I hope that this storyline does not offend anyone. The events and characters are mostly from my imagination. The locale and the inhabitants are based on the CC and the beautiful world Ziwa Bonde by Nilxis. I doubt that the lots nor the people bear much resemblance to the real country or organizations that I used in the story.
The birth was difficult and the mother was in a lot of pain. Alissa took her hand and told her to squeeze as hard as she wanted. The mother looked up at Alissa in gratitude. The doctor assisting the mother to give birth smiled at Alissa for helping the mother to relax. The mother’s sister stood anxiously to the side. This was the mother’s second child, and she had lost her first child during a previous birth.
The Stallworths had been in Africa for two weeks now of their three week term. They were based at a mobile medical clinic. The nearest large town was hours away. All three of the Stallworths were tired but it had been very fulfilling and wonderful helping out the people in the camp. Most of the people they had met had been very warmhearted and hospitable even though they had very little in the way of material possessions. They’d lost a lot as a result of the warring groups in the country. It was an experience that the Stallworths would never forget, and they were very grateful for this special opportunity.
For the most part, those involved in the warring factions in the country respected the medical relief teams. The relief team heard stories of massacres in remote villages, and from time to time victims of shootings, stabbings and beatings would be rushed into the camp for medical treatment. Dale was assigned to do the specialized surgery needed for children, and other doctors and medical personnel assisted the adults and other children. Most days their camp was flooded with people needing medical assistance, and there was very little time to relax.
The supervisor of the area where Cara was working sent Cara for her dinner break. Cara wasn’t hungry, and so she went outside to look at the scenery. It was a beautiful country, and Cara hadn’t had much opportunity to take pictures outside. She’d taken many pictures of the people in the camps for her Mom’s story, but none of their beautiful surroundings.
She got her camera and started to take her pictures. She’d been cautioned against wandering far from camp and intended to stay close. Cara saw an adorable little monkey and just knew that she had to take a picture of it.
She was loving the shots that she was getting of him. She’d been cautioned against going far from camp and hesitated when the monkey started to leave. She wanted more pictures of him. She followed it into the trees promising herself that she wouldn’t go far.
At least it was until she heard the raised voices of men arguing. Someone cried out just as they came into Cara’s view. One man was on the ground and another stabbed him. Two more men stood around watching. Cara started to back away and head back to camp. As she did, she stepped on a branch and it made a loud crack.
Alissa and Cara started running. Cara was beginning to give out. She hadn’t realized that she had come so far away from the camp. She’d already run a good distance before she’d seen her mother.
Her mother had never spoken to her like that before. Cara was scared and she crouched down in the bushes just like Alissa told her to do.
Alissa moved away from Cara and headed in the direction where she could hear the men coming. She made some loud noises breaking branches and led the men to her. They had been told about a rebel group called Seleka who had been terrorizing remote villages in the area, but Alissa didn’t know if these men had anything to do with that group. However, she did know without question that she did not want them to harm her daughter!
Cara crouched in the bushes trembling and afraid for her mother. When she heard them hit her mom, she wanted to jump out and try to help her, but she knew that it would be better to go back to camp and get her Dad. As soon as she heard them moving away from the area, Cara crept quietly out of hiding and took off running through the trees back to camp. Cara ran into the camp screaming for Dale!
Dale was in the middle of an operation when he heard Cara screaming for him. The doctor assisting him took over and Dale raced outside to find Cara.
“What are you talking about, Cara!”
“In the jungle, I saw some men kill another man and they chased me! Mom found me and made me hide. Then she led the men away from me. They caught her and made her leave with them!”
“I’ll show you, Dad!”
The supervisor of the relief unit had rushed over when hearing Cara screaming. The camp security officers were there as well.
“Dr. Stallworth, I’m sorry that I had to do that, but it would have done you no good to go racing off into the jungle. Then we’d have lost both you, your daughter and Mrs. Stallworth. As you were informed in your information packet, the government has very little authority nor control in this part of the country. However, the closest law enforcement agency and the American embassy have been informed of the situation. Cara will you please inform Mr. Yarden that your father is conscious?”
When Mr. Yarden arrived he explained the situation to Dale.
Alissa looked around her not seeing another exit to the hut. It appeared to be used for storage. She slumped down onto the floor and huddled there wondering why they had brought her here and what they planned to do with her. No matter what though, she was glad that they had not taken Cara. Her throat was dry with thirst and she was exhausted. Her eye throbbed with pain from when the man had struck her and her lip was cut and hurting too.
