A few hours later, Nick parked on the circular drive in front of the mansion. Shannon bent down looked up at it through the window on Tyler's side. She gasped. It was better than she'd dreamed. No one could stay here without a ton of scary thoughts nibbling on the edges of their minds.
A fountain with two angels had overgrown grass covering the bottom half. The great expanse of lawn hadn't seen a blade in years. Weeds mixed with the grass, trying to strangle it. The mansion's large stone steps were cracked in several places, and a few of the diamond-cut windows were broken.
Shannon climbed from the car, eyes wide. The picture hadn't done it justice. The house was a complete wreck. She didn't mind, but Johnny was going to hit the roof when he saw it. He'd probably grab his cell and start calling motels. She could hear him now. My kids are not staying in this death trap!
But it was perfect... so perfect.
Every childhood nightmare, every terror she'd experienced in her life paled in comparison to the thought of spending one night under Woodlow's tattered roof. Her legs felt like rubber, and her heart thundered in her chest. She could feel the creative juices flowing already.
Nick gaped at her over the top of the car. "You've got to be kidding."
"I know it's a bit rough."
"Rough? The place is crumbling before our eyes. It's dangerous."
Shannon raised an eyebrow. "More dangerous than having mobsters after us? Give me a break." She grinned. "You have to admit, no one will look for us here."
Nick was speechless.