“You can shower in there,” said Annelie, “you are about the same size as Angel, so I will get you some of her clothes to wear.” “Thank you,” said Camille. Was Camille telling the truth? Annelie thought her story sounded too much like it was rehearsed. And she could see in Camille’s eyes that something just was not right, but what was it? Hopefully she can catch her on something. Annelie kept looking and Camille’s story seemed to check out, but wait, what is this?
“Hey, you are quite a beautiful woman after you are all cleaned up,” said Annelie as Camille came back in the room. Camille did not say a word, she just looked at Annelie. “I am scared,” she said shakily, “what can I do?” “Sit down here,” said Annelie, “the first thing you can do is tell the truth. We do not lie around here, tell the truth and we will help you, but lie to us and out you go.”
“I guess you found out something about me,” said Camille, “yes, I will tell the truth. I am in a lot of trouble.” Then she told Annelie why she was there. “Sometimes being beautiful is not good,” she added, “it has certainly gotten me in a lot of trouble over the years.” “How old are you?”, asked Annelie. “Twenty three,” she said with her head down. She had already told Annelie that her name was not Camille, it was Aurela Jonsson and she was from Sweden.
They went back down to the library to talk with Baldwin and Shirley. “Well, that took some time,” said Baldwin, “but you certainly came out looking beautiful.” “Yes,” said Shirley, “that is quite a change for sure, and a very pleasant one.” Aurela put her head down and told her story to them while Annelie was at her laptop checking her story. It did match this time. She did have a tough beginning with her parents dying in a house fire one night while she was at her grandmother’s.
So her grandmother raised her until she was 6, then the grandmother died of a heart attack. Her other grandparents looked after her until she was 8 but she was quite a handful so was put in foster homes, 7 different ones, until she was 15 when she ran away and met some “friends” that took her into a life of crime, lies and drugs. She was arrested and spent 2 years in jail. When released she was sold by her friend to someone else who sent her on this journey.
“I am very scared,” she said, “but I understand if you want to throw me out. I do want to change though, I really do, but I need some help. Please help me.” “I should take you and toss you back to the wolves,” said Baldwin, “what do you have to say Annelie?” “Her story checks completely,” said Annelie, “I say we give her a chance.”
“I agree,” said Shirley, then she turned to Aurela, “but we need honesty from you at all times, if so, you have a new home and new friends.” Aurela smiled, “though honesty is something foreign to me, I will always give you the truth. I am grateful and will show that by working very hard.” “Good,” said Baldwin, “perhaps we can use you here in our team in some way.” “Right now perhaps you can help me cook supper,” said Shirley. “I would love to,” she said enthusiastically.
Off they went to the kitchen. Annelie had gone out of the room when she got a phone call and was coming back in as the others left. “Have you heard from Jake yet?”, asked Baldwin. “That was him just now,” said Annelie as she went back to her laptop. “Am I supposed to ask questions?”, asked Baldwin again. “Oh, sorry, he is still trying to find who had the hit out,” she said, “and there are 3 more hits out as well.”
“Okay, please continue,” said Baldwin getting a little impatient. “The 3 people are Angel, Kat and myself,” she said looking right at Baldwin. “You will not leave this house,” he said, “and what about Aurela?” “I trust her,” said Annelie, “she is just a scared girl right now. When do those 2 new girls show up?” “Hmm, they should have arrived by now,” he said, and he phoned one of his men.
His mouth dropped open and he hung up. “One was shot dead when they got off the plane,” he said, “just like Candace. The other one will be here shortly.” Annelie looked at Baldwin, he was visibly shaken by the news. Annelie called Jake again. “Hey girl, I didn’t know she was part of your team or I would have mentioned her,” he said, “yeah, she was a hit too, same guy, still don’t know who, but I will get back with you. Be careful girl.” For the first time, Annelie was scared.
To Be Continued.
©2022 Steve McLeod.