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jgranger https://jtgn.wordpress.com/2015/06/23/review-collectivefaith-christian-social-website/

knightspencer

1. find a topic you interested to start learning

In China ,people says that interesting are the best teacher. Chinese is not so hard to learn if you find something you're interested in. Such as Chinese culture , Chinese songs or the  Chinese scenery.

2. get a system learning

Chinese learning can divided into 4 parts----listening, pronuncing, writting and reading. Listening and pronuncing are about Chinese pinyin ,writting is about strokes .All that are quite different from English speaking and writting.

3. practise speaking with local Chinese

To learn a language is to get a tool. You can never use a tool only by studying the guide book. Speaking to local Chinese is good for correct the pronunciation and know what the local people say to learn more phrases and sentences.

4.reading

There are many blogs about learning Chinese that offers  some articles from biggner level to advanced level.By reading you can border your horizon and know the new words.

5.take time

China is a country with about five thousand years history and Chinese are changed and evolved in this long history.So Chinese can never be learned in a second. The begining will be hard. Just take your time and be patince.

Here I'd like to introduce a web to help you learn Chinese well.It's echineselearning,the biggest online Chinese learning school ,which offers professional teaching by local Chinese trained teachers for 24/7 via skype. All the lesson are 1-on-1 so you can communicate with your teacher when you met a problem and take your lesson whenever and wherever you want.

Click here ,you can sign up and get a free trial.

 


jgranger http://collectivefaith.com/blog/1911/how-to-set-up-a-page-on-collectivefaith/

ClarindaBurston If you have any questions, feel free to contact me at upward002@gmail.com

WelcomebackMegan I can't believe it's been a long time since I've been on this! I would love to catch up with all my old friends on here if you guys are reading this! I sure miss the fun time! Mucho love everyone! God Bless! 

