Secrets and Blue Roses

by Jenna

They found her by the river, just a few miles away from her house. She had been missing for a week. Everyone in our town had been putting up fliers, organizing searches, and holding vigils. I sat with her parents praying and hoping with them that she was safe. She was my best friend we couldn’t have been closer if we were sisters. But, I knew she had secrets.

She had become withdrawn lately and would sometimes have unexplained bruises and cuts. I begged her to let me help, but she would never tell me anything. When the call came that a body had been found her parents couldn’t face the truth. They weren’t ready to accept that it was over. I volunteered to identify the body.

I stood in front of the window looking in to the coroner’s autopsy room. The body was covered in a sheet. I was warned that what I was about to see would be difficult but nothing could have prepared me for it. The body was in terrible condition. The face was unrecognizably bloated, most of the hair was gone, and the skin was pasty and discolored. But I knew I was looking at my friend’s remains. I could still make out the tattoo on her shoulder that matched mine. We had gotten them when she turned 18, a blue rose for her and a red one for me.

They hadn’t found much of her clothing but when I was asked to look through it I recognized something out of place. It was a medallion I knew did not belong to her; it was given to her ex boyfriend when he had graduated from his expensive private high school. They said they had found it clutched in her hand. She hadn’t dated him long but he always was too dependent on her. He lived a reckless lifestyle and ran with a dangerous crowd. I knew he had gotten her wrapped up in something and I was going to find answers.

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