“Last seen at Harry’s All You Can Eat Buffet, sixteen-year-old Julian Splitz, from Daily Makeup Tutorial dot com, has gone missing.”

Those words echo in my head from last night’s news. I need to find my sister, and I am going to do just that. I shake my head to get the sad voices out. I hop out of my bed, change out of my pink pajamas into my nice, red Adidas and my flower dress, and head down the stairs. I go straight to the living room. I grab the rusty, gray remote and turn on channel five, Eyewitness News, to see if they found Julian. Nothing.

It’s up to me to find her. Placing my hand on my heart, I say, “I, twelve-year-old Amelia Splitz will find my sister no matter how hard and how terrifying it gets.”

I race back upstairs to my bedroom and grab my dark green bookbag. I grab a flashlight, extra batteries just in case, a 100 dollar bill, and some scissors. I’m not allowed to use anything sharper than that, even if it means I can’t protect myself from whoever teen-knapped Julian. Before I go downstairs, I walk across the hall to my parents’ room. When I open the door, I see my mom sitting up with red eyes, like she got no sleep and was crying the whole night. I quickly and silently close the door so she does not see or hear me, and I walk down the stairs. Before I leave, I go into the kitchen and pack an apple, some bubble gum, Lay’s potato chips, and Cheetos.

I walk out the door and hail a taxi. “45th and Broadway please,” I say, in the politest way possible.

“You got it,” the taxi driver says. “Hey, have you heard about the missing teenager?” he asks.

“Um,” I think about what to say, and then, I finally find the right words. “I don’t watch the news because it’s way too scary for me,” I say. I don’t want anybody to find out what I’m doing because it’s top secret.

“Oh right, nevermind,” he replies quietly. After a thirty minute drive, he finally says, “Here is your stop. That will be $25.52, please,” sadly expecting more money for that thirty minute drive.

“Here you go,” I hand him a twenty dollar bill and then give him six singles. He gives me forty-eight cents back. “Thank you,” I say, walking out of the green taxi.

I walk down the block to come across Harry’s All You Can Eat Buffet. I walk inside. Nobody is there. As soon as someone sees me, she runs up to me desperately and says, “Welcome to Harry’s, the all you can eat buffet. Can I seat you?”

“Nah, I’m just here for a scavenger hunt.”

“No! Please just eat at least one thing! I need the money or at least a tip! Nobody has come here since the missing sixteen-year-old. Have you heard?”

“Um… no, I’m too young to be hearing violent stuff like that. Anyways, I’m just here on a scavenger hunt with my friends, and I need to find a certain food. I just need to investigate, so bye now.”

I walk around the corner to come across all of the dinner tables. I check for clues on every table. Table one just has some crumpled chips on the seats and chairs. Table two has nothing. As I am checking table three, I find a phone on the red chairs. It is Julian’s phone! I turn it on to see if anything was next on her schedule so I could go to that next place, but her phone is dead! I get so mad, I kick over a chair.

“Excuse me, are you okay?” the same waitress asks.

“Yeah, I just realized I was in the wrong restaurant looking for that certain food, so I will be on my way now. Bye.” I grab my sister’s phone and walk out of the resturant with my head to the ground.

I need to charge her phone. I need to go to see where she went next. Everything she does and everywhere she goes is on that schedule! I run home. I have no time for a taxi. After an hour and a half, I finally reach my house.

I walk in and go to my room. I start to charge the phone. As I am charging the phone, I start to think of places she could have gone after Harry’s. She could have gone to eat dessert at her favorite dessert cart, Waffles and Dinges. But they have dessert at Harry’s, so why would she go there?

After another thirty minutes of thinking of places she might have gone, I hear a buzz. I check the phone, and it says the battery is at one hundred percent!

“Yes!” I say, jumping in the air. After I finish doing my happy dance, I grab the phone and check her schedule. On her schedule, it says, “First go to Harry’s, next go to Sugar, the best candy store ever.”

That’s just where I’m going.

I race back out the door and catch the bus. After ten stops, I get off. I look around for the store Sugar, but there’s no sign of it. After the bus leaves, I realize I need to go another stop. I chase the bus so maybe it would stop so I could get on, but when it finally stops, I have run to the next stop. After I take a five minute break and eat two cookies, I walk over to Sugar.

