Something Else

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Chapter 9

I wake up to different scenery than what I fell asleep too. I’m in a room I imagine to be a high class hotel room, because of my luxurious surroundings.

The bed I’m currently lying on is white and silk and the pillows are plush complete with animal down. The blanket is silk stuffed with thick fleecy stuff.

There’s a huge TV in front me and a desk with pencils and writing and drawing materials and a laptop. On my nightstand there’s a phone, a NEW one.

I look up at the plush couch and see someone sitting there staring at me. Lucas.

“Hey Lacey.” I give him a sidelong glance.

“Why are you here?” I ask curiously.

“Because you’re fun to watch,” he shrugs like it’s not a big deal.

“When I’m sleeping?” I know I should get up and check on Karly but …

“Always. You’re fun to watch when you’re asleep and awake.”

“Um I-“ don’t know what to say, I finish in my head.

“Would you not do something, because people think it’s weird? Especially if it’s something you