No One Will Find You
An aspiring artist. A high-school senior. A stripper. Three women who seemed to have nothing in common except their sudden disappearance. But one man knew them all. Wealthy, privileged Craig Thornton even claimed to love them. And for that, they paid the ultimate price.
No One Will Save You
When Adrianna Barrington receives an anniversary card from her husband Craig, she assumes it’s some crackpot’s idea of a joke. After all, Craig is dead. But then come phone calls, flowers, messages…all reminding her how much Craig misses her. While Adrianna begins to doubt her sanity, grisly remains are found on the Thornton estate. Detective Gage Hudson is convinced the bodies are linked to Craig. But the biggest shocks are yet to come.
No One Will Hear You Scream
A psychopath has taken up his chilling work again, each death a prelude to the moment when she is under his control at last. And the only way for Gage and Adrianna to stop him is to uncover the truth about a family’s dark past—and a twisted love that someone will kill for, again and again…
Praise for the novels of Mary Burton
“Taut, compelling…Mary Burton delivers a page-turner.” —Carla Neggers on I’m Watching YouPrologue
“A chilling thriller.” —Beverly Barton on Dead Ringer
Sunday, September 24, 10:00 p.m.
Time had degraded the videotaped image of the cowering
A line skimmed down the center screen now peppered
with electronic snow, and a sallow haze paled the image’s
once vibrant colors.
As he’d made his movies over the last twelve years, he’d
expected them to last forever. He’d never realized excessive
viewing coupled with time would degrade the tapes of his
three actresses and their final performances. The first tape
wasn’t a great loss. He didn’t understand lighting, costumes,
or camera angles. He’d been rushed and nervous. But as
time passed, he’d gained experience and confidence and by
the last tape, he’d honed his moviemaking talent.
Remote in hand, he leaned forward and directed his
attention to the most recent tape in his collection. He tuned
out the annoying technical distractions and focused on
A pale satin slip, the shade of forget-me-nots,
skimmed her full breasts and slim body and pooled
over long legs tucked under her round bottom. A blond
wig covered chestnut hair and accentuated a pale face
and listless brown eyes underscored by smudged
mascara. Blue-black bruises darkened her cheeks. She
stared sightlessly toward the ceiling, cradling the hand
he’d broken the last time she’d resisted.
Off-screen a door opened and closed. Keys jangled.
The woman straightened and tried to stand, but a
waist-hugging chain forced her to remain on her knees.
He’d never stepped in view of the camera lens.
“Sorry I’m late. I didn’t mean to be gone so long.”
The woman’s chest started to rise and fall in rapid,
short breaths. “I thought you weren’t coming back.”
He’d been gone eighteen hours. “I couldn’t leave you
Over the last two weeks, he’d left her intermittently.
Each time he made his exit, he threatened never to
return as he shut the door. Then from a closed circuit
television he watched as she begged him not to leave
and yanked at her tether. Then after three, five, or ten
hours, he’d return. Each time she wept, her expressive
features reflected relief, horror, and flickers of anger.
Slowly he’d been breaking her down, teaching her
that her world revolved around him alone.
Now as she glanced up, she offered a smile both
pleasing and desperate. “Now are you going to let
“Not just yet.”
Her smile faltered. “You said next time when you
came back I could leave.”
“I’ve changed my mind.” He zoomed in the video
image. “I’ve enjoyed your performance so much I find
I can’t say good-bye.”
The close-up vividly captured expressive eyes
that mirrored disappointment and a terrifying
understanding. “You’re never going to let me go, are
“Didn’t I promise?” He sounded defensive.
Fresh tears rolled down her cheeks. Her lips quivered.
She seemed to sense that this was the end. Game over.
Hysterically she started to yank the chain. Her
breasts bounced delightfully as she struggled. “Let me
go! Why are you doing this to me!”
“I love you, Adrianna.”
“Let me go!” She all but howled the words.
“I told you that I loved you. What are you supposed
to say?” The words dripped with annoyance. How
many lessons would it take for her to play her part
“No, no, no! My name is Rhonda.” The silk under the
chain had frayed and turned brown from the iron in the
links. “My name is Rhonda!”
“You are not Rhonda!” He snapped his fingers. “Say
the words like I taught you. Or I will get the cattle prod.”
Mention of the prod drained the fight from her eyes.
“Please. Please. Please.” The plea wound down to a
“Say it.” This would be their final scene together.
And he couldn’t hide the desperate anticipation from
The woman closed her eyes. “I love you.” The faint
whisper, void of feeling, tumbled out like rubbish from
a bin. All the spirit and fight she’d had in the beginning
The words left him wanting. “Say it again. And look
at me when you speak.”
