Gone (a One Direction murder mystery)

Zayn Malik and Perrie Edwards' wedding is coming up...or is it? When Perrie goes missing while One Direction is on tour, Zayn and the boys turn to Private Investigator Shannon Adler, on whom Zayn develops a crush. Zayn's determination to find Perrie's kidnapper escalates when he finds her dead in the woods.

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3. Chapter 3

Chapter 3

 

On the way to lunch at Nando’s, Shannon called the London Police Department to tell them about the current situation.  The man who answered said that they’d get on the search for Perrie right away.

 

By the time Zayn and Shannon got to Nando’s, they were both hungry, their stomachs simultaneously growling.  After Zayn gave the hostess an autograph on a napkin, the two of them were seated and given menus.  After they decided what they wanted, which took Shannon longer than it took Zayn, Shannon posed the first question:

 

“Tell me something about Andrew Milliken.”

 

“Well,” Zayn began, “he met Perrie back in 2010, a year before she went on ‘The X-Factor’.  He was nineteen, she was seventeen.  He was a gentleman at first, but he snapped when Perrie told him she was gonna be on the show.  She eventually broke up with him, of course, but when Andrew found out about me, he almost raped her.”

 

“I see,” Shannon said.  “What does he do for a living?”

 

“He’s a truck driver.  Clearly, I was better for Perrie, right?”

 

Shannon laughed.  She had a nice laugh.  Oh, stop it, Zayn!  You’re getting married in a few months!  “Yeah.”

 

During lunch, Shannon gathered all the information she needed about Andrew, jotting things down as Zayn spoke.  After they finished, they collected the rest of the gang and headed to South Shields to talk to Andrew.  When Shannon rang the doorbell, an intimidatingly muscular man with disheveled brown hair and a beard/mustache combo answered it.

 

“What do you want?!” the man asked snidely.

 

“Are you Andrew Milliken?” Shannon asked.

 

“Who wants to know?”

 

“Shannon Adler, Private Investigator.”  Shannon flashed her ID.  “My client tells me his fiancée was kidnapped last night, and he thinks you’re the one who did it.”

 

“That’s rubbish!  I didn’t take ANYONE last night!  I was just let out of the slammer, for fuck’s sake!”

 

“Where were you as of last night?”

 

“Bitch, where do you THINK I was?!  I was bloody ASLEEP!”

 

“BLOODY LIAR!” Zayn barked, getting ready to punch Andrew.

 

Shannon stopped him.  “Zayn, please.  I know you miss Perrie, but there’s no need to take it out on anyone,” she said calmly.  “Mr. Milliken, I’ll need you to step aside.  We’re gonna search your house.”

 

“Not if I murder you first!” Andrew yelled.

 

Ignoring Andrew’s threat, Shannon shoved him aside, and the eight of them entered the house.  They searched for an hour, each member of the group in different rooms, and finally determined that Andrew wasn’t the culprit.  Everything had looked normal.

 

On the way back, Zayn mentioned to Shannon about Mrs. Edwards’ brother, Walter Tudor, who lived in London.  They stopped at a rest stop between cities to talk about him.  Zayn revealed that Walter had been abusive towards Perrie since she was a little girl.

 

Meanwhile, Niall and Harry were taking pictures with fans when one girl, whose name was Izzy, pointed out that she and her friend found a dead body in the nearby wooded area.

 

“Bloody hell!  Is it female?!” Niall asked, half hoping it was Perrie and half hoping it wasn’t.

 

“Yes, she has blonde hair.  I couldn’t tell you what she looks like, because she’s face-down, but she’s wearing a pink nightgown,” the girl’s friend, who identified herself as Husnal, said.

 

“Thanks for the heads-up, love,” Harry said.  “We’ll be sure to tell Zayn.  By the way, are you single?”

 

“Harry!” Niall hissed, looking daggers at the curly-haired boy.

 

After a few more pictures with fans, Niall and Harry crossed the parking lot into the woods to take a look at this dead body.  They, too, couldn’t tell whether it was Perrie or not.  It could’ve been any blonde wearing a pink nightgown.  It looked like she’d been beaten to death.

 

“Bloody hell…” Harry mumbled, crouching down to turn the dead girl right-side-up.

 

But Niall pulled him back before he could touch the corpse.  “Don’t touch her,” he said.  “Let’s turn her over with a stick instead.”

 

Niall found a six-foot-long stick nearby and attempted to flip the body over with it.  When he succeeded, both boys’ jaws dropped.

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