Deborah came home to her husband; who was overcome with worry; he was sitting in an easy chair just tapping his fingers; with his phone by his side; just waiting for the phone to ring with the news that Dave was safe as well. She felt guilty because she had been off to meet a male friend that Alex was unaware of. He was less of a friend and more of an ex- lover she had met in college. He called her a few weeks back and wanted to catch up; she still cared for him a great deal and wanted to see him but she was married to Alex now and it didn’t seem right to meet with him. “And yet I was going to meet with him anyway” she thought. She realized that she was too focused on this and needed to tend to the needs of her husband and the search for Dave. She put those thoughts out of her mind for the time being. Deborah said to her husband “Honey, I am so sorry; this is so awful; surely by this time I would have thought we would have heard something” Alex replied “I know, I just don’t know what to do; I haven’t moved from this chair since I called you but I know we have to find Dave” “So you talked to Dave’s family?” asked Deborah. “Yes, I spoke on the phone with his parents and I guess they have already made a missing person’s report” “I was hoping it wouldn’t have come to this, but please, let’s stay positive, I’m sure we’ll find Dave and he’ll be ok” said Deborah ‘You’re right, well, maybe it’s a good idea if we search for Dave in the city” said Alex. Deborah nodded her head in agreement. Alex and Deborah spent the day driving down Seattle streets; searching for Dave with no avail; they spent hours seeing thousands of faces and none of them were Dave’s. They even drove past Melanie and Susan’s house but Dave was in the backyard smoking a cigarette while Susan shared with him some of her poetry; Alex and Deborah were so close and they had no idea. Alex said to Deborah “You know maybe Dave isn’t even in the city; maybe someone took him somewhere; kidnapped; I mean, maybe he’s dead somewhere; killed by some maniac”. “Alex., why the hell would you say that?” exclaimed Deborah. “We are trying to stay positive, remember?” she added. “I’m sorry, I didn’t mean to upset you” said Alex. “Do you think it’s possible that he may have amnesia or something; I once saw this unsolved mystery episode and…” Deborah interrupted him “That seems farfetched don’t you think?” “I guess it is” replied Alex. Right at that moment; Alex’s phone rang; it was Dave’s parents. He stopped the car and park right in front of the house where Dave was staying. Alex picked up and it was Harold; Dave’s father. “Hi Alex, I just wanted to let you know that we did file the missing persons report and the police in your area have been informed; they will be mobilizing soon and will start searching the area for Dave” “Wow” replied Alex. He added “I am really worried; I pray we will find him safe” “Of course” replied Harold. “I have to go now but I just wanted to give you an update, we’ll call when we get more information” said Harold. Alex said “Thanks for the calls, I will be on the lookout for Dave and you will continue to be in my prayers, take care. “You too” replied Harold
Harold hung up the phone and put his arm around his crying wife. “I’m really scared, our Dave!” said Margery through tears. Harold held his wife tighter “I know, I know. We’ll find him, I’m sure of it” He hated seeing her so upset and wanted to cry himself but he needed to hold himself together for the sake of the rest of the family. A few moments later, Betty walked in with her husband and two kids, a boy and a girl; aged 9 and 6. Betty gave her mom a big hug and they both cried; it has been a long night and Betty stated she hadn’t slept. Her husband seemed quiet as usual; going to the kitchen for a glass of water and to pet the family dog; he wasn’t good with emotional scenes like these; he cared; he just couldn’t express it. Betty sat down for awhile with her parents and tried to compose herself. She said to her father “I think we should tell the kids, what do you think?” Harold replied “Honey, you do what you think is right” Betty motioned to her Husband Mark who was still in the kitchen; petting the dog. He sat next to her and she asked “Mark, I think the kids should know about their Uncle” Mark replied “Do you think they need to know, I don’t want to worry them” Betty said “Honey, they should know, I mean, they can see we are all upset and are probably confused” “Fine” Mark said. Mark said nothing and walked back to the kitchen. Betty hung her head down with a sad look. Betty and Mark’s relationship had been strained for some time and she was beyond hurt about Mark’s lack of response and inability to meet her emotional needs during this time. “I mean, my brother is missing for Christ’s sake and he could give a damn” she thought. It made her parents so sad to see how Mark treated Betty. He had seemed so nice at first and now they could see this other side and it hurt to see their daughter treated this way but at that moment they had keep their thoughts on Dave.