wonder777 This is the final chapter to my "Crystal Chronicles" trilogy. Please read "The Secret" and "A Day On The English Shore" first! Please read and let me know what you think. God Bless, Wonder October 21, 2032 Part One: Tragedy Chapter One In a beautiful area in North London, on a lovely sunny day Monica was on a bench, enjoying the breeze and watching traffic come and go. "They should be here soon. What is taking so long?" She sighs impatiently looking at her watch. "3:00 and I tell them 2:45." Soon after, she sees Gloria come walking up the street. Sitting beside her supervisor, they waited for one more. "I have been here only two days and finally got to walk London Bridge." She gushed about her vacation. Also, Gloria showed off her new glasses. A pink pair, suited her pretty good. "So, what's the assignment?" "Andrew should be here soon." The older angel responded looking around. Soon enough, a man emerges from around the corner. Wearing a leather jacket, white shirt and jeans, Andrew walks over after spotting the two other angels. His hair was darker and he grew a goatee. Just wanted to try a new look. "You're late Andrew. I said 2:45 and it's 3:15." Monica was a little impatient since trying to reduce her coffee intake. "I had to take a gentleman Home not far from here. Wanted to see his great-grandson born. He was 99." He explains, running a hand through his shorter hair. "So what's the next assignment?" He sits down and pulls out a newspaper. "Let me take you to the family." Monica rises up and leads the other two down the street. They stop in front of a white fenced house, where a van just pulled into the carport. A woman and her three children, two boys and a girl, get out and begin to unload the groceries in the back. "Now Michael, help your brother with those heavier bags," Crystal Moore tells her older son as she unlocks the door. "Amy, carry those eggs very carefully. I can't afford to have them break." It had been a long day. Having her hair done, then a call to her editor about the sales of her latest book. Finally, after picking up the kids from school, grocery shopping. This was the first time today she had a breather. Then she felt something and was compelled to look in the direction where the angels stood. But by then, they were gone. Passing it off as tiredness, she turns her attention to helping her kids unpack. She had to get dinner started before her husband gets home..... Chapter Two "They are our assignment. The husband will be home soon and tomorrow we will meet with them." Monica begins to dole tasks. "Gloria, you will primarily work with the youngest boy. His name's Steven and he's autistic just like his mother. I will be working with the husband as his temporary manager. And Andrew, you will be working with the mother and the older two kids." Monica points them out through the window. "Their names are Michael and Amy. It's their 12th birthday tomorrow. You should know their mother." Andrew got a glimpse of her. That's Crystal, it can't be. She's aged well and looks great, he thought. "She seems so happy, then why are we here?" He asks. "That is the question." Monica replies and Gloria takes a moment to try and remember who the mom was. Then she remembers. "North Carolina, right?" Monica nods and confirms Gloria's statement. The Next Day Every thing was ready for the twins' party. They were growing up so fast, it seemed like it was yesterday they were born. On a date she would rather forget, an anniversary she dreads but has since learned to deal with. Maybe it was a blessing for something wonderful to happen on that date. The back of her left hand always itched around this time. It had been like that since she cut it. Alex would be bringing the cakes and already the pile of presents from her family in the States was neatly stacked on the extra table brought out for such occasions. Pink and blue streamers were spread over the windows in the living and dining rooms. A big banner with "Happy Birthday Michael and Amy" spread over the main windows in the living room. It looked better with the sunlight coming through. He had taken the day off from recording his new album for this occasion. Now he was picking up the birthday cakes and getting his temporary manager, Monica, up to speed. "It was sad to see Basil lose his mother. He's really good. Remind me to send his family a bouquet and a card. At least he recommended you." Getting the cakes finally (there were five of them, because of the number of guests), they packed and headed for his house. They got back two hours before the guests arrive. Just enough for everyone to get ready. Crystal was with Amy in her room, brushing her long dark brown hair and pulling it up into a bun. "I wish my hair was this long when I was your age. It's just like mine. Fine and the same shade, but with a hint of red like your dad's." Oh, to be 12 again under different circumstances....Then Crystal remembers the little present on the dresser. Picking it up, she hands it to Amy. "I'm letting you wear this because it's a special occasion." Crystal opens the box and in it was a silver pendant with a sapphire surrounded with small diamonds. "It was the first big present your father gave me when we first started dating. One day it will become yours." She takes it out and puts it around her daughter's neck. "Looks lovely on you." Crystal beams with pride. Chapter Three Andrew rushes to the front door, he was already late. His boss had asked him to get some presents for the twins and the lines at the store were horrendous. He saw a few cars in the driveway and knocked on the front door. A girl, about twelve answers and takes a look. "Where's your invitation? Mr. Moore, we seem to have a gate crasher here." She turns and calls to someone in conversation. He comes up and greets Andrew. "Come on in. It's a party, sorry for not letting Stephanie here know you were coming. Her and our daughter are best friends." Alex introduces everyone to the guests. Some were friends from the twins' school, others were members of his family. And others who were close friends. "We're just getting started. Presents go over there." pointing to a pile on the table. Then Alex calls everyone to attention. "Now I would like present the birthday boy and girl. Michael and Amy Moore." Turning everyone's attention to the stairs, Andrew saw the kids he saw the day before come down. Michael was in a nice suit and tie, looking a little uncomfortable. Amy, on the other hand, was a spitting image of her mother. Hair, eyes, even that half smile was inherited. She had a lavender outfit with a white top. Looking prim and proper. Then she was coming up behind them. It had been 20 years since they first met in that church office. Crystal had only grown more beautiful since. She looked more confident, happier, content. Then everyone began to sing "Happy Birthday". Alex introduces the kids to Andrew. Then he calls Crystal over. She takes one look and recognizes the angel, despite the hair and goatee, she never forgot those features. "Crystal, this is Andrew. He is going to be around here while I'm on the road and I've set Steven up with a new therapist while Sandy is out." Crystal shakes his hand. Just like that Sunday afternoon 20 years ago. Andrew kisses her hand and notices the faint scar on the back of her left hand. "Pleased to meet you Mrs. Moore." She explains to Alex that they met when she was 17 and he worked with her church group for a time. She calls their children over. "These are our twins, Michael and Amy. Today's their big day. And this little one is Steven." She motioned the smallest one out from behind his brother. Andrew notices he's awfully shy. "He turned 9 a few months back." She ruffles his reddish brown hair. "Looks just like his father." Crystal flashes a smile. The party goes well and eventually dies down. It was late and school was tomorrow along with Alex starting his latest stretch of shows over in Prague. Amy gets her first kiss from a boy at school as Crystal and Alex watch from inside the kitchen window. And Michael finally got that signed soccer jersey has wanted the last year. Later, after the kids had finally went to settle down, Crystal and Alex began to relax. He was leaving in the morning for a few concerts and they wanted to be alone. They had slipped into bed when Andrew knocked. "Steven's asleep and the twins are about to change." He says through the closed door. "Okay make sure lights out by 10:30." Chapter Four Amy sneaks into her mother's study. This was where the magic was made. Once in a while she came in here while nobody was around. This room fascinated her, all the pictures and the books lining the shelves. But this time around, she was looking for the photo books. Also to return the necklace she lent her. Safely put back in the box and right beside the framed picture of all of them next to the computer. Finding the albums, she flipped through looking at her Mom at around the same age she was. That short hair and almost all of them she noticed Mom had a sadness in her eyes. Like she was hurting. Mom never talked much about her younger days. But she bore a resemblance to Grandfather Bryan. "Are you supposed to be in here?" Came a voice from behind. It was Andrew, and it made Amy snap out of her focus on the books. She swore she closed the door. "Mummy knows I do this and has no problem as long as I don't mess anything up. I'm just trying to know what she was like when she was twelve." She lied. She took a good look at the angel. His hair was a short dark blonde and the goatee wasn't too bad. "You knew my mum. What was she like growing up?" Andrew was at a loss for words, asking a question like that. "I didn't know her very long back then, but you are an awful like her, in looks and personality." He helps her put away the photo albums, Amy looked up at the clock. It was 10:18. "10:30 