"The nineteenth, around ten pm," Tom said. "She was going to work. She asked what I was doing I said sleeping and she hung up."
"And you didn't do anything that made her angry and maybe cause her to want to leave you?"
"I don't know," Tom said. "We've been together for a long time and she gets mad at me, but she didn't say anything to make me think she was mad."
"How long have you been together?" the officer asked.
"Sixteen years this February," said Tom. "We've been married for about ten years this October third and we're building a house and buying this one. If she was going to leave, she would have taken the money. She hasn't touched it, so I know something's wrong."
"Do you know what she was wearing when she left?"
"Black slacks and a white blouse," Tom reported. "The Bellevue Police and I found video of her getting into her car, so they said I had to file in King County because that's where we live."
"You say she got in her car? What makes you think something happened?"
"Because she never got home and didn't go to work. That's not like her. Something happened between there and home."
"What kind of car was it?"
"Blue Honda Element, 2007. She was on tape at nine AM, getting in it and driving away from the Bellevue Fred Meyers."
"And that was on the twentieth?"
"Yes," Tom said. "That's why Bellevue said it was no longer in their jurisdiction and I would have to file a report here."
"I think we have what we need for now," the officer said. "I'll write this up and get you a card."
"Do you want to search the house?" Tom offered. "Anything you need, you don't need to waste time with a warrant. You have my permission. My life's an open book. I have nothing to hide. And I don't want you wasting resources looking at me when you could be looking for her."
"Okay, if you'll wait here I'll take a look around and come back out."
Tom waited in the driveway while the officer searched the house.
"Those are her checks on the railing?"
"Yes, and that's her bankcard on the counter," Tom said. "All she has with her is her Nordstrom Visa and I can't check it because I'm not on it. But, if you guys could check it, then we'll know if, well, if someone stole it or not."
"Well," the officer said, "I can't make those decisions I'll turn this over to the sergeant and he'll make the call on whether it goes to a detective."
"So you mean you might not investigate, after all this?" Tom asked. "What do I have to do?"
"It is out of my hands," the officer sighed. "I just take the report."
"Well, you do what you have to and I'll do what I need to," Tom said. At least he had a case number so he could get the story out there. He thought that, maybe, some attention would force the police to do their job.
Tom called Channel 13 News, which had called the Sheriff's office about the missing-persons case criteria. Can it be that that phone call tipped the scales and made them open the case?
Through the darkness again and again, my phone rings and stops, rings and stops. I want to answer it but it is somewhere over there. I can't reach it, can't even find it. My mind is foggy. If only I could reach the phone! If only I could reach the phone. If only! But I cannot. I am trapped here, stuck here, abandoned here. What if no one comes to save me? What if they never find me? How long can I survive, anyway? I have been without water for… I don't even know how long. I have been unconscious a lot. I think I have gone through two nights, but I am not sure.