Chapter 20

A/N: I'm sorry that I have kept everyone waiting so long, but this semester has been a killer. My classes have been killing me. I hope that everyone likes this chapter. I stayed up all night to bring you this chapter so please forgive any errors.

One Week Ago

The Van drove for hours, and ended up in a very secluded wooded mountain area. It went deep into the forest and stopped at a cabin hidden away from the world. The second man carried her into the house and down into the basement. He laid her onto the bed, tied her hands and feet, and slowly removed the duct-tape from her mouth. He caressed her face and as he was about to give her a kiss, the first man carrying her purse along with another came down.

The second man turned around. "Where were you?" He asked the new man.

He was about 5'11 with jet-black hair. "In the bathroom." He looked at Kate. "This her?" He asked walking over to her. "She is beautiful."

"Don't get any ideas. I'm paying you to watch her not touch her." The second man said.

"I know, I know. Don't touch, I get it."

"Good." He pulled his ski mask off. "That was getting irritating."

"Yeah, it is." The first man pulled his off too.

Kate began to stir.

"Sleeping Beauty's waking up." The other man told them.

"Leo." She whispered before opening her eyes. "Mr. Herschk? Ben?" She was confused as to what they were doing watching her. She tried to get up and realized that her hands and feet were tied. She sat up and leaned against the headboard. "What did you do to me?"

"Calm down." Herschk told her.

"I'm not going to calm down. Tell me where I am right now." She demanded.

"It doesn't matter. There is no one around for miles and even if there were these walls are soundproof. So, you could scream all day and no one would here you." He said with a snide laugh.

"You are on twisted man. So, I would expect this of you, but you Ben," she looked at him with disgust, "I never would have imagined you could do something like this."

"You made me do it Billie." Ben told her. "I'm sorry that it had to come to this."

She looked at the other man. "What do you have to gain from this, Mr…?"

"Sawyer, ma'am, and I'm just in it for the money."

"Well if that's what you all wanted then you could have just asked. Now untie me, I will get your money, and we can forget this ever happened." She hoped that this would work.

Herschk laughed. "He's in it for the money, Ben and I did it because we have a special interest in you."

"What could you two possibly have in common besides being twisted freaks?"

"You my dear."

Kate couldn't believe what she was hearing. "You did this because you want me? So, what are you going to take turns raping me? You will never get away with this."

"Come on Billie, I wouldn't do that to you."

"But he would Ben."

Herschk slapped her. "Shut up!"

Ben ran over to hit him, but Herschk grabbed his hand. "Don't hit her again." Ben was seething with anger.

Kate was holding her face. "See Ben, he's crazy. Did he tell you that he tried to rape me when the two of you were plotting away together?"

Ben had a look of shock on his face. "What? Is that true?" He asked Herschk.

"What does it matter? We did what we had to do, now we have to see this plan to the end."

"You did." Ben said in a whisper as he slowly backed away from Herschk. He looked at Kate. "What did you mean when you said he "tried" to?"

"He tried to rape me after school one day, but I stopped him before he could."

Herschk looked at her with such disdain. "You forgot to mention that your hero Kaufman came to rescue you."

"Leave him alone, he has nothing to do with this."

"He has everything to do with this."

"See Ben, he is always there, right by her side. She is nothing but a little whore. She broke up with you to screw her teacher."

"I knew that it was true Billie. You lied to me about everything. You are just slut."

"I didn't lie to you. You asked if I was sleeping with Daniel for a grade and I told you the truth."

"Look she's still lying to you. She can't be trusted. Now aren't you happy that you did this? She has to pay for what she did."

"Yeah, she does."

Herschk was great at manipulating Ben.

"Excuse me, but you and I have some business to deal with Roy." Sawyer said.

"Fine, let's go upstairs." He got turned to Ben. "Watch her until I get back." Herschk and Sawyer went upstairs leaving Ben alone with Billie.

Ben looked at her, confusion mixed with hurt and disgust on his face. "You have changed so much that I don't even know you anymore Billie."

This would be comical to Kate is she hadn't been kidnapped. "Oh boy, the attempted rapist and the serial cheater are passing judgments on something they will never understand. If it weren't real I might laugh."

"What is there to understand? You're sleeping with Kaufman. You would never have sex with me, always talking about how you were waiting for marriage. Then this guy turns up and you give it up to him without a second thought."

"Love. That is what you and Roy will never understand."

"Here's five grand, you will get the rest later." Herschk handed the money to Sawyer. "Ben and I have to get as far away from here as possible, so you have to keep an eye on her. I will call you from pre-paid phones occasionally to make sure everything is running smoothly."

"Okay. Is there anything else I should know?"

"No. Just do what I told you and you will walk away from this a very rich man. Wait here until we come up." He went downstairs to see Ben with an indiscernible look on his face. "Ben." He broke him out of his trance. "Go to the van I'll meet you there in a moment." Ben left leaving the two alone.

"Come to finish the job?"

"Not yet."

"Daniel and my father will hunt you down and kill you. I could save you from this fate if you just let me go. I'll get your money and I'll tell everyone that I just needed to get away for awhile."

"Thanks for the concern, but I'll be fine without your help. None of this would have happened if you had just agreed to be mine, but you chose him over me. Now both of you will pay."

"Get over yourself and me. Go find yourself a nice girl that doesn't mind psychos and leave us alone. You are really pathetic."

"I rather like the woman I have in bed now." He laughed at his stupid joke. "I'll make Daniel pay and I will have you to myself."

"You will never win. There are some things that you just don't understand."