lights out." Andrew leads her out. He turns and looks around at the study. An American flag and the Union Jack graced one wall. Many pictures were in frames and placed throughout the room. The one closest to the computer was one of her with family. Also, lots of sticky notes. Mostly concerning deadlines and plot points. He would have to read through some of her work in his time off. Checking in on the kids, he took some time to do that. He was impressed at how talented she really was. But the question remains: why was he assigned to Crystal and her family? Monica and Gloria were thinking the same thing... Reading some of her novels, it seemed she was blessed with an ability to create. A very fertile imagination and the detail was amazing. Gloria shows up and read all the "Veritas Order" books in less than an hour. All 20 books (there was one more and that was to be the finale, not yet published), and she was satisfied. Chapter Five Crystal woke up the next morning to an empty bed. Alex had to leave early to catch his flight for his next string of gigs. Then with Andrew's help, got the kids ready for school. And this morning Steven wasn't in the best of moods. It wasn't the best of mornings. A nice strong cup of herbal tea would help as she rarely touched coffee. Andrew and Crystal finally had a few moments to play catch up. She put on a teapot and laid out some crumpets she made the day before. "I've become a pretty good at making these. My mother-in-law's recipe." He tries one and it was quite good. She tells him about what happened after they last saw each other. "Well, within a day, I went from cap and gown to the courthouse, literally. The trial was the day after I got my diploma. My former stepfather was found pguilty of assaulting me and Haley. Got 20 years but would be out on good behavior in 13." Andrew could see the shadow cross her eyes. "And how does that make you feel knowing he could be out?" He reaches out and touches her hand. "Upset. I sent a video expressing my opposition to his early release and they still let him out. Then about three years ago, he died in a car wreck down where he grew up, they never found the body. So I'm glad he's not around." The teapot whistled, and she fixes the cups. "An herbal blend that helped me with nausea during my pregnancies. Not bad for colds, headaches, and warming up the insides." Crystal gives a half smile pouring it. "Preparing, pouring, and drinking tea is an art onto itself. One lump or two?" She asks Andrew. He asks for two and tries it, finding it quite flavorful. Crystal sits down and picks up the story. "You should have been there. He was blaming everyone else for his actions. Still he was found guilty. The hardest part was being on that stand having to recall those details. Guess I was glad I didn't succeed in killing myself, huh?" Andrew nodded. "I couldn't be there, but I did hear from Henry about you. The beach with your boyfriend back then?" He always had that look. "Well, back then I knew it would come up and decided to open up to him. I was so scared he would dump me. Henry was sent to give me a 'swift kick in the pants' so to speak and I ended up marrying Alex after realizing I couldn't let that come between us. In fact, we didn't consummate our relationship until our wedding night." She talked about her mom's divorce from Haley's dad and how she had his parental rights terminated. Then about her first meeting with her biological father and a little about that side of her family. "Believe it or not, my dad was a preacher. That side of my family is full of them. He was married and had a son when he met my mom. They had an affair and I came out of that. He divorced his wife and they were planning to marry, but something broke them up. He remarried and became an alcoholic selling insurance. Then my mom convinced him to meet me after his second wife died. We did the tests and he had a wonderful relationship until he passed 3 years ago." Andrew was impressed. Crystal showed him a picture of her dad when they first met. She bore a great resemblance to him. "I also have a half brother. He's 46 and is married with 3 kids. 17, 14, 10. My dad legally adopted me and Haley after the courts terminated her dad's parental rights." "My parents married when I was 21. I had just got back to my place after my first date with Alex and got an email from Mom telling me this." She pauses, asking Andrew if he wanted another cup. He says yes and then the story continues. "Haley is now married with a son and a baby on the way. She lives in Chapel Hill as an elementary school teacher. My brother lives in New York with his family as an ad executive." The phone beside Crystal rings. It was her editor, with some good news. "One of the higher ups at Fantasy Monthly wants to meet with you about publishing some exclusive short stories for their magazine. Usually, they frown upon foreign writers, but they may be softening up. You interested?" Crystal tells her that she would think on it and get back to her. Chapter Six "I stayed with Cassie until I left to come here at 21. My family supported me all the way and I feel more....belonged here." Crystal resumes, "my cousin on Dad's side is also a preacher and when he's coming our way, this is where he stays. What a family tree I have." "Of course I met and married Alex, my family was shocked when he first met them." He proposed to me a year after our first date and 6 months later, we married." Crystal got misty eyed here. "Not long after, my first book was published and we were expecting twins." Andrew looked around at the family portraits on the walls. "I am truly content Andrew. I've found my place, my purpose for being here." She looks at the clock and realizes it was almost time to pick up Steven. "I have to go fetch my youngest, he has therapy today. Oh, where's Monica and Gloria? Usually they are around where you are." She gives a wink. "Sometimes I sense angels. It's a gift." "This is the greatest adventure I've ever had in my life Andrew." Crystal looks out the window then back at him. "I wouldn't change it for the world." Then she rises up from the table and picks up her coat, it was almost time to take Steven to his therapy session. Alex and Monica were prepping for interviews and talked about his family. "I was always told by my father i would marry a Durham girl. He was right. But instead of a County Durham gal, I got a Durham County USA one." He pulls out a picture from his wallet. Monica looks at the family of five. Her old assignment was beautiful, her youthful looks matured. The children were beautiful, the daughter looking exactly like her mother. "I'm proud of them." Alex flashes that trademark smile. "Crystal is the only woman I truly love. She's risen from the ashes of her troubled life like the Phoenix. When she told me about her past, it scared her so much she thought I would bresak up with her right then and there. But I was hopelessly in love with her by then." He had that serious look not many knew. "She wanted to know me as a person, not as a pop star. In fact, she didn't tell her family we were dating for a good 10 months." Monica was facinated at his humility. He took back the picture and got a little teary eyed. "You can only imagine the shock on their face when I showed up at their doorstep." He chuckles at the thought. "Mr. Moore, you're needed in makeup." A producer comes up and let's him know. "Thrity minutes before the taping." Alex finishes off his coffee and goes to the make up room. Monica ponders about why she's assigned to him and not the wife. Chapter Seven The next few days passed with almost no problem. Gloria was already doing wonders with Steven. He seemed more calm, more able to handle stress, especially since Crystal remembers her. The kids were at school and Crystal was at her desk, typing away at her new novel. She had sent the final copy of her latest book to the editor, the final book of her landmark series. Suddenly she felt tired. Taking a break, Crystal decided to take a nap. No sooner than her head hit the pillow she began to dream. It was the same one she had the last few weeks. She was with her husband and kids at a graveside. Looking up from the casket being lowered, she sees a man by the trees. Something was familiar but she couldn't put her finger on it. Then the scene changes to a wooded area. Her family were surrounded by a dark cloud that came up from behind her. The voices were tormenting. Crystal had almost forgotten what they sounded like, but knew what they were. Then a big tarantula appears and crawls towards Amy but she doesn't notice. Again that feeling of familiarity rippled through her. It weaves a web around her, and when Crystal tries to reach her, she gets trapped as well. The spider crawls up and stares into her eyes. Unnaturally red eyes of evil. Crystal recognizes them all too well. And the fear crashes through her, Crystal jolts upright and reaches for a journal and pen she kept at her nightstand for such things like this. Andrew stands bedside, unseen. He recalled the last time they talked before now and how she described a vision. Alex must never know. But I have to protect my family, especially Amy. Crystal thought, could it be a warning dream? Maybe my cousin can help. He is gifted in this kind of thing. I'll email him right away. Andrew and Monica were watching Crystal writing her cousin in the States about the dream she had earlier. Recalling every detail she could, Crystal put it all in this e-mail. She was trembling so badly, her usual ease with the keyboard was affected. It took almost an hour and a half for her to write it. "Anything wrong?" Andrew had brought the kids home from school because Crystal wanted a nap. "Nothing. Been trying to iron out some plot points for an upcoming short story I'm working on. Wore me out, but I think I got it worked out." He knew she