When I get there, it is really crowded! It is going to be hard trying to find clues. My sister’s favorite snack is ice cream, so I go over to the ice cream section. I check tons of tables and try all of the flavors of ice cream, but there’s no sign of anything but delicious flavors.

After three hours, this guy in a green cap and black suit, who looks about 26 years old, and I are the only two left in the store besides the cashier.  He must have no friends because he keeps on asking me what friends are like. I do not have the time, so after answering five of his questions, I start to pretend I do not hear him.

After another thirty minutes, I see a card in the very corner of the room. I smile and pick it up. As I pick it up, I scream, “Aha!” But it is only a business card for a dry cleaner. As I frown, the guy in the black suit is staring at me.

I say, “Um, I dropped this a few days ago, and I really need someone to help me with my dirty clothes.” I don’t think he believes me because after I say that, he looks down at the floor and walks out the door. I sit down as I realize it is too late to continue tonight because the store is closing. I hail a taxi and go home.

When I finally arrive home, I pay the taxi driver and walk up to my room. I sit on my bed, thinking about how I failed to save my sister. As I keep thinking about my sister, tears start to fill my eyes. I can no longer hold them in. I turn to my pillow and let the tears stream down my face and absorb into my white cushion. That night, I skip dinner and go straight to bed in my outfit.

Before I let my eyes shut, I murmur, “Hang in there Julian, I’m coming.”

The next morning, I wake up and change out of my dress and put on some jeans and a purple tank top. I still have leftover snacks from yesterday, so I do not need anything. I grab my sister’s phone and go to the schedule. When I am on the schedule, I see words being typed in. It deletes her plans from the Cross County Mall to an old, beat-up mall near a dark alley.

Why is someone typing on Julian’s schedule? Who is it? I question  myself. I do not know what is going on, so I turn off the phone and walk downstairs. I pack one more cookie, and then I leave.

I hail a taxi and go to the beat-up mall. When I arrive there, I walk two blocks and finally arrive at the mall. I look around, no sight of anybody. Then, after about ten minutes, two tall guys in all black with black masks walk in front of the mall.

I hear them whisper stuff loudly, like, “Well, is she coming? What time did you put it on her schedule?”

“I put for exactly now, 11:30 sharp!”

“Well, Savannah should be coming soon.”

“Wait, Savannah? I wrote it in that girl Julian’s schedule.” As soon as I hear Julian, I knew I am in the right direction.

“What? We already kidnapped that one. She’s the popular one who will make us a ton of money with her makeup tutorials.”

“Oh well, I will just switch it then.”

“No, it’s too late. Let’s go.” The two men start walking away. I need to find Julian, so I decide to follow them.

They stop at the dark alley I have always been afraid to walk near. They walk to a door that has eight locks on it, and they unlock it. They walk in. I am left behind.

I am deciding if I should get the cops so they could break the door down, and I can save my sister. But then, I see an open window not too high above the door. Before I call the cops, I need evidence. I climb on top of a dumpster and a few cardboard boxes and finally hop into the window. There is a ledge when I hop through the window. I look over the ledge. I see three men in black suits and masks. Then, all the way in a corner, I see my sister tied to a chair with a handkerchief in her mouth, stopping her from talking.

I almost cry out “No!” but I hold it in. I hop back out the window and dial 911. “Hello, police department, what can I help you with?”

“Hi, you know the missing teenager? Well, I found her. She is being held captive in an alley on Blackberry Lane between Eighth and Ninth Street. Hurry!”

“Okay, we are on our way.” With that, I wait for them.

After about ten minutes, tons and tons of blue and red flashing cars appear. All the cops get out of the cars, and I show them where Julian is being held captive.

“The door is locked so you have to climb through the-”

I am cut off by the sound of a door being broken down. The loud bang must have scared me because I scream as loud as I possibly can. All of the cops walk inside holding guns that are loaded and ready to fire.

The guys try to escape, but they are surrounded by cops. “Oh great,” one of them murmurs. They both put their hands in the air and are brought into custody. Before they leave, the officers thank me and untie Julian.

“You are one brave cookie,” one officer named Officer Brown says.

“Well, I had to save my sister. I don’t know what I would do without her.”

“Thank you, you are the best sister ever!”

With that, my sister and I hug and walk home, side by side. It takes over an hour and thirty minutes, but as long as I am next to my sister, I am fine.


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