The Ghost and The Hacker (Dark Fire Book 3)

BOOK: The Ghost and The Hacker (Dark Fire Book 3)
4.71Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

Copyright © 2016


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In The Dark


That Hot Summer Night in Meridian

The Lady Jane, Unmasked

The Night Lies




The Rockstar and The Pussycat

(Dark Fire, Book 1)


The Player and His Best Friend's Sister

(Dark Fire, Book 2)


The Ghost and the Hacker

(Dark Fire, Book 3)



Special Thanks to Officer Dan W. for his help in getting Zach out of legal trouble.


With apologies to J and V for all the peanut butter sandwiches that you ended up eating while I wrote this.


Dear Readers,

I wanted to include the metamorphosed playlist I blogged about.  You'll catch some of them later when Zach builds his playlist, but in the meantime, this compilation is perfect to listen to while you're reading.

The Reason – Hoobastank

Easier to Run – Linkin Park

Let Her Go – Passenger

If You Only Knew – Shinedown

Bitter Sweet Symphony – The Verve

Walking With The Ghost – Tegan and Sara

One Year Of Love – Queen

Here With Me – Dido

Asleep – Emily Browning

Wishing You Were Here – Chicago

Locked Out Of Heaven – Bruno Mars

Far Away – Nickelback

Zak and Sara – Ben Folds

The Luckiest – Ben Folds

Bless the Broken Road – Rascall Flatts







I rolled over at the sound of my dad's voice.  It had to be
early in the morning- It was still dark outside.  Why the hell was he waking me up this early?

"Wha?" I managed.

"It's Zach.  Something happened."  My eyes flew open at his words.

"What's wrong?  Is he okay?"  I could feel the bile rising in my throat.  What could have happened that my dad would be waking me up in the middle of the night?  My dad- the Police Chief.

"Are you awake?"  He seemed to be grappling with how to tell me something important.  I wasn't sure if making sure I was awake was a stall technique or if he was making sure I was ready to hear it.

"Sarah Jennings.  Sixteen.  Lakemont, Pennsylvania.  Lead singer for Random.  Four-point-oh GPA.  Valedictorian."  I cleared my throat.  "Do you want my locker combination?"

"You're awake."  My dad was silent a little longer and this time I knew it was because he was grappling with how to tell me something.

"What happened to Zach, Dad?"  Tears started welling behind my eyes and I registered the sting of holding them back.  "Is he dead?"

"Oh, Sarah...  There's no reason to think that."

"No reason to
?"  I parroted, fingering the friendship bracelet at my wrist.  It's match lived on Zach's wrist.

"We got a call," my father clarified.  "A whole rash of them, actually.  Alarms going off in most of the shops along Main Street.  When we got there, each of the places had been busted into.  Windows smashed, registers cracked open.  Cash gone.  We spotted Zach's dad, Roger, hopping into his truck a couple of blocks away, so we stopped him.  We asked him what he was doing out in the middle of the night and he said that he and Zach had a fight.  He said that Zach took off so Roger followed him.  He thought maybe Zach would head to the bar for the night, stay there for the night since he had the key.  Roger said he was out looking around when he heard the police sirens and got worried Zach was in an accident.  He said he was getting into his truck to follow the sirens, but then we stopped right behind him at the curb."

My dad took a deep breath, "You know this isn't public knowledge, right?  You're on your honor here..."  I nodded and he continued.  "Well, Roger said he thought he saw Zach around the corner, near the boutique store.  It was the last store where an alarm went off, Sarah.  If Roger saw his son near that store, then it looks like Zach might have been breaking into shops for cash and then took off."

"That can't be right, Dad."  My voice wasn't defensive.  I was simply stating a fact.  "That's not like Zach at all."

"He's a person of interest, Sarah.  And he's gone.  That makes it look bad.  Plus, the everyone's looking at how screwed up his dad is.  He's from the wrong side of town.  His momma's gone.  And everyone knows he was fighting with his dad a lot.  There's no question that Zach might have finally left."

"It's just not possible, dad.  He might have left, but he wouldn't be breaking into stores.  Did you check his dad out?  I'd believe it if he was responsible..."

It could be that simple.

"He was clean.  No money, no marks from breaking windows.  Nothing.  We had to let him go."  Dad was quiet for another minute and I held my breath, knowing there was more to it.  Worried what it could possibly be.

"Sarah, you guys have been together for a couple years.  If you know where he might be, you have to tell us..."

I exhaled the breath I'd been holding.  Of course that was what he wanted to know.  Of course.

I wanted to cry.

Zach didn't do it.  I knew that, could feel it in my bones, in my heart.  If I told my dad where to find Zach, was it like handing him over?

But if they found him, then they would know he didn't have the money and he'd be let go.  Everything would go back to normal.


BOOK: The Ghost and The Hacker (Dark Fire Book 3)
4.71Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub

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