The Official Writing Challenge
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Well done. Captivating story from the beginning through the end. Definitely kept my attention.
Exciting! Held my attention throughout. Great writing.
I love this story! You did a wonderful job of building the suspense. My mind raced in all kinds of directions. Was the prisoner the dad? Maybe the girl a decoy?

I did notice some tiny errors, especially with punctuation and quotation marks. You may want to find a reference book like Trunk and White's element of style or a website that helps refresh the rules. Punctuation almost always goes inside the quotation mark.

You seem to be doing a good job of working on doing more showing than telling. This line, however, is all telling: The Missouri heat was almost unbearable this time of year.
It is also redundant because you already showed the reader that it was hot. Granted that line about sweat could also show anxiety, but if you wanted to show both you could do something like this: As the heat seemed to produce a thick haze,the sweat dripped down her neck, but simultaneously she felt goosebumps explode on her arms as her eyes darted through the woods searching for danger.
I did that kind of fast so it may not be the best example, but I hope it shows what I was trying to say.

I think you did a great job of pulling the topic in and actually making it almost a character that threatened to give away the little girl's hiding spot. I like how the beginning introduced the conflict right away and pulled me in. The ending felt a bit forced. It might have had a bigger impact if you left out the last two lines and ended with the MC collapsing in tears as she wrapped her arms around the little girl. "Shh, we're safe. Thank God!"

You have a nice way of transitioning from intense danger to safety. There are all kinds of wonderful little messages packed into this story, as well as it was a thrilling read!
Congratulations on ranking 4 in your level and 24 overall! (The highest rankings can be found on the message boards)
Congratulations!
Congratulations!