Hideaway by Nicole Lundrigan
English | 2019 | Mystery/Thriller | ePUB |960 Kb
Hideaway : Gloria Janes appears to be a doting suburban mother and loving wife. But beyond her canary-yellow door, Gloria controls her husband, Telly, as well as seven-year-old Maisy and her older brother Rowan, through a disorienting cycle of adoration and banishment.
When Telly leaves, Gloria turns on Rowan. He runs away, finding unlikely refuge with a homeless man named Carl, with whom he forms the kind of bond he has never found with his parents. After they are menaced by strangers, Rowan follows Carl to an isolated cottage, where he accidentally sets off a burst of heightened paranoia in Carl, and their adventure takes a menacing turn. Gloria is publicly desperate for the safe return of her son while privately plotting ever wilder ways to lure Telly home for good. Her behaviour grows more erratic and her manipulation of Maisy begins to seem dedicated toward an outcome that only she can see.
“Gloria? Is that you?” I heard grumbling. “Gloria? I’m sorry. I’m really sorry.” My throat constricted. I croaked, “Gloria? Telly? Telly!”
The light bobbed along until the beam reached my feet, slid up my legs. Shone straight into my eyes. I squinted, tried to yell “Leave me alone.” But nothing came out.
Panting, then. A quiet clicking. An animal’s wet mouth opening and closing.
“I am not a Gloria.” A grown man’s raspy voice. I couldn’t see him. “And I am, am, urh, not a Telly.”
Pee spilled down my leg, a burst of warmth. I shook my head. Fast. I wanted to run, but outside the circle of light was thick tar. I pressed my back into the tree. The ripples of bark cut into my shoulder blades.
Then he flashed the light on the sign above my head.
“But you’re a thief.” He mumbled something, then said, “Whoever created your signage has difficulty with, urh, proper letter arrangement.”
I clamped a hand over my gaping mouth, teeth stabbing my palm. I sucked air through my fingers.
The voice continued speaking in a flat, mechanical way. “Juvenile delinquent in the system. Once he’s in, it’s very, very, urh, difficult to get out.” The flashlight moved over my jeans and sweatshirt. “What sort of offender?”
A mousy squeak popped from behind my fingers. He aimed the light directly in my eyes. I tried to twist away
“What did you steal?” Louder this time.
I lowered my hand. “Chocolate.”