short story, story promptTara’s father has been receiving death threats on her life. He’s tried hiring bodyguards, but most of them can’t stand being around her or trying to keep track of her. Until this particular bodyguard gets hired…


Tara shook her head. “This isn’t going to work.”

Her father frowned at her. “You said that about the last three bodyguards we hired.”

“Exactly! What good were they? None of them are standing in this room right now, are they?”

He sighed. “That’s because you drove them all away. If you aren’t going to take your safety seriously, how can you expect someone else to do it?”

She tossed her hair over her shoulder. “I don’t need a bodyguard, Dad. You’re being paranoid.”

“Receiving death threats on your life means I’m paranoid?” he demanded. “There are people out there, Tara, who disagree with certain things I’ve done in my career.”

I disagree with some of the things you’ve done in life,” she flung at him.

“Tara, don’t you dare …”

You’re the reason my mother was alone that night!” Tara screamed at him. “You’re the reason she left the restaurant after you stood her up for an important business meeting! You’re the reason she was mugged and left for dead! You weren’t there to help her.”

Her father’s face had turned white. He slowly sat down in his leather office chair. “You will accept the fact that I have hired you a new bodyguard. You will allow him to follow you everywhere and you will follow any orders he issues in regards to your safety.”

Tara turned and glowered at the young man her father had hired. He stared at the wall opposite, no indication on his face about what thoughts were going through his head. Perhaps he was used to screaming matches.

She stalked out of his office, refusing to look at her father. He thinks he runs my whole life! How dare he make all the decisions for me? These stupid death threats are ridiculous. Why would anybody want to kill me?

Reaching the door to her room she yanked it open. She caught sight of the new bodyguard trailing her. She put her hand up.

“No way. My room is private. Only I come in here, you can wait outside.”

He placed his back against the wall. “As you say, Miss Sanders.”

She slammed the door closed behind her and hurried to her wardrobe. Throwing the frilly blouse and red skirt into the wash basket, she replaced them with a nondescript blue shirt and black jeans. She needed to get out and get some fresh air. This house was stifling.

She quietly opened the doors to her balcony, trying not to alert her new bodyguard. Nimbly, she hopped over the balustrade on the right-hand side and grabbed the tree branch that served as her trusty escape route. She dropped from that branch onto a lower one and from there to the terracotta tiles in the courtyard.

After a quick glance around, she headed for the side gate of the property. It was always locked and rarely used. Luckily, she had the key for it. She pulled it out of her pocket and slipped through, locking it behind her again. I’m out!

She turned and let out a small shriek. Leaning against the outside wall was the bodyguard her father had just hired.

He raised a dark eyebrow at her. “Going somewhere?”

“What are you …? How did you know I was going to sneak out?” she demanded, flustered.

“Let’s call it a hunch.” He gave her a smile that wasn’t quite real. “I’ve also got another hunch that an SUV is going to come around that corner in a minute and try to kidnap you.”

Tara stared at him. “You’re crazy. Those stupid death threats aren’t real.” The sound of an engine reached her ears. She flicked a glance in the direction of the noise and saw a blue SUV round the bend, heading in her direction.

The SUV screeched to a halt right beside her. Two men in masks jumped out and grabbed her arms, trying to hustle her into the car. A moment later, one of the men collapsed as his legs were knocked out from under him. The other man suffered a punch to the jaw. After a brief flurry of grunts and swinging fists, the two men lay on the ground unconscious. Her bodyguard surveyed the damage, then looked at her.

“Perhaps now you’ll listen to me.” He took her arm and led her away from the scene.

Who is this mystery bodyguard??

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