was hiding something. Alex called that evening, like he always did while on the road. The kids were ecstatic to hear from their Dad. He always brought little presents wherever he went for Mom, Michael, Amy and Steven. This time, he was in Prague, Berlin, and even Italy. It pained Crystal not to tell him of her dream. And she hadn't heard back from her cousin yet. The next afternoon after church, Crystal sat on the back porch, sipping on some tea while Michael and Steven were over at a friend's house and Amy laid down for a nap. Letting the English winds blow through her hair, she enjoyed the quiet moments. It was starting to get colder, so a jacket was required. Andrew was standing by when Monica appears. "Her husband is starting to worry about his wife." She says, in a concerned tone. "Especially since he's getting letters from someone in the States. They come through his management and that's why he's upped security at his shows and any function his wife has." She hands him a light blue envelope. Handwritten and printed, it looked like a mess. Andrew pulls out its contents and begins to read. Chapter Eight "Dear Mr. Moore," "I am writing about that holier than thou wife of yours. Be careful of what she says. She's not the angel she claims to be. Mention 'cold muskrat moon' and see how she reacts....." The letter left only one initial: "K" "They started coming about six months ago. They were at first fan mail, but quickly turned into an attack on Crystal. Attempts to trace them have failed. Andrew, could her dreams and these letters be connected?" Monica asks, her Irish accent intensified by her emotions. "She has no idea. Alex had been trying to hide them, but it's not working. He loves Crystal and the kids, but it won't be long before it comes out. I have to go, keep close to her and the kids." Monica vanishes. "Amy, could you please get that binder on my desk next to the lock box in my study? The green one. Thank you." Crystal had to sift through some notes for ideas. She had decided to accept the Fantasy Monthly offer. Amy goes in and finds the binder. Underneath it was an envelope. It was addressed to Mom. "North Carolina Department of Corrections" was the return address. Opening it, she read about someone being paroled. "Mrs. Moore, in compliance with....." The rest didn't make sense to Amy. She had to ask Mummy about this. It was dated shortly after Granddad passed 3 years earlier. She had to ask Mum why she knows a criminal later. Carrying the binder down to the dining room, she saw Mum crying. Michael and Stephen had wrapped their arms around her. "What was wrong?" she asked. Andrew stepped in and told Amy. "Your grandmother had a massive heart attack earlier today and is in the hospital. We're going to the States and let you see her one last time. She won't be with us much longer." Amy was shocked. Grandma had not been well since Grandpa died, but this..."Everyone, pack up. Make sure it's enough for a week and put in a nice outfit for the service. Andrew, get the plane tickets and hotel booked." Crystal finally choked out a few words. "I'll call Alex and let him know to meet us. It's the last date of the tour for him." Alex had just left the stage when Monica hands him the phone. "Urgent message from home" she yells over the noise. He calls back home. After a frantic few minutes of calming his wife down, he tells her to get over there and he would meet her as soon as he gets a flight out of Milan. "My mother-in-law has had a heart attack and won't last much longer. I need a flight out to Raleigh-Durham as soon as possible. Can you pull that off Monica?" Chapter Nine Crystal managed to get an 11 o'clock night flight out from Heathrow. She managed to get the kids packed, the schools informed they were going to be out, and booked the flights. All without breaking down emotionally. Thankfully, Andrew was there to help. Also, she had to hold it together for everyone. Everyone was tired already and a five hour flight wouldn't make it any easier. Alex would try to get a flight out as soon as possible. In the hospital, Haley Anderson sat by her mother's bedside. She held her hand, "She's coming Mom. Please hang on for her." Tears slid quietly down her cheeks. How would she explain how this happened? She slid one hand down to her pregnant stomach and caressed it. Never had Crystal been so nervous on a flight. Her children were sleeping as soon as they buckled up and it was just her and Andrew awake. "The only times I had ever been nervous on a flight was when I came over to London to study and when I brought Alex over to meet my family." The bottle of water she held shook as she spoke. "Calm down," Andrew gently told her, "you will get through this. It may be....her time to go. Just like your dad." He takes her hand and squeezes it, staring into her eyes. She remembers how he did that before and it made her feel better. Drawing a deep breath, Crystal closed her eyes and tried to get some sleep. It was going to be a long few days. Touching down in North Carolina, it was around 6:45 and the sun was setting there. Immediately they got a rental and Andrew drove everyone to the hospital. Haley was waiting for them. "Thank God you got here." She embraces her big sister and hugs the kids. "The doctors say it's not good. Let the kids say their goodbyes. Also, there's something else we have to discuss." She looks at Andrew, "I swear I've seen you somewhere before." Seeing her mother attached to machines almost drove Crystal to tears. But as always, kept it together for the kids. Margaret Grayson lay there, able to open her eyes to see her eldest daughter and grandchildren beside her bed. "Grandmother," Steven shrieked, wanting to give her a hug, but was held back by his big brother. All he could do was hold her hand, "sorry you're like this. We love you." He kisses her forehead, at least he tries. She looks over at the small crowd around her bed. "I'm so proud of you." She whispers so low it was hard to hear. "Crystal, you've done a fine job raising these three. A better job than I did with you and Haley." For a moment, a shadow crosses her eyes then a smile comes across her face. "My greatest dream came true already Crystal. With you, I wanted to see you grow up, especially after the trial and being in a foreign land, that scared me the most." Margaret glances over at the grandkids. "Watch out for that one." She points to Michael, "He's going to be a real troublemaker." Everyone laughs. Chapter Ten Alex and Monica had finally gotten a flight out of Rome to London and then to Raleigh. He called Crystal and assured her it would be at least midnight before they arrived. "I've always liked my mother-in-law," he told Monica, "a really good woman. Crystal is so much like her in personality." Monica had cleared his schedule for the next week and rescheduled interviews and studio sessions. She had an idea of why he was her assignment and not Crystal. Something big was going to happen and soon. It was just past midnight when they arrived from the airport, with Andrew meeting them at the hotel. Alex took a cab to the hospital straight to the hospital. The only thing that mattered was being at his wife's side. Alex had always like his mother-in-law, despite all the jokes. In the hospital room, Margaret Grayson had one last talk with her eldest daughter. "I love you and proud of what you've done with yourself. There's something else," She's then interrupted by something in the room "so, you're here to take me Home?" Pointing to the doorway, Crystal turns to see Andrew standing there, glowing and in a off white suit. He walks over and takes Margaret's hand. "Yes, it is time for you to go." Crystal breaks in, angry. "NO! I want her here. I won't allow it!" Her stormcloud grey eyes flashing at the angel. "It's not fair." "It is her time to go Crystal. You have no power to stop the Father's plan. Would you rather let her suffer or let her go?" Andrew tells her. Margaret then chimes in. "I just want to rest. Now will let an old woman go on to her reward?" Turning to him, she tells him how stubborn Crystal always was growing up. "I'll be fine. You have a husband and children, my time here is complete. Honor me this one last time by letting me be." Crystal then realized she had let her emotions take over. Reluctantly, she says yes. Andrew takes Margaret and the two disappear. The monitor flatlines at 12:22 am exactly. She gives her mother one last kiss on the forehead before the nurses come in. Almost in a daze, she calmly walks out, barely paying attention to what was going on. Alex had arrived just in time to see his wife coming down the hall. She looks up to see him and collapses into his arms The look on her face said it all. Haley came running up (the best a pregnant woman could at 8 months), greeting her brother-in-law with an embrace. "She just passed. Everything has already been arranged and the service is the day after tomorrow." Crystal didn't care. All she wanted to do was have Alex hold her. His arms were the safest place for her to be in at the moment. Now, it was back to the hotel and break the bad news to their children. Also, she would break the news to her brother. He grew to love Crystal's mom, this would tear him apart. Chapter Eleven It was almost 1:30 in the morning by the time Alex and Crystal got back to the hotel room. By then, Joshua had been told and would be kept up to date about the service details. He would be there with his wife and two kids. Monica and Andrew had took turns watching the kids. They got impatient with all the waiting, so the angels had to keep them busy until they finally got tired. Crystal finally called with the news and that her and Alex were on their way. But not to wake the kids until then. "Crystal argued with me Monica," Andrew said, "and she had that look in her eye. The last time I saw that, it was pure