Alissa was afraid to drink the water. They had been cautioned against drinking untreated water because of the microbes it might contain. He plopped the pan on the floor and then left Alissa alone in the hut. More time passed. Alissa had lost her watch in the jungle and she didn’t know how long she’d been there.
“You are American CIA sent to spy on us!”
It was the day following Alissa’s abduction and Dale was angry and afraid for Alissa. Although the state department was now involved, they were not holding out much hope for a good resolution. Alissa had been taken by a rebel faction outside of the control of the local authorities or governmental control. The American state department and the U.N. were insistent that Dale and the other members of the Doctor’s Without Borders organization in Dale’s group leave the country for their own safety. Dale didn’t want to leave without Alissa, but he wasn’t being given much choice.
The night before their trip home, Dale couldn’t sleep. He looked at Cara sleeping fitfully on her cot . He knew that she felt guilty for what had happened to her mother, but he felt the same as Alissa did. He was glad that their daughter was safe with him. He got up and kissed Cara’s cheek and then went outside the tent.
“I have friends in the state department and friends who try to let me know how the family is doing while I’ve been gone. It doesn’t take long for them to reach me when something serious happens. That’s how I learned about Joy’s illness. This time though, I disobeyed orders by coming here. Whatever I do…” He looked at the man who’d come with him. “Whatever we do, it isn’t officially sanctioned by the bureau or the state department. That way they have “plausible deniability.”
“Please call me Dale.”
“Dale, if your wife were not a celebrity or related to Alex, then we would not have been permitted to come. Alex is neglecting to tell you that his coming here will blow his cover and he’ll no longer be permitted to work out in the field undercover again.”
Dale looked at Alex, and Alex smiled at him.
“It’s okay, Dale. I’ve been ready to come home for a long time now. I miss the family. I miss my old life. I’m quitting the bureau and I think I’ll just go back to police work. Maybe I’ll take a desk job this time.”
“How will you explain your return after being declared dead?”
Alex answered Dale’s question. “Part of the truth will work. I was undercover and mistakenly thought to be dead. It happens! The bureau will make sure that whatever is necessary will be done to reestablish my identity.”
“We can talk about it later. What about Alissa? I can’t leave without her, Alex!”
Sharlee had picked Sky up from her grandmother Kaye’s home after finishing her classes. She took classes every morning and Kaye looked after Skylar while Sharlee was at the college. Sky was playing in her playroom. Sharlee stretched out on the couch and switched on the television to find some mindless comedy program to watch to unwind before preparing lunch for herself, Noah and Skylar. Noah usually tried to come home to eat lunch with her and Skylar.
“Mommy, I been thinkin a lot. I wan a Aidan.”
“Aidan has soccer practice this afternoon, but you can see him after that.”
“Yes! Can I have a little brother for me.”
Sharlee was surprised. “Awww, Babygirl! I’ll talk with your Dad about it, okay?”
“Yay! Okay Mommy.”
“Well… Hmm, you know how long you’ve been waiting for Cindy Mayburn’s cat to have her kittens?”
“Yes, a long, long time!”
“It’ll be a surprise for us whether or not we have a little brother or a little sister for you. We can’t pick whether to have a boy or girl. Nature just decides for us.”
“Yes, that’s right.”
Skylar was thinking deeply about what her mother told her. “I guess a sister is okay too. “
She was about to change the channel when she heard her mother’s name mentioned. She left it on the channel. That was how she heard the news that her mother had been taken hostage! Sharlee stared at the television screen in disbelief! Her phone rang right afterwards. It was her grandfather Matthew. He’d called to tell her about Alissa.
Crystal was sitting on the couch in her loft. June was making a hot drink for her. She’d come over to Crystal’s loft as soon as she’d heard about Alissa. Crystal’s doorbell rang, and June went to answer it. It was Angelo. He too had heard about Alissa. Even though they hadn’t spoken since the night she’d slept with Keith, Angelo was there as Crystal’s friend.
He came inside and sat down beside her. They looked at each other silently. Crystal never cried, but she couldn’t control the tears as they started to fall down her cheeks. Angelo pulled her close and held her as she cried.
I’ve already started the next chapter. I plan to finish this storyline for Alissa and then I’m going to concentrate on my other story, Mutation. I’m going to finish the remaining chapters of Mutation and then only on Alissa. Thanks for sticking with the story! ❤