# 100 – Empty Rooms and a Blue Shoebox

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Bruce peeked into the bathroom. It was empty. He sat down at his desk and organized his work for tomorrow. Five minutes went by and there was still no Liza. Bruce was sure that she’d said that she would wait for him here. He looked around the office as if maybe she’d been standing there all along and he hadn’t seen her.

Then he noticed that the library ladder wasn’t in its usual spot. Dread swept over him. He should have told her in the beginning. Maybe it wouldn’t have been that big of a deal back then. It was too late now. He shouldn’t have taken the box. That just made everything worse.

Bruce stood up and walked around the desk. It was like being in a dream where you could only move in slow motion.  When he got to the shelf, he crouched down and fished his hand around behind the row of books. He pulled out the blue shoebox. It was still there. He opened it. Nothing was missing. He was just being paranoid. But where was Liza?

Now he was worried. What if something happened to her? That was ridiculous. What could happen to her? He’d left her sitting in his office. Maybe she had decided to walk to class without him.

Bruce took the documents from the shoebox and locked them in his filing cabinet. He went to the door and looked out into the waiting room. Empty. Janice was off today and no one else was around. He jogged out to the sitting area and tossed the box into the fireplace. Bruce grabbed his coat, book, and sketch pad from his office and headed out to look for Liza.

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