I know

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic
The search for young Alexandra Diego has been called off so now Isabella has work to do.

Submitted: July 28, 2014

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Submitted: July 28, 2014

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“After thirty days, local authorities have stopped the search for Alexandra Diego. The community is in mourning of the loss of this young soul who has seemingly vanished with out a trace. Wherever you are Alexandra, our hopes and prayers are with you.”

Click.

Silence is bliss. A lot like ignorance, or so I hear. But I wouldn't know because everyone tells me fucking everything. The lights are all out now. The glow of the television set still lingers in my sight, casting a strange aurora over the window where my gaze trails over. I can't put it all together. For someone who knows everything sometimes I feel so stupid. That's how I feel right now. Stupid. So, so stupid. But... I know.

I pick myself up off the couch. It's late and I should be going to sleep, but I can't. I have things to do. The backpack is already packed and sitting next to the door with a flashlight. The hunt had officially been called off at noon and everyone in town knew about it, so the days of hiding things like backpacks full of questionable contents and flashlights are over. Now I could just be someone who likes to camp, just like the days before Alley went and got herself all disappeared.

The walk to where she lays is short. Thirteen minutes exactly on foot from her parents home. I arrive at exactly eleven-thirty. Exactly the time the three of us agreed on. We'll, the two of them. I never agreed to anything. Things just happen to a girl with the friendly face I guess. I guess. Yeah, I guess because here I am. The walk was such an easy one, day or dark that I've yet to turn on my flashlight. But I need it now.

Click.

Isn't it funny how everything clicks. Wanna turn something on? Click. Wanna turn something off? Click. Wanna figure something out? Wait for it to click. They didn't wait long enough. If they had... Click. Just like that. Everything fits together into this neat little package. Everything. If they'd been paying attention. Really been paying attention, they would have known. They'd know where their daughter was, they'd know that the community never really sent out their hopes and prayers and that now that the search was over, the idea of hopes and prayers are the furthest thing from anybodies mind. Rumors, gossip, pointing fingers at neighbors and strangers and living in a mock sense of self righteous fear wondering whose child would be next. That's all this town has ever known.

It's too late for them to know. And I can never say anything. Not a word, or my life would be over. I might even end up in jail. Would people trust me in jail, the same way they trust me out here? I doubt it. No, this secret goes with me to the grave.

A foot fall in the woods gives my heart a stop. I can't breath for a second, but then he emerges. It's him. My accomplice, Dmitri. The second he see's me he flinches as though he is about to turn and run, but then his flash light blinds me and he breaths loudly.

“You came.” He says, his hand on his heart.

“Of course I did. I said I would.”

“Is she?”

“I brought everything, we should probably start.”

Few people know about the cave. But we do. We approach what looks like a pile of rocks, flash lights in hand we find the sliver of an opening and squeeze ourselves inside. Though the opening is small, the cave itself is quit roomy. We walk side by side in silence for a while. Well, semi silence. Our foot steps fall in echos and I am reminded of drums in war movies i've seen. I think that's appropriate, given the situation.

I see the bottoms of her shoes first. They are worn and dusty and just laying there of little use now. The area where we left looks like a tornado went through it. Clothes everywhere, dirty and some torn. Wrappers from her last meals in piles. And there she lies.

I walk over to her motionless body and shake my head. What did I agree to? What am I doing? For a moment I try to picture my life. I wonder, will I ever be able to look back on the last thirty days? On this day? Would I ever come to terms with wither or not this was ok? How many lives had I ruined? And then I bite my lip. She deserves it. I know that, down deep in my heart. She deserves everything she gets.

I look back at Dmitri. He has tears in his eyes. I don't know if he is read for this... but I do it anyway. I kick her. Gently of course, in the leg.

“Wake Up Ally.”

“Hmph”

“I swear, she can sleep through anything.” I say.

Dmitri laughs.

“Wake up.” I say again. This time I squat, and shake her shoulder. Her eyes flutter, and she smiles.

“Is it dinner time Sis?”

“Yes. I brought you a couple of burritos. I hope that's ok.”

“Yeah it's fine.”

She sits up and I toss the backpack to her. She digs into it eagerly.

“I knew you'd sleeping.”

“I can't help it. The baby wears me out. Even in here.” She laughs, patting her stomach.

“How's my boy doing?” Dmitri asks, sitting next to her. He kisses her forehead as she bites down.

“It's not a boy. I told you. It's a girl and she is going to be just like me.” She wipes refried beans from her mouth.

“God, let's hope not.” I say. “I can't go through anything like this EVER again. They all think your dead Ally.”

“I know. But it was the only way.”

“I know.”

“I don't think you do. I don't think you can. You've never been pregnant. They were going to make me have an...”

He kisses her head again, and I just nodd. I know. I know. That's why I'm here. That's why any of us are here.

I take the backpack and I dig around the clothes I brought her, I dig around the bottles of water and the extra money I put away for her, some of it stolen from my parents bank accounts, I dig around it all and pull out a folder.

“They called off the search tonight.” I say. My eyes begin to fill with tears and I urge them to stop.

She stops chewing. “They did?”

“Yeah.”

“Oh my gosh, and did you? Do you have it?”

“Yeah. Here.” I hand her the folder and she opens it. It holds only one single sheet of paper.

“Oh my God, Isabelle! You are everything to me. Everything.”

Again, I say the only thing I can say... “I know.”

She closes the folder and stands up. I stand up and take her hand. Four months and her belly is already huge. I press my none pregnant belly against it and imagine myself hugging her baby, after all... this is as close as i'll ever get.

“Are you ready?” I whisper.

She turns and looks down at Dmitri. He smiles, nods, and before I know it she is nodding too. It's happening. I sigh, kiss her cheek, and take the backpack once more. “This was all I could get. I hope it works.”

I dig out a white skirt and white maternity T-shirt and hand it to her. She smiles.

With in minutes she is changed, and we all squeeze out into the moonlight. I have to be quick, and I know it. Search off or not, if anyone saw us...”

I take the folder and hold it to my chest. It feels more official that way I guess, holding that little paper that proves I’ve been ordained for this. That proves that in the eyes of God my words are binding and true. It's short, I hope it's sweet.

“And do you take Dmitri Montoya to be your lawfully wedded husband?”

“I do.”

“Then by the power invested in me by God and the State of California, I know pronounce you husband and wife.”

They kiss. They kiss as though it is the first time and I know why. In that kiss I see it all. My sister, alive and happy holding a baby and kissing its cheeks, my new brother in law holding them both, safe and sound. And the world... my parents... her parents, they will never know. And that is the way it has to be. One more hug and our tears mix as we say goodbye. She's only sixteen. I think. And I will never see her again.

“I love you.” I whisper in her ear.

“I know.” She whispers back. “I know.”


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