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TheBigRetort strange but true series continues with a chilling tale of child abduction.

It also reads as a bizarre prequel to the mysterious disappearance of Madeleine McCann, and reveals a father's startling sixth sense.

Not too long ago, somewhere in the UK, a schoolchild inexplicably vanished off the face of the earth. As in the Algarve case, the girl disappeared mysteriously, without trace, leaving police and public totally perplexed.

However, fortunately, this did not turn out to be a smoke-and-mirrors investigation -or a whodunit leading nowhere - because there was a single witness.

Police say that's all it takes.

A man out walking his dog recalled seeing a white van going up and down a lane. He told police that it was constantly retracing its steps, almost as if the driver was searching for something.

Or should that be someone?

Police did not have much to go on but they realised that they may have a potential serious child abduction on their hands.

Unlike police in the McCann case they moved swiftly, and following strict procedures laid down in abduction cases they placed a large cordon around the area - every white van leaving and entering the zone was stopped. It was that simple.

But it was also to no avail...

Sadly... nothing was found of the missing girl, and another tragedy at the hands of a monster looked likely.

And yet...

Call it "Strange"... Call it "Otherworldly".... Call it "Divine intervention"

But in this tale of bogey men and missing children there are also additional "howevers" and it is what followed these that so interested TheBigRetort.

A policeman stood waiting at a road block on the outskirts of town in a lonely country lane. He had grown bored with the task that had been set him, but he too had a daughter of his own and so he knew how he would feel if she went missing...however.

He waited patiently...

Suddenly a white van approached. The driver seemed pleasant enough and eager to assist. He dutifully obliged the policeman by opening the van's rear doors… it was full of goods the driver was in the process of delivering.

The copper apologised and told him to be on his way…

And there the mysterious disappearance may have ended. But there was something… "other". Something that the cop could not explain, even to himself - then, or now.

Was it a presentment? Telepathy? Or the driver's body language? Whatever... an eerie feeling came over the policeman and for some inexplicable reason he knew one thing was certain: he could not let the van leave.

'Just a second, sir. I'd just like to take another look. If I may!' he said. The driver hesitated as he was about to climb behind the wheel, it was not a question... And once again he traced around the van to the doors.

'Open them,' the cop ordered as the driver hesitated.

Inside the van all seemed in order.

Be that as it may... despite the normality something was inexplicably drawing the policeman's attention towards the floor of the van and try as he might he could not put his finger on what it was.

He pulled back a carpet in the van... He saw the little body of a girl in a wheel well. The child, wrapped in another carpet, was bound and gagged… and fortunately still alive.

Finally, eerily, the policeman realised why he had inexplicably wanted to search the van... she was his daughter.


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