Updated: 19 hours ago
Who's in the picture with Dr. Edwards? Is Bobby involved with the case? What is LD short for?
Based on true events
Dr. Edward’s Home - Garden Ridge, TX
“You’ll need this.” Dr. Edwards removes her hands from Nina’s and continues.
“We don’t have much time, but I can’t go to the airport smelling like this. Let me take a quick shower then we can leave.”
Dr. Edwards walks into the bathroom and shuts the door. Nina wants to wait until she hears the shower running before she opens the envelope. She listens closely. Ten seconds go by before she hears water coming out of the bathtub spout. Another ten seconds pass and she hears the shower running. She contemplates opening the envelope then, but wants to hear Dr. Edwards enter the tub first.
Thirteen seconds go by.
Finally she hears the curtain hooks scratch the shower rod, followed by feet lightly touching the tub's surface. It’s time.
Nina breaks the seal on the envelope and reaches inside.
As she grabs the object, she thinks back to the rollercoaster of a moment when Greg showed her the Logan family album.
“This is what I wanted to show you. It’s an album from the Logan's.”
She remembered how calm she felt sitting on Greg’s couch, listening to the stories of the family.
“Yeah. That’s why they changed the town’s name– to honor their family after the tragic loss,”
Wow, what a generous thought it was for a town to change their name to help remember the lives of one family. She remembered how honored she felt to be living in such a place.
“They had a bookcase in almost every room as you can see from the pictures. He was an author and she was a teacher so it makes sense,”
How amazing would it be to have a bookcase in every room, she thought. She was ashamed to admit it, but she remembered feeling a little jealous. Nina thought about all the stories out there that she never read or even heard of. More than anything, she felt hope for a future in a town where she could create a life of reading and learning for herself and even for a family one day.
“Yeah, the gap gene was strong.”
There she was. Feeling so proud of the gap she closed after years of hating something that came natural to her. That made her feel good. Something as small as two millimeters owned acres of space on her self-esteem. People always say it’s the little things that make the biggest difference and it’s true. This moment was another example. In a weird way, she felt more confident than ever. More sure about herself and what she wanted. More hopeful that she made the right decision to leave San Antonio for Logan. More prepared for whatever drop this roller coaster of a moment may bring next.
“Oh Essie, I think her life was the biggest tragedy. They never even found her little body.”
Or so she thought.
“They’re the same picture.”
Nina shakes out of her flashback, but can't shake the same sick feeling from that day. She drops the envelope and scurries out of the room and down the stairs.
She reaches the first floor, but struggles to find the kitchen. She stumbles from wall to wall– feeling, slapping, scratching the walls in hopes to find a light switch. She realizes she doesn't have much time before her vomit becomes the latest wall decoration to Dr. Edward’s collection– a colorful, but tasteless addition that Dr. Edwards would not approve of.
Nina sees a set of double doors ahead and quickly walks towards it with her hand covering her mouth. She’s never seen a bathroom with double doors, but had her mind made up. Bathroom or not, whatever is behind these double doors will have to do.
She opens the door and sees a trash can sitting next to a desk. Nina lunges toward the trash can with no hesitation and vomits. She rolls over onto the floor once she’s finished. Nina lays on her back for a moment, breathing heavily. The room remains mostly dark, but there’s a crack of light coming in from the hallway. Slowly, but surely, her breathing slows down. She sits up and sees a figure that resembles a plastic water bottle sitting on the desk in front of her. It’s too dark to make the figure out so Nina stands and walks to the desk. She can make out the shape of a lamp as she approaches the desk.
She turns the lamp on and can now confirm that it is a bottle of water. She grabs the bottle and drinks the water as if her life depended on it. She lets out a sigh. Her legs still feel a bit weak so she leans against the desk. Her momentum knocks over a picture frame.
“Shit,” she whispers. Nina picks up the frame and looks at the photo. She’s unable to see clearly, so she brings the photo closer to the lamp.
