"I saw him take a hammer and a box of nails. No one ever saw him again."
"My brother said he was going to find Jodie Hicks. He had just had his heart broken for the umpteenth time."
"Don't judge me too harshly, but I dated him for a few months. It didn't work out. We weren't right for each other. It was no reason for him to walk into the woods and never come back."
"They say he built some type of fortress for the broken hearted."
"I don't think it's a fortress. He just wanted to get away for a while and other people started showing up. You know how things go viral."
"The truth is no one's seen any evidence Jodie built a damn thing. The boy couldn't hammer a nail to save his life."
"Don't listen to the naysayers. I was out hunting deer one day and I saw it! A giant fortress if I ever saw one. People fawning all over Jodie."
"It's rumored the police found a body that looked a lot like him. They couldn't confirm the identity but the sanest of us feel it settles the outlandish stories that keep cropping up."
"The body was Ricky Smith's. It says so right in the police report and his own mother identified him. Jodie Hicks is alive!"
"Helicopters didn't find anything but I'm still on the fence. It's nice to think he found some comfort and all those crazy people looking for him did too."
"It might be a cult. I don't know. Jodie was always more of a follower than a leader."
"The girl that did it to him? That's up for debate. Some say it was Martha Higgins, I say it was Cindy Lucas. Cindy had a bad habit of using up men and leaving them dry. She would say it was Martha though and Martha would say it's Cindy. It's how these things tend to go."
"They were all over each other. I never saw him leave Martha's side. You'd think they were attached at the lips or something."
"If he loved Martha so much why did he go to prom with Cindy?"
"She didn't show up; they never went. I think it was the embarrassment that drove him to it as much as the broken heart."
"If you want truth, forget romantic ideas of forts in the woods. His neighbors said they heard a gunshot after he walked off. Wishful thinking is the only thing keeping him alive."
"I still hear his voice when I go walking. I guess you never get over losing a child. Still, I don't think I could bear knowing for sure. It's better to imagine him away seeing the same sunrise in the morning, being around those other lost souls that truly understand his pain."