It was 10:43 the next morning when the block where Randall lived was flooded with squad cars, S.W.A.T. teams, detectives, police dogs, news reporters, bystanders, and neighbors. The entrances on both sides of the streets were blockaded with police cars preventing anyone from coming or going. People in police uniforms were yelling and pushing people back from Randall's house. The day started off tense as Randall ever had experienced before. Randall and his father sat on the living room couch occupunied by three S.W.A.T members. The men stood over them, strapped in their protective gear and two with large MP5's thrown around there shoulders. The one without the large gun was an average sized, middle heighted man who seemed to be in his mid-forties. The other two who stood behind him on either side were more fit figured, taller, and in their mid-thirties.
"I'm Sargent Eugene Palmer. I'm here with the S.W.A.T unit,"the middle heighted man said.
"I'm Gregory Pierce and this is my son Randall Pierce," Randall's father said shaking the mans hand.
"This is Edward and this is Leus," Eugene stated pointing to the men. The men gave a slight nod as their names were stated. Gregory nodded in response.
"We're here to do as much as we can to get your friend back. But we need you to help us do that. Can you do that for us, Randall," Sargent Palmer asked. Randall looked up into the mans eyes and nodded. Sargent Eugene took a seat in a nearby chair diagnol to the couch keeping his eyes on Randall. The two man remained standing, which made Randall nervous. The guns gave him a feeling that whoever took Melonie Hulbick, they were going to kill them. No hesitation.
"Okay, Randall," Sargent Eugene started, straightening up in the chair,"We have men over at the Hulbick home now, talking to the parents. But I need you to tell me everything you know about what happened with Melonie Hulbick in your backyard last night. What exactly occured before she disappeared." Randall swallowed hard at the request. He really couldn't recall what had happened. The sargent continued to stare at Randall with a face that read "now come on, you tell me what happened or else".
Randall blinked hard twice trying to refresh his memory. After a while, the vision of the backyard, the telescope, and Melonie's smile came into his mind.
---"Hey, Randall come look at this," Melonie said, her hands gripped onto a telescope tightly. Randall and Melonie planned a camp-out in his backyard to look at the stars shining above their heads. Melonie herself was obsessed with stars and she did nothing but look at them even in the daylight when they barely can be seen.
"Let me take a look," Randall said approaching the telescope. He closed one eye and peered through the telescope with the other. Melonie stood next to him, smile across her face as if she was looking at a bowl of strawberry ice cream.
"Isn't it wonderful. I mean, how delicate and well positioned they are," Melonie stated. She looked up at the sky, and her smiled faded.
Randall stood up right and glared at her with a doubtful look on his face.
"What's wrong Melonie?" he asked her, stepping closer. Melonie didn't answer; she just continued to stare at the sky. Randall waited for her to respond and then gave up.
"Um, well I'll go in the house and bring out something fresh to drink. You look quite parched," he suggested breaking the silence. Not responding still, Melonie continued to look at the sky. Randall pierced his lips, slipped his hands in his back pocket, and headed towards the house.
"So Melonie enjoys the stars?" Srg. Palmer confirmed. Randall nodded.
"What does she like so much about them?" He asked curiously.
Randall shifted on the couch for comfort. He stared at his dirty tennis shoes before replying.
"She can escape," he mumbled. Srg. Palmer frowned uncomfortably. Randall didn't dare to look up at him.
"Escape? Escape from where Randall?" Srg. Palmer now stood up over Randall like a bully does his target.
"From... from stress, you know. She looks at them to bring her peace. She has a world she goes to when she feels as if the real world is bringing her ro a near end,"Randall eyes started to tear as he spoke.
"We need the parents here now. Seems like the girl is schizophrenic and has problems that
we need to know about immediately, " Srg. Palmer said into ear peice. He wiped sweat from
his brow. He eyed the green carpet underneath him and switched his stare to Randall.
"School? What school she attends?" He asked Randall in a demanding voice.
Randall hesistated and swallowed again. " She goes to school at McCormet High. I go there, too. But she doesn't have any problems at school. I know that for sure. Melonie has lots of friends."
"Okay," Srg. Palmer said, smacking his hands on his knees with a deep sigh. The two men that were standing shifted to the left in unison. Srg. Eugene stood up. He began talking to, for
what Randall thought was noone. He, then, noticed he noticed the black ear piece in the sargents left ear. Really, Randall thought. Eugene started speaking into the earpiece words that Randall couldn't make out. Every second of every minute madw Randall more and more upset. He peered at the circular clock on the wall ahead of him. It read 11:00. It's been exactly twelve hours since Melonie disappeared the night before.
"Okay, team, we have a 1503 on our hands today. An sixteen year old girl named Melonie Hulbick was abducted late last night from the backyard of 1607 Greenwind Ave. She was last seen by a young man named Randall Pierce, whom she was camping out with in the backyard
the night of her abduction. This girl has been gone for 12 hours, and 12 hours has been way to long. We need to send out amber alerts immediately just in case we have eye witnesses. We need to get the young lady home safely," Sargent Eugene Palmer spoke aloud to the men in the room and anyone else that could hear him through the earpiece.
The men rose their guns to their shoulders with a swift snap. Lues looked at Randall and gave a slight nod and him and Edward rushed out the front door into the daylight.
"Sargent Palmer, what happens next?"Randall asked. Srg. Palmer was looking outside the window, sun beaming on his aged face. He turned his gaze to Randall and eyed him with a mysterious look. Everything, is what he said.
"Promise that you'll get her back home. She's probably scared to death,"Randall begged standing up. Hands resting on his hips, Srg. Palmer walked over to Randall. He looked him in the eyes.
"Randall we are going to do the best we can to get your friend back home safe," Srg. Palmer focused his attention to Randall's pleading eyes. "Promise," Randall choked out. Srg. Palmer didn't reply. He ran his hand down his mouth and looked at the hurt boy. After a minute of emotional thinking, he rose his hands up and rested them on Randall's shoulder.
"Randall, we are here to help get your friend back. We're not superheroes. We don't wear capes. Under this uniform, we're regular human beings. Am I going to promise that we get her back home safe? No, because there are no promises. There's only hope. Remember that." There was an awkward silence after that. Srg. Eugene adjusted his side-fire and took a final look at Randall who was looking at the floor.
"Have a good day." Srg. Palmer left.