Daddy's Gone a Hunting

Free Daddy's Gone a Hunting by Mary Higgins Clark

Book: Daddy's Gone a Hunting by Mary Higgins Clark Read Free Book Online
Authors: Mary Higgins Clark
Tags: Suspense
shirt, winter jeans, and his thick boots. He had stuffed his insulated gloves into the pocket of his warm denim jacket and written a note. “My beauteous Margaret Monica, my little guy, Skippy. I’m sorry. I love you so much but I can’t handle this life. All the money in our savings is for you and our Skippy. But please don’t spend it on looking for me.”
    Clyde did not sign the note. But he took his always polished medals out of the breakfront in the dining room and laid them on the table. Then he remembered to take the framed picture of him and Peggy and Skippy and put it in the knapsack that already was filled with a couple of bottles of wine.
    He made sure the front door was locked on their small ranch house on Staten Island and began his forty-year walk to nowhere . . .
    Now sixty-eight years old, nearly bald under his skullcap, his gait unsteady from an old fall down subway stairs that had cracked his hip bone, his face unshaven unless he happened to find a used razor in a garbage can, Clyde lived his solitary life.
    He spent his days panhandling on the streets, just enough to keep a steady supply of drink. First he went to Philly and managed to survive for several years there, even picking up a few regular handyman gigs for pocket money. But eventually he began to grow wary when the vagrants he holed up with at night started to become too friendly. So he set out for Baltimore and spent some years there, too. Finally one day he just got the urge to head back up to the city. By this time decades had slipped away.
    When he finally came back to New York, he wandered around the five boroughs but had a few regular routines. He frequently had a meal at the St. Francis of Assisi breadline, and came to know other shelters where he could get food in any of the boroughs. The only one he avoided was Staten Island, even though his guess was that Peggy had long ago taken Skippy to Florida to be with her parents.
    Clyde’s rod and his staff were those bottles of wine that dulled pain and warmed his aging body on the many cold nights that he spent outdoors escaping the unwanted caring of the volunteers who tried to save him from the blustery winds of winter. He had always been ingenious at squatting in church cemeteries or shuttered buildings no matter what city he called home, and now he sought shelter in abandoned subway stations or between cars in parking lots after the attendant had locked up for the night.
    Over the years he had developed a hair-trigger temper. Once when he was in Philadelphia he had swung at a cop who tried to force him into a shelter and had almost spent the night in jail. Heagreed to go to the shelter, but he didn’t want that to happen ever again. So many people. So much talk.
    Clyde’s new life began in the Connelly complex a little more than two years ago. He had gotten on the subway with his shopping cart at about eleven o’clock one night, rode back and forth until he woke up, then got off the subway at the nearest station. It was in Long Island City. Clyde vaguely remembered that he had been in that area before and there were old warehouses, some vacant, some under construction. His sense of direction, one of the few acute senses he still possessed, kicked in, and he had dragged his cart until he happened upon the Connelly complex, the landscaped jewel in the midst of its grimy neighbors.
    The few lights he saw led up the driveway to the buildings. Clyde had walked cautiously around the perimeter of the property, not wanting to be caught by any security cameras. He did not go near the buildings. Probably some sleepy watchman on duty, he figured. But then at the back of the property, past where he guessed cars were parked during the day, he came upon a large enclosure that reminded him of the carport he once had at home on Staten Island. Only a lot bigger. Lots and lots bigger, he whispered quietly to himself.
    One by one he counted the vans there. Three big ones, the size you could move

Similar Books

Lonesome Road

Patricia Wentworth

A Dangerous Business

Lorelei Moone

The Jerusalem Inception

Avraham Azrieli

White Hot Kiss

Jennifer L. Armentrout

Night Shift

Nora Roberts

Demons of Lust

Silvana S Moss

Desire Unleashed

Savannah Stuart