I don't know.
It was dark now and there was a chill hugging my body, Liam had been missing all day and well into the night. I stood by the waterfall for hours hoping and waiting for him to appear, so far he hasn’t showed but I refuse to move.
I don’t know where Liam is.
I don’t know what set him off.
I don’t know if he’s safe.
I pulled my phone out to ring him again but it went straight to answer phone. So I text him for the billionth time this evening.
Liam, please come home. I’m not mad. I just want to talk to you. We can get through this together. X
His friends are out looking for him, all the places they’ve ever been before. Reece is staying at the house in case he comes back. Lola and Tia are asking around at bars and clubs. But I’m here because I know this is where he would come, he’s strong enough and brave enough to fight any battle and find his way back to me.
I just needed to wait.
“They sing so beautiful.”
“Who do?” his voice asked.
I lay back in the avery watching colourful flutters of weightless wings fly above my head. The singing was loud and the sun was bright making my eyes squint but I was ridiculously happy because I could sense Liam everywhere. His scent was intoxicating, it hugged my body. Oud wood and fresh vanilla.
I opened my eyes, blinking in the overbearing sunlight that hit my face unpleasantly. The birds chirped high up in the trees and my neck felt stiff from the position I had fallen asleep in. Draped over my body for warmth was Liams leather jacket and I immediately sat up to look around.
“Liam?” I called out.
A few birds scattered from the trees but Liam didn’t answer.
“Liam?” I shouted again, this time louder. More birds scattered but Liam wasn’t here.
I pulled my phone out and dialed for Jordan.
“Olive, have you found him?” He sounded exhausted and worried.
“No I fell asleep but when I woke up his jacket was around me.” I could hear the tears forming in my throat. I just wanted Liam back safe and sound, how could I fall asleep?
“Well is there anything in his pocket?” Jordan asked, I quickly dug my hands into each of his pockets.
“Nothing new.” I said. “Oh wait... there’s like an ounce of weed.” I told him pushing the bag of herbs back into his pocket.
“Okay, we can cope with Liam on weed.” He informed me.
“Jordan his bracelet is gone.” I felt around in every pocket just to make sure.
“What? His bracelet? What does that mean?” His voice went higher in frequency.
“It means ... he needs me with him.” I said slowly.
I heard Jordan sigh down the phone. “Meet me back at the house.” He hung up.
I slipped Liams jacket on, it was heavy and big on me but it comforted me. It smelled like him. I shouted his name until I was out of the woods completely but deep down I knew he wasn’t close. When I got to the lake house everyone was gathered on the seating areas, they looked gloomy and defeated. I snuggled into the sleeve of Liams jacket and silently willed him to walk through the door.
Jordan, Zak and Ben all walked in together getting my hopes up and then bursting the bubble right before my eyes.
“Let’s think back okay, we were in the diner talking. Reece you asked him a question and he freaked out. What did you ask him?” Jordan asked. Reece suddenly looked very guilty.
“Ben and I were arguing who was the better player, Reece said I was and after bickering about it for five minutes she asked Liam if he agreed, that’s when he flipped.” Zak interrupted.
“You touched his arm. Anyone else notice he doesn’t really like to be touched.” Lola pointed out, she’s been paying attention and has noticed that Liam is intangible.
Jordans eyes darted to me for a split second, I know he was asking me if I thought that is what set Liam off but I shook my head.
“No, it happened before that.” I answered quietly.
Everyone turned their attention to me, waiting for me to finish but I don’t really know what else I could add.
“You were all talking to that guy and his face just changed.” I said.
“What guy?” Ben asked.
“The Scottish one who kept telling us to go up that mountain” Tia reminded everyone.
Silence filled the group for a few heavy seconds.
“It’s him.” I whispered, coming to the terrifying realization of what happened at the diner.
“Who? Who is he?” Zak asked, everyone turned to me waiting for an explanation.
“It’s him.” Jordan said as the realization dawned on him too.
“Okay so what? You think Liams gone up the mountain? Or maybe he’s gone to the elementary school. He said he works just up the road.” Lola said.
Jordan pulled out his phone and started searching for the elementary schools located close by. He also pulled up directions to the mountain. “Everyone stay here, Olive come with me.” He grabbed his car keys from the side and as an afterthought he turned back and said “sorry Reece.” before we both left the house.
I glanced over at Jordan who concentrated hard on the road, or on whatever was running through his head at the time. He noticed me staring and I kept seeing his side eye flick towards me.
“How much do you know Jordan?” I asked genuinely curious. He shook his head.
“Enough. I’ve pieced together bits. I don’t want to know the rest, I don’t like thinking of it.” He said honestly.
“Imagine having to live through it.” I replied quietly.
Jordan remained silent but I could see him flick away tears that he tried to keep hidden from me. I don’t understand why all of these boys wear a front that hides their emotions. Jordan must always remain macho, the alpha male of the group. God forbid he shows that he actually has a heart.
“You’re a good friend Jordan, I’m pleased Tia has someone like you.” He turned to face me and gave me a smirk at the mention of her name. It was an uplifting fleeting moment in the time of a dire crisis and I was thankful for it.
“Yeah, you kind of caught us there didn’t you detective Olive.” He laughed and I laughed.
Jordan pulled into the parking lot of Bumble Grove Elementary and my insides exploded with nerves, I didn’t get a good feeling about this. Jordan clipped off his seat belt and threw the door open wide, it banged the car next to us but he didn’t even stop to assess the damage or close the door. He just ran through the car park towards the school.
I climbed out of the car and stopped to close his door before making my way through the parking lot. Jordan’s soccer trained legs were much faster than mine and it wasn’t until I got closer that I could see he was talking to Liam.
My heart erupted with butterflies and I finally felt relaxed.
Liam is okay.
He is here. He is safe.
I watched Liams retreating back walk away from Jordan and head towards the school. I picked up the pace with my legs, running to catch up to them but as I got to Jordan he grabbed hold of me.
“What the fuck are you doing? Let me go” I shouted as Jordan’s strong hands clasped around my midriff and I fought to get free.
“Olivia.” He spoke deeply and calmly. It’s the first time Jordan has used my actual name and it made me feel instantly sick to my stomach.
“He has got a gun.”