rage. Like she was cheated out of something important." He was frustrated, memories coming back. Then there was a knock at the door. Monica answers, letting Alex and Crystal in. Steven had woken up and was coming out of the bathroom when he saw his parents. He began to run up, but saw something was wrong. They woke up the twins and told them that Grandma passed away. "She went peacefully. No pain and....." Crystal couldn't go on. But the tears wouldn't come either. Alex takes over and lets them know the service would be the day after tomorrow. Amy began to let the tears flow, Michael reaches over to calm his sister down and Steven was trying to process it all. The five of them all got in a group hug and everyone went to sleep. Amy drifted off with memories of her grandmother in her mind. All the times they laughed, the stories of how she grew up, and her cooking. Oh how Amy would miss Grandma's cooking! Mom was just as good, but something about a grandparent fixing homemade cookies made it a little bit better. Now she's gone. Also, she never got to ask Mum about that letter she found in her study. But that would have to wait until later. The next day was hard on all of them. Thankfully, the funeral was already preplanned. Crystal's mom would be buried next to her husband in the same cemetery as her grandfather. A private service would be held in a church nearby. Through her management, Crystal had released a statement about this and the condolences started coming in. Chapter Twelve Crystal's brother flew in from up north with his family for the service. A small service was at Mom's home church. Ironically, it was just three miles from where Haley and Crystal grew up. Only family and some friends were allowed in, no media. Haley came up before the service and pulled Crystal aside. "We have to talk about how Mom ended up in the hospital. But after this and alone. There are....concerns." She pauses as people started to pass by offering condolences. It was a short, but pleasant (as a funeral can be) ceremony. Plenty of flowers despite the family asking for donations instead, but still they brightened the mood a little. Crystal still couldn't shed a tear. It was like before when she was seventeen. Numbed to where she felt almost nothing. Crystal and Haley's mother was then buried next to her second husband in a cemetery not far away. The same place where other members of her family were also buried. There were only a few people (20 to be exact, including the minister). Crystal, couldn't hold back the tears at graveside. She had gotten a response from her cousin in Virginia. Her instincts were dead on. It was a warning dream, someone or something from the past will come back and try to lure her in using those who love her. The spider was a type that weaves a web that lures in their prey to a slow trap. And it was coming quickly. Walking away from the graveside, Crystal looks around. In the shadow of a elm tree, she sees a man smoking. For a brief moment, she feels worse than ever. Then turning away, he was gone. Andrew felt the same thing as he helped usher the family into the limo. At Haley's home in Chapel Hill, she had to break the news to her sister. That the heart attack was triggered by someone breaking in Mom's house. "The police believe it was....him." It was almost too much for her to even say it. "What? You're saying Mom was scared into a heart attack? And who are you talking about?" Crystal was upset, almost yelling, her acquired British accent gone and the native tone rises up. Good thing Andrew was with the kids and it was her, Haley and Alex. Part Two: Revenge Chapter One "Kyle Thomas McCoy." Haley had said it. Crystal had not heard that name in years. Shudders went up her spine just thinking about it. Alex noticed her trembling and drew her close. "We never speak his name in casual conversation. He's my former stepfather and Haley's biological father." Crystal says in a trembling voice. "He was the one who...." the words trailed off from there. A knock at the door brought everyone to attention. It was the police officer in charge of the case. "Mrs. Thompson, I'm following up on leads concerning the break in at your mother's house. I am so sorry for your loss." As they sat down, Monica was watching all this. She remembers that day almost 20 years earlier where she froze that man in his tracks. How he spat in her face and the fear in his eyes when she revealed her angelic status. Crystal recognized the detective. He went to high school with her and now was at the top of his game. "Mrs. Moore, your mother was beaten before she had the heart attack. And the only thing missing aside from some petty cash, was a page from her address book." He hands Crystal a blue leather book, already processed by the police. Crystal always knew her mom was organized. Even her address book was meticulous, alphabetically organized. Addresses, email, phone numbers, she had it all. Flipping through it, she finds where the page was torn. And it sent shudders through her body. The missing page had her address in London. He now knew where she lived. Now not just her, but her family was now in danger from a madman. Her worst nightmare now was coming true. Andrew by this point, had arrived back with the kids. He found Crystal on the back porch, trembling. Alex held her in his arms, but it was like she was in another world mentally. It took a few minutes, but she began to snap out of it. "He's back Andrew. The man I helped put away is alive and now wants my blood." were the first words out of her mouth. "I never would have thought he actually would come after me. Make promise on his threat at the trial." She choked back tears as she recalled that moment. After dinner, the family went back to the hotel they were staying at. Crystal and Alex had decided it was time to tell the kids about what was going on. They knew their mother had a difficult life and nothing more, but she knew it would eventually happen. Cassie had been at the funeral and was asked to come over. She was always there for her 'little sister" and they still kept in touch after all these years. They had talked about how to bring this up, not just to Alex, but their kids as well. Chapter Two Amy and her twin brother had been worried about their mother and she expressed concern to him. She told him about the letter she found and how she felt how Mom lied to them. "I'm telling you Michael, she's hiding something. I found pictures of her with a woman who wasn't Grandmum." Michael looked at his sister with concern. "Listen. You always jump to conclusions. There has to be a good reason she doesn't tell us everything. Stop acting like she's got something to hide." He looks over at their little brother, flipping through a book. Monica, Alex's manager, had brought them back to the hotel because the adults had to talk. Trying everything she could to take their minds off the funeral, they just packed up so they would be ready to go back home the next morning. About 8 o'clock their parents came in. Amy noticed her mom had a concerned look on her face and their Aunt Cassie was there too. "We need to talk," their dad said, his face carrying a look of great concern. "All three of you." Sitting down, Crystal had the hardest time finding the words to say. The last time she felt like this was when she had to do this same thing with Alex that day at the beach. Now it's with her children ages twelve and nine. With one deep breath and with her family and friends beside her, Crystal began to tell her story. A burden lifted as she told her story in terms the kids could understand. She could see the looks on their faces, especially little Steven's. Afterwards, Amy speaks up. " Mum, is that why you are sad sometimes and why you rarely talk about your childhood?" She had that look of shock and worry on her face. Michael was speechless considering he was a talker. Steven was in a state of shock, even for his age. Alex and Crystal had decided to keep from the kids about what led to their grandmother's passing until they got more information. For now, they felt it best to just leave it at that. Tomorrow they would be on their way home to London, figuring out how to protect their kids without scaring them. At the airport, a man dressed in black, presented his identification to the attendant at the counter. "One flight to London. Business class." After he bought the ticket, and gave a sinister smile. It was time for revenge, he thought, caressing a piece of paper torn from a book. It was the key to finding the person who in his mind ruined him. Chapter Three The kids took this better than Crystal had expected. She watched them as they slept. It would be a busy day tomorrow with going back home. There were things named in the will that would be sent over to her. Everything was set up in advance with Haley being named executor of the will simply because she lived closer. Monica had to pull her away from the door. By this point they recognized each other even after 20 years. Crystal was already tired and it was almost 11 oclock by the time she got to sleep. It was going to be a long day. The sleep was shallow, even in her husband's arms, because of the fact the man who killed her mother was out there, alive and planning something. As much as she hated hiding the fact that he was out there from the kids, it was harder on her than anyone else. Morning came and everyone was a little frantic from oversleeping by half an hour. Traffic in the afternoon was bad due to a wreck a mile from the airport and Steven having a little meltdown from the noise didnt make things better. Thankfully they all got to the flight back in time. On the way back, as the kids slept, Alex and Crystal along with Monica and Andrew, had to plan a strategy. Obviously, they didnt have any pictures of the man, that was a problem. But they could go to the authorities