Betty called her kids to the couch; Michael and Lisa. “Michael, Lisa, can come sit on the couch with me and Grandma and Grandpa?” They were busy watching tv but they jumped up and sat on the couch. Betty said “I need to talk to you guys” “Are we in trouble?” asked Michael. “Of course, not” replied Betty. Lisa asked “Is It about Uncle Dave” Betty looked confused and replied “Yes, it is, how did you know” Lisa said “Well I heard you and daddy talking about him in the kitchen last night but I didn’t know what it was about” Betty said to her daughter “Well, honey you shouldn’t listen to other people’s conversation, we talked about that ,remember?” “Yes, I remember” said Lisa; rolling her eyes” Betty stated “Well your Uncle went on a trip to see a friend and no one can find him, He didn’t arrive to where he supposed to be and he hasn’t called us” “Uncle Dave is missing!?” exclaimed Michael. “Yes, honey” Betty replied. “And you know how much we love him, right” she added. “Yes” the children added in unison. “Well, Grandma and Grandpa and I went to the police station to let them know Uncle Dave was missing. They are going to help us look for him, ok>” said Betty. The kids look concerned and Lisa hugged her mom; now she was crying. “It’s ok, honey” Betty said as she comforted her daughter. “We will find him safe and sound, ok/” added Betty. Lisa nodded her head. Michael added “Don’t worry mommy, I’ll be strong for you, just like daddy is, he doesn’t cry” She looked to see her husband all alone in the kitchen; with a cold look on his face; not even being there for his children when they were upset. “Yes, he doesn’t cry or show any emotion; even during times like these, and maybe that’s the problem” she thought. She held both her children and said a little prayer; she wanted to find her brother and to hug him and tell him she loved him. She never appreciated him more than she did at that moment; she couldn’t bear the thought of losing her brother forever.
Back in Seattle at Melanie’s house; Dave and Susan continued to talk. Dave felt bad about finding her diary and confessed to her “Susan. I feel bad but while I was searching through the drawers upstairs for my clothes; I found your diary, I’m sorry” Susan laughed nervously “Oh, you saw that? No worries, I’ve shared most of those poems at the poetry reading so I have nothing to hide” Dave let out a small laugh and said “Oh ok, good. I feel bad for snooping” “Don’t feel bad, in fact if you want, I can share some of my poetry with you” she said. Dave replied “Yeah, I’d love that. It means a lot that you want share it with me” She went upstairs to grab the journal and Dave couldn’t help but think that he was falling for Susan; she was sweet and really seemed to like him; she was willing to share her poetry with him and was giving him a lot of attention. But he also thought of Iris; she is the one that was there for him from the beginning; the one that vowed to not leave him until they found his identity; he cared deeply for her as well; he didn’t want to lose her. He wondered to himself; if something had happened between them prior to him losing his memory; he wondered what made Iris care for him so much. This is what made the situation so difficult; his past was a blur and how could make present decisions when he couldn’t remember the past; he was so confused. As he was thinking; Iris looked at him from across the room; she was beautiful; the midday sunlight from the window illuminated her face; her beautiful curly hair bounced when she moved her head; her piercing eyes and red lips; never had a woman such as her taken any interest in him. As he was looking at Iris and she at him; he had momentarily forgotten about his feelings for Susan; he realized that maybe Iris in the short time of knowing each other had fallen in love with him; it was overwhelming to him; he didn’t know what to do with his feelings. When Susan walked back downstairs; he look away from Iris’s gaze and said to Susan “Hey, do you want to go for a smoke and you can read me your poem?” “Yeah” said Susan. Iris turned away from Dave and her smile faded into a frown of sadness; she did her best to hide it from Dave. It’s true, she had fallen in love with him but she’d never admit it.
