Note: This entry is Part 2 to the previous entry and is from Sam Uley’s perspective. Also when Sam is in wolf form, the dialogue is in italics to differentiate between the two forms.
“Any ideas?” Emily asks me.
I’m about to shake my head when I catch sight of the Black’s house, which does give me an idea. Rachel. She lives in Seattle which isn’t too far, and I know she and Leah are close friends.
I pause before answering, “. . . Possibly.”
She follows my gaze. “I’m sure they’ve asked them all.”
“Maybe so, but if Leah came to you, asked to stay, and asked you not to tell anyone she was there, wouldn’t you do it?”
Emily barely has to think before she answers. “Yes. But I wouldn’t do it for more than a week.”
“And a week is all Leah needs.” Emily considers this and nods. I can tell she’s not sure, but she knows it’s possible. Now that I’ve thought of it, it seems like the only solution. Christmas was never Leah’s favorite holiday and it would probably be even more miserable for her now. I cringe with guilt, and know the only way to get past it is to reach over and take Emily’s hand, so I do.
“Wait. Em, Leah doesn’t want to be found. At least not yet, which is why she ran away. If we go in and tell Harry and Sue, and we’re right, and the Leah finds out that we figured it out and tattled on her—”
“She’ll be more upset with us than she already is.”
“Exactly. But on the other hand, we could use it to our benefit and say we found her because we know her and love her best,” I whisper, grateful that Seth had fallen asleep.
Emily thinks it over. “I don’t know, Sam. What if she’s not with Rachel? Then what?”
The thought sends another twinge of worry through me. I miss Leah. And love her. I’m in love with Emily, but I will always love Leah.
“I know what to do, ” I say. “Don’t say anything about our theory tonight and I’ll check into Rachel tomorrow. “
“You mean go to Seattle?”
She sighs, and I know she’s not happy with it but knows it’s best.
I pull the car onto the side of the street behind the Forks’ Police Cruiser and we get out. Seth wakes up as I shift the gear into park and gets out of the car, leading us into the house in a zombie-like posture. He leaves the door open behind him and Emily and I follow him in, her soft hand in mine.
Harry, Sue, Charlie, Billy, and Jacob are all placed timidly about the brightly lit living room. Seth heads straight for the stairs without saying a word.
“I believe Seth may have sneaked out to talk to us,” I announce while closing the door.
Sue sighs, “Sorry if he bothered you two. And thanks for bringing him home. At least that’s one kid.”
“So we heard. And nope, no bother, ” I say, realizing afterwards that her words implied Emily and I had been together when he showed up.
“Well since you guys are here, ” Charlie says to us, “Mind answering some questions?”
“Nope, not at all, ” Emily answers. I like that we speak together; answer for each other and trust that we know each other well enough.
“Have either of you seen or heard from Leah in the last . . . hmm, week or so?”
Emily and I both shake our heads.
Charlie sighs, seeming to be giving up.
“Seth told us what was going on, ” I say. “I think I might have an idea—”
I haven’t finished speaking when Sue interrupts. “Where?”
“Have you checked Rachel?” On instinct, my eyes move toward Billy and Jacob. Billy looks tired and worn out. I automatically scan Jacob for any changes. He is expected to phase any time, being old enough. Guiltily, I look forward to the day when he does, so that I can step down from my leadership position in the pack and Jacob will be alpha. I can feel Emily’s speculative gaze examine me, wondering what I’m up to. I want to tell her; I don’t want them to be surprised that Rachel lied, if Leah is there.
Sue, Harry, and Charlie all look disappointed when I ask them this. Harry nods. “We’ve called twice.”
“Think about it. This is Leah we’re talking about. She hates Christmas, and she disappears a week before it. I’d bet she’s just trying to get away from here for the holidays. And I’d bet she’s staying at Rachel’s whether Rachel says so or not.”
Billy shakes his head. “Rachel’s supposed to be down here the day after tomorrow.”
“Which makes it even better for both of them. Leah gets to go away for a week. Rachel gets housekeeping,” I argue.
“I don’t know, ” Charlie says looking doubtful.
I let out a long breath in frustration. “Well do you have any other leads? I know Lee. She just wants to get away for awhile, especially because of me and Em. Just give her a week, she’ll be back.”
“No we don’t have any,” Charlie answers.
“Rachel wouldn’t lie about something like that, ” Jacob says in defense.
“Sam’s right. Just let her be. She’ll come back just like he says,” Harry says from the corner. I see Sue give him a glare. “Whether she’s with Rachel or not, ” he adds for Jacob and Billy.
“Well, it’s up to you guys, ” Charlie says, “I’ll keep an eye out. Let me know if she comes back.”
