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A Day to Remember
I woke up suddenly, feeling the pain in my right leg. I looked around. The room was painted pink and contains a lot of girly furniture.
Where am I? Is this my room? Who am I? What am I doing here? I panicked, unable to remember anything. I threw off the pink comforter and walked back and forth. My heart was pounding. Why can’t I remember anything? I hit the side of my head angrily, trying to trigger some memory. I spotted a closet in the room. Maybe if I see my clothes, I’ll remember, I thought hopefully. I opened it and found it empty.
“Why aren’t there any clothes? Is this some kind of joke?” I yelled to it. I slammed it closed and marched out the door. I wasn’t sure where I was headed, but I would be happy to be anywhere but this room. In front of me were the stairs, so I cautiously limped down them.
“Good morning Amy!” a familiar, cheerful voice called. Who’s there? I stopped in my tracks and let out a yelp. I picked up an umbrella that was leaning against the wall and held it up for protection. It seemed so familiar that I decided I just had to follow it. I ended up in what looked like a kitchen, face to face with a forty something year old man packing a briefcase. I stared, trying to remember who he was.
“What are you doing with the umbrella?” he asked me, slightly chuckling.
“Who are you?” I didn’t lower the umbrella. He laughed.
“Good one, Amy. Did you –“
“Where am I? Why can’t I remember? Why?! Why?!”
“Stop kidding around. You’re in Scranton. Did you have a good sleep?”
“You’re not answering me! Why?! And why does my leg hurt?!”
“Calm down, Amy! It must have been when you tripped on the side of our pool yesterday.” He looked at his wristwatch.
“Oops, looks like it’s time for Dad to go,” he grabbed his briefcase and rushed out the door. Dad? Dad?! I shrugged and let out a deep, annoyed breath. I opened the stainless steel fridge and found it empty.
“Where’s the food?! Why isn’t it there?!” I screamed into it.
I slammed it shut and went searching for breakfast in the pantry near it. There was only a single box of Cheerios. I took it and went back over to the fridge. I put my hand on the handlebar then remembered no milk. I sat down at the round table eating my Cheerios dry. Bored, I picked up the newspaper on the table. “Girl missing from Elmira home,” I mumbled, reading the title.
Girl Missing From Elmira Home
14 year old Julie Allens was reported missing from her home in Elmira, New York two days ago on her birthday, November 10th. Her parents went out grocery shopping, leaving Allens home alone. When they returned, Julie was nowhere to be found. Julie Allens is of dark brown hair, light brown eyes, has a scar on her cheek, and is 5 foot 5. Her disappearance has been reported all over the U.S. If you have any information, please call the Allen’s residence, 181-818, or your local police station.
“It must suck to be them,” I say to myself as I polished off the last of my dry cereal. I wandered back upstairs to find a bathroom, feeling much more comfortable in the house.
I found one next to my room. I entered and a few minutes later, I was soaked in hot water. I grabbed a shampoo bottle. “For color treated hair,” it read. It was the only shampoo in the room, so I poured a generous amount into my hand. As I showered, I kept wondering why I had that kind of shampoo in my bathroom. I didn’t dye my hair, at least not that I remember of.
I turned off the water, dried myself off, and put on the same dirty clothes from the night before. Disgusting, I thought. I wiped the steam-fogged mirror with my towel, and take a look at my face. I had brown eyes and light brown hair. I saw something on my cheek. I raised my hand to wipe it off. But whatever it was wouldn’t come off. I leaned in closer to have a better look. I had a short red line on my cheek. I realized it was a scar.
Just like that girl in the paper, I mumbled. I shook my head. A lot of people in this world had scars on their cheek. It was no big deal. I looked at my hair. Was it just me, or did my roots seem darker than the rest of my hair? I leaned in to the mirror as close as I could. My face was practically pushed onto it. I took another look, and saw that it was. Just then, I accidentally dropped my towel onto the damp floor. I bent over to pick it up, and nearly hit my head on the side of a plastic trash basket. I looked in, and there was a lone packet of hair dye sitting in it. It was the same color as mine.
Whoever dyed my hair did a pretty bad job at it, I thought. Seeing my resemblance to the description of Julie Allens, I decided it was too crazy. I needed some fresh air.
Maybe I could go for a swim, I thought, remembering Dad’s words. I walked out of the steamy bathroom, down the steps, and out the back door. I closed my eyes and breathed in the cool, autumn air. I couldn’t wait to at least dip my feet into the pool. I slowly opened my eyes, but then snapped them open in shock. I gasped. The ground consisted of dirt and a few patches of grass. But that was it. Nothing else was in sight, except for the fence bordering the property.
