No One to Trust Except Sisters
The thin wispy clouds were tangled with the twilight sky. I stared out the open car window, the wind combing through my long, dark tresses. “Are we there yet?” I asked my eldest sister, Cassie for the fifty seventh time no eighty seventh time. “Almost, just around the corner, Liz.” Replied Cassie. I looked at Suzanne, my younger sister facing the window. I put my hand in hers, she turned and her almond colored eyes met with mine. “Don’t be nervous, Suzanne” I told her softly. “I’m not” She replied hastily a clear sign she was.
Our parents Mrs. and Mr. Caraway usually come with us but as world travelers they had a last minute project. So Cassie, Suzanne and I are on our own to the Heather family home, they were our cousins or so we were told.
Cassie parked the car. We each carried our suitcases and stepped in unison toward the wooden cabin-like house. The porch stairs creaked. I looked to the side and noticed a stone statue of a dwarf, its mouth in an ugly frown, one of its spindly arms raised up, palm forward. As if it was saying “Stop, don’t go in!” I raised my hand toward the door, then paused. “Why don’t you knock?” I tell Suzanne. “I can’t even reach it!” she complained. “Ugh enough, I’ll do it!” Cassie shouted over our voices. “Sisters!” she mumbled, about to knock Cassie lifted her hand “Creeaak!” The door opened revealing a lady her hair with streaks of gray tied in a bun. Her gray eyes tired but she was persistent to keep a smile. “Oh welcome Lizzian, Cassie, and…” She looked at Suzanne searching her mind. “Suzanne.” I finished for her. “Oh yes, sorry about that, I’m Mrs. Heather.” “Come in girls you are going to have so much fun, but we’ll leave today for rest since you must be so tired, your room is down the corridor, and Mr. Heather will be back in the morning.
After Mrs. Heather left, we heard “Un deux trois …” then a small “Hello?” broke the silence. We turned around to find a tiny girl, her brown hair short and bangs right over her brows. “My name is Louise, I’ll show you your room.” She said. “My name is Cassie and they are–” Cassie was cut off by Louise “- Lizzian and Suzanne.” Louise finished. “What are you waiting for?” Louise proclaimed.
We followed Louise down the narrow hallway. “So let me guess, parents are busy and you have to spend rest of your summer here.” Louise said casually. “How did you know?” I retorted. “I know everything besides, Ma tells me everything.” Louise replied. “But Mrs. Heather didn’t say anything about you.” Suzanne told Louise before I could stop her. Louise didn’t say anything but I could tell she was frowning even in the dark.
“Here’s your room.” she said. We walked in the room, waited for our eyes to adjust to the light and dropped our suitcases in the corner. The walls were mint green and white. The bed had red reindeer designs all over, beside it a bright red closet. . There was one tall window with a red frame. It appeared to be the most colorful part of the house. “It looks like Christmas in here.” Cassie remarked. “Oui, Ma used to be obsessed with Christmas and winter… until…” Louise said softly looking like she was about to let out a few tears. “Good night, Caraways!” she said instead, smiling then she left. I threw myself against the bed, Suzanne and Cassie joined in. “Good night.” I whispered. “Good Night” they whispered back in a chorus. I somehow fell asleep in the cold, hard bed.
“Thud, thud, thud ….. Thud, thud, thud” Suzanne got up, peered through the window and screamed. I woke up still hazy. Hitting her head against the window was a cloaked girl. Her skin white and gray and terribly frostbitten. Her eyes replaced by empty sockets. She jumped at the window and vanished. We heard a deep growl. “Sue, come here! “I tugged her arm. We stood there frozen with fear. Cassie woke up “What are you doing?”
“There was” – I caught my breath, “a girl with frostbite, banging on the window!” “With no eyeballs!!!” Suzanne added making it kind of unbelievable. “Yeah! Right I’m sooooo scared!!” Cassie said sarcastically. “Next time keep the tomfoolery to yourself!” Cassie shouted. “They are not lying, I saw her too” said a soft voice. We turned to see Louise. “I saw her, she spoke to me, and she wants you to leave… forever and…” Louise continued. We heard another growl as the floor broke into two, the wooden floor boards breaking in groans. “Caraways!!” said a disembodied voice, “It’s time to wake up!”
I gasped, it was Mrs. Heather “Breakfast time!” she said cheerfully. I looked at my sisters “we need to talk” I mouthed. We hastily ate our pancakes and thanked Mrs. and Mr. Heather. Cassie finished first then left for a while. I wondered why Louise didn’t come for breakfast. Louise however decided to come along for the meeting. We all sat around a pink rug in Louise’s room. Awkward silence. “So I had a weird dream,” I started then explained everything. Their eyes opened wide as I spoke, apparently they had the exact same dream. “This is not normal, you have to leave now” Louise said loudly then softly she added “connected dreams are a bad sign.”
Mrs. Heather came in “Girls, you have to try my lemon cookies”. “No thanks” we replied. “All Caraways are allergic to lemon” I lied when she looked at me persistently, I didn’t want to try anything from this house anymore. “Alright” she said in a rough tone. My sisters eyed me. When Mrs. Heather left the room, glass shattered behind us. It was the window, the curtain flew up to revealing a storm outside. “I’ll tell my Ma about this,” said Louise leaving the room.
“Did you see her locket?” I asked my sisters. “It has the picture of the cloaked girl we saw; with the words ‘Always in Remembrance’.” “She looked like Louise, does that mean Louise … is the girl?” My sisters’ faces turned white in horror. “But that’s not possible, let’s just leave.”
“Mrs. Heather can we go to the park?” I asked trying to smile. “It’s raining cats and dogs.” She replied. “That’s what makes it so fun, besides we have plenty of umbrellas.” Piped in Suzanne with the most adorable face. “Fine.” said Mrs. Heather. Clearly she was holding a grudge for the cookie incident. “Thank you so much Mrs. Heather!” I said.
“Let’s get into our car and leave.” I whispered, “What about our stuff?” Suzanne asked. “It’s in our car, I packed it in this morning, so we could leave.” Cassie flushed red.
We drove for an hour, our minds tangled in a million thoughts.
“Thud. Thud. Thud!”
Suzanne screamed, “It’s her, it’s her!!” “You think you can just leave?” asked a familiar voice. The girl’s hood was off, she was tiny with short brown hair and bangs. She was frostbitten and her eyes were dark. It was LOUISE!
Louise was in front of our car, banging on the window. She seemed to be getting weaker, she became pale and transparent. Louise screeched “Come back, reviens maintenant!!” “Don’t look, don’t listen!” screamed Cassie. She drove at breakneck speed.
Finally we lost her. I hugged Suzanne tightly. “I’ve got your back and I know you’ve got mine.” Suzanne whispered. “Always.” I whispered back!