Chapter 8: Where are You, Aiman?
Aiman’s house looked empty when Shinta and Nina came there the next day. According to his neighbors, Aiman and his sisters had left their house early this morning.
“Where are they going, Nina? Why didn’t Aiman tell us that he wanted to go somewhere?” Shinta asked her best friend tearfully.
“I don’t know, Shinta. But I hope they will be back soon,” Nina said hopefully.
Unfortunately, Nina’s wish didn’t come true. Although they had waited for them the whole day, but Aiman and his sisters never returned.
From that day on, no one ever heard of Aiman or her sisters again. It’s as if they had vanished off the face of the earth.
Every day, Shinta always came to Aiman’s house, wishing she would see him there. But it was always the same. The house kept standing empty.
One afternoon, while Shinta was walking past Aiman’s house, she saw all the lights in his house were burning.
Thinking Aiman finally came home, Shinta rushed to his house and knocked on the door impatiently. However, it’s neither Aiman nor his sisters who answered the door, but a complete stranger.
Apparently, Aiman had sold his parents’ house. And now, the old woman who opened the door for her was the new owner of the house.
“Why did Aiman have to sell his parents’ house? Does it mean that he and his sister will never return here? Are they planning to leave their hometown for good?” Shinta asked herself confusedly on her way home.
Several months went by since Aiman and his sisters disappeared and were never heard of again. Until now, nobody knew their whereabouts.
Shinta and Nina had tried everything they could do to search for Aiman, Alya, and Adinda. From calling their distant relatives to reporting them as missing people to the police. But they could not find the three siblings anywhere.
Shinta was sitting in her usual spot in the backyard of her school. She stared blankly into space, while her thoughts wandered back to the happiest moments she had spent with Aiman.
“Shinta, what are you doing here?” asked Nina who suddenly approached her.
Nina’s arrival pulled Shinta out of her reverie.
Shinta then replied, “I am thinking about Aiman, Nina. I am so worried about him. Since his parents passed away, I never heard of him or his sisters again.”
Sitting beside Shinta, Nina touched her shoulder, trying to comfort her. “Don’t too worry about him, Shinta! Maybe he’s busy now, so he doesn’t have time to call us.”
“But I am afraid that something bad has happened to him, Nina,” Shinta said anxiously.
“Hush!” Nina put her index finger in front of Shinta’s lips. “Don’t say so! I am sure Aiman can take care of himself wherever he is.”
Shinta let out a long sigh. “I hope you’re right, Nina.”
“Yes, I hope so too,” Nina said with a weak smile.
“Oh Nina, I miss Aiman so much,” Shinta told her best friend.
“Yeah, I know. I also miss Aiman terribly,” Nina blurted out.
Shinta was startled by Nina’s words.
“I— I mean, Aiman is my best friend. That’s why I also miss him as you do,” Nina quickly corrected.
Shinta only responded Nina’s remarks with a faint smile. And then, she said sadly, “Aiman is still my boyfriend now. But he hasn’t phoned me since he and his sister left our hometown. I am afraid he will forget me and dump me for another girl, Nina.”
“Don’t too worry about it, Shinta! We both know that Aiman is a good boy. He’s got an honest face. And he’s also very faithful. I believe that he will never betray you. And as his girlfriend, you have to trust him too, okay?” Nina advised her.
Shinta sighed. “Yes, you’re right, Nina. I must put my trust in Aiman. Now, all I can do is only waiting for him to come back.”
“Good!” Nina exclaimed with a smile.
Shinta returned her smile.
“It’s getting dark. Let’s go home now, shall we?” Nina suggested.
Shinta nodded her head. “Okay. Let’s go!”
The two best friends finally left that place and went home.