Chapter 71

Simon steps forward, “Niki, thank God you’re okay. We were so worried.”

“Simon, where’s Maddie? Is she here? Does she know what happened?”

“She’s at home with Amber. Maddie knows there is an active shooter alert on the floor you work on. She knows you’re involved, and that a SWAT team has arrived to rescue you. Other than that, Amber has taken away her cellphone, kept her off of the Internet, and the TV. I’ve updated Amber by text with what little information we’ve had. We decided she and I were the ones to tell Maddie if…”

Simon doesn’t finish his sentence. Again, there’s that awkward silence.

The realization that everyone who loves me thought I might not survive being held hostage by Frank sinks in. I fight back the tears, letting the sedative the doctor gave me do its work, and drift off a bit.

A throat clears. Behind Simon, is Officer, I mean, Mike.

“Simon, Raquel, Grant, this is Mike. He’s a friend of mine from work.”

The trio nod their heads towards Mike. Grant shakes Mike’s hand

“Thank you for all you’ve done for my sister,” says Raquel.

“The SWAT team are the ones to thank. I was just holding place. Um, Niki, I’m going to leave you now with your family and husband.”

“My ex-husband. We share a daughter.”

“Ex-husband, then. Um, I’d like to check in with you in a few days, if you don’t mind, if that’s okay? Just check in and see how you’re doing, if you need anything. Here’s my business card. You can call me too, if something comes up I can help with”

He hands me the card. Officer Michael Elligsen. Mike Elligsen. It’s a nice name.