There I was standing hoping and praying that this wasn’t real. That I wasn’t in the middle of this. I tried so hard not to believe it but in the end it was real. It was real like a touch of a hand or the whisper of a child. I stood there breathing heavily as if nothing would change. I wanted everything to be okay. But I knew it wasn’t. I stood there as the world went on without me. The world turned as I fell. 
 
 That was a year ago. Why would I think of that? I forgot about that day as if it was yesterday. I was a better person now and I got over it. I never wanted to be that person again. I hadn’t let anyone in since that day and I wasn’t about to start. I stopped talking to a lot of people but I got better at talking to the one person I knew I could trust the most in my life. My mom. She’s my everything. She’s the one person who can make the world disappear with her angelic face and her soft brown curls. A lot of people told me that I look a lot like her but really how can someone look like an angel? 
 She taught me everything I needed to know about life, relationship, and love. She taught me that if something wasn’t working, step back and look at it differently, it would all come to you. I love that saying she had. She was an amazing mom. She took care of me all alone and didn’t complain when she had to work three jobs to get me where I am today. Where am I? That you will find out. 
 It’s a beautiful place here. I’ve loved coming here since I was a little girl, when mom would take me on trips. We would stay here for a few days, and always be at the beach. She didn’t tell me that she couldn’t go into the water because she couldn’t swim, she did it anyways. I still walk that same beach every day and still can hear her laughing when I would do something cute or funny. My mother was a strong woman, but yet she had her days where she showed she was weak. That didn’t bother me. I always told her that I thought that even the strong women need a day off. She kiss me on the forehead and tell me that everything is okay. She then go on to make me something to eat. 
 She taught me so much and I owe her everything. 
 A year has past and my life is different. I have changed and I feel older and more wise. But it wasn’t me growing up it was my mother showing me the way. She loved me for me. 
 
 How about I tell you about myself? I worked for a little company that is involved with insurance for the hospital. I don’t work in the hospital. There’s an office building that is near the hospital, but I refuse to go anywhere near a hospital. I’m 18 years old with long soft brown hair. My hair has soft waves in, which I normally have straight hair, but ever so often I curl it. I have chestnut brown eyes with a hint of green in them. My smile is straight and full of warmly, but I hardly show it. I hardly showed a lot of things. Like I said I haven’t let anyone in. I can’t let anyone in. It’s hard when everyone around you leaves you. My father left ten years ago and didn’t bother telling me why, or where he was going. I haven’t trusted any men after that. Not even the ones my mother would date. Not that she dated a lot but she had one every 2 years and they would hurt us. I’m a soft spoken girl, with a heart that breaks easily. I just want the world to understand me. My name is Gabriella Somers. 

I rent this cottage down by the beach for the last six months and it’s beautiful waking up every morning to the sounds of the waves crashing against the sand. I would make breakfast, then go and sit out on the porch out back. I watch the birds fly by as they get their morning breakfast. I would watch some of the local joggers jog by listening to their music as they try to make their weekly quoted. Then after breakfast, I head to work. After I had a quick shower and changed into my work clothes. I stop off at the little café down the street for my morning cookie fix and Snapple. I never left the café without those two things. I did it every morning for the past six months because it was just something to do before starting a day of paperwork. I smiled at everyone as I walked down the street to work. There was a barber who cuts my hair, that was a friendly old man, that didn’t seem like talking today. He looked troubled so I let him be. 
 At work, I was normally the go-to-girl for everything. There was a man named, Harold Jenkins. He’s worked there for 15 years and still can’t find where the insurance papers where for the cancer patient was. I laugh as I would take out the file marked Harold. I would make that file every day if I could, just to make him happy and so he didn’t forget. There was another girl name Lindsay, she was a little rude to me at first oh okay, she still is. Her dad runs the company and she doesn’t think that they need another girl there. She’s afraid I would take the guys away from her. The only cute guy there is William Baker. He’s a intern at the hospital, that comes in every day to make sure that we have the insurance papers filled for the hospital. He always goes to Lindsay and stays away from me and that’s how I like it. 
 See I knew Lindsey from when we were little girls, she and I used to play in the sandbox. I told her that once and she laughed in my face. I don’t talk to anymore. 
“Gab?” Lindsey’s high pitched voice came into the air. I looked up from my computer and over at her. I hated when she called me that.
“Yes, Lindsey.” I said, taking a sip of my Snapple, that I put into my mug. 
“Could you cover for me during 2 pm?” She asked in her annoying, preppy, cheerleading voice.
“Why? Where are you off to today?” I asked, looking at her.
“I’m going out with Will. He wants to take me to lunch.” She said, smiling from ear to ear. I so could roll my eyes but she would see it.
“Oh, why can’t you go during your lunch time?” I asked, kind of annoyed.
“Because that’s when Will goes on lunch. Pretty please. I promise I won’t ask you again.” Lindsey said, with her eyes pleading. Yea, right you won’t ask me again. I thought looking at Lindsey.
“Fine, just make sure you don’t leave work early tonight.” I said, sighing. I hated when she does that. She would leave for lunch and come back only to leave work early. We work till 5 pm Monday to Thursday and on Fridays till 3 but that didn’t stop her from leaving early. 

