Finally, the day was here. Ever since the first day of freshman year I had been dreaming about the time when I would become a senior. There would be no more aggressive jocks and peppy cheerleaders to push any juniors around, at least none but us. Boy did it feel good to be at the top of the food chain.
I crept out of bed, careful not to wake my mom. The clock read 6:25 and the sun had yet to creep out of the darkness, so I wandered to where my clothes lay in the dark. I’d fix my outfit later.
After getting ready and heading downstairs, I struggled to think of what to make for breakfast. As if on cue, my cell phone buzzed from the kitchen counter and I picked it up, finding myself staring at Stella’s face.
“Stell, what are you doing calling this early?”
I heard a yawn from the other end. “Just wondering what you were eating for breakfast.” Best friends think alike.
“I haven’t decided.” I said while picking up a box of cereal from the cabinet. “Actually, make that frosted flakes.”
“Huh, I thought you’d go for cheerios.”
I rolled my eyes. “Are we really gonna talk about breakfast the first day of senior year?” Of all the things Stella was good at, conversation was not one of them.
“Fine. Do you need a ride?”
“Since I’m not walking two miles, yes.”
“Then see you in five.” And the conversation was over.
I set the phone back and tried hard to keep my eyes from wandering to the picture frame sitting on the counter next to it. It would ruin my day. It would bring me back into a whole state of wondering and questioning, trying to find the truth.
I lost the battle.
I found myself staring at the picture. Me, with my brown hair all curly and untamed around my shoulders, I had my head turned away from the camera while I looked to the girl behind me. She had the same green eyes as me, the same smile. I wondered what it would be like if we were going to school together today. I wondered what it would be like to be a senior with my sister.
It wasn’t long ago that she disappeared, just four years. Only I remember it like it was yesterday.
It had been hot, one of those sticky and moist days in Briarfield, North Carolina. Everything had been the same; there hadn’t been a sign or a clue that things might be different that day. I remember thinking about how humid it was. I remember wishing I had gone along with Anya to her volleyball practice instead of walking home.
I’d stepped inside the air-conditioned house, instantly feeling better. I had sat down on the leather couch and waited and waited for Anya to come home. Only she didn’t come. She hadn’t picked up her cell phone, her friends hadn’t seen her, and she hadn’t been at practice. She’d simply disappeared.
I remember running up to my bedroom that night and crying myself to sleep. I’d prayed and prayed that this was all a dream, that I had gone with her to volleyball, and that we’d both be doing our homework right now, as if nothing had happened.
But I hadn’t. And even now, I think it’s my fault.
Beep! Beep! I snapped out of my trance, Stella was waiting for me outside.
I grabbed my backpack and headed out the door, forgetting about breakfast and for the most part, about Anya.
“Hey, girl! Ready for the first day of the rest of your life?” Stella asked as I stepped into the car.
“Ready as I’ll ever be.” Stella gave me one of her looks and rolled her eyes as she drove down the street.
ALL THE RIGHTS TO THIS EXCERPT BELONGS TO ME!!!