Winter Flower, Chapter 9-1.

SPOILER WARNING: This preview contains a major story development. I don’t recommend reading unless you’ve been following all the previous preview chapters!!!

“Mrs. Roberts? It’s Agent Wilcox.”
“Yes,” I choked out.
“I’ve got some news.”
Time froze. In less than a second, my mind ran past all the incidents where Wilcox had given us news. When they found her car, with the broken phone. When they found the bracelet Lori gave her in Chase’s apartment. The weekly calls for a year, then less often since then. But he still called, and he almost always prefaced those calls with the statement, “I don’t have any news, I’m just checking in.”
Today he’d said, I’ve got some news.

Winter Flower, Chapter 8-3. Birthday.

“It’s her birthday,” I said.
I swear to God I wasn’t going to say anything. I wasn’t going to mention it. I wasn’t going to do this.
His face clouded, and he looked to the floor. “I know,” he said in a rasping voice. “Eighteen.”
I crossed my arms over my chest. It was too much to think he’d come over and hug me. And I didn’t know how to approach him. Not anymore. I wasn’t even sure I wanted to.
“Do you think she’s still alive?” I asked.

Winter Flower, Chapter 8-2. Birthday.

Gemini: Want to talk about it?

I swallowed. There was some safety in the anonymity of being online. And I didwant to talk about it. I don’t know why, but I hadn’t told Mrs. Mullins or Hayley that it was Brenna’s birthday. Finally I responded: It’s my sister’s birthday. She turns eighteen today.

Gemini: And this is a problem because…

Tamara: She went missing two years ago, and we haven’t seen her since. …

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