Brandon just got free from work and leaned back. He was meant to meet up with a prospective research partner at 8:00 p.m. He still had half an hour to go, so he rubbed his eyes and leaned back in his chair.

It was too hectic these days and he felt like he didn't even get time to breathe. His stubble was overgrown and he had dark circles under his eyes. What wouldn't he give for a long and relaxing vacation at Hawaii!

Yes, it wasn't easy being a therapist. Sometimes he couldn't help but feel overwhelmed by how much people relied on him. He pulled out his phone which had gone off. Sighing in exasperation, he plugged in the charger. The phone light came on, and suddenly the screen buzzed with messages.

"What the -"

Brandon frowned at the screen, where Pixie's name was alight. The message played, and Pixie's anxiety stricken voice played.

"Hey, Brandon? Call me when you get this. It's Jade. I'm freaking out right now. Call me back."

Quickly, he dialed the number and put the phone to his ear. He frowned, trying to keep his heart from beating faster.

"Hello?" Pixie's voice rang out from the other side.

"Pix, is everything okay? What's up with Jade, I got your message," Brandon asked.

"Sorry about that, but I didn't know who to talk to," Pixie's worried voice reached Brandon. "I've been trying Jade's cell for the past two days, but it's no use. She told me she'd come over yesterday, but she didn't show up. I'm just worried about her. You know she's not really...alright these days. I just...I remembered she told me she sees you often, so I wondered if you could just tell me if she's okay."

"Um..." Brandon felt at a loss of what to say.

"You haven't talked to her, I'm guessing," Pixie sounded disappointed.

"You got it, I haven't," Brandon confessed, feeling a huge pang of guilt. "I've just got a lot on my plate these days, I'm so sorry. But, hey, I'm sure she's fine. Right?"

"Yeah, I...I hope so," Pixie said uncertainly. "I don't know, maybe I'm just being paranoid -"

"You have been known for it," Brandon tried to lessen her worry, and Pixie laughed half-heartedly.

"I've just got a bad feeling about this," she went on. "Jade doesn't usually skip things when she gives her word."

"You're right," Brandon closed his eyes for a moment. "But you know her phone stays off for days at times. Look, don't worry, okay? I'll go see her tomorrow. I would right now, but I've got a huge deal to finalize tonight. And then I've got the clinic in the morning. But I assure you, I will go see her tomorrow. Is that alright?"

"That would be great, thanks, Brandon," Pixie sounded relieved. "I'm sorry for this..."

He voice trailed away and Brandon laughed.

"Don't mention it, Pix, I get it," he smiled as he cut the line.

But his smile vanished the next moment. Though he had pacified her, he himself was starting to feel worried. He hoped Jade was okay.

*

The next morning, Jade was lying on her side, her head beginning to hurt. Her mind had been whirring uselessly for hours.

She could feel the presence of Tyler behind her back. He'd been prowling around her room, gazing at her nearly nonexistent belongings. He'd destroyed her phone, and even disabled the lock on her bathroom. The only possible exit was blocked by the couch that Tyler was using now and then.

The Perfect Jade ✓Read this story for FREE!