in London and try to get some help there. The greatest concern at the moment were the kids, especially Steven. There would be increased security at their public appearances and only a few would know the truth. Touching down and finally getting back home, it was just past one in the morning. Usually for Crystal, coming home to the Manor (as she affectionately nicknamed it), was comfortable. But not this time with the danger looming. It was raining and mists made the roads that much more dangerous. Also, it was symbolic as in reminding one that things thought to have been left behind can come back in unexpected ways and at random times. The next day Alex had to go in for a studio session and Andrew took over with the kids. He had become concerned with Crystal about all this, but as per the Father's orders, he kept close to her while Monica stayed with Alex. Gloria would remain unseen with the kids while they were out and about. Crystal sat at her desk, unable to type a thing. A stack of notes lay barely touched and the cup of tea was going cold. She felt the spark that fueled her creativity had gone out. Too much was on her mind, Mom passing and of course, the madman on the loose possibly on his way to London for her head. Little does she know that last part had already come to pass. Outside, a man sits across the street on a bench, watching and waiting for the right moment to strike..... Chapter Four The next few days the feeling Crystal had of being watched just wouldn't go away. She was almost afraid to pray and when she did, it sounded hollow and weak. Like all her faith was drained. Despite Andrew trying to help, she withdrew. Friends came by and tried to encourage her, but it wasn't working. Only a few people knew of her dream and what caused her mother's death. Also, Crystal and Alex went straight to the police the day after touching back down in London. They promised everything possible would be done to find and stop her former stepfather. That brought little comfort. Another week and Alex had some concerts over in Berlin and Madrid, so he would have to leave. Crystal and the kids had the house to themselves. One afternoon, the twins were walking home when Michael asked his sister about what their mom told them. "You hadn't spoken a word about Mum's bombshell since we got back." Now, he wasn't the smartest of the two, but he always knew when his twin had something on her mind. "That letter I told you about? There was mention of someone being released that was connected to Mum. The date was right after Granddad died, and He had the same last name as Aunt Haley, before she married. She was hiding something." Amy finally told her brother, unable to keep the emotions back. "There's more to this than what she told us back at Aunt Haley's house." In the shadows, a figure waits, watching as the two pass by. Revenge was the only thing on his mind. Especially the girl....he knew right then how he would pull this off... Crystal met with Gloria about Steven. It was like they never missed a beat. "It was good to finally tell them the truth," She tells Gloria, "it had to come out sooner or later." She hadn't eaten much since coming back, also along with the stresses of family and career, that didn't help matters either. "Mom was happier after the trial and life with Dad completed her. I was happy we repaired our relationship before I came over here." Crystal started tearing up, and the angel hands her a box of tissues. Steven runs over and hugs his mother, asking if she was okay. She assures him she was and he goes out to play in the front yard where his mother could see him. Gloria had spent the day working with the youngest Moore child. This was a break in the session. She went a day without coffee (Monica had corrupted her there), learning instead a little about the art of tea. Chapter Five Steven was outside gazing at the trees on the edge of the yard and feeling the bark. It was rough and crumbled when he pulled it off, amusing him. A rustle startled him, making him turn around. An old man stood there, his finger at his lips telling the boy to keep quiet. Grizzled and old, he looked at the child up and down. "You look more like your dad. Though you act like your mom." He spits on the ground, then grins, revealing a line of rotten and jagged teeth. "Not one word" he tells the boy before slipping into the shadows. The clouds were about to burst when Steven goes running towards the door. Andrew, unseen, looks on only allowed to interfere if he little one was in danger. Something was familiar about the man.... The storm began, and Steven still had issues with loud noises and became nervous when they came. Lightning was no problem but the thunder made him tremble and Mom or Dad would have to reassure him all was okay. Also, that man he saw on the other side of the fence scared him. The teeth, that voice, and the long scar along his left cheek. The storm was bad enough, but this on top of it, almost made it unbearable. The twins had came in just minutes before the rain poured. Their mother always told them the angels were bowling or God was crying with storms like this. They had homework and when Mom wasn't looking, the two had snuck into her study where Amy found the letter she told Michael about. "This is where I found it. Look at the name." She points to the name on the line, "That must be the man Mum told us about. He must have really hurt her to make Mum never mention his name." They hear a noise in the hall and quickly put it back before leaving. Alex had a successful gig, but it just didn't have the same vibe as before. Monica had become concerned about him with the stalker and all. She knew he had suspicions the mysterious letter writer was now his wife's former stepfather. It was frustrating at how this was all turning out. He didn't want to scare his children, nor make them live under a constant state of fear. Being a public figure, it was hard enough for them to have a normal life. At least now they knew why their mother was always a little more protective about things than some parents. Why she wanted them to be open with her about anything. In the hotel room, he began to weep in Monica's lap because it had become too much even for him to handle emotionally. Chapter Six I hate European tobacco, the man thought taking a drag off of a cigarette. It makes me feel sick and the smell disgusts me. The only thing keeping those thoughts at bay was finding the address he held in his hand. Rounding a corner, he looks at the numbers on the mailboxes until he finds the right one. 133 N. Kensington Lane. This has to be it. He smiles as he rustled into his coat pocket and pulls out a letter. It had one name on the front and it was in a light blue envelope, like the others. Someone was coming out the front door. Quickly, he slips it into the already full mailbox and hides behind a tree. It was the girl. She looks just like her mother, a prize catch. Watching Amy empty the mailbox, she goes back in. Kyle McCoy had a plan....he just needed the right opportunity to strike. 19 years of waiting would finally pay off.... Amy sifted through the stack of mail. Mostly bills, some condolence cards from friends and a light blue envelope with her mother's name scribbled across the front. Maybe a neighbor dropped this in. Could be a note, but why not tell her directly? She mused walking back to her mom's study and placing it on the desk where she was tapping away at the keyboard while talking to an editor on the phone. "Yes, I am polishing that article right now. I'll have it ready in a few days." Crystal sees the stack of mail and reaches across the oak desk for it. Ending the call, she begins to sort the junk, bills, personal. Then she reaches the last letter. A blue envelope with her name scrawled on it. Curious, she opens it and reads the card inside. A card with the words, " cold muskrat moon" written on it was the only thing in it. Along with, "your fake title and family mean nothing." It was signed with the initials "KTM". Andrew heard the scream from outside and comes running in. He finds Crystal curled up in the corner, shaking with the card beside her. Amy was at her side, starting to panic. The last time he saw her like this was that day in the woods so long ago. "Calm down. What happened?" He asks the quaking woman. Amy didn't say one word as she picked up the envelope and card off the floor and handing it to him. "This was what I found after coming in hearing the screams." Chapter Seven It took almost an hour and a few cups of tea for Crystal to get calmed down. Michael had come home with Steven after football practice and called his dad about all that happened. She got composed enough to explain what her and their dad didn't tell them at their aunt's house. "Your father and I wanted to let you be kids without being scared. But we do have the authorities looking into it." Crystal had to reassure them everything possible was being done to find and stop the man who was her stepfather. "Wait until you father finds out....he will have a fit over this." Crystal couldn't even look Andrew in the eye her mind was so messed up. Everything she had built was in danger of collapse. Her overcoming spirit was at the breaking point and this time, it wasn't just her sanity and life at stake, but her family as well. Thankfully, God had sent Andrew, Monica, and Gloria to help her again, but even she wasn't sure if it was going to be enough this time around.... Alex had returned and visited some executives when they showed him a letter in a blue envelope. They were made aware of the situation and were concerned about a stalker. That was when he got the message from home. "Get here quickly. Mum is hysterical" was all it said. Michael had sent it. Holding the letter, the scariest thing was that it had a London postmark. Angry as he was, Alex and Monica wove through