It’s a man, a woman and two small kids– who look like a boy. The boy looks like a four year old and the girl looks about one or two years old. Nina scans the picture a little harder. It’s tough to tell, but the girl looks like a young Dr. Edwards. The picture seems family-oriented – as the man has his right hand placed on the hip of a caucasian woman, while holding the baby girl in his left hand. The little boy stands hugged-up next to the woman’s right leg. Nina assumed that Dr. Edwards may have parents from different races, but never got a definitive answer from her. Dr. Edwards has a bronze complexion and cultural pride– that she gladly displays through her hair and clothes, making it exceedingly clear that she sees herself as a black woman.
Nina gently places the picture back onto the desk. On the other side of the desk is another picture of what seems to be the same four people. In this picture they’re much older– the boy and girl look like teenagers. All four of them are wearing shirts that say, ‘Do or Dobbs’. The man and boy with blue shirts, the woman and girl with pink shirts. Nina can easily identify Dr. Edwards in this picture, but looks closer at the woman and son.
Her focus is broken by Dr. Edward’s phone ringing upstairs. She quickly turns the lamp off in the office and exits the room. As she closes the double doors, she hears the shower stop. Nina carefully runs up the stairs and into the room just before she hears Dr. Edwards exit the shower. Seconds later, Dr. Edwards opens the bathroom door.
“Can you hand me my phone?” says Dr. Edwards. Nina grabs her phone and hands it to her. Dr. Edwards grabs it and goes back onto the bathroom. She closes the door as Nina listens closely.
“Hey Sis, what’s up.” Dr. Edwards says then pauses. She continues.
“Yeah, mom and dad know, but you have nothing to be scared of, it’s been years since–” Dr. Edwards says before coming to an abrupt stop. She opens up the bathroom door and surprises Nina– who acts like she wasn’t listening in the first place.
“Nina, the Uber is here. Take my suitcase down please.”
“Oh, um… how do I get to the downstairs bathroom?”
“Take a right at the bottom of the stairs, go down the hall and it’s the third door on the left.”
“The envelope,” Dr. Edwards tilts her head towards the floor. Nina looks in the direction her head is pointing and spots the envelope on the floor.
“The envelope, right, right,” Nina picks up the envelope, folds it and puts it in her pocket.
“Tell the driver I’ll be down in five minutes.”
“Gotcha,” Nina responds, then heads downstairs with the suitcase.
She returns to the office and turns the lamp back on. The smell of her vomit is slowly spreading already. She cringes while tying up the bag in the trash can. She takes one last glance at the family photo– specifically the son and the woman. They look familiar to Nina, but she can’t remember when or where she’s seen them before. She hears a car honk coming from outside. She quickly turns the lamp off and leaves the office.
Police Station - San Antonio, TX
Detective Miller is sitting on his desk while talking on the phone.
“Well I really need you to be faster in your delivery Jone. Nobody has time to sit and listen to that discombobulated shit.” Officer LD enters the office and stands by the door. Miller continues.
“Gotta go.” He hangs up the phone abruptly and starts walking towards the door.
“Damn, I thought you’d never get here. The fuck took you so long? Yall went on a shopping spree or something? Shit. Let’s go.”
“Hold on,” LD responds. Miller stops walking.
“For what, we’re already behind, we need to start questioning–”
“Why the fuck not?!”
“I don’t know!”
“How don’t you know? It was your job to know!”
“She ran away.” Miller pauses. He’s having trouble processing the information and it’s showing in his hands and face. He scratches his head and clutches his eyes tight. He walks back to his desk and sits at the edge.
“Ok, break it down for me,” Miller says.
“I left her to go talk to you at the Diner.”
“In the back of my car.”
“Was she cuffed?”
“Was the door locked?”
“Then how’d she get out?”
“The window was cracked so she could get fresh air. She was breathing really heavily.”
“So first she’s dodging bullets like Neo, now she’s squeezing through small spaces like a Magician’s assistant,” Miller slams his hand on his desk and stands. Now he’s irate.