“Where’s the pool? Where is it?” I yelled, clearly frustrated. I let out some more frustrated screams and stomped my feet.
After a while, I calmed myself down and started to circle the house. Dad didn’t necessarily say it was in the backyard. But as I finished my lap, I still did not see a pool. I circled the house again and again, speeding up each time. I wanted to believe there was one, and that I had only missed it. But after a while, I had to admit to myself that there was no such hope. There was no pool. I screamed in frustration.
I marched back upstairs to my room. I flopped on my bed, with mixed emotions.
Why would Dad lie about a pool? I thought. I kept think of reasons why. As I thought more and more, I started to panic. Angry thoughts swam around in my head.
A pool is not something most people lie about. Why would he say that? Then I recalled something from earlier in the morning. Was it a cover up to why my leg hurts? Who does that? And why? Why would he do that? What really happened to my leg? What if he’s not really my dad? Who is he? Where am I? I pondered the thought angrily.
I calmed down, way too exhausted to think anymore. Slowly, I fell asleep.
“Happy Birthday!” a tall woman screamed, as she barged into a lime green room.
“Thanks,” I blushed.
“You’re fourteen!” she screeched, showing me a “Happy Birthday” tattoo.
“Uh, yeah, I am. You got me a tattoo?”
“Mhm, where do you want it?” she asked, completely oblivious to my disgust.
“Uh…” I debated whether or not I should.
“My foot,” I decided, pointing to my left foot.
At least no on will see it there, I thought as she pressed a cold, wet towel on the temporary tattoo.
I woke up, my foot tingling in memory of the dream. I remembered her. I knew her. But who exactly was she? I grabbed my left foot. I gasped. There was a “happy birthday” tattoo on it.
Suddenly, I remembered who she was. It all came rushing back. The woman was my mother.
After Mom applied the temporary tattoo, she and Dad went out grocery shopping.
“Don’t open the door until you hear the secret knock!” she reminded me. Our secret knock was to knock exactly eight times.
We’ve done this for the past eight years, don’t you think I know already? I held back the urge to roll my eyes. But I smiled and nodded instead and they left. Just as I was deciding what to do, I heard a knock on the door.
“One, two, three, four, five, six, seven, eight,” I counted aloud. “They must have forgotten their keys. And they think I’m the one who needs reminding,” I mumbled to myself. I opened the door. There stood the man who told me he was my dad. He grabbed me and shoved me out of the house. I kicked and screamed, but it was hopeless. I felt a push from behind me and I toppled onto a car’s floor, landing ungracefully on my leg. I lifted my head, but all it got me was a hit to my head. I blacked out.
I suppose that was how I ended up here. I ran down the hall, searching everywhere for a phone. It was in my kidnapper’s bedroom. I quickly dialed 181-818.
“Hello?” Mom’s voice answered.
“Mom! It’s Julie!”
“Julie!? Where are you?”
I didn’t know so I fled downstairs and out the door.
“29 Vine Street in Scranton, Pennsylvania.”
“Don’t leave! We’ll be there in a few hours. Call the police!” she hung up.
I dialed 911 and told the officer everything. He assured me help would come and in a few minutes, police cars pulled up in the driveway. Some officers stayed to investigate while some drove me back to the police station to question me.
In a couple of hours, Mom and Dad barged into the station, looking very relieved. We hugged after not seeing each other for three days. TV and newspaper reporters flooded the lobby, all trying to interview us.
“Where were you?” someone yelled.
“Who was it?” another reporter shoved a microphone in my face.
I sat down on one of the thin plastic chairs and told them my story.
Julie Allens Found
Julie Allens was found yesterday after reported missing four days ago. Allens was taken by Bob Nightshade in her home in Elmira. Nightshade made very little attempt at disguising her by only dying her hair a different shade of brown and giving her a new name: Amy Nightshade. In the car, he hit her head repeatedly until she was unconscious, giving her amnesia. He drove her all the way to Scranton, PA, where he rented a house under the name of Peter Stone. Investigators say the house was mainly empty of furniture and other household items, such as clothing and food, because Nightshade had run away in fear of getting caught. He left Allens behind. Allens realized who she was after reading an article about her disappearance and after her amnesia had passed. Police caught up with Nightshade, and was arrested in Mountain Top, PA.