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The ground shivered violently and a loud bang was heard throughout the area. Breathing heavy and nervously shaking Jess looked up from her spot on the ground. She gasped and looked at the spot only feet from them where the bus had smashed into the ground completely disfigured and broken. Kevin sat up and stared along with her. He tried to speak but nothing came out. Jess spoke the exact words he was thinking, “Do you think anyone survived?” Her voice was cracking. Kevin hesitated, he wasn’t sure he wanted to think about the two of them being the only ones alive.
“I doubt it,” he finally said. Shutting his eyes and bowing his head to the ground. He could hear Jess crying freely as she continued to stare at the wreck. Kevin looked back up the cliff. “There is no way we can climb back up that thing,” he said, examining the straight drop they had just fallen. Jess looked at it too, “Then what do we do? Do we wait for help? Do we try and help ourselves?” She was stuttering, and shaking. “I guess we should try and help ourselves,” Jess turned and looked at him.
“Why?” she questioned. “Because, one: we are in the middle of no where. Two: no one will realize we are missing for hours” he answered
“But, someone will notice, I mean, we were only a few miles behind the other buses. Someone is bond to realize that we aren’t following anymore,” Jess started to panic as she thought through all the possibilities. “What if no one comes, and they never find us! What if we starve!” Jess started to scream.
“HEY!” Kevin yelled at her,” Just chill out and breathe! We’re going to be fine, we just have to think this through!” She stared at him with a bewildered look on her face, “Think it through? Everyone is dead! We are lucky enough to even be alive, what are we supposed to do besides wait for help!”
Kevin stood and paced the area,” Yeah, well you wouldn’t even be alive if it weren’t for me, so you owe me, and you won’t even consider my option of moving,”
“Now, you’re the one throwing the b**** fest, and I would be fine without you!” “HA, doubt it, if I hadn’t grabbed you and pulled you out the window you’d be squished like a bug on a windshield like everyone else!”
Jess frowned and looked back at the bus,” You’re right, I’m sorry I guess. Everything happened so fast, I can’t remember anything after we went off the road, I was so scared!” She said, not looking up at him. Kevin looked down at her,” Yeah I was too, I couldn’t tell you how in hell we got out of that bus alive, some sort of freak miracle I guess”
Kevin walked over to the bus and leaned in the wreckage. “Be careful, it could tilt!” Jess yelled to him. He waved his hand back at her. He searched the inside; he could see their bags lying under what used to be his and Jess’ seat. He started to step in to grab them when he caught a glimpse of one of the old women sprawled on the windshield. He jumped back and shut his eyes.
“What’s wrong?” Jess said walking over. She looked in and saw the woman. She put her hands to her mouth and whispered, “We have to move, we could die here,” Kevin shook his head, “No you’re right we should just stay and someone will find us, it’ll be fine,” Kevin took a deep breathe and stepped into the bus. He grabbed their bags and jumped back to Jess. Just as he stepped out he heard a creaking noise. Jess screamed as she saw the bus start to tilt toward them. Kevin grabbed her arm and ran with her just as the back of the bus hit their heels. They fell and looked at the bus, horrified. “Ok, let’s move,” Kevin said handing Jess her bag and pointing toward the woods.
They started walking until they were almost engulfed in trees. Jess looked back and watched as the bus started to disappear as they went down hill. “Are you sure we should move?” she asked. Kevin looked back too and answered, “Well if we die, just blame me,”
“Welcome to Washington!” The bus driver said to the students in the back. They cheered in joy. “Finally!” Rebecca called. She looked out her window and tried to watch the buses behind them. She could see the bright colored ones of her fellow students but she couldn’t catch a glance of the white public bus her friend was on.
“Don’t worry, I’m sure they are fine” said the boy next to her. Rebecca had become friends with him over the ride without her best friend. She had learned this was Jake, a hockey player, and Kevin’s best friend. “How crazy is it that we got seated together, she said. “And when we get back to school, it’ll be an epic friendship!” Jake said, they laughed as their bus pulled into the parking lot of their hotel.
The students were gathered in the large lobby of the building as the teachers handed out room keys. Rebecca and Jake were each given a key to rooms right next to each other. “Cool, as soon as Kevin and Jess get here we’ll chill and have a party!” Jake said and they walked off to the elevator.
“Alright, I’m just gonna go unpack and I’ll be right back out for Jess, and we’ll meet up in a little,” Rebecca said opening her room. Rebecca threw her bag on the bed and started to put her clothes in the first set of drawers.
She sat on her bed and put in her earphones. She turned up the volume and laid back on the pillow to wait for Jess. Without knowing it she fell asleep and when she woke the sun was gone and it was 10pm. She popped into a sitting position and looked over at the bed next to hers. It was unoccupied. “Jess? You here?” She looked around for another bag but couldn’t find one. The other drawer was empty. The bathroom was unoccupied as well.
Rebecca walked out of her room and went back down to the elevator. Entering the elevator she say Mr. Canz the principal, Jake, and two police officers. “Hey, has anyone seen Jess?” She asked them. They looked at her with strange expressions. Jake walked over to her and took her arm as she looked up at Mr. Canz. “What’s going on?” she demanded. Jake answered, “Kevin and Jess are missing,”
Rebecca looked up at him, “No, no, their bus just got lost, a wrong turn, they’ll be here soon I know it,” The police officer looked down at her, “We haven’t heard from the driver and we aren’t sure where they were when he stopped contact but we are sure they went off the road,” Rebecca stared at him with her mouth open, “Off the road? As in they crashed?”
“Yes, somewhere near the countryside,”
“The countryside, as in farms, with people to help them right?”
“No as in, forests, woods, mountains,”
Rebecca went blank. She felt dizzy and started to panic. “We have a search team out now but we don’t know how long they’ve been out there and we don’t know if we’ll get to them in time,” The officer said. “How can you say that!” Rebecca said to him, “You have to do everything you can to find them and fast!” The officer looked sympathetic toward her, “Miss we don’t even know if they are alive,”
Rebecca threw herself into Jake’s arms. They had only known each other for a few hours but now they needed each other to get through the thought of their friends in mortal danger
“It’s so dark, maybe we should stop?” Jess said rubbing her arms in fear. Kevin walked ahead, “No I think we should keep going, at least get another mile in,” Jess stopped dead, “A mile! No Kevin, we are stopping, now!” He turned around and smiled at her. “No need to be bossy,”
“How can you smile at a time like this? We don’t even know where we are!”
“Sure we do! If we go straight back that way for 4 hours then we’ll be right back at the bus,”
“So smart! Now let’s stop, Kevin please!”
“Ok, ok! We’ll stop”
Jess fell onto her back and leaned against a tree. Kevin sat down next to her. “So? Do you think anyone knows we are missing yet?” he asked. Jess closed her eyes, “God I hope so, I don’t know if I can handle all this walking, I feel like we are in the Incredible Journey or something,”
“Isn’t that the movie with the talking animals?”
“No it’s the book that made me cry,”
“There’s a book?”
“You’re such a boy,”
Kevin smiled and closed his eyes and in minutes they were asleep, exhausted from their long walk. They had no idea the kind of things they would face in the morning.