“How the hell does an 18 year old girl fit through a half cracked window?!”
“It wasn’t half cracked, it was all the way down.”
“Son of a bitch.”
“When I got back to the car I didn’t see her so I drove for almost an hour looking. I made some calls, but no one has seen anything.” Miller stands looking at LD in disbelief. He turns in the other direction and stares at the wall. LD continues.
“ I just made a mistake. Don’t act like I’m not capable of doing my job. We all make mistakes, Detective.”
“I can give two fucks about a mistake. What I’m worried about is your approach. You usually walk around here with a huge fucking chip on your shoulder– going above and beyond with everything. Always trying to compete, outworking everyone, double-checking your work to make sure you don’t make rookie mistakes. And the times you do make mistakes, you come in pissed about it. Hungry to make up for it.”
“I am,” Miller mocks LD.
“The fuck you are. You come in here late, dragging your ass without the suspect. You didn’t submit a report or picture to our connects at the department of public safety or department of transportation– and I know you didn’t because Jone called me about it. And because of that, we didn’t have eyes or ears on the ground looking for her until about five minutes ago. Then we’re at the crime scene and Jone comes over with new info on the case, but before she can even get to it, she mentions Bobby and you have a relationship.
“Bobby knows all of us. I go to the diner like half the city does. He only knows my name because he’s a creep that has a fetish for Officers that look like women.”
“Officer’s that look like women? You mean female officers.”
“It’s the 21st century, people identify themselves–”
“Hold that thought,” Miller walks over to his phone and dials a number. He puts the call on speaker.
“Hello!,” Jone screams through the phone.
“Jone, are you a female officer?”
“Um, yes. I mean technically I am because–” Miller hangs up the phone.
“See. Female officer. And I’ve never seen Bobby look twice at her,” Miller follows up.
“I think it’s best if I go now, I have to go find my suspect.”
“You’re not going anywhere with that badge on.”
“Put the badge on my desk LD. You’re off the case.”
“Off the case?”
“I told you, I do not want this to become national news. The moment she leaves the state, we’re all fucked. I just can’t take that chance.” LD stands and removes her badge. She puts it on his desk. Miller continues.
“Take a few days off. When you get back we’ll have something else for you.” LD scolds Miller. She didn't say a word, but her look said everything she was thinking.
“Maybe you should let Bobby take you out one of those three days,” Miller says then chuckles. LD slams the door on her way out. Miller grabs LD’s badge and puts it in his desk drawer. He picks up his phone and dials a number.
“Hey Jone, I need you to do some digging on LD.”
San Antonio Airport - San Antonio, TX
Dr. Edwards and Nina stand in the TSA line. Nina’s hands are in her side pockets– fiddling her fingers in hopes to stay calm. Dr. Edwards notices and places her hand on Nina’s shoulder.
“Relax, we’re almost there,” Dr. Edwards utters. Nina doesn’t respond, but she can’t help but question in her head: Calm? Calm? How can I stay calm with all these televisions around me? At any moment my face could pop up on a screen.
“Next!” The TSA woman yells. Dr. Edwards steps to the side and signals the person behind her to go ahead.
“What are you doing?” Nina asks Dr. Edwards.
“I know that guy so I want to go to him. He’s always nice when I come here. Nina looks over at the man she;s referring to. He does not look nice at all. The man had thick glasses and a heavy mustache– one you would imagine on a trucker or Harvey Davidson motorcycle rider.
“Are we looking at the same guy?” Nina whispers.
They begin walking towards him. Dr. Edward’s tone gets real chipper all of a sudden.
“Hellooooo, how are you?” she says. The man has a robotic reaction to her up-beat tone.
“ID and ticket ma’am,” he says.
“Oh you don’t have to call me ma’am, I’m not that old. I’m lovin’ the new mustache by the way.”
“ID and ticket please,” he responds. At this point, Dr. Edwards realizes he’s not budging and drops the act. She hands him her ticket and ID. He scans the ticket then holds up her ID. He examines the ID, then her. Then back to the ID, and back to her.
