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16 pages13 minutes


When Claire checks her cell phone at the end of her shift her senses are assaulted by the message staring back at her from the tiny screen. The SMS from Dana’s school screams out her daughter’s failure to arrive for the morning roll call. It takes a moment for Claire to collect herself, stem the tide of rising panic that swells in her chest. It’s quickly replaced with annoyance at her teenage daughter’s moodiness of late, her increasing secrecy and difficult behavior at home. The cascade of possibilities increases her irritation with Dana, her selfishness at causing this unnecessary upset. Until she calls the school and learns that Dana hasn’t attended for the entire day. Until her friends assure her they have no idea where she is. Until the police become involved.

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