Normally, I do not break my stories into parts, but today will be an exception. It is a story I started writing the other day, but have been unable to finish it since. Instead of rushing it and giving you a whole, but half-baked piece today, I opted to tease you a little with part 1 and then share part 2 with you next week.
Oh, and because it is a two-parter, you will not get the prompt for the story today. It will reveal it next time. Good? Let us begin!
Mrs. Donna Cobweb sat across from Officer Mike Powell, who was typing something into his computer using only his index fingers. She let out a sigh and looked at her watch. It’s been more than five minutes since the man in uniform told her that he would be with her shortly. All she wanted to do was to grab that keyboard and beat him with it until he paid attention to her, but she knew better than to get rowdy at a police station.
As he continued to type up a presumed report, Donna looked around the room. The desks were all chestnut brown, covered with piles and piles of paperwork. Even though the people working there were of different gender, age, and race, to Donna, they all looked the same in those uniforms. A big blob of blue. Aside from some service awards and three flags – the city’s, the state’s, and the country’s, there was nothing on the walls. Donna found the room lacking character, concluding that it must have been a man who designed and decorated it.
“How do they work here?” Donna wondered, looking at few of the women scattered around the room. Being here all day, every day would have been boring. The room needed some color. “Maybe some fuchsia, orange, or even green, would liven this place up. A plant in the corner or on every desk wouldn’t hurt either,” she thought to herself.
The black plastic chair Mrs. Cobweb was sitting on was not comfortable, and Donna began to shift her weight from one butt cheek to the other when the policeman hit Enter and directed his gaze onto her.
“What can I help you with today, Madam?” Officer Powell asked, folding his arms and leaning back in his chair.
Mrs. Cobweb turned around and waved to a man pacing in the hallway. “That’s my husband,” she explained to the officer as Daniel approached the desk and sat down next to her.
He immediately shifted in his chair. “Our daughter – Delilah, she’s… well, she’s missing,” Mr. Cobweb said very matter-of-factly, looking around the room and wishing that his house was a simple as this office.
“Missing…” the officer said mostly to himself as he clicked onto something on his computer.
“Yes. She’s nowhere to be found,” Mr. Cobweb replied, fidgeting in his chair. “The room is nice, but the chairs are a hard pass,” he thought to himself.
“We looked everywhere in the house,” Mrs. Cobweb added, running her hands down her bare legs to make sure the skin still felt moisturized.
“What about family? Friends? Have you checked with them?” Mike Powell asked without looking away from his screen, extending his right thumb and then his index finger as if he was reading down a list of preset questions.
“We don’t have any family in this state,” Mrs. Cobweb said, slightly annoyed at the invasive questions.
“And Delilah has no friends,” Mr. Cobweb added, sensing his wife’s irritation.
“She’s a … peculiar child,” Donna said, wondering whom their child took after. Neither she nor her husband is a loner.
“She’s been gone for more than 24 hours. Correct?” Mike asked, still without taking his eyes off his computer.
“Yes. We last saw her Friday night at dinner. Afterward, she went into her room and we assumed she went to sleep,” Donna began, looking up and slightly to the left. “We want her to learn about life and responsibility, so on weekends, we let her do whatever she wants while we are busy at work,” she added, knowing that the officer would ask them about the gap between Friday night and Monday afternoon.
“When she wasn’t ready for school at 7:30 a.m. today, I went to check if she overslept but she wasn’t in her room. Her bed was made,” Daniel said and stood up, finding the chair impossibly rigid. “I’ll stand. I’m used to sitting at work a lot. Standing is supposedly better for you, anyway, so I might as well try it out,” he explained defensively after Officer Powell looked at him quizzically.
“These chairs aren’t very comfortable,” Donna said to the police officer, but he acted as if he didn’t hear her and turned back towards his computer.
“Please leave a photo of Delilah with the lady at the front desk and I will be in touch as the investigation picks up,” Officer Powell said and began typing on his keyboard.
Donna stood up, joining her husband, and looked at Mike just in case he had anything else to say but no words were uttered. The Cobwebs turned around and left the precinct without leaving a photo. They believed that cameras have the ability to steal one’s soul, which was definitely possible since Delilah has always been weird ever since the nurses took a photo of her the day after she was born.
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