Two o’clock came around and Will walked in the front door. He had changed from his uniform to what looked like a new t-shirt and a pair of beige shorts. I snorted a quiet laugh when I saw he was wearing sandals. I have to say he looks quiet cute like that. Lindsey had ducked off to the bathroom just before Will arrived to powder her nose. Like she needs to do that.
“Hello Gabriella. How are you on this fine day?” Will asked, sitting across from me. I was the only one in the office right now. Harold was off at the hospital, probably being yelled at for the form he filled out yesterday. I told him I could fix it but he told me that it would be okay. I got the call from Gloria Rubin telling me that Harold needs to come up the hospital. He was a little nervous. I looked over Will and smiled.
“I’m fine, William. How are you?” I said, smiling.
“Good. Why do you always call me William?” He asked, he had sat back in the chair and placed his leg on his other knee.
“Because that’s your name?” I said, smirking. He laughed and looked around the office. I watched him as he placed his hands on the back of his head and looked at me.
“You know that you’re a cute one.” He said, his golden eyes had a hint in them, but I ignored him. He held my glaze as the bathroom door opened. Lindsey came out. Both Will and I turned to look at her. She changed. That girl is always wearing a different outfit. This morning it was a blue tank top with a black skirt now it’s a purple maxi dress with a tie dye pattern on the waist. Her golden blonde hair was now pulled back a bit and kind of wavy. She redid her make up. She was wearing purple flip flops now. She was really weird that one. “So the plan is?” Will stood up at this point and looked at me.
“I tell whoever asks, that Lindsey is too busy to take a call and that I’ll get her to call them back when she’s done.” I said, like a robot. I must have said that line a million times in a week. 
“Good. I’ll be back around 3. If anyone asks where I am?” Lindsey said, looking at herself in the little compact mirror.
“You stepped out for supplies.” I said, avoiding both their eyes.
“Good, you ready?” Lindsey said, looking away from me to Will. 
“You bet. Are you ready?” Will asked, looking at Lindsey as he put his arm around her waist. She gave a little squeak. Will laughed as he looked at me. “Have a nice day, Gabriella.” He turned and walked Lindsey out of the office. 
 I sat back a bit and looked at my computer screen. I had finished the Handsons’ file when Harold came in. He looked annoyed and frustrated. He walked past me in a huff and closed the door behind him. I turned back to my computer and hit send for the file. I was about to start another one when Harold’s door opened and he poked his head out.
“Where’s Lindsey?” Harold asked. I looked from Lindsey’s desk and over to Harold.
“I think she said something about getting more supplies.” I said, turning away.
“Cut the bullshit.” Harold said, walking out of his office over to my desk. He sat down across from me. “Where did she go to?” 
“She went out with Will.” I said, nervous.
“Are you kidding me?” Harold said, pissed off.
“No. They just left like ten minutes ago.” I said, biting the bottom of my lip.
“Goddammit. I told that girl that if she left work like that she would be fired. I don’t care who her father is.” Harold said, he picked up my phone and dialled a number. “Hello, sir. Yes, it’s Harold. Listen your daughter is out with William Baker. He’s the boy from the hospital. Yes, sir. Yes, one second.” Harold pulled the phone from his ear and held it out to me. “He wants to talk to you.”
“Me why?” I asked, nervous and shocked.
“Because he knows that she would ask you to cover for her.” Harold said, pushing the phone into my hands. I took the phone and placed it up against my ear.
“Hello?” I asked, nervous.
“Gabriella right?” Mr. Thompson asked, he sounded so firm and confident.
“Yes, that’s right.” I said, still shaking a little.
“How many times has Lindsey asked you to cover for her?” He asked. 
“I don’t know but a lot, sir.” I said, now twirling the phone cord in my hand.
“Do you say she does this a lot?” Mr. Thompson asked.
“All the time. She always wants me to do this for her.” I said. I looked at Harold, who had his hands folded at his mouth.
“Do you know where she goes?” Mr. Thompson asked.
“No, she never tells me until she gets back.” I said, biting my bottom lip now.
“Well, how about this? You keep quiet that you and I talked and you find out where she goes. Could you tell me where she goes?” Mr. Thompson said.
“She won’t know that I told you?” I asked, nervous.
“You have my word. Oh and Gabriella, you’re doing an amazing job don’t stop working hard.” Mr. Thompson said. I could tell he was smiling by his voice.
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