George was just about to put down his phone when the notification on his phone popped up on the screen. It was Abigail.
I’m ready. Pick me up in 10 min.
Shit, George thought. He has forgotten about the movie night with Abigail.
I’m so sorry, Ab. I have to cancel tonight’s plan. Sorry. George replied.
George’s phone rang within a minute.
“What happened?!” Abigail asked before George could even say a word.
“Um…I-I have plan with Melissa tonight. You know, her parents have invited me for a dinner,” George replied.
“What?! I thought you already have dinner with her parents last week.”
“Well, yeah. But we doing it tonight too. Look, I sor-”
“You already cancelled me last week! And you cancelling me again?!” Abigail said in utter disappointment.
“Look, Ab. Melissa is my girlfriend. We kinda getting serious. I’m meeting her parents, we spending more and more times,” George said.
“But we always have movie nights every Saturdays since high school,” Abigail sighed.
“But we’re already grown-ups. We are not in high school anymore and we should have a grown-up’s life, you know-go for a date, get married, have kids,” George defended.
“You mean we should have our own life,” Abigail said after a moment of silence.
“Ab, this is not what I meant,” George said. “We still can hang out.”
“But hang out less,” Abigail cut in, tears started to well up her brown hazel eyes. “You know what, I gotta go now. You enjoy your dinner with her parents,” Abigail tried to hold back her tears and kept her voice from trembling.
“Well, ok,” George finally broke his silence. “I-I call you later.”
“Yeah, sure. Bye, George,” Abigail hung up the phone before George could say anything as she couldn’t hold back her tears anymore. She burst into tears on her favorite teddy bear which was given by George as her 18th birthday gift. That was ten years ago.
She looked at the teddy bear with her eyes still watery. Reminiscing their times together. George was right. We’re adults now. I should have my own life, Abigail thought. She stood up, kept the teddy bear inside her drawer and went to the bathroom. Abigail washed her crying face and then put on some makeup. She then changed into a light blue denim jeans matched with a white chiffon blouse.
“Ticket for one, please,” Abigail said, a little bit embarrassed as the cashier might give her the poor thing who don’t have any friends look. To her surprise, the middle-aged woman with a bright red lipstick and a crazy big curly hair didn’t do so.
“Here you go,” the woman handed the ticket to Abigail. “You know what my dear, take this. My treat,” said the woman and handed Abigail a box of caramel popcorn.
“Um…are you sure?” Abigail confused. The woman nodded. “Well, that’s very kind of you. Thanks,” Abigail looked at the woman’s name tag, “Rosamund.”
“You’re welcome. Enjoy your movie,” Rosamund replied with a smile.
Abigail tried to focus on the movie but she couldn’t. She kept on thinking about the phone conversation that she had with George. The smell of the caramel popcorn was so inviting but she has lost her appetite. But it was a ‘kindness’ from the cashier and Abigail didn’t want to take it for granted, so she popped some into her mouth, trying to enjoy it as much as possible. Few minutes later Abigail decided that she was unable to enjoy the movie and left.
George’s phone vibrated in his pocket when he was just about to savor the chocolate mousse topped with fresh raspberries made by Melissa’s mother. “Excuse me,” he said to Melissa’s parents and went to the kitchen to take the phone call.
“Hello,” George answered.
“Hi. Is this George?” said the other person on the line.
“Yes. Who am I speaking to?”
“We are calling from National Lake Theater. My name is Rosamund. Your friend left her handbag in our theater and she is nowhere to be found now.”
“I checked her phone and it seemed like you were the last person she talked to,” said Rosamund.
Is password protected. How did she-? Ah, never mind, George thought. “Maybe she went to the restroom?” George asked.
“Nah! I already checked the ladies. I think she just forgot her handbag. Do you mind to come collect? Or is there anyone we can contact for this?” Rosamund said.
“It’s ok. I will go to collect. Thanks,” George replied and hanged up the phone.
“Yes. You are Rosamund?”
“Yes, that’s me. Here you go,” Rosamund passed Abigail’s handbag to George.
“Thanks,” George said. “You know what,” George turned back to the counter, facing Rosamund and she looked at him, confused.
“I got this strange feeling. I think Abigail…um…my friend is missing. The movie hasn’t end and she wouldn’t just walk off like this as that is her favorite movie. Let alone forgetting her handbag,” George said worriedly.
“Um…you wanna call the police?” Rosamund asked. George nodded.
“We have looked through the CCTV and your friend left with a man,” Robert, the police officer said. “Do you recognize this man, Mr. Gray?”
George looked at the CCTV. Abigail left with a man. And the man looked too familiar. “Oh my God!”
“What?!” Rosamund who was following around the whole time during the investigation asked George. “You know that guy?” Rosamund, standing beside George, pointed to the man on the CCTV’s screen.
“Yes. We’re kinda friends. High school friend. I haven’t seen him for years,” George replied.
“What’s his name? And do you know where does he live now?” Robert asked with a pen and a notebook on his hands ready to jot down the details.
“Ivan. Ivan Hill. I don’t know where he lives. We’re not really that close,” George replied.
“All right. We will check on it. We’ll give you a call if there is anything,” Robert said. “Here’s my number. Call me if you have any new information that you want to add,” Robert handed a piece of paper to George.