Something Wild

Chapter 1 - Missing

Fridays were great days, usually. Everyone was in jeans and t-shirts, every email began with "Happy Friday!", and, if she was lucky, she'd be out of the office before five. If Naomi was lucky and planned ahead, she wouldn't have to do any schoolwork once she got home and could instead relax.

She was not very lucky. It was half past three and she had just received an urgent request for a meeting in the next hour minutes. Some presentation needed reworking immediately — a complete overhaul — before it was brought before the executive committee, and she needed to go through and make all the changes, run it through her manager for approval, and hand it over to the presenter with fifteen minutes to spare so he could do his own preparation. As far as internships went, she figured there could have been less important things she could've been doing. At least she got to be this close.

And at least she was in jeans.

Naomi was checking the file she had to make sure every metric on the presentation was correct and every change documented before handing it over to her boss. Her phone had been buzzing for the last ten minutes, and she'd chucked it into her desk drawer to avoid the tempting distraction. She couldn't afford to lose time.

Once she sent it over to her boss for approval, she allowed herself to peek at the still buzzing phone. A handful of missed calls and several text messages awaited her. She scrolled through them, furrowed her brow, and checked her email for a response from her boss. Nothing yet. She called the number back and was immediately greeted by a sigh of relief.

"Oh, Omi, I'm so glad you called me back," the girl on the other line said. Naomi had grown rather fond of her, but she knew this wasn't a social call.

"I saw your texts. What do you mean he's missing?"

A shaky breath. "I-I don't know. I haven't seen or heard from him since Wednesday, your mom said she hasn't seen him, and he wasn't at school. I haven't been able to get ahold of him all day. I'm sorry, I didn't want to worry you, but—"

"It's fine," Naomi interrupted. She glanced at her inbox to make sure her boss hadn't yet replied. "I can try calling him. In the meanwhile, why don't you try calling Billy Black? His friend is the chief of police in Forks, I think, so he might be able to get people together to search if necessary."

"Okay, I'll do that now."

"I'll let you know if I can get ahold of him."

"I'll keep you updated."

"Thank you."

They hung up and Naomi quickly dialed her brother's number. She felt like her mouth and her forehead were both frowning so hard that the creases would become permanent. It wasn't like him to disappear — he'd never done it before. The phone rang out until she got his voicemail. She tried again several more times with the same result before switching tactics. Perhaps text would be more helpful.

Where are you? Are you alright?

The ping from her computer startled her, and she turned her attention to the screen. Her boss's reply had come nearly ten minutes ago, as well as a message from the presenter asking for an update. She had no time to lose. Naomi went through and did the final changes as quickly as she could and sent it along before refocusing on her phone, where another call was coming in.

"Hey, Leah. What did Billy say?" Naomi asked.

"He told me not to worry and that he'd handle it." She snorted. "Wouldn't even let me help, just said to sit tight."

"I'll grab a weekend bag and head over there."

"Thanks, Naomi."

"Of course." She bit her lip. "I'm sure Sam will turn up. We'll find him."

Naomi began gathering her things and sent a quick farewell message to her boss. The drive to the apartment she shared with her roommate wasn't incredibly long, but every second in her car made her more worried. Naomi took deep breaths. She was a tornado of activity when she parked at her place, barely acknowledging her roommate in the living room. In almost no time she had thrown together a bag of clothing and headed back into her car, hoping she could make the next four hours fly by.

With only an hour of driving left to go, she received another call.

"Allison," Naomi greeted.

"My dear Omi," Allison said. "Are you coming?"

"I'll be there in less than an hour," Naomi replied. "Any word?"

"No... I've been keeping tabs with Billy but he says that La Push is out of his police friend's jurisdiction. He's asking Harry and a few others to help search."

"We'll find him, Allison."

"I hope so."

"I'll be there soon."

When Naomi arrived in La Push, it was dark. She pulled up to the familiar driveway, a heavy feeling in her stomach. Allison was waiting in the living room for her.

"Oh, Naomi," she said, throwing her arms around the girl. "It's so good to see you."

Naomi hugged her as best she could with the duffle in her hands. "It's good to see you, too, Allison."

"I've made dinner if you're hungry. I can't imagine you had the opportunity to eat. Shall I fix you a plate while you get settled?"