“Here you go,” he says as he hands the ID and ticket back to Dr. Edwards.
Another TSA man with a blue vest walks over and whispers something in his ear.
“Here?” he responds to the man in the blue vest, who nods in agreement. Both men leave together. Dr. Edwards looks back at Nina.
“Where’s the envelope?” Nina takes it out of her pocket and shows Dr. Edwards.
“Ok, take it out, your ticket and ID are in there.”
Nina opens the top flap of the envelope and hears several gasps and chatter from people behind her. She turns around and notices everyone looking at their phones. Some people are showing one another. Others have their mouths covered in shock. Nina suddenly feels her phone vibrate. She opens it and sees her face with the following text: Nina Anderson, 5 '2, 115lbs, last seen at Bobby’s Diner in San Antonio, Texas. Suspect is not armed, but potentially dangerous. Call 911 if found. Nina looks at Dr. Edwards who is trying to play it cool, but now has a forehead full of sweat. Dr. Edwards gathers herself and makes eye contact with Nina. Nina stares back, looking for Dr. Edwards to say or do something to make her feel better in the moment, but even the always-ready Dr. Edwards is speechless.
“ID and ticket ma’am,” says the TSA man who has now returned back to his seat. Nina feels frozen. Looking the man square in the face, but not able to move. She’s felt paralysis in her sleep before, but never in real life. She’s fighting to reach for the envelope, but her arms aren’t complying. Dr. Edwards walks over and grabs the envelope for her. She hands it to the TSA man.
“Kids, get so nervous at the airport sometimes,” She says– trying to laugh it off. He opens the envelope and empties the items onto the desk in front of him. He picks up both items. Seconds later he scans the ticket. Next, he holds what seems to be an ID up to his eye-level. He examines the ID, then her. Then back to the ID and back to her. He pulls the ID closer. Then leans forward to get a better look at her.
“Remove the hat,” he says. Nina uses her left hand to hold the wig down and the right hand to pull the cap off. He examines the ID, then her. Then back to the ID, and back to her.
“Hey Tim. Come here for a second,” he says. The TSA man with the blue vest returns. He lowers his head and covers his ear. They go back and forth whispering into each other's ear three times. They stop and both examine the ID together, then examine Nina together.
“Sir! There’s a darn criminal on the loose and here you are holding us all hostage! I gotta plane to catch, come on! Let the chile go!” a lady yells from the line. The lady’s outburst reminds her of her mother. That’s something she would say, Nina thought. The thought makes Nina giggle and feel a bit more relaxed.
“Settle down,” the TSA man commands. He takes one final look at the ID and continues.
“Ellie Logan, huh. I used to know an Ellie Logan back in the day. Enjoy Illinois.” He extends his arms with the ID and ticket. Nina puts her cap back on then grabs the ticket and ID. Nina and Dr. Edwards walk off. They let out a sigh of relief and give each other a look that said: ‘that was a close one.’ As they walk towards the conveyor belt Dr. Edwards pulls her in.
“Hi Essie Logan, nice to meet you again.”
Bobby's Home - San Antonio, TX
Detective Miller sits in his car across the street from Bobby’s house. His seat is slightly reclined so he isn't seen. He watches as Officer LD walks into the home and is welcomed by Bobby. He can see that LD’s car is full with duffel bags.
“The hell is she doing, moving in?” Miller rattles to himself. His phone starts ringing– it’s Jone. He answers.
“Did you find anything?”
“Not as much as I hoped on LD so far, but tons on Bobby. LD is definitely a regular, but not just as a customer.”
“Tell me more.”
“Of course, but before that. I checked with Jake– the officer on night duty tonight. He said he never called LD back in. That was suspicious because who wants to pull an extra shift for the hell of it? Not me! I mean, don’t get me wrong, I love you guys, but–”
“Sorry, sorry. Ok, so remember how I asked about LD and what it is short for? Well now I know. Introducing behind door number one, Lenda Dobbs.”