The woman looked directly at him. “I love you.”
Nervously, she picked at the chipped red nail polish
on her toenails. A ladybug tattoo framed her right
ankle. “Can I leave now?”
He ignored her question. “Why do you have a ladybug
tattoo?” These last two weeks he’d loved touching
it. Kissing it.
Tears streamed down her face as if she realized
her words had no effect on him. “I told you a million
“Tell me again.”
“It’s a sign of good luck.”
His laughter rumbled rich and genuine. “For me, it’s
good luck. Not such good luck for you.”
Her eyes flashed with sudden hot anger. “Why do
you keep doing this to me?”
“Playing games. Why don’t you let me go? I’ve
sworn that I’ll keep this secret. I just want to go home.
I want to forget. I want to live.” The camera zoomed
and caught the beads of sweat on her forehead. “I have
done everything you asked.”
She tipped her head back and he could see her dark
hair peeking out from under the wig. She was ruining
“Say it again.” His voice projected the annoyance
he’d felt that day. “And say it like you mean it!”
The woman dropped her gaze and fisted the fingers
on her left hand so tightly her nails drew blood. For
several long seconds, she remained silent.
The snap of the prod had her meeting his gaze.
“I love you.”
“What is my name?”
“Craig. Your name is Craig. I love you, Craig.”
This time she looked directly at the camera and
nearly screamed the words. “I love you, Craig!”
His erection hardened and finally he was able to take
her. Though he’d been driven by powerful emotions, he
was mindful of the all-seeing lens and careful to keep
his face turned away from the camera.
She’d lain under him, the slip bunched around her
waist, her body as still and cold as a lake in winter. His
climax had come quickly, violently. He’d never felt so
alive, so in the moment, and for those fleeting seconds
the voices that always stalked him—told him he wasn’t
good enough—went silent.
Now as Craig viewed the tape for the hundredth time,
the exquisite feelings he’d once enjoyed, like the tape,
The indefinable hunger that had tracked him for so many
years had returned and the heavy weight of anticipation bore
down on his chest. Lately, no matter how much he watched
the tape, his darkest appetites clawed at his insides, begging
to be satisfied.
“Damn.” He hit REWIND and replayed the last few seconds,
his thirst desperate to be quenched. “I love you, Craig. I love
you, Craig. I love you, Craig.”
Craig leaned toward the television and touched the image
of her face. He traced her eyes and then her lips.
From the edge of the screen, the camera captured the
tip of a gun barrel. The woman shrank back, trying to
press herself through the wall.
Crying, she tried to crawl away, but the chain
stopped her as he grabbed the wig and tossed it aside.
He wrenched her upward. Her fingers clawed at his
hand as she screamed and struggled to get free. He held
on tight and raised the .38 to her temple.
He whispered, “I love you, Adrianna.”
The revolver’s bullet tore through her brain. Blood
splattered his face. She slumped forward, dead. His
heart raged in his chest like a tornado.
Then he released her, stepped back, and watched as
she crumpled to the floor. A second passed before the
recording ended and the image turned to static snow.
Now Craig understood how much he’d fed off her terror.
Her panic and those of the other two had invigorated his
blood like a narcotic.
“I shouldn’t have listened. I never should have let
you go.” He could have kept her tucked away down here
If he’d known three years would pass until the next kill
he’d have stowed her away and savored her all the more.
Stupid. Stupid. Stupid.
Frustrated, he shut off the television and turned his attention
to the new digital camcorder he’d bought last week. It
fit in the palm of his hand and had cost him a fortune but
the kid in the electronics store had promised it would produce
crystal-clear images guaranteed to last a lifetime.
“So clear you can see the pores on a face,” the kid had said.
Craig palmed the camera, amazed at its compact size.
Technology was a wonderful thing.
Pointing the camera toward the empty basement corner
with the wood panel and loosely coiled chain, he hit RECORD.
The red light clicked on. He taped for a few seconds before
stopping and replaying the image on the camera’s view
screen. The kid had been right. The clear picture caught the
grains in the faux wood and the threads in the brown carpet.
Craig glanced at the newly purchased pink silk slip and
blond wig. He set the camera down and picked up the wig.
He stroked the strands of real human hair dyed just the right
shade of blond.
Imagine what detail he would capture when he filmed the
next one. This camera wouldn’t miss anything, and the
images would surely satisfy him for years.
This time, this time, he’d not be in such a rush. The next
one, he’d savor.
Craig glanced at the pocket calendar taped to the side
of his filing cabinet. Twenty-four red X’s marked through
most of September. Anticipation burned like fire.
In just three days, it would be time again for hunting
In just three days, center stage would host a new actress
to play his sweet Adrianna.