Cryer's Cross

Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann Read Free Book Online

Book: Cryer's Cross by Lisa McMann Read Free Book Online
Authors: Lisa McMann
the four-wheelers before she sees them. It’s Marlena and Jacián.
    “Ah, now there’s a thought,” Sheriff Greenwood mutters, looking up. “Yes. That’ll work.” He turns toward them. “You two can swing by for Kendall on school days, right?”
    Jacián is silent, and in the dark, Kendall can’t gauge his reaction. Marlena pipes up, “Sure. We’d love to.” She climbs off and goes over to Kendall. Gives her a swift hug. “I’m really sorry. You must feel horrible,” she says softly.
    Kendall’s throat tightens. She nods. Can’t speak.
    “We covered miles and miles, made it to the foothills and up beyond Cryer’s Pass, along the woods, and back.”
    “That’s awesome,” Kendall says, without enthusiasm. Her body aches. She just wants to crawl into bed and forget everything.
    “Jacián and I can give you a ride home now if you need one. You look exhausted.”
    “My dad’s coming. Thanks.” She’s almost asleep on her feet.
    At home she checks all the windows and doors in the entire house before falling into bed.

WE

    The quiet stretch unsettles, rattles Our aching souls. We roam the floor, bitter, restless, shoving others out of Our way. Searching for new life. And then We grow quiet and return to Our spot. Remembering, hoping.
    We save Our energy for another day.

TEN
    After a week of chaos the local search for Nico Cruz ends. They’ve combed every accessible section of the valley on foot. Every American with a TV has heard about the strange situation in “quaint” Cryer’s Cross, Montana, where young, innocent Tiffany disappeared in spring, and sinister, older bad boy Nico disappeared only months later . . . probably because he killed her. Or brainwashed her into hiding out for three months so they could fool people into thinking their disappearances were unrelated.
    Never mind the quiet girlfriend, Kendall. She keeps her head down and doesn’t talk to the reporters. Does she know something? Speculation ad infinitum.
    Kendall can’t stand it.
    Every morning Kendall wakes up and remembers. And every evening at eleven her phone doesn’t ring. More than once she thinks about calling Nico’s number just because it feels like a connection, but she doesn’t want to startle his family, make them remember, force them to relive their personal horror any more times than they already do.
    Over the course of the week Kendall goes from shock to mourning to frustration and fury. The news crews are bored, tired of having only one restaurant to eat in and no fast food within thirty miles. Tired of the loyal, tight-lipped people. They try to get a fresh angle, but the people of Cryer’s Cross are a quiet, protective group. Even Jacián just gives them a look and walks away when they yell out questions to him.
    Kendall sits on the restaurant steps, waiting for her mother to stop chatting inside the drugstore. She pushes her hair off her forehead. It falls back again when she stares down at her hands. Behind her, old Mr. Greenwood and Hector Morales sit in their chairs, not talking. As usual.
    Jacián comes toward them. “
Abuelo
,” he says sharply. “Are you coming now with me?” Kendall notices that he takes on a hint of an accent when he speaks to his grandfather.
    Jacián ignores Kendall, walks right past her up the steps.
    Hector looks up and says something to Jacián in Spanish. Jacián replies in Spanish and then turns, jogs down the steps and to his four-wheeler. He heads off alone.
    Kendall turns and squints at Hector. “Jacián isn’t supposed to be going off alone, you know. He could get arrested.”
    Hector smiles, but he looks worried. “He’s okay. He’s already eighteen, and stubborn. What can I say? Sheriff says he’s legal to go alone, just stupid. It’s nice of you to worry about him, though.”
    “I’m not worried about him,” Kendall says crossly. How can she explain it? The rule-follower in her can’t help but say something.
    “I’m sorry, Miss Kendall. Truly. About

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