The Follower by Koethi Zan
He didn’t even appear to register her words.
Then she heard a door slam and turned toward the sound. Her heart leapt, though she could hardly believe what she saw. For there, just a few hundred yards away, was a farmhouse all lit up. A plump, middle-aged woman headed straight toward them. She looked like someone’s favorite aunt, wearing a loose-fitting housedress, her wispy brown hair pinned up messily.
It was surreal, unfathomable, yet there she was, walk- ing across the moonlit yard filled with scrubby brush, past an overturned wheelbarrow and a clothesline where shirts twisted precariously in the wind, the cuffs of the sleeves nearly touching the ground.
Julie thought at first it was a hallucination, but no, she was real. Hope welled up in her. It’s so hard to kill hope.
Her abductor still had her by the arm, with the nose of the gun now pushed into her back, but she took a chance that he wouldn’t kill her in front of a witness.
‘Help me! This man kidnapped me. Call the police. Run! He’s dangerous. He has a gun!’
In that moment she felt a rush of relief. Help was here. Maybe there were even others inside who had heard her scream.
But the woman didn’t react. She just walked toward them, calm and unhurried.
‘Do you hear me? This man abducted me! I need help!’
Everything began to unfold in slow motion. The woman’s lips were pressed tightly together, her eyes fixed steadily on Julie’s captor. There could be no mistaking the situation. She had to get it. But her expression wasn’t right.
If anything, the woman’s eyes glistened with a kind of adoration. She ignored Julie, who stood there frozen. Julie realized at that moment that this woman was not appalled or outraged or terrified. She wouldn’t be her savior, delivering her from evil.
No, she wouldn’t help her. She was in on it.
About The Follower
By Koethi Zan
Published by Vintage (E-book: 23 February 2017; Paperback: 18 May 2017)
SHE'D DO ANYTHING FOR HER HUSBAND.
Julie has the perfect life
A kind boyfriend, loving parents and good grades. She has everything ahead of her.
Cora’s life is a nightmare
A psychopath for a husband, a violent father and a terrible secret. There’s no way out.
But one night, their worlds collide
Locked in an isolated house together, they must work out what has happened – and who they can trust to set them free.
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