Dave and Susan sat outside smoking while Susan opened her diary and shared some of her poems with Dave. One poem was about a man she had been in a relationship for many years; someone who was in a band; who she’d been in love with and thought maybe she might marry him someday. When she was finished reading the poem, Dave said “Wow, that really a great poem; very heartfelt, I can tell you really liked this guy” Susan replied “I was so in love with this guy; we had met in college; Gary was his name. He was in a band I thought he cute and my friend introduced us and we just instantly got each other, you know? We moved into together and at first things were great; he helped me write some his songs and play them for me; it was really sweet; you kind of remind me of him in a way (Dave blushed). Susan noticing Dave’s blushing said “Aww your blushing that is so cute and I mean it by the way” Dave felt even more flustered which made Susan smile. Susan said “Anyways, we along great and I liked him because he was kind and sensitive. Gary had a lot of late-night gigs, so he’d be up all night but he’d always be home when I woke up or he would call and let me know he was alright. One morning I woke up and he was gone, no phone call, nothing. I called his cell and it went straight to voicemail. I called my friend who introduced us and when she picked up the phone, I could hear a guy next to her. I said “Oh, Michelle, you got a guy with you”; I was joking. She didn’t say a word but she sounded nervous. All of a sudden, I could hear Gary voice asking her if she wanted coffee. I lost it. I said “You know, what fuck both of you.” Gary tried calling me several times and I would just hang up every time. I never spoke to either of them again. It totally broke my heart” “I can imagine” said Dave. Susan continued “When he finally got back home all of his shit was in the hall and I had kicked him out. I mean, I owned the lease and so he left and I sat in that apartment for hours crying and feeling betrayed. That is when I wrote that poem; so, it means a lot to me” “I’m sure it does” said Dave. Dave added “I am so sorry that happened to you; you seem no nice and you don’t deserve that” “Thanks for listening, Dave, you are sweet, I can tell you on a kind soul” she replied. Dave said “Thanks maybe I am, I don’t know. I could have broken so many hearts and not even realized it” Susan took his hands in hers and said softly “I don’t think so Dave” She gave him a big hug and kissed him on the cheek.
In fact, Dave’s heart been broken so many times he had lost count and yet he had broken very few hearts. It had hurt him to the core; for years he thought of his inability to connect with women; the times he was rejected; the times where he’d daydream about the girls he could never have. Before he had lost his memory, he often thought about the girl he liked in high school; she was gorgeous and popular and had plenty of boyfriends. He admired her from afar and never had to courage to talk to her until one day he got the nerve to ask her out; her name was Cindy Peterson. He found her in the hall with her friends and asked her if he could talk to her. Her friends laughed quietly but she said excitedly “Sure” Dave took her to the side and nervously asked her if she’d want to go to a movie with him (his hands were shaky and sweaty and he could his heart beating out of his chest; he was not good at hiding his nervousness) She sort of hesitated; taken aback by Dave asking her out; since they hardly knew each other. She laughed nervously and she said “Yeah, that sounds great, here’s my phone number” She ripped out a page form her notebook; wrote down her number and drew a little heart. Dave was ecstatic; he couldn’t believe he had just gotten a phone number from this beautiful girl he had a crush on. He told Alex about and he retorted with “Bullshit, man. She didn’t give you her number” As Alex said that, Cindy walked by and called out Dave’s name, waved and in a flirty voice exclaimed “Hiii, Dave see you on Friday” Alex was like “Oh dude, this is crazy. You weren’t lying, you’re really going out with her?” “Yep” Dave replied with all the confidence in the world. As Dave walked down the hall; he could see people looking at him and snickering. He had been bullied before but this seemed different. Dave walked by Cindy’s locker and she didn’t notice him; she was talking to her friend and then he overheard her say “I know, I couldn’t help telling people; it was so funny. Like he was so nervous and he thinks I’m going out with him?” I have to come up with some excuse; like I’m sick or something” said Cindy. Her friend replied “You didn’t tell Derek, did you” Cindy laughed loudly “Oh, he’s the first one I told. I thought he’d be angry but he thought it was hilarious” Dave couldn’t stand it anymore and walked in the other direction. He went to the corner to cry; his heart was broken in a million pieces and he hated crying but he was so overcome with emotions. At that moment a few boys saw him in the corner crying. One kid motioned to his friend “Hey guys, David’s crying. Check it out” Another kid said “dude what a loser, is this about Cindy Peterson. I heard about that, it’s hilarious. I guess she told you, huh? Everyone in school knows” People started laughing. Dave wiping a tear form his eye yelled “Fuck you!! Get the fuck out of my face” Cindy overheard it while walking by; she shook her head and exclaimed loudly “Oh, Jesus” laughing with her friends. After that even into adulthood Dave carried a fear of women he liked; this moment ended to be catalyst to an irrational fear of women. And maybe that’s why he feared when women got too close; he had replayed that humiliation over and over again for many years after that. The irony is after his memory loss; he became a man more comfortable around women; in fact, he was surrounded by three women that genuinely liked him; who weren’t going to hurt or humiliate him. But he felt nervous and didn’t know why; his memory was gone but the feelings remained.