On January 25, 2012, Child Eater was released. To celebrate the 10th-anniversary of this amazing event, I am releasing a special 10th-anniversary edition on January 25, 2022. I will post a chapter every Saturday and Tuesday until then. Read chapters one and two or find chapter three below.
She had page after page of hits, but they all seemed to be repeats of the same news stories. Three children and one adult had gone missing from hotels in the past month. It was so hard to tell which ones met with foul play and which ones were caused by the light. Tabitha wasn’t even really sure if any of them were the light. That was why it was so important to investigate each and every disappearance herself. The adult would be the last one she investigated. Like her father, other grown men had disappeared while protecting their children. However, the article said that he had been traveling alone on business. It was highly unlikely that he was another victim of the light.
She looked up the addresses for each of the hotels from the news articles. She put a mark for each on her map. Her map was posted on the wall behind the couch. She used colored thumbtacks to mark off the hotels. Green indicated that she was still investigating. Red indicated that she had proven, to herself at least, that the light had struck again. Usually, these came with reluctant witnesses who verified seeing the light present when the children had disappeared. The blue thumbtacks were used to denote disappearances she could neither prove nor disprove the light’s involvement. And, lastly, just in case they proved relevant, she used yellow to mark the ones that had appeared to be anything other than the light. Some of the latter she had even helped to bring back home to their families. She wished someone had been able to bring her dad home to them.
Tabitha returned to the computer. She pulled up MapQuest and ran a search for each of the hotels. She used the sticky pad she kept beside the computer to write down the distance from her apartment to each of the locations. It made the most sense to start with the nearest one. Unfortunately, the trail got cold fast. She would have to get a move on. She scarfed down the rest of her breakfast.
She packed a bag of necessary items. She always packed light for these trips. Often times, she ended up buying clothes from the tourist shops along the way. This was how she had obtained the T-shirt she now wore.
Her second bag, the important one, was always packed and ready to go. She kept it right at the door in case she ever needed to jump and run. In that bag, she kept a couple flashlights, her EMF detector, holy water, salt, a blessed knife made of silver, her guns (one shotgun, one handgun), spare ammunition, and a few other odds and ends that could come in handy one day.
According to her research, if she ever caught up to the light all she would need is the knife. The local priest, Father Bailey, blessed it for her once a month. He assured her that once it was blessed it would always be blessed, but she didn’t want to take any chances that the blessing might wear off just when she needed it most.
Father Bailey was always so patient with her. She visited with him whenever she was in town. He always listened to her recounting of her trips. He never judged her for giving up her life to pursue the light. After all, the light had taken her father from her when she was only a young girl. He researched for her in his spare time. Always looking for any indication of what the light may be. They were fairly certain it was demonic. He had given her the knife as a gift years ago when she was still a fledgling hunter.
He was an older gentleman who had been with the church for years. She had first met him when she had been an angry little girl looking for someone to punish for her loss. He had counseled her, listened to her. He had been a friend to her when no one else would listen or understand. He was probably the only real friend she had in this cruel world. Only he knew the whole truth of what she was doing when she disappeared for weeks on end.
She printed off the driving directions to the first hotel from her house. She packed up her laptop, grabbed it and her bags and headed out the door. She headed downstairs and across the parking lot. She started her car, found a good song on the radio, and backed out of her parking spot. She headed for the expressway. The hotel was only about an hour’s drive from her current location.
Want to know what happens next? You can preorder Child Eater: 10th Anniversary for Kindle, now.
Give me a follow to be alerted when you can read the next chapter of Child Eater; coming January 18th.