Closer Than You Think By: Zoe Barraza

Detective Debbie was a detective like no other. She was special because she loved to help people and make their life better by solving a case and helping them cope with the loss. Debbie solved every case she could get her hands on. That is with the exception of one. The one case that she could not crack had caused her to have a mental breakdown. Unlike many other detectives Debbie had an unusual fear of failure. It was something she could not bare. This case nearly ended her career and it came close to destroying her. This case wasn’t just a regular case. It was a case that hit close to home.

It all started with a little girl named Lilly. Lilly was a sweet little 5 year old girl. She was smart and silly. She was full of life and loved her family, she loved to make them laugh. Lilly had been at the park with her Mom, Dad, and dog named Rosco. Rosco was a very clumsy dog and loved to wander around. Rosco had run away from the park and Lilly’s mom went to chase him while Lilly and her Dad stayed at the park together. Lilly had been enjoying the chilly wind and the warm sun while she was on the swing. Lilly’s dad had went for a quick drink of water at the fountain. Out of nowhere a man in a black hoodie came and snatched Lilly from the swing. Lilly’s dad quickly ran after the man but the man and Lilly both disappeared into a black truck. Lilly’s dad began to panick, by the time Lilly’s mom came back it was too late, the truck had driven too far. They handed this over to Detective Debbie. Debbie was never able to solve this case and to this day Lilly was still missing. It’s been 3 years since and Debbie still has flashbacks.

Debbie had gone undercover into the city at night. Her mom had called and asked what she had been doing, Debbie said she was going to work at the diner. When the call had finished she'd gone to gather information for her new case. The new case involved a kid-napping similar to that of Lilly’s. She knew she had to solve this one for the sake of Lilly and herself.

Debbie’s boyfriend’s closest friend Ryan had stopped by to take her some dinner and questioned her about the case she'd been working on. Debbie grew suspicious why he'd been asking but she blew it off. When Debbie got home from gathering her clues she saw that her door had been broken down and her house was trashed. She wondered who could have done this so she stayed with her boyfriend Jacob just to be on the safe side. Debbie woke up from a bad dream and she couldn't sleep anymore so she started to get some work done. She looked for hours on end and was getting very fearful that the kidnapped could be after her so that he wouldn't get caught. Debbie was scared so she woke her boyfriend and broke down to tears. She had major flashbacks and she'd been angry with herself for not being able to save Lilly.

The next morning had arrived and Debbie went to her part time job at the diner. Her mom had walked in by surprise and she stayed to talk. Debbie's mom mentioned an old friend called her to catch up on the past. Debbie's mom also mentioned her friend “Matthew” had a daughter named Lilly and would like for Debbie to meet her. Debbie thought how odd it was that he had a daughter named Lilly but blew it off. Debbie agreed to meet up with Matthew later that day.

Matthew” walked into the diner around 8:30 in the evening.The man wasn't Matthew at all. The man was Ryan and with him he had a little boy and a little girl. The little boy fit the description of the kidnapped boy and the girl looked exactly like Lilly yet older. Ryan walked up and said “ Are you waiting on Matthew?” Debbie couldn't respond so she just nodded. Ryan stated he used a fake name so that Debbie would agree to meet up with him. The diner was near closing so everyone left. Jacob showed up to pick Debbie up from work and he saw Ryan and asked what he'd been doing there. Ryan locked the door and said “This is Lilly and this boy is Nathan, you know the current kidnap case”. Debbie was speechless and couldn't breathe. Debbie finally caught her breath and said “ HOW COULD YOU?!” Ryan responded and said “ It was pretty easy actually, I watched you suffer and I envied Jacob so much, don't you know I love you?” Ryan reached inside his jacket and pulled out a gun. Jacob ran behind the bar and pulled Debbie with him but Debbie didn't make it fast enough. Debbie was shot , Jacob pressed the emergency button and the police tried to arrive as soon as possible. Ryan and Jacob were fighting but the cops ran into stop the fight. They took Ryan into custody and the kids were returned to their families. Jacob was heart broken, he couldn't believe his love was gone. He attended her funeral and his last words to her were “ Debbie, I love you but it's sad to see your service is done and I will see you again”

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