Rachel nodded. It was a given that she would go there.
"Why do you think he was the one who sent the package?"
"We dont think it. We know it. We got a match a little while ago on a fingerprint from the GPS. He replaced the batteries on it and we got a thumb off of one of them. Robert Backus. Its him. Hes back."
Rachel slowly opened her fist and studied her hand. It was as still as a statues. The dread she had felt just a moment before was changing. She could admit it to herself but no one else. She could feel the juice begin moving in her blood again, turning it a darker red. Almost black. She had been waiting for this call. She slept every night with the cell phone near her ear. Yes, it was part of the job. The call outs. But this was the only call she had truly been waiting for.
"You can name the waypoints," Dei said in the silence. "On the GPS. Up to twelve characters and spaces. He named this point Hello Rachel. An exact fit. I guess he still has something for you. Its like hes calling you out, has some sort of plan."
Rachels memory dredged up an image of a man falling backward through glass and into darkness. Disappearing into the dark void below.
"Im on my way," she said.
"Were running it out of the Vegas field office. It will be easier to keep a blanket on it from there. Just be careful, Rachel. We dont know what he has in mind with this, you know? Watch your back."
"I will. I always do."
"Call me with the details and Ill pick you up."
"I will," she repeated.
Then she pushed the button that disconnected the call. She reached to the bed table and turned on the light. For a moment she remembered the dream, the stillness of the black water and the sky above, like black mirrors facing each other. And her in the middle, just floating.
Copyright © 2004 by Hieronymus, Inc.
Blood at the Root
"A gripping, timely, and important examination of American racism."
- PW Starred Review
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