Ryan and Lindsay drove to school together that morning; both of them remained silent the entire ride to Oakbridge High School. Lindsay grabbed her backpack filled with heavy textbooks and binders and dragged it on the floor, looking depressed.
“Lindz,” said Ryan. Lindsay stopped walking, but continued to stare ahead. “Lindz, listen. I’m worried about Lyssa too,” said Ryan. ‘Lyssa’ was Alyssa’s nickname that was given to her in first grade when Ryan mispronounced her name the first time they met. “We can’t go into school looking like something is going on. People will ask questions, and we can’t let anyone else know what’s going on, or else we’ll never be allowed to go look for Lyssa. Okay?”
Lindsay continued to gaze ahead. Her eyes were lifeless; her eyes which were once bright green had faded to a dim olive shade. Lindsay eventually nodded her head and continued to walk towards the school doors.
The day was passing by quickly. It was now lunchtime in the cafeteria for all high school students. Elementary and junior high students ate an hour before the high-schoolers were released for lunch.
“Hey, Lindsay!” yelled Lindsay’s friend Sierra. Lindsay couldn’t help showing a smile. Sierra always found a way to make Lindsay laugh. “Where’s Alyssa? I haven’t seen since the prom,” asked Sierra. Lindsay’s smile faded. She didn’t frown, since she didn’t want Sierra to suspect that anything was wrong. “She’s not feeling well,” Lindsay lied. “Oh. Well, tell her I said to feel better for me, ‘kay?” “Yeah, sure,” said Lindsay. Lindsay grabbed her lunch tray and walked over to the table where Ryan was sitting.
“Rowan and Dawson just texted me and said that they are just being released from biology class,” said Ryan. “They had a quiz that went overtime. They’ll meet us here in a few minutes,” he added.
Lindsay poked at her food. She had lost her appetite the moment she found that her friend was missing, and she never felt hungry after that. Ryan wasn’t eating either. You could tell that he was just as worried for Alyssa as Lindsay was, but he didn’t let his fear show in order to reassure Lindsay that they could be successful in their search.
“Hey, guys,” said Dawson, a tall, somewhat nerdy-looking guy as he sat down with his lunch tray. Immediately following him was Rowan, a somewhat short girl, super skinny and speedy, with dark squinty eyes and pale skin. “Hey,” said Rowan as she dropped her backpack next to her and sat down next to Dawson.
Lindsay gave them both a weak smile and looked at Ryan as if she wanted him to speak for her. “So…” started Lindsay. This was the first time Ryan had heard her speak in a while. “Something serious happened,” she continued. “We know,” said Dawson. “Yeah, I can’t believe it. I just saw Alyssa at prom a few days ago,” added Rowan. “But we promise you, Lindsay, we’ll find her. Dawson is great with computers. I’m good with puzzles. Ryan’s a super quick thinker, and you’re super complex and you’ll be able to think in a way we would have never thought of. We can do this. We’ll meet at Ryan’s house after school?”
The lunch bell rang, meaning that it was time for the students to return to class in ten minutes. They all smiled and nodded at each other, and they got up and went to their next classes. “See you later,” said Ryan.