"That would be amazing."

Her room was just as she left it. She supposed it was the guest room now, though she doubted they had any guests pass through. They'd left most of her old decorations up — photographs of the forest, the beach, and the wildlife, as well as strings of fake flowers and a tapestry on the wall behind the headboard. Naomi dropped her bag, thinking that she should leave some clothes here next time she had the chance.

Allison had served her some chicken and greens, and she couldn't have been more thankful to the woman she thought of as her mother. "You are a godsend," she said.

Allison smiled softly, sitting across from her with a glass of water tightly clutched in her hands. Her gaze fell onto the table, but her mind seemed far away.

"Hey," Naomi said, placing her left hand on Allison's wrist. "We're going to find him."

"It's not like him to go running off…."

"I know, but we can't assume anything. It'll drive us crazy."

"You're right." The older woman sighed. "Thank you for coming."

"Of course. We're family."

Leah Clearwater, her brother's girlfriend, came over late Friday night. She was so worried, Naomi almost thought her face would get stuck in the same creased expression. Saturday came and went. They hadn't found him, despite mobilizing friends and family. All three of them were growing more concerned about Sam, but none of them wanted to speak it into existence.

By Sunday morning Naomi was driving back to Seattle to pick up more clothes and a thumb drive for important documents. She sent a quick message to her boss about the situation, and thankfully, her boss gave her the week off. After a restless afternoon nap so she could get a break from driving, Naomi piled a suitcase and her backpack into her car and headed out for La Push again.

"Hey, Carla," Naomi said, her phone pressed between her ear and shoulder as she worked on folding her laundry. "I just wanted to let you know that it doesn't look like I'll be back this week."

"Oh, sure," her roommate said. "Just don't expect me to do your laundry."

"Funny enough, I'm doing that now."

Carla made a hum of acknowledgment. "And your brother, he's still missing, then?"

"Looks like it," Naomi said curtly.

"Sorry. Didn't mean to be insensitive." Her tone softened. "I'm sure he'll turn up soon."

Carla was a journalism major who Naomi had shared a few classes with. They weren't especially close, but they decided to room together when Carla got kicked out of her boyfriend's place and Naomi's other roommate moved in with a family member. It was just good luck that the topic of housing happened to come up while they were studying for an exam after one of their classes. Naomi wished that she and Carla would've become close friends, but it just didn't happen. The two girls were rarely there at the same time.

"Anyway, thanks for letting me know," Carla said. "I, uh, might have someone over. Just letting you know."


"And, um, maybe it's not the time, but — if things keep going well — I might be moving out."

"Oh." Naomi frowned. "You mean soon? Or…?" She couldn't afford the rent on her own. Naomi did not want to even consider that possibility.

"No, no," Carla assured her. "I would wait until the lease is up in the summer. I wouldn't do that to you."

"You really had me worried there for a moment." Naomi let out a sigh of relief. "Okay. We'll cross that bridge when we get to it. Good luck with the guy."

"Thanks. I hope it works out this time."

"How's school?" Allison asked, peeking in through the doorway. Naomi looked up and smiled halfheartedly.

"It's okay. I'm getting more done than usual."

"Your internship takes up a lot of time, huh?"

"Well, let's just say I'm really looking forward to these next few weeks being over."

"Where are you applying to transfer after this semester?"

"I'm not sure. I was thinking about the University of Washington," Naomi said, resting her chin on her interlaced hands. "Since it's just finishing my bachelor's, it doesn't need to be far away."

Allison was nodding, but her face scrunched up in such a way that Naomi couldn't tell if she was happy or sad. The older woman went and pulled Naomi in a big hug. "You will always have a home with me."

Naomi tightened her arms around her. "I know. Thank you. You never had to take me in and you've been nothing but wonderful since day one."

"Come on," she said. "Take a break from schoolwork and help me with dinner. I'm sure Leah will be passing by soon."

It had become normal for Leah to arrive in the evenings, hoping to be there whenever they received any news about Sam. So far, there hadn't been any, and over a week had passed. But it was too early to lose hope.

A/N: The title of the FanFic is actually taken from the song "Something Wild" by Lindsey Stirling Ft. Andrew McMahon in the Wilderness.
I'm curious — how long before you realized her brother was Sam? Let me know in the reviews!