the London streets short of breaking the speed limit. "Alex, calm down," she tries to get him to slow the car, "you have the police looking into this." He starts swearing a blue streak, apologizing to the Irish angel. "Sorry, I rarely say those things. But I won't let some monster come after my wife and kids." When he pulls into the driveway of their home, he sees police car outside. Detective Reggie Tennyson was assigned to this and was already in taking the complaint. With Monica right behind him, he goes to his wife's side and shows the detective the latest letter sent to his record label. The handwriting was identical to the others and the one Crystal held in her fist like a death grip. "He has my attention. This means war." Was all she could say in a cold, emotionless voice. Alex and the kids were scared, they had never heard that tone before. Little Steven reached out with his small hand and touched his mom's face. "Dont worry Mummy, you, Daddy and God will protect us right?" he says showing concern. That snapped Crystal out of the withdrawal, You're right." She says, stretching out her hand. "We fight this, together." Everyone then reaches out and places their hands on top. "Together!" Chapter Eight Despite the tightened security measures, the next few days were pretty normal. Amy had to practically beg her parents tolet her go to her best friend's birthday party. She had already gotten the present, a gold locket and a beaded red makeup bag, all wrapped up. Stephanie would love this, she thought. After an argument, they let her. But only if Andrew accompanies her, Crystal trusted him. What they didn't know was that despite the efforts to find and apprehend the man after Crystal, he was waiting and had a plan all laid out....Now it's a waiting game... Everyone loved the Cadillac Amy and Andrew came in. The party was an outdoor affair in Stephanie's backyard. A typical birthday for a 12 year old. At its peak, Andrew was suddenly distracted and took his eye off of Amy for a second. When he was able to scan the crowd for her, she was gone. She had noticed something rustling in the bushes along the edge of the property. Thinking it was a cat that wandered off, she investigated. Suddenly, a gray haired man with a scar across his cheek reaches out and grabs the teen. He yanks Amy by her hair and begins to force her to come with him, flashing a knife as a motivation. "Shut up, you make too much noise." The old man tells her as he's dragging Amy into a van just off the grounds. Once inside, he binds her hands and feet before slapping a piece of duct tape over her mouth. "At least that will shut you up for now". Then he climbs to the front and starts the engine. Andrew hears the sound of a engine start and gets there just as the van is down the road. It was too late, now he had to call her parents and authorities. "I'm finally going to get my revenge on that mother of yours girl," he tells his frightened hostage, "you're merely the bait. I'm going to break her once and for all." He kept muttering under his breath. Gloria appears unseen next to Amy, tying to calm her down. She's also looking over at the driver, angry at what's happened. Chapter Nine "What do you mean, you've lost her?" Crystal and Alex were frustrated at Andrew for failing his job. "You couldn't keep your eye on our daughter with a mad man out the there and he may have her?" She couldn't look the angel straight in the eye. The cops were already called and a description of the van was put out. Andrew was getting frustrated, but could understand their feelings. Monica was trying to hold back Alex after seeing flashes of anger almost bubbling over. Crystal had to firmly grab his shoulder to keep him from getting up and slugging Andrew. Michael and Steven were in their rooms, letting the adults talk. They were worried too. "You think Amy's all right? That man Mum told us about will hurt her too?" Steven asked, face buried in his brother's chest. "I hope not. Mum always told us God won't leave us. He's with her now. All we have to do is pray." Michael comforts his brother. What he just said was more his twin's kind of thing. All they could do now was wait for something....like their parents. Amy wakes up, one ankle chained to a tree. She tries to slide out, but he chain was too tight for her to do anything. She was just too weak. Instead, she tries to figure out where she was. There were hotel signs in the distance, red and flashing dots in the distance. "God, please keep me safe," she prayed, "Mum always taught us that would send help if we ever needed it. Well, I need it now." The moment the words left her lips, saw a light fill the area. Then Amy sees Gloria, her brother's therapist, standing there and the light was coming from her. "Do not fear," she says kneeling down to the scared child, "I'm an angel sent by God, and your mother was right. God will send help when His children asks for it. Andrew and Monica are also angels. We helped you mother 20 years ago. And we were sent to help her and also your dad and brothers." She gave a smile hoping to calm her. They hear the sound of footsteps nearby. It was the man who snatched Amy reeking of cheap liquor. For the first time she sees the man who hurt her mother and aunt so badly. He throws a bag at her feet. "Something for you to eat. You will need your strength for what's to come." He then tosses a bottle of water for her. "Don't worry, only you can see me." Gloria reassures the frightened girl. Chapter Ten "You look just like your mother. Same hair, same defiance in those eyes." Kyle reaches out to stroke Amy's face, "I think I'm going to enjoy this." He leans in to inhale her scent, and when he smiled, a line of rotten teeth showed. She pulled back in fear and he felt threatened. So he slaps her face, hard. He pulls back. "Fiesty, like your mother. I always managed to tame her though. Now I have to make one call..." pulling out a cell phone, Amy's, he searches for a certain number.... Crystal and Alex wait anxiously by the phone. Finally, at 10:45 pm it rang. With great hope and trepidation, they put it on speaker, praying that their little girl was safe. The voice on the other end dashed them all. "Girlie, (that was Cassie's nickname for Crystal) you want her back?" Kyle's gravelly voice was faint, just enough to get attention, "Come alone in an hour. On the outskirts of London there's a famous hotel with a red roof. Lots of flashing lights. The campgrounds with the big boar statue at the entrance. No cops, you only. Can't guarantee she will be the same...." A scary laugh follows. Then the line goes dead. Alex starts swearing up and down, Crystal rises from her chair and heads up the stairs. "You're seriously not going to do this are you?" he says, trying to grab her arm. She turns around and with just one look, he backs down. "It's not about you, he's trying to bring me down once and for all. And I'm going to end this once and for all." Kyle sat just feet from Amy, watching her. "Your mother had to open her mouth and stripped everything from me. My daughter, business, everything." Then coming closer, he whispers in her ear. "I sat in that cell for 15 years, planning and plotting, convincing the parole board I was rehabilitate. When I finally got out, nobody wanted anything to do with me." Amy could see the long scar across his cheek where her mum had sliced him. "My only child won't even talk to me. I have nothing, even the family business was sold and torn down." He raised his voice, making Amy frightened even more, "But now, I have my revenge on that ex-wife of mine. But it's not complete. Not until your mother gets here." Showing a line of rotting teeth, he begins to laugh, long and hard. Crystal pulls on a pair of boots, then reaches up on the wall of the bedroom she shared with her husband, taking down a samurai sword Alex bought for her as a wedding gift. It ends now. For the sake of my family, it's the only way, was the only thought going through her head. Looking in on her sons, sleeping, she couldn't help thinking about them. Would it be worth risking it all to protect them all from this monster? She turns away, praying she does the right thing.... Going downstairs, sword hidden under her long coat, she whispers some things to Alex and bids everyone farewell. Then she gets in the car and leaves, knowing where her girl was being held. Chapter Eleven Gloria stayed by Amy's side as time passed so slowly it seemed like it had stopped. Kyle still sat there, trembling with anticipation. He uses the phone to call her mother. She was not far out, by what Amy could gather. Thank God, someone's coming for me, she thought. Hopefully it won't be too late. I don't like that look.. "So you really are an angel?" She asks Gloria and she nods. "Yes, I was sent to help your mother a long time ago. Now I've been sent to help you at this time." Holding Amy close, she begins to calm her down.... At home, Alex decides to defy his wife's request and walks into the master bedroom to get his coat when she sees the missing sword from the wall. He realizes what her plan is and frantically wakes his sons. Quickly they get dressed and were about to walk out when they find a sight standing at the door. Monica was standing there before them, glowing. "Alexander Richard Moore, I am an angel sent by God." She says in a firm tone. "I was sent by God to help you and your family. The man who has your daughter is willing to do anything to destroy your wife. There's no time I'll explain on the way there." Crystal kept just below the speed limit, so as to not get a ticket. All her focus was on getting her back daughter safe and sound. And the sword beside her was going to be a motivation. He will wish he'd never left the States, I will see to that. It was the only way to stop this, she concluded. She almost didn't see the man standing in the middle