"Keep dreaming I always win." He leaned down and planted his lips on hers. "I told you." With that he left and Sawyer came down.

"Would you like anything to eat ma'am?" Sawyer asked.

"Yes, and please call me Billie. Would you please hand me my purse?"

"You know that I can't do that."

"Fine, will you please hand me my medicine out of my purse?"

Sawyer went in her purse and handed her the pills. "Are you sick or something?" She didn't answer. "Okay, I'll bring you a glass of water with your food." He left her by herself.

Kate was happy to finally be alone. She rubbed her belly. "I promise to keep you safe and healthy." She looked at the pre-natal vitamins in her hand. "I promise that I…" tears began to well up in her eyes, "I promise that I will take you home to your father. He loves us so much." The thought of Daniel made the tears come out in floods. "I give you my solemn vow that no harm will come to you."

Sawyer was coming down the stairs when he heard her crying. He sat the tray down on the table next to her. "Please don't cry." There was something about a woman crying that got to him. "I'm sorry that this is happening to you." He handed her a box of tissues and a glass of water.

"Thank you." She wiped her tears and blew her nose. She took her pills and downed half of the glass. Kate managed to get herself together enough to ask him a question. "Why are you really doing this?"

"I spent my whole life being a failure to my mother. She's diabetic and has to have a kidney transplant. Her job fired her when she had to start going to the hospital too many times for their liking. She worked there for twenty years taking one vacation her whole time there. Now she has no insurance and no money. This is the only way that I can make it up to her for being a disappointment." The sadness in his voice was evident.

"I'm sorry. I have to ask you though, would your mother approve of the way in which you are going about getting the money?"

"She will never know where it came from. As long as she gets her surgery it doesn't matter if I go to jail."

"I don't know how you got mixed up with those two, but I'm sorry that you did. Herschk is a horrible, insane, twisted man, and Ben is a spineless coward. They are doing this because they both want me, and they can't have me. It's going to be interesting seeing how this turns out in the end."

Ben and Herschk were in the van driving home. Ben couldn't stop thinking about what Kate had told him. "Love, she said that she loves him. That can't be true, I know that it isn't, she and I belong together. I just have to get rid of Kaufman."

"Don't ever lay a hand on her again." Ben told Herschk.

"You can't do anything to stop me. I am the brain behind this whole operation, without me you are going down." He said sinisterly.

"I haven't forgotten that you tried to rape her. I would rather go to prison then let you do that to her again."

"That can be arranged." Herschk thought.

The next day Kate woke up and saw Sawyer sitting in front of the TV.

"Good morning Sawyer."

He turned around and gave her a smile. "Good morning Billie. Sleep well?"

"As well as I could under the circumstances." Kate was going to keep planting these feelings of guilt until she got through to him. "I would like to go take a shower now."

"Okay." He untied her feet and led her upstairs. When they reached the bathroom he untied her hands. "I'll make you something to eat while you shower."

"Thank you." Kate closed the door. She looked in the cabinet and found a new toothbrush. After she brushed her teeth she undressed. She turned on the shower and looked in the mirror. "I swear I have gotten huge overnight. I have to keep them from seeing me, I don't know how I'll do it but I will." When she finished showering she put on the robe they had left for her, and she went out.

Sawyer had to do a double take when she came out in that robe.

"You guys are really trying to make sure I don't go anywhere, giving me a robe to wear in the dead of winter. I must ask, do you have any real clothes for me?"

"I'll bring you some clothes after we go downstairs. How many pancakes would you like?"

"Four please."

"A woman that likes to eat, that's a rarity."

Kate took her plate downstairs while Sawyer went to get her clothes. He took them to her and went back upstairs while she dressed.

Kate ate her breakfast and took her vitamins. After she ate she lay in that bed trying to watch the TV but her mind kept drifting to Daniel. She kept picturing him in her head and thinking about what he was doing. She wondered if he knew that she had been taken. "He probably doesn't, he's still in Idaho. Do my friends and family know or suspect that something is wrong? I just want to see his face. I want to hold his hand. I can't sit around here waiting to be rescued. I have to find a way to escape, but I can't endanger the baby."

Present Day

Ethan took all the pictures that he had been given of Kate and went straight to his office. He ran front-page headlines in all of his papers and made sure it was the top news story. They decided that her marriage and pregnancy would be information that was released later.

Daniel, Anne, and Sophie stayed with Diria. None of them could go to sleep.

"I'm going to quit my job tomorrow." Daniel announced to everyone.

"Why?" Anne asked.

"It will make it easier on everyone. That way I won't have to think about work, and I can dedicate my time to finding my wife."

"You're trying to protect Kathleen, aren't you?" Diria asked him.

"Yes. When people find out about us it could ruin her. People have a way of jumping to conclusions and making assumptions when they don't have all of the facts. I don't want people saying things about her for marrying her teacher."

"If my daughter cared about what people thought, then she would have gotten an annulment when her father and I told her to. She has a mind of her own and she loves you. If Kathleen couldn't handle it she would have gotten out when she had the chance. We can't underestimate her strength, especially now. It's that strength that will bring her home to us."

The next morning the top news story was indeed that of Kate's kidnapping.

A mother had the news on in the kitchen while her son at breakfast.

"Mommy!" The boy exclaimed. "That's the pretty lady that gave me the dollar with the two and the zero on it at the park. Why is she on TV?"

The woman looked at the television, then at her son. "Are you absolutely sure that is the woman from the park?"

"Yes mommy. She was really pretty."

The mother called her job to tell them that she wasn't coming in and also her son's school, and they went to the police station.