searching for the so called object. Suddenly, in the corner of my eye I caught a glimpse of a pink teddy bear that looked oddly familiar. Then I realized that this was what I had come here for. It was the stuffed bear Ruby had chosen just before she got taken away. I got my pocket knife out and opened the bear from its back. After taking all of its stuffing out, there was a chip that I put into my phone. The screen went black and in green letters it read:
6_4 N__t__ar _r
The voice message commented “Congratulations! Your first task is to head to your apartment before 3:25 p.m. If you fail to complete this task, your child will have to pay". I looked at my watch, and the time read 3:12 p.m.
I ran out of the store as fast as I could but once I was outside, Blake was leaning on my car. As I was running toward him, I yelled "Move!" and shoved him off the lid of my car. "Where are you going princess?" he mocked.
I ignored his question and seeing that he wouldn't get off of my car, I told him to get in to save time. Weirdly, he agreed and got in the passenger seat. Before he could close the car door, I hit the gas pedal and left a trail of dust behind me.
With only five minutes left, I sped through every red stoplight, every stop sign and speed bump. At one point a police car started chasing me and not soon after two more joined the chase. Fortunately, I was able to reroute them and loose their trail on me. As I finally reached my apartment I looked over to my right to see Blake holding tightly onto the seat. I jumped out of the car and ran up the stairs, leaping over three stairs at a time. I fumbled with my keys and stumbled into my home. In front of me there was a chip similar to the one that I had found earlier. Without hesitation, I placed the chip inside my phone. Once again the screen went black and a set of words was revealed. They read:
604 No_t_s_ar Dr.
Before I could get excited for getting more letters of the full location, the screen displayed some more words:
Congratulations! Your second task is to go to the Silver Cloud Hotel. Once at the location, you will find a gun with one bullet. It's up to you to kill the person that you will find inside room 221. Remember, I am always watching. If you contact the police, the security of your child will not be guaranteed. Have a nice day!
I looked at the screen disoriented. Was I really capable of this?
As I went back to the car, Blake was waiting for me fully recovered from my reckless driving. I put my curly hair up in a ponytail while he blabbed away at how stupid he was for getting in the car. “You know, I think you should tell your name to people that you almost kill. It's nice to know who killed you.” he stated. I glared at him, “Elizabeth Campbell, happy?” I replied. “What is all of it for though?” he questioned. With a deep sigh and with tears in my eyes I simply replied “For my daughter."
We both got inside the car and without a word to each other, we drove off to the hotel. During the drive, I realized that I actually trusted Blake and felt safe with him. After I told him my story he seemed more sensible. It was actually pretty nice to have him tag along. At least I wasn't alone in this. He afterwards told me his story about an absent father and a drunk mother. He mentioned that he had a younger brother but that he hasn't seen him in a long time.
When we arrived to the hotel, I told Blake to stay behind. I had to do this on my own. Although he strongly disagreed, he gave in. As promised, there was a gun at the entrance of room 221. I could hear muffled crying and knew that this was going to be hard. I opened the door, gun raised, ready to shoot if it meant it would save my daughter. The person that was inside was a teenage girl around 15 years old. She looked at me with hope, probably thinking that I was here to save her. Out of nowhere, I could hear Blake shouting at me to not do it. I knew this was terribly wrong, but I needed my daughter. So before Blake could reach me, I closed my eyes, whispered sorry, and pulled the trigger.
When I open my eyes, I can hear Blake cackling. Confused, I turn around and see him approaching me. Laughing, he says “I can't believe you actually did it!” “What?” I question under my breath. “I’m the one that took your daughter Elizabeth. Don’t worry, she’s out of harm's way." Suddenly realizing the truth I was trying to hold back my tears. I asked him, “Why?” He did an exaggerated laugh and said “ You know my story. My parents didn’t care whether my younger brother was drowning. I ran to them to help me get him out of the river, but my dad, he was gone once again on his ‘trips’ and my mom was too drunk to even stand up. I was 7 years old! So, I took kids and made their parents fight for them, to see if their kids were worth fighting for. Most of them couldn’t do it. They were as coward as mine were.” he informed. “So, because you are the first one to actually finish my challenges, I’ll make you an offer. I’ll let you and your sweet little Ruby go alive, only if you come with me. Don’t judge, life on the road gets lonely and I might start to think about retiring. So, what do you say?” The offer was tempting, to finally get my baby back in my arms sounded like heaven to me, but being with Blake? Seeing the person that caused me so much pain every day for the rest of my life? I couldn’t do that, especially to Ruby.
“No, never in my life.” I challenged. “What? Really? I was positive you’d say yes. Unfortunately, for you it means I will have to leave you tied up, you know that right? I know that you will report me as soon as I’m out of here so I won’t take that chance.” he states. I could now see the insanity seeping through his eyes, and throughout all of my years of being in this job, he terrified me the most.
As I realized what he is about to do, I threw a kick and a punch, but although I had professional training, I was no match for him. He soon found a way to pin me to the ground. After thinking that if I lost this fight my daughter was to be stuck with this person or even worse, get killed by him, I found myself wriggling free of his grip with an inexplicable force. Once free, I stood up and kicked Blake in the face with my foot. After a few more kicks that were derived from pure rage and hatred, Blake was on the floor. I pulled out my handcuffs and placed them onto his hands. I immediately reached out for my phone and called the office to report him and to give our location. After giving the details, I demanded, "Where's my daughter?". To this day, I don't know why he told me the address. Maybe it was because he knew that his game was over, or because he thought I might let him go free. Once inside the abandoned house, I yelled, “Ruby!”. Over and over again, I kept calling her name, praying that she was here. “Mommy? Mommy!” I heard. Tears began to form as I turned around a hallway and when I broke the lock on the door, Ruby runs into my arms, and I whisper to her, “Mommy's got you."
Mom and Daughter
Elizabeth with gun
Small Smiling Blake