Emma (17 yrs old) and Cassandra (15 yrs old) were believed to have run away from home and disappeared. Emma’s car was found in the river and a strand of Cassandra’s hair. Their disappearance remained a mystery three years later – until Cassandra came back.
Cass appeared by the doorstep, rang the doorbell, and waited for her mother to open. Her mother, Judy Martin, hugged her as she cried. Judy attended to Cass. She let her eat, take a shower, and rest. Cass’s stepfather, Jonathan Martin, called the police to inform them about her return. Dr. Abby Winter handled the case, along with Leo Strauss.. they immediately went to Martin’s house to ask Cass what had happened.
Just a quick background about Cass & Emma’s family:
Their mother, Judy, first married Owen Tanner. Judy always needed praise from her daughters. She always wanted to hear how beautiful she was and how great she was as a mother. Cass & Emma just went along with it, even though as they grew up, they started to realize that there was something wrong with their mother. She is a narcissist.
Judy cheated on Owen with Jonathan Martin. Judy and Owen divorced and had a custody battle. Both Cass & Emma wanted to live with their father – she voiced this out, and it is evident that it angered their mother. Emma just chose to stay with their mother. Owen gave up, and Judy won the custody battle. Even if Judy won, she was still angry at Cass and insisted she calls her Mrs. Martin.
After the divorce, Jonathan Martin moved in with his son, Hunter. And that’s how everything started getting worse.
Here’s the story that Cass told Abby and Leo during the interview:
According to Cass, she and Emma were fighting because of the necklace on the night that they disappeared. When Cass noticed that Emma was about to leave, she hid in her car. Emma met someone by the river, and Cass yelled at her. Emma got angry because Cass had just ruined her plan to run away, now Casshads came with them. Emma is running away because she is pregnant. She has not told Cass who the father is. They ran away with the help of Ben & Lucy, a couple without a child. They treated both of them very well. They were happy since Ben & Lucy were very kind – but not until Emma gave birth to a girl. Ben & Lucy did not let Emma hold the baby, and they treated it as their own. Ben & Lucy told them that they could leave the island anytime – but they discovered that it just meant the two of them. The baby, Julia, should stay with them on the island. Emma asked Cass to look for ways to leave. Cass should leave the island and bring back help. Cass attempted to go once, but she got stuck, and the boatman named Rick caught him. Rick is very loyal to Ben & Lucy. Cass was very disappointed, but she, later on, thought of another way to leave – and that is to seduce Rick.
She heard the story from Ben & Lucy that Rick witnessed a woman get raped by the other fisherman, and he was very guilty and ashamed about it for not doing anything. So Cass used that against Rick, to let him know that he can’t trust Ben & Lucy – because they just told her his secret. Cass had an intimate relationship with Rick. She doesn’t love him. She just pretends. And she allows him to have sex with her anytime he wants – in return, Rick fell for her and helped her escape the island. Rick knew someone who drives a truck and asked for his help so Cass could finally go home.
Cass has asked the police to look for the island to find Emma and Julia.
After listening to Cass’s story, Abby is in doubt. To her, it sounded like Cass had prepared her story. She noticed that Cass likes keeping track of time, but she could not track events.
Finally, they found a lead. First, they found Cass’s boat and found Rick – but he was dead. After that, they found out the actual name of Ben & Lucy and their history. Their real last name is Patterson, and they had an adopted child named Julian that died a tragic death while they were on a boat. The people sympathized with them at first, but later on, they discovered that they paid a considerable amount to Julian’s real mother – which is illegal.
The police finally found the island. They searched the house. No one was there, and the only clue they found was the necklace that Emma owned. The same chain that she and Cass fought over on the night they disappeared. They found nothing else. After they searched the house, something occurred to Abby. She remembered Cass telling her that she saw Emma’s reaction from the bedroom window, but no window in Emma’s room could’ve been visible to Cass. What she described as Emma’s room was facing the other way. Abby realized that Cass was lying. She has a strong feeling that this mistake by Cass regarding the view from the window means that Emma has never been on that island.
Abby came up with a plan to find Emma – and that is to tell Cass and Judy that they found Emma and her baby.
When Abby told them, Judy got frantic. Cass just listened while Judy and Jonathan fought. When they went out of the house and into their car, Cass followed them. It turns out that Abby and Leo are also on the lookout and follow them. Together, they saw Jonathan digging and Judy crying. She doubted if they did bury Emma because the police just told them she was found. After a while, Jonathan showed Judy the bones – Emma’s bones.
Both Jonathan and Judy were sent to jail. Abby helped Cass avoid punishment for lying to the police by telling them that what she had was simply a delusion. After that, Cass returned to her daughter, Julia. It was her that was pregnant and not Emma.
Here’s what really happened:
Cass and Emma saw Judy and their stepbrother, Hunter, having sex. Emma wanted to use this against Judy, but Cass suggested that instead of using what they saw against their mother, Emma could just tell her that she’s pregnant and see how she reacts. Emma thought it was a good idea. She likes provoking Judy. The truth is Cass would like to know how Judy would react so she could prepare herself when she tells them that she’s the one who’s pregnant with Hunter’s child.
When Emma told Judy, they got into a big fight. Emma fell down the stairs and broke her neck. Jonathan came home after a while and suggested that they call 911 immediately, but he got worried about how this would affect Hunter if it gets discovered that Emma was pregnant with his child. So they both decided to just bury Emma. Cass stayed hidden because she was scared. She wasn’t sure if they brought Emma to the hospital, let her live somewhere else to conceal her pregnancy – or if she died.
Since Cass already knows what would happen if she reveals that she’s pregnant – she runs away. She contacted Bill (she saw his number in an ad for troubled teens). Bill and Lucy adopted her and treated her well – until she gave birth to Julia. Lucy treated the baby as her own and wouldn’t allow Cass to take care of her.
Cass escaped – she has been collecting Lucy’s pills secretly. Cass dissolved the tablets in wine and let Bill drink it as Lucy slept. When they were already asleep, she contacted Rick using Bill’s phone. Cass took the baby and waited for Rick. When they met, he told her to go back and return the baby. Cass was so disappointed because after offering herself to Rick for so long, his loyalty is still with Ben & Lucy. So she killed him (just sort of pushed the boat into the rock) and sailed by herself, with Julia.
When she finally arrived, she looked for her half-brother (not Hunter) and asked him to keep her baby while discovering what was done to Emma.
After exposing the truth, she fetched her baby and decided to call her Emma since she wasn’t the one who named her Julia.
The End of Emma in the Night by Wendy Walker.