of the road, she swerved, skidding to the roadsid just in time to prevent damage to the vehicle. It was Andrew, glowing and in his tan suit. Getting out, she starts railing on him. "I could have hit you Andrew! Now I'm losing precious time dealing with you!" She raises her hand to slap the angel, but couldn't bring herself to. "Might as well get on in. I want a witness to see the end of all this." Chapter Twelve "Kyle McCoy wants to drive your wife into insanity like he almost did 20 years ago. Midnight is the anniversary of his arrest, and he can still play the mind games." Monica explains to Alex with the boys in the backseat heading north. She then addresses the two boys in the back. "Did your mother ever tell you about asking God to send angels to help her as a kid?" They nodded and Steven speaks up. "You were one of them weren't you?" he asks, a tired tone in his voice. "Gloria and Andrew too?" Monica nods with a slight smile. He knew all along. Andrew sees the sword in the backseat as he got in. He had a good idea of what Crystal's plans were. He remembers that day long ago where he had to stop her from stabbing the stepfather with a knife. Now, she really was going to go through with it. Father, help me prevent a tragedy, he prayed hoping for something he can say to change her murderous ways. Kyle begins beat up on the scared teen. Gloria took the blows for her, ensuring little to no physical harm. He begins to get frustrated at the lack of bruising on her body. That was when Gloria was allowed to show herself. "I remember you," he says seeing the angel, "didn't I fire a pistol at point blank range from five feet away and you caught the bullet? That moment 20 years ago is fresh in my head. The doctors wouldn't believe me, called me crazy. But I knew better..." Crystal and Andrew reached the campgrounds and followed the path that would lead them to the one who took her child. She had the sword in hand, and quietly removed it from its sheath. "Listen, you can't do this, think about how far you've come. Why throw it away and have blood on your hands? You would be no better than he is." For a moment she paused, a glimpse of clarity shows up. "Maybe you're right. God wouldn't want me to do this. Just like before, when I tried to take him out then, I couldn't do it completely. It was you who held my arm back, wasn't it?" Andrew nods. "Yes I was sent to stop you from ruining your life. I'm back to help you make the right decision again." He brushes a tear from her eye. "There is something you can do that would wound him worse than a physical cut." He whispers something in her ear. "Forgive him. Leave him to God, let Him deal with this man. I promise you, he will not get away with this by no means." "You gave me something to think about Andrew," she tells him, "but I want my daughter out of danger before I do anything." Crystal begins to walk towards where Amy was held. More determined than ever... Chapter Thirteen "It's 11:58. Might as well start the fun." Kyle touches her face, his rancid breath making Amy sick. Gloria tries to keep him at bay, but something in the corner of her eye catches her attention. A reflection off something shiny. "Get off me you filthy git," Amy masters up enough courage to say it aloud. "I'm not afraid of you!" She spits in his face. Usually, it would be rude, but there are times manners doesn't matter. Wiping it off, he had a look of rage in his eyes. But before he could do anything, Kyle freezes, like something was stopping him. Taking a glance, Amy could see an outline of someone behind him. "She's right you know." The teen recognized that voice anywhere. It was her mother. And she had a sword at the back of his neck. "A long time ago there was a song about being strong and courageous. And you sir, are either. So back away please. Gloria, take my daughter out of here. I want to have a few words with him." Crystal says, cold and near emotionless. Gloria pops the lock and unwrapped the chain around Amy's ankle. Then helps her out of the clearing back down the trail, picking up her phone on the way out. "Call your father, let him know you're okay." When they were out of sight, Crystal turns her attention to man that had made her life and that of her family pure hell. "I've waited for this moment since finding out you killed my mother. Eye for an eye, the saying goes." She had turned him around so he was facing her while pinned against the tree. The only thing keeping him there was the razor sharp sword at his throat. She could see the fear in his eyes, that cold hard look breaking. "I see the scar I gave you healed nicely." Andrew stands right behind her, praying under his breath, nervous as can be for an angel. He wished for something to break, a heart to change, the anxiety was that thick. Then something happened. Crystal softened that hard look and lowers her blade, but poised in case this man decides to pull something off. And the words came from her lips. "Kyle Thomas McCoy, I can inflict you a wound greater than anything physical like this," glancing towards the sword in her left hand, "I choose to forgive you. For everything you've done to me and my family." The words came with difficulty for her. Andrew was astounded. She finally got the message! Praise God, his prayer was answered. Crystal continued. "This will not let you off for what you've done, but it's mostly for me. I've come too far, accomplished too much, to throw it all away on someone like you. Besides," she pauses to shush him, "let me finish." Glancing over at Andrew, she knew this was the right decision by his look. Turning back at the pinned man scared half to death, "I leave you to God. For Him to punish you as He wishes. All soul ties between us are broken by the power of God. He saved me, and can do the same for you." Kyle's eyes grew as he realized the fear of losing control was reality. Chapter Fourteen Crystal turns away. "You can be right with God you know. Ask him to forgive you for your sins. What is worse: facing man in this life and making peace with God. Or eternity separated from Him, knowing too late you had a choice all along. Knowing He loved you? I refuse to stoop to your level." She slides the sword back in its sheath. Then starts to walk away. "Andrew, I'm done. He's yours now." Pausing, she turns around. "One last thing: only two people can call me 'Girlie' and you ain't either of them." Then she starts walking again. Even in the dark, she could see the trail by moonlight. She felt free at last. This would make a really good idea for a story. She thought, maybe later. I'm too tired to do anything now. Andrew began glowing and trying to reach Kyle. "You have done terrible things. But she is right, you can stand before the Father forgiven. All you have to do is----" The old man shut the angel up with a long blue streak. "That girl ruined my life!" He shouts, then looking at Andrew curiously. "I remember you. You brought that girl home. And when she was removed, you always were around. Who are you?" Andrew responds. "I am an angel sent by God. I was with Crystal then and now. She is now freed from your influence as is your biological daughter Haley. But I want to help you too." He extends his hand, Kyle slaps it away. "I don't need your God's pity, I'm not a charity case!" Then reaching behind him, Kyle pulls out a pistol. "I'm a dead man, remember?" Andrew tries to talk him down. "You don't have to do this, it's not worth it." Seeing Crystal in the distance, Kyle had one last thing to say. "I'm already dying Andrew. Got cancer, the only person who wanted to take me out the most refuses. So now I have to do it myself. THERE'S BLOOD ON YOUR HANDS GIRL! YOU HEAR ME COWARD! YOU COULDN'T FINISH ME THEN, AND YOU WON'T DO IT NOW?" He shouts towards her back. Andrew tries to stop him as he then puts the gun to his head and pulls the trigger. One shot and Kyle Thomas McCoy goes limp. Almost immediately Adam appears. "Go get her. She doesn't need to see this, I'll deal with him." Andrew runs to catch up with Crystal. She heard the shouts and then a gunshot. Turning around, she runs back only to run into Andrew, who was trying to stop her. "I have to see, to ensure It's over." She actually shoves Andrew to the ground, running until she saw a pair of feet. That was all the proof she needed. Crystal went no further. Andrew catches up and calms her down. "He was really suffering, wasn't he?" She asks as they walked up the path away from the scene. Andrew nods. "Yes, he had a pain so deep only God could heal." They finally meet up with Alex and the kids, and of course Monica and Gloria. Taking the kids in her arms, she assures them that Kyle will never hurt any of them again. And in her husband's arms she wept, tears of sadness and of freedom from this nightmare. In the light of police cars and angels, she was finally free. Epilogue It was determined that Kyle McCoy did die from a self inflicted gunshot wound. He was buried in a poor man's field back in the States, in a mass grave, casket unmarked but for a number. Crystal and Haley were there, not wanting to be recognized, they were disguised. They knew this was the closing of a chapter and a start of another. Crystal had finally made peace with her past. This inspired her to write new stories, never forgetting the angels sent by God to help her. Alex also became inspired to write new music. A year and a half later, Andrew was browsing the aisle of a bookstore when he sees a display. An autobiography with Crystal's face on the cover. A small smile crosses his face as he reaches for it. On the dedication page, he sees something interesting. It read: "This is to my family, friends, and ultimately, God and three of His angels he sent in my darkest hours. To Him the glory belongs to." He smiles, taking the copy to the desk. This is going to be an interesting read.....

ClarindaBurston