Chapter Twenty-Four

Just as Kyle had expected, his arrival was met with resistance.

"Get the hell away from me!" Glen yelled, trying to slam the door in Kyle's face but fortunately Kyle had put his foot out to stop the door.

"Please!" Kyle pleaded, attempting to kick the door further open. "Just hear me out."

"Why should I listen to you?" Glen snarled.

"Because you don't know the full story." Kyle said simply, calmly. "I didn't do what I did out of my own accord."

That caught Glen's interest.

"You didn't?"

Knowing that he'd just bought himself some time, he decided to reveal a little more. "There's a man with a great deal of power who wanted revenge for Jake. He conscripted me. I did what he wanted me to do or else he'd send me back to prison and kill me!"

There was a moment's pause as Glen searched Kyle's desperate features for some sign of lying. When there wasn't any, he relented.

Barely.

"Why should I believe this?"

"Because you know this man that forced me to do this. You understand the power that he has, and now he's after me." Kyle clasped his hands together as if begging. "Please, I'm unarmed. The entire city is looking for me, and there's no way out. I'll explain everything if you just give me the chance."

The couple of seconds it took Glen to decide felt like an eternity, but he opened the door enough for Kyle to come in. "You've got a lot of explaining to do."

Although he was a criminal, this man was still his uncle. The sternness of his voice reminded Kyle of when he and Jake had gotten in trouble when they were younger. Bowing his head humbly, he said, "Yes, Uncle Glen."

The door closed behind him.


When he was finished telling the entire story, Kyle sat back in the chair nervously. He was begging, pleading with the Higher Power to make Glen believe him. He hadn't told a lie – he just didn't mention the part about kicking Clare down the stairs. Everything else was as he remembered it. Kyle had to admit that despite being frightened that he'd be thrown back into the street, it felt good to let all of it out. Scorpion has sworn that if he told a soul, they would be killed. He'd been wanting to tell someone for so long.

At least he told family.

After moment, Glen said, "What are we going to do? How do we stop him?"

"I haven't thought that far ahead," Kyle admitted softly, "But there's got to be someone within the police force that is aware of Scorpion's machinations and would be willing to help us."

Glen's expression grew skeptical. "There's too many police officers for that, and it would take too long. He's after you now, Kyle."

Like Kyle wasn't already aware of that fact. "I know he is, but we can't kill him. That would be murder, number one, and number two: it won't bring him to justice for what he's done."

"But it would remove the threat he poses to this family, and you would be able to live the rest of your life in peace." Glen insisted.

Would you still think that if you know what I'd done to Clare? Would you still want me to live the rest of my life in peace? "I'm surprised that even after knowing everything that I've done, you'd still wish peace for me." His throat tightened and his vision began to swim.

Glen leaned forward, smiling slightly. "The entire family has always known you were a troubled child, Kyle, but deep down we always knew that there was a good guy inside of that tough outer shell. You've made some mistakes, but you're still my nephew. I love you and I forgive you, knowing everything."

The tears that he'd been fighting back spilled over. "I just wanted justice for Jake. I never knew it would escalate to this."

The small smile that Glen had offered faded at the sound of Jake's name. "Clare knew as the rest of us knew that Jake wasn't right after... what happened. He was a broken man, Kyle. Clare was just defending herself."

Kyle looked up. "He was my best friend, Uncle Glen. He watched out for me when I went to prison. I owed him."

"You didn't owe him anything, Kyle. You've got to stop thinking that."

Although Kyle knew that Glen had a point, it hadn't felt that way. "That's probably why Scorpion that I was easy to manipulate." He murmured.

"That's in the past now, Kyle," Glen said reassuringly, "You're free now."

"Free?" Kyle repeated incredulously. "Scorpion's got the entire city looking for me. I won't be free until..."

Glen raised a brow for a moment before the realization dawned on him.

"Until he's dead."

Kyle nodded. It contradicted what he had said earlier, but the truth was Scorpion wouldn't stop hunting him until he was dead, or captured, tortured and begging for death or mercy. It was the only way to end this terrible business.

Glen stood up and started to make his way to the basement when there was a series of urgent knocks on the door.

Kyle jumped up and hid behind the wall, giving Glen a pleading look.

Glen nodded, gesturing for him to find a better hiding spot.

"Glen, Glen, Glen!" Another series of knocks, growing desperate. "It's me Eli, Eli Goldsworthy. I need to talk to you about Clare!"

Kyle's heart sunk.

"All right, Eli, hold on." Glen gave Kyle one last look that screamed hide.

"I'm going to open the door."

Knowing this was his last chance, Kyle bolted for the basement door, closing it behind him and leaning against the door so he could hear the conversation between Glen and Eli. He placed his ear on the door and heard the front door knob turn and hear the words that both comforted him and haunted him.

"Clare's awake, but she doesn't know who I am. Maybe she'll know who you are. Do you know where your nephew Kyle is?"