Abby had never felt so relieved, as when she heard the sirens of approaching police cars, and then people stomping through the underbrush. Soon, Gary was peering in her window, concern clear in his face. “We’re going to get you out of here, Abby, as fast as we can.” Gary assured her, before moving to let the police do their job. Paramedics rushed in, and began checking Abby over, making sure she didn’t have injuries, which would make moving her dangerous. “I’m ok, really!” Abby kept trying to tell them, but Gary insisted she be taken to the hospital, just to make sure. She finally agreed to appease him.
Abby watched from a squad car, as her car was towed away. In her heart, she knew her car was totaled. “If you’re ready, we’ll head on to the hospital, then we can go home.” Gary jolted Abby out of her daze. Thinking about the hospital made her stomach tighten. What if Jay was waiting at the hospital for her? He would have known you could have been hurt in the eventual crash, and would want to be taken to a hospital, which was familiar, and she where was comfortable. “I’m fine, really, I don’t need to go to the hospital. Suddenly Abby was terrified. She could be walking right into a trap by Jay.
Gary couldn’t understand Abby’s sudden change. What was she so of afraid of at the hospital? She worked there every day, knew the procedure in the ER. Could her fear have some to do with Jay? “Everything will be fine.” Gary tried to reassure Abby. “I’ll be right beside you the whole time. Jay won’t even be able to get near you.” The need to protect Abby was strong in Gary, and he knew the only way to do this best was to marry her, so they would never be apart. He resolved to talk to her as soon as possible about this. Gary knew she would resist, but he had to convince her. Reluctantly, Abby agreed to get checked out, only if Gary stayed with her the whole time.
In the small cubicle at Forrest Central Hospital Abby was examined by a doctor she knew well, and blood drawn by a nurse who had often assisted her. Gary was by her side the whole time; alert for anything Jay might try to do. When she was released, Gary drove her home, and followed her into the apartment. As soon as Abby stepped inside, alarms started going off in her head. Was this her imagination, or had Jay found her again? Sensing her fear, Gary put his hand on her arm. “What’s wrong Abby?” He said gently. “He’s been here, Jay has been in this apartment. I can feel it.” Abby said, feeling herself starting to shake. “Stay here, Gary said, moving past her. He searched each room, his gun drawn and ready. Abby relaxed a little when he returned, reporting Jay was gone, if he had been there in the first place. When Abby went to put her purse on the counter, she spotted the evidence of what he had sensed. A single sheet of white paper lay on the counter. The message was short, but effective. “Did you enjoy your ride?” was etched across the page in large letters. Abby found herself frozen in place. She listened as Gary called the police, but was unable to even think straight enough to give him her address. He had to flip through her mail until he found something with her apartment number. As they waited for the police to arrive, Gary coaxed Abby to the sofa, and stayed beside her until he heard the approaching sirens. Abby watched him talking to the officers, both of which were close friends of his. Gary recounted the happening of that day, ending with Abby finding the note on arrival home. When the report was complete, the officers left, saying they would tighten security around the complex. Gary was reluctant to leave, fearing for Abby’s safety. “Abby, I think it would be safer if I slept here, on your couch tonight.” Gary stated, knowing Abby was going to fight him. “Gary, I don’t think it would be a good idea, since we aren’t married.” Abby said halfheartedly, knowing it would be safer to have him around. “If I don’t sleep here, I am not going to sleep at all. There is nothing wrong with me spending the night, under the circumstances.” Gary retorted frustrated. “Circumstances or not, it wouldn’t be right in God’s eyes.” Abby said, starting to get angry. Although, she wasn’t really angry with Gary, it had been a long day, and all she wanted now was a shower and to get in bed early. “Well,” Gary said starting to get angry too. “I don’t think God’s eyes are on you, if he allows Jay to keep finding you, so I don’t think he would notice!” “How dare you say that? If it were not for the grace of God, I would be dead. He is always watching and protecting me.” Both of them stood there, not sure what to say next. Gary finally decided to try a more gentle approach. “Abby, I just want to protect you. Please let me do this, if not for your sake then for mine. I won’t have a moments peace away from you.” Gary pleaded. He watched her contemplate, and finally resign herself to his staying. “I guess it would be ok for tonight. I would sleep better knowing you were protecting me.” Abby said defeated. “I’ll get you a blanket and pillow. The couch pulls out to a bed, if you want to bother with it.”