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Chapter 17

See disclaimer chapter 1


For the next few days, Abby sat idly while Stan and the FBI agents worked on tracking down Stan's old friend, Charlie.  The only bright spots in her existence were the time she spent with Holly during the day, and spending her nights in Stan's arms.


She didn't know what she would have done without Stan.  At night, with the moon shining through the window, they lost themselves in each other.  She found it hard to believe that she would be able to lie in his embrace every night, for the rest of her life.


She sat on the couch musing on the changes in her life, when Stan came in.  "I'm going for coffee.  Wanna come?"  Abby grinned.  Stan's love for fine wines was only surpassed by his love for a good espresso.


She rose and gave him a squeeze.  "No, I think I'll pass this time.  Holly and I made plans to go shopping."


Stan was immediately concerned.  "Shopping?  Now?  Don't you think you should put that off until we get this Charlie thing under control?"


"We'll be fine," Abby reassured him.  "One of the agents is going with us.  We'll be perfectly safe."


"I don't like it," Stan grumbled.


Abby grinned and gave him another hug.  "We'll be fine."  A shadow crossed her face.  "What about you?  Are you taking someone with you?"


"Yes, I am. JT is going with me."  Stan planted a brief kiss on her lips.  "We'll be all right."


"Okay.  Be careful," Abby said.  She pulled his head down for another longer, deeper kiss.


"Maybe we should go back to bed," Stan murmured.


"Hey, Abby!  Are you ready to go?" Holly shouted, barging into the room, and seeing her dad holding Abby.  "Don't you guys ever quit?" she asked in a disgusted voice.


"Get used to it," her dad grinned.


"I'm ready."  Abby slid from Stan' hold.  "Let's go, sweetie."  Turning to Stan, she said in a low voice, "I will see you later."


Abby and Holly had a great time at the mall, but Abby was sure the agent was bored to death. He followed them from store to store and even carried a few of the girls' packages, but every once in a while, Abby would see a pained expression on his face.  Especially when Holly pulled Abby into Victorias Secret.


"Abby, I think you need this."  Holly giggled as she held up a red, lacy teddy.  "I bet Daddy would like to see you in it." 


Abby's faced turned the same color as the lingerie that Holly held.  "I don't think thats any of your business, missy.  Besides, red is not my color."  At that, Holly held up a black one.  Abby laughed at loud.  "You're impossible.  And I thought you wanted us to cool it."  After looking around the store, Abby ended up buying the black outfit that Holly had picked out.


"Somehow, letting a ten year old pick out my lingerie just doesn't seem right," Abby commented, as she accepted her package from the clerk.


Holly shrugged.  "Well, I can pick out something pretty, can't I?"  Abby just grinned and nodded.


"Ladies?" the agent called out to them.  "We have to go back."


A sense of foreboding crept over Abby.  "Why?"


"I just got a call from the house.  They said they wanted us back now.  That's all I know."


Abby took Holly's hand.  "C'mon sweetie.  Let's go."  Turning to the agent, she requested, "Get us back as quick as you can."  He nodded once and they headed to the parking lot.


Arriving at the house, Abby ran up the walkway and burst through the door.  "Stan!" she called out.  All that answered her was the silence of the agents that faced her.  She took one look at their expressions and collapsed on the floor, weeping. 


Holly reached her.  "Abby, what's wrong?"  The girl wrapped her arms around the woman's shoulders.  "What's wrong?" Holly asked one of the men.


He cleared his throat and glanced at his partner who nodded.  "Miss Spark?"  Abby looked up.  "Maybe we could talk to you in the other room?"


"Whatever you need to tell Abby, you can tell me too," Holly demanded.


Abby stood up and put a hand on Holly's shoulder.  "It concerns her.  You might as well tell us both."


"Mr. Jobson and Agent Roberts never returned.  Do you have any idea where they were going?"


Abby was surprised.  "You mean, you dont know?"  They all shook their heads.  Abby could feel hysteria set in.  "They were going for coffee.  It shouldn't have taken more than about a half hour."


One of the men checked his watch.  "They've been gone for three hours and twenty minutes."


Abby grabbed the nearest agent.  "You have to find them, do you understand!"  She shook him a bit for emphasis.   "You have to find Stan!"


Holly had been quiet up until now.  "Abby, it's okay."  She tried her best to sound soothing, even though inside she was panicking.  "They will find them.  Let's go put our stuff away." 


Abby looked down at Holly, amazed at her.  "Okay, sweetie."  Maybe doing the mundane task would take her mind of the fact that Stan was gone.  She followed Holly upstairs.


When they reached Stan's bedroom, Holly shut the door.  "Abby, we have to find my dad."


"They'll find him, Holly.  I just hope they do it in time."


Holly shook her head.  "No, I think we should try."


Abby thought for a moment.  "Well, I don't think I can just sit around here and do nothing."  She looked Holly in the eye.  This wonderful girl was going to be her daughter.  "Okay.  I don't know how we can help, but if we find anything we have to tell the FBI guys.  I will not put you in any danger.  I love you too much, and your dad would kill me if I did."


Holly's eyes lit up.  "Cool!"  She gave Abby a little hug, then added, "And can I call you Mom?"

Chapter 18

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