• It's almost seven years, but it doesn't feel anything like it. It's still six years since I've lasted went to Fabian Manion's birthday. Now, I'm in high school and I'm retaking the steps in this kind of flashback. Fabian disappeared long ago and I haven't seen him ever since.

    I'm now looking at the beach one afternoon. Being 17 at this time of day isn't too easy. I've met a mysterious redhead who calls herself Alexandria---she was in her 70s outfit for no apparent reason and it seems that she is probably up to something. I wonder what HER dilemma is?

    "What are you doing here?" I began.

    "Patience, child," she responded. "I came here to retrace my own steps. One of my friends have vanished long ago and I'm doing my best to look for them, if they are to be found."

    I said nothing. She continued, "I may have last seen them here, but I have no idea where they went. It's been years since I'm still trying to look for them."

    "I'm also looking for one of my classmates," I told her. "This is where we had HIS birthday party. A week later, I last saw him meditating out in the beach. He didn't want to be bothered, so I was left staring at him from a distance for a good hour. One day, when I wanted to check on him again, he disappeared. Even his brothers have no idea where he may have gone off to."

    "Sounds like we both share the same dilemma," Alex said. "And speaking of that, my summer been almost too boring. Everyone I know today and before act as if they've all vanished. I haven't heard from them since."

    "I know, right?" I retorted. "I feel like I'm the only one left as well."

    As we were walking down the beach to remember all that we've been through so many years in our lives, I tripped over something that was half-buried in the sand. That caught my attention, so I was able to dig it out.

    "What is it?" Alex asked.

    I was able to pull it out. "It must be a time capsule."

    Actually, this was no ordinary time capsule; this container had all of Fabian's personal stuff from before. When I opened it, we were able to take a look at some of his photos, tapes, DVDs, and even documentaries. I began to realize that Fabian must be hiding something all these years and, as I said earlier, it's been nearly six years since I've last seen him. We may have some antagonism for one another from time to time, but there are other times when he's calming himself to talk to me. Nonetheless, it took a while for the two of us to go through what was half-buried in a time capsule container---a huge one, that is.

    Alexandria looked at the various documents and photos. "Why would he bury it here?" she questioned.

    "Maybe this used to be his favorite place," I began to wonder when I responded to Alex.

    "Maybe he had a dysfunctional past. But no matter, I'm not resting till I find him. We should get this stuff to safety."

    "I'm way ahead of you." And with that, we placed the items in the container and closed it up. I held it tightly while I followed Alexandria to her car. I placed the time capsule into her trunk and got in her car. We were planning to go to my place for a little "further investigation" based on Fabian's disappearance.

    A couple minutes after we took off, my cell rung---it was from Anthony Martinez, my longtime friend.

    "What's up?" I began.

    "How are you doing all these years, Dave?"

    "Pretty good, how about you?"

    "Same. Summer's not used to the way it was been before." Anthony's voice through the phone sounded like he was depressed.

    "Why?" I questioned.

    "I don't know; it's just not how it used to be."

    I totally felt sorry for Anthony as much as I was sorry about myself all this time. "I know how that feels," I responded. "I feel the same way as you, man."

    "How's high school?" was Anthony's next question through the phone.

    "Pretty good."

    "Are you doing fine with your girlfriend?"

    "She's alright, man. I'm just heading back to my place."

    "Where are you?"

    I paused for a moment, then continued, "Eh, me and Alexandria left the same beach in which we celebrated Fabian's birthday so many years before."

    Anthony asked, "Did you find him?"

    "No, I found his time capsule and I'm willing to investigate the rest of his whereabouts."

    There was a pause. Anthony responded, "How about I'll show up at your place and help the two of you?"

    I told him that it was a good idea. After a few more minutes of our usual conversation, Alexandria halted at the stoplight smoothly and asked, "Who was that?"

    "Just Anthony," was my prompt response. "He said he's gonna help us track down Fabian at my place."

    Alexandria looked at me. "Sounds like a great idea," she said. "Is he meeting us now?"

    I nodded. "He'll help us now. I won't rest until I find Fabian. If our dilemmas seem to be getting intense every second of a new day, then it would be wise for us to try and solve it before IT conquers us."

    She looked at me for a few moments and replied, "Good point, Dave... good point."

    The traffic light flashed green. We resumed heading back to my place. I know that it's going to be the three of us: Me, Anthony, and Alexandria. Since Alex and I share the same dilemma, I have no idea about Anthony's in this kind of summer we're in. But whatever happens to one of us, we will do anything to solve it. And I know we will all do it step by step.