Sue still looks upset. Emily sees her at the same time I do and lets go of my hand to go to her. I hear her murmuring words of comfort and take the chance to look at Jacob again. Billy sees me do so and gives me a look that seems to ask how much longer I think it will be. I shrug my shoulders slightly, trying to avoid drawing attention, but Jacob sees and his eyes narrow at me.
Emily returns to my side a few minutes later. ”Well, we should probably get going, ” she says to me, as well as everyone else.
“Thanks for bringing Seth back, ” Sue whispers.
Emily answers her as we return to the car. We are both quiet on the ride home, lost in our thoughts. I am trying to plan what I will do tomorrow once I get to Seattle. I don’t know where Rachel lives, or even have an idea of the area.
“Have a goodnight, Em, ” I say as I drop Emily off.
“You’re really going to Seattle tomorrow?”
“I have to, ” I answer and the look on her face tells me she understands. She sighs anyways.
“Goodnight.” She walks toward the house and I think I hear her say ‘I love you,’ but it might just be my imagination since that’s what I wish she would blurt out someday.
Once home, I don’t go inside but instead run into the forest and phase after I park the car.
Yoo-hoo, I holler in my thoughts. Anybody here? You’re supposed to be you know.
Paul answers back yawning, Yeah, yeah, I’m here.
I thought Jared was supposed to relieve you after he had dinner?
Yeah. He was. Never showed up, and you weren’t answering your phone when I called thirty minutes ago. No one else did either.
I relay the evening’s events for him and he understands.
Well ya could-a howled, I joke with him. Anyhoo, I’ll go see what happened to Jared, you go ahead and sleep. We’ll be okay for awhile. And hey, any idea of where Rachel lives? I show him my plans to go to Seattle in the morning.
Thanks, Sam. And no idea. I’d like to though; she’s hot! Images replay in his head of his memories of her and I groan.
Please spare me, Paul.
Why? You don’t for us. Sam and Emily sitting in a tree, k—
I interrupt his chanting with a command, Go get some sleep, Paul. So that you guys can take care of stuff for me tomorrow. Make sure that if anyone new phases, I hear about it. I don’t want to come home and find a bunch of surprises.
Yes, boss. His voice fades from my head and I race toward Jared’s house.
When I am close, I phase back to my human form and dress quickly. The lights are on in Jared’s house where he lives with his older brother and sister-in-law. I hurry to the door and knock, loud and hard. Jared’s brother, David, answers the door.
“Hey, Sam. What’s up?” he says nonchalantly, and I can tell he knows where Jared is and where he’s really supposed to be.
“Where’s Jared?” I question, skipping the small talk.
“I don’t know,” he lies.
“Yes, you do.” I can hear other voices inside so I ease my way past him into the small living room.
Seated on the couch is Jared, trying not to laugh, along with Kim, a girl I recognize from school. She’s in Jared’s grade and has always had a crush on him. The pieces click, when I see their hands intertwined. “Well, crap. Great timing, Jared.”
He is to his feet in a moment, looking alarmed. Kim looks confused, trying to figure out what is going on, which tells me he hasn’t explained much yet.
“What’s going on?” he asks.
“Long story. You need to be running. I sent Paul home. I’ll explain on the way.”
The word running, seems to make sense to Kim and in unison sadness crosses over both of their faces.
“Say your goodbyes, ” I tell him with a sigh, “I’ll be outside. Make it quick.”
I exit the house and go to the forest where I phase. I’m just about ready to go back in and drag Jared out by his ear when his thoughts glide into my mind. All he can think about is her and I am tempted to roll my eyes. But as Paul said, I’m just as bad for them with my thoughts of Emily.
He starts to run the perimeter we’ve set, and I catch him up on what’s happened. So I need you guys to figure out something for tomorrow, I don’t care who runs but don’t be slacking just cuz you’ve got a girlfriend now. Oh, and I’m happy for you by the way.
M’kay, yeah, thanks. Jared sounds as if he’s speaking on the phone with all his distracted thoughts.
So do you happen to know where Rachel lives? I ask.
No. But, hey—I can have Kim ask Jacob. Tell him she was wanting to go visit or something.
I smile, grateful for imprints, Do that. And thanks. Let me know as soon as you can. I’ll probably run there tomorrow, so just pop in when you find out.
Will do. Sorry about Leah.
What is there to be sorry for? I might actually be able to talk to her for once. The thought makes me smile again. I don’t wait for a reply, since I am home now. I phase and dress, and go inside to bed. Tomorrow could be a long day.
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Note: This entry is from Sam Uley’s perspective
“Well I can’t just stay here for Christmas, Sam. If I did that, my dad would just drive up here and drag me back kicking and screaming if he had to,” Emily’s voice came through the receiver.
“I know. I understand that. My mom doesn’t have anybody to be with for Christmas,” I point out once again. “I don’t know. Maybe you should just go, and I’ll go to my mom’s.”
Emily lets out a long sigh that I know means she doesn’t like that. “I want you to meet my parents though, so…”
“Yeah, and I want to. I just—”
“I know, ” She finishes.
We’ve had this conversation so many times now, it just keeps circling back around without anything being decided. The doorbells rings, distracting me from what I was going to say. I’m sitting in the kitchen of my small mobile home which gets more and more lonely, the more time I spend with Emily in the house I bought her.
“I don’t know, Emily. Can’t we just decide later?”
“You’ve been saying ‘we’ll decide later’ for weeks now. I think we need to decide now.“
“Maybe we need to just let things fall into place. It’ll all work out, ” I say this to comfort her though I’m not sure of it myself since there’s hardly a week left until Christmas. The doorbell rings again and I start walking, flipping lights on in the dark house as I go. “I gotta go, Em. Someone’s here.”
She sighs again, “Fine. But this conversation is not over.”
“Okay, ” I say smiling at her bossiness. “Bye, Emi. Sleep well.”
“See you tomorrow, Sam.”
I snap the cell phone shut and open the door. The screen is still shut, but the porch light illuminates Seth Clearwater’s face.
What is he doing here? I wonder. It’s nearly eleven at night, long past Leah’s curfew when she was Seth’s age.
I open the screen door and gesture for him to come in.
“What’s up, Seth?” I ask.
“Hey, Sam. You haven’t talked to Leah, have you?”
“Uh, when? The last time we spoke I think was when Emily…” My voice trails off. I’m afraid to speak the words, afraid that saying them will bring bad luck.
Seth’s head hangs low, “Yeah, that’s what I guessed. Still had to know though. Thanks, Sam.” Seth moves toward the door.
Suddenly, my mind is conjuring up the reasons he would want to know. Maybe bad luck just follows me anyways.
“Wait!” I call out before he is off the porch. He turns, hopeful. “Why?”
“Leah…she’s missing,” Seth starts to ramble. “We all thought she was just sleeping in yesterday, but when mom went in to offer her lunch, she wasn’t there. So we talked to Charlie Swan and he said that if she was still missing at lunchtime today, then they could file a report. She’s eighteen but—” My heart speeds up and the sound of blood traveling through my veins overpowers my hearing. I may not have imprinted on Leah, but I still love and care about her.
“So everyone’s out looking for her now?” I ask interrupting.
“Yeah. Well, sorta. We’re all just talking to the people she might have said something to. Charlie’s idea. I think it’s pointless, since she probably doesn’t want to be found but…”
“So what do you think we should do?” I interrupt again.
“I don’t know. You know her as well as I do. So does—”
“Emily, ” We say in unison.
“Let’s go over to Emily’s, ” I say. “Where are your parents?”
“Home. Charlie’s there too.” Seth avoids my stare as we walk outside together. He climbs in the passenger seat of my car and I start it up. I narrow my eyes at him.
“Seth?” I ask after a few minutes. I turn to look at him for a moment, since the quiet roads of La Push at this hour require little attention.
“Do your parents know where you are right now?”
He continues to avoid my gaze, answering my question. He mumbles something incoherent.
“Well gosh. Now I’m a kidnapper and probably a suspect on your sister’s case. Thanks, ” I joke, trying to lighten the mood.
Seth only chuckles nervously, “Or else they’ll blame me.”
I can tell how worried Seth is about Leah and I don’t blame him. I’m the same way. We pull into the driveway of Emily’s and the automatic porch light comes on. I see Emily watching from the kitchen window. When she recognizes my car, she steps out onto the porch in a white bathrobe and pink pajama pants with multicolored polka dots on them. The corner of my mouth pulls up in a lazy smile. Emily looks so cute that I wish I was coming over just to spend time with her.
“Sam?” She inquires as we get out of the car in unison, “What’s wrong?”
“Leah, ” Seth answers. “She ran away.”
I see Emily’s face turn from wonder and confusion to worry.
She doesn’t even hesitate, “Give me one minute.”
She returns inside and I see her scurry through the house quickly flipping lights on and off again as she goes. Finally she comes outside again wearing the same clothes she had been earlier that day. I climb back in the driver’s seat and Emily into the passenger, since Seth has moved to the backseat. Seth catches Emily up on the events from the last few days.
Although the ride from Emily’s to the Clearwater’s is short, Seth appears to be exhausted and falls asleep on the way over.
Emily turns to me just as we pull off the main street.
“Any ideas?” She asks me.
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