I sat at the kitchen table in silence, eating my breakfast like the good girl I was while my dad drank his coffee and my mom served him his breakfast. Eggs, bacon, and toast, while I sat and ate my bowl of now mushy cereal, staring into the milk as I swirled my spoon around. My older brother Connor came downstairs, kissed mom on the cheek, clapped dad’s shoulder and sat down and mom served him the same meal. My little sister Zoey was excited about her first day of fourth grade, and couldn’t wait to find out who her teacher would be. Mom sat down and we were all eating breakfast together. They were talking, laughing, completely oblivious to my presence.
Connor said something and ruffled Zoey’s hair and she batted his hand away and dad laughed while mom shook her head smiling.
I kept my head down, staring into the bowl, but every once in a while, I’d look up. When it got quiet. I hated it when it got quiet.
Connor got up and said he was going to be late for school, so he grabbed his backpack and car keys, called out ‘I love you’ and left for school. Senior year. He wanted to get into Harvard, be a lawyer. At least, that’s what his plan used to be, who knows what it is now. He was the captain of our school’s football team, and he was probably the most popular guy in school. He was just a nice guy. Everyone wanted to be Connor’s friend, he made everyone feel so welcomed and appreciated. He’s the kind of guy that stands up for what’s right, helps people who need help, stops bully’s, tutors, and volunteers to help underprivileged kids.
My dad is a lawyer, a partner with Mills Harper Law. He’s a defence attorney to be more correct, while mom is a nurse practitioner at the only hospital in our small town called Stoneville, population twenty thousand.
They got married and less than a year later they had Connor. Three years after that, they had me.
Sophomore year. The year when I was going to try out for cheerleading, audition for the school musical, get my first kiss, hopefully lose my v-card, get drunk for the first time, get my license, get my first job… It was a big year.
Dad got up and took his plate to the sink and kissed mom on the forehead and gave our German shepherd Bruno a pat on the head, grabbed his jacket and briefcase for work, but he stopped in front of the family picture that we took two years ago in Niagara Falls. Mom’s blonde hair was in a ponytail, dad’s sunglasses were sitting on top of his head, Zoey was hugging dad’s shoulders, proudly displaying her missing front tooth, Connor had his arm around my shoulder, and my blonde hair was held out of my face with a red headband, my arms around Bruno. I was wearing my white shorts and blue tank top with white flowers. I love that outfit combo.
We were the perfect family on paper.
Dad ran his hand over the picture, lowering his head and letting out a sigh before shaking his head and leaving for work, Zoey grabbing her bag and going with him. He was dropping her off. Mom immediately resting her arms on the island countertop and closed her eyes. It was her first day back to work after she’d been on leave for a few months. It was good that she was finally getting back to work, she loved her job.
She drew in a deep breath and I could see she was struggling, so I got up and wrapped my arms around her, trying to tell her everything was going to be okay, but she brushed me off, pushing past me and went upstairs to get ready for work.
I followed her as she walked past Connor’s room, the hall bathroom, Zoey’s room, her and dad’s room, and she stopped in front of my closed bedroom door.
It still had the pink flowers and glitter decorating it that I put up in middle school and had never taken down for some reason. She opened the door and stood in the doorframe for a moment, but she didn’t go in. She shook her head and closed the door again, turning to go into her bedroom to get dressed.
My name is Sierra Clayton, and this is the story of the mystery surrounding my abduction, the search to find me, and my murder.
Yeah, I probably should have mentioned the whole dead thing. My bad.
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