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The non-descript black van with stolen Maryland license plates rolled up to the edge
of the curb. Altair, the older brother, jumped out of the van, wearing an Army surplus
jacket and sunglasses, and carrying a .38 Smith and Wesson. He went up to Morse‘s
table at the cafe, grabbed him roughly by the arm, and before Morse knew what was
going on, threw him into the sliding door of the black van. Zach and Zoey looked on in
horror as the black van with their father peeled off around the corner in a squeal of tires.
Neither Zach nor Zoey got the license plate.
―NO!‖ Zoey yelled. ―Daddy! Come back!‖
Zach‘s self-preservation and protective instincts kicked in. There was nothing they
could do about their father now. But killers could be coming for himself and his sister.
They had to get out of here quickly.
―Come with me!‖ Zach said to his sister urgently. ―I will protect us.‖ Zoey grabbed
her father‘s bag and the two ran through a door in the kitchen, through the kitchen, and
out the back door into an alley. They dodged and darted down the streets of Washington.
After about twenty blocks, they ducked into a hotel. Zach looked around. He was
confident they were not trailed. He took his sister into the hotel restaurant. He would
regroup here and decide what to do. Zach was terrified. His father was gone, probably
dead, and he was all alone in a strange city with no money, and terrorists after him and
his sister. He hoped everything would be okay.