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Wearing my uniform, I stood behind the counter at the library. We were living on borrowed time during the shift, given that the library closed at one. It is preferred if everything that needs to be done for the week is completed by then. In order for my colleagues who work on Monday to have a fresh start, I couldn’t leave until it was done. Therefore, I hastily began packing away the heavy pile of books which had been returned. Saturday is probably the library’s most popular day, especially given that it is closed on Sundays. It is the day of choice for those who are prohibited from coming during the week, such as through work, school or study. Children finding that single needed book for school assignments were a routine demographic. While carrying some more books back across the library, I smiled fondly at the sight of yet another family. However, when I ducked behind the shelves, my face fell, engulfed by my acute sense of loss, of Mitchell’s loss. Thankfully, it wasn’t long until my shift concluded, and I was able to get out of there. I drove home from work and removed my uniform, to have a shower. After getting out, I dried myself and walked back through into my bedroom. I got changed, then dropped onto the bed, reaching for my phone. For some reason, having a shower seemed to suck the life out of me. At least I was wearing comfy clothes, rather than my work uniform. I flicked through the camera roll on my phone, needing to scroll further and further until I reached Mitchell. It ran through my mind that I should have been sending more of these photos to the media, to garner more attention around his case. In the afternoon, I sat at my desk in my bedroom, doing some study, when I noticed Greg’s car pull up. I flipped close my notebook and stood, dawdling out of the room and into the hallway. Stepping forward, I opened the door. Outside, the spring was finally starting to warm up and a pleasant breeze filtered in through the screen door. Greg, Natalie and Geoff piled out of the car. After locking the car and retrieving the dessert, they strolled down the driveway. I opened the screen door and stepped out onto the scratchy straw doormat. Greg, Natalie and Geoff climbed the front stairs.

“Hello,” I greeted them.

Geoff approached me and curled an arm around my shoulders. We casually kissed. When our lips parted, I beamed. So did Geoff. We brushed our noses against each other’s a few times. Natalie giggled.

“You two,” she quipped, “are so cute.”

I pecked Geoff on the lips again, then turned.

“Yes, we are,” I confirmed to Natalie, who laughed.

Over family dinner, I felt Mitchell’s absence, although it meant that we found ourselves triple-dating. An ordinary meal, after an exhausting day, it felt like an event. Once we finished eating, I fell asleep, with my head in Geoff’s lap. Eventually I must have stirred.

“I’m sorry,” Geoff apologised, “but my thighs need to go home now.”

I dusted kisses across Geoff’s knuckles.

“It’s not like we haven’t stayed under the same roof before.”


The younger sister of missing Sydney man Mitchell del Reyan, Nina del Reyan lives on Dharug land in western Sydney. She has recently commenced a teaching degree at Macquarie University. Nina loves her family and friends and is deeply committed to finding answers and justice for the families of missing people.

Abbey Sim is the founder of Huldah Media. She is a creative writing, law and theology student who lives on the lands of the Dharug people in Sydney, Australia. Abbey desires to explore themes of hope, love and longing through her storytelling. She is the author of 'Shadow' and 'From the Wild'.

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