The feeling of doom that had been dogging him hung in the air like the sickly sweet smell of death. They would be forever bound and changed by this moment. You couldn’t take a life and not be changed in some way. He wondered if she would deal with it or push it down deep and let the numbness blanket her, impervious, until nothing could get through, not even love.
“Go now and hide, don’t come out no matter what you hear.”
Angel’s life had gone from bad dream to nightmare in the last year. She had run away from her abusive father only to become Carlos’ sex slave, and now she had killed him. Was her life even worth saving anymore? There was only one thing she was sure of at this moment-she didn’t want this man to die. He took her in his arms and kissed in a way that sent shivers down to her toes.
“Please, go. I’ll come for you if I can,” he whispered.
Angel heard the shouts of Carlos’ men as she ran out the back door and knew he was going to die.
Nick threw the gun down; when the men burst through the door he raised his hands in surrender. They checked Carlos on the floor and found he was dead. One of them hit Nick with a rifle butt and the lights went out.
Unsure if he was alive or dead, Angel watched from the garage as they carried Nick back to the main house. Men scurried around the compound like angry ants. She wiped away a tear and saw his blood staining her hands, and she cried until there were no tears left. The corner of the grounds next to the garage was hidden by trees; she had spent months looking for a way to escape but she heard the coyotes at night, so close she could hear them lick their lips in anticipation of her delicate flesh. What would happen to her now would make death by coyote a mercy. Was life with Carlos worse than being torn to shreds by hungry animals? Now she had no choice, she would run for herself and to get help for the man who had stolen her heart. Angel climbed quickly and hit the ground running, she ran for the tree line clutching the cross and praying he would survive.