“Wake up! Wake up! Sean!”
Sean sat up abruptly, throwing the blanket to the floor and putting his hands up, ready to defend whoever was about to attack him. He couldn’t see who the murderer was yet, as his vision was hazy from sleep, but if he were to have any chance of survival, he’d have to attempt some punches.
“Sean! She’s gone!”
His vision became clear. In front of him, Kyle stood looking alarmed, eyebrows arched. “Honey, are you awake? Did you hear what I just said?”
“Sorry” Sean started, “I was having the weirdest dream. Wait, what did you say? Who’s gone?”
Kyle started pacing around the kitchen, completing laps around the island. “She said she was going go sit on the bench across the street and read for a little bit. I could see her from the window, and now she’s gone! I ran down there to look for her and she’s not there. Sean, I don’t know where she is!”
“Shit” was all Sean could say. She had been diagnosed with Alzheimer’s just last month, and it had been agreed between Sean and his sisters that she would move in with him for the time being, while they looked for a suitable facility to aide her. It had only been two weeks since she arrived, and this was the third time she had gone missing.
The first time, she had wandered down the street, claiming she wanted to pick up some groceries from the Farmers Market. Upon being found, she was distraught and upset, as the Farmer’s Market hadn’t been running at that location for many years.
The second time, Kyle had found her on the roof of their apartment building, watering the flowers of the neighbors garden. She claimed she was just planting strawberries for Julie’s birthday. Julie had passed away two years before.
“Okay, she couldn’t have gone far. I’ll be back”
“Do you want me to come with you?” Kyle asked. Kyle felt useless if he wasn’t doing something at all times.
“Just stay here, call my sisters and tell them what happened. I’ll have my phone on me if they happen to know where she is”.
Sean slipped on his shoes and grabbed his jacket. Patting his pocket to make sure his keys were there, he left the apartment, closed the door behind him, and took the elevator down to the garage level. He jogged to his black Dodge Stratus and pulled out of the building as quickly, and safely, as possible.
“Alright, where are you?” he muttered to himself. He turned off the radio, hoping that it would help him concentrate and spot her better.
He slowly drove by the bench Kyle had said she was reading on, wondering which direction she could’ve gone in. His gut told him she would’ve walked down the hill instead of the opposite direction, as she would’ve been unsure of her balance on a steep surface. Turning right onto Maple Ave, he kept his eye on both sides of the sidewalk as best he could. He passed a playground, where the old Farmers Market used to be, but with no sight of her.
“Quick, think!” He said, smacking the steering wheel with his right hand.
He turned left onto Front St, quickly glanced around, then took a right onto Seneca Ave. Where could she be?
He could only think of one more place she could possibly be – the street where she grew up.
He turned right onto East State St, and accelerated as fast as he dared. Three cars in front of him, the traffic light started to change to yellow. Sean hoped he would be able to get through the light, but the cars in front of him all slowed down, coming to a stop.
He was stopped at a red light when the old woman opened the passenger door and got into the car.
“Please take me to South 7th Street, sir.”
“Grandma, it’s me. Sean.”
To be continued…
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