Psych Fan Fiction ❯ Of the Children ❯ II ( Chapter 2 )

[ T - Teen: Not suitable for readers under 13 ]

I'm not sure how I feel about this chapter...
It was desperation that found Henry outside of the Guster household that morning, a mere hour after finding his son's discarded backpack. He had yet to call Madeline or the police. After all, if his son was just a truant, there was nothing to worry about. He tried to keep his worry from bubbling in his stomach as he rang the doorbell.
After a few achingly long moments, Winnie answered the door. Behind her, Henry could see the signs of a sick child's house. The television was playing cartoons and a tray containing a bowl of chicken soup and a box of tissues was perched on a nearby table. His heart soared; it would be just like Shawn to skip school and hang out with a sick friend.
Mrs. Guster, who had originally smiled when she opened the door, took one look at him and frowned. “Whatever your son did,” she told him, “Burton had no part in it.”
Her words didn't require much interpretation. Still, he asked anyway. “Did Shawn happen to come for a visit today?”
Winnie's frown deepened. “Wouldn't he be in school?”
“Please. Could you just ask Gus if he came?”
The woman gave him a strange look. However, something in his expression prompted her to comply. She turned and walked around a corner while Henry anxiously waited on the porch. A small, hardly audible discussion between mother and son took place before Winnie returned to the door. “Shawn hasn't been here.”
Henry felt his hopes plummet. He swallowed to moisten his suddenly dry throat before speaking once again. “Could I,” he began thickly, “could I borrow your phone?” The woman gave a brief nod and allowed him in. On a small table in the entrance hall was an old-fashioned telephone. He lifted the receiver to his head and turned the dial to the first number. It spun back at a leisurely pace. He entered the next digit and watched the dial return to a neutral position.
By the time he had finished dialing, his tension was at its height. When he heard his wife's voice on the phone, he had to lay a hand against the wall to support himself. “Madeline,” he murmured just loud enough to be heard over the phone, “Meet me at the police station in an hour.”
“Henry?” her voice crackled over the phone, “I can't just walk out of work.”
He paused for a moment as his hand curled into a fist against the wall. “Shawn's missing. We need to file a report.”