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The Disappearance
Moriah, Age 13, Logan, OH

It's June, and my family and I are on our summer vacation. We spend most of the day sightseeing. It is a long day of shopping also; my sister is thrilled. It is an eventful day for us. The most exciting part of the day for me is the parasailing. Soaring high above the ocean, flying with the seagulls, wind in my face, the smell of sea salt.

We return to our beach house for dinner. Mom and Dad cook butter lobster and corn on the cob, my sister Julie's and my personal favourite. Julie and I do the dishes and watch cartoons for a little bit. Then we get ready to go to the beach.

After Julie and I put our swimming suits on, we walk out to the backyard, which is like our own little part of the beach. While Julie is working on a sandcastle, I run straight into the water, which is surprisingly still very warm for 6:30 pm. Mom tells us both to be careful. I watch Julie while Mom gets everything ready for tomorrow.

I get out of the water to check on Julie. As I am walking out, I hear her muffled voice, but I'm still getting saltwater out of my eyes with my towel. When I'm done, Julie is gone. I yell for Mom and Dad to come outside. I start to cry and look for Julie. We look everywhere, and Dad calls the police.

When the police arrive, they bring a search dog. They look all throughout the night. Julie's picture is now everywhere: the local newspaper, telephone poles, and every news channel in the state. I feel like Julie's disappearance is my fault. What if I had stayed with her? Would I be with her right now wherever that is? A thousand or more "What if's?" are running through my mind. The two big questions are who would do this to Julie and our family and when will Julie come back home, safe and sound?

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