Joey sat at her desk in her lofty office at Bold Vibes. Most days when Joey couldn’t focus, she had a habit where she would sit in her chair and just spin around. Honestly, she would spin around in hopes that the dizziness would erase her troubles.
The day was June 6, 2018 which meant that it had been 5 years since she last spoke to her mother—5 years since her mother was sentenced to jail. Joey chose not to call or visit, her mother didn’t deserve that. The thought had always passed through her mind, how dare she leave me alone? With no father to begin with, she goes to jail…
“Joey,” the Editor-in-Chief, Carter, abruptly said, interrupting Joey’s ever-twisting thoughts.
“Joey, I have a new story I need you to look over that just came in. It’s a doozy!”
As Carter walked in, Joey looked at him in disbelief that any of the girls in the office had a thing for him. As his assistant, Joey had no choice, but to work with Carter on an individual basis almost every single day. With his shaggy brown hair, and light hint of scruff on his darkly tanned face, Carter was the definition of a womanizer. As his assistant, Joey was sworn to secrecy as she kept tabs of Carter’s schedule, which included his multiple dates with women from the office. In any other situation, Joey would’ve left based off of Carter’s failed morals, but she stayed only for the job.
Joey looked up at Carter with eyes that meant business and only business, and took the paper he handed her.
She glanced at it, confused by the headline that shouted at her:
“Mother Abandons Child Just to Kidnap Another”
Joey looked up at Carter, and asked with curiousity,
“What is this?”
Carter leaned down with one arm supporting him on her desk, he whispered, “This Joey, is going to be the story that once and for all validates what this company stands for. This woman has been jailed for abandoning her own flesh and blood, just to kidnap a little girl who she thought looked more like her. Joey, this story is more twisted than one could ever imagine! Read over it, and send it for print!”
Joey awkwardly chuckled, and agreed as anxiety had taken over her body with an all-too-familiar feel.
Visions of Mya and her mother took over like a ghost taking possession, it was the heartbreak and emotional abuse of her teen years that were coming back. It was that news headline that became almost too familiar.
Joey had just gotten home from school, and though her mom’s car was home, she was unable to find her mother. It was ever since the picture fiasco in the kitchen, that Joey’s mom was having more panic attacks, which led her to drink more than she normally would. So far, there were a total of five nights where Joey got a call from the local bar, “Buddy’s,” explaining that her mother was too drunk to drive home. Joey was hoping that tonight wouldn’t be another night of phone calls.
While Joey had the house to herself, she figured she could look for photos for her graduation party. She went into the attic, and started to search through boxes. As she was searching in her cold, isolated attic, she found a particularly strange box labeled as, “Joanne James.”
Who was Joanne James? Well, Joey had wondered the same. For most of her life, her mother was quite open with her no matter what she asked; so, the name Joanne James was not familiar whatsoever.
She opened the box and peeked inside.
She took out photos, and when she looked at them, they were pictures of a little baby girl. With chubby cheeks, blonde hair that almost looked like new fallen snow, and eyes that were as blue as the ocean, this baby looked into the camera as though it found a new toy to play with. Still, though Joey had looked through these photos, she still did not know who this baby was. Maybe it was a cousin or someone from the past that Joey wouldn’t have any recollection of.
Just as she had opened the box, Joey put the photos away and looked into another box. Skipping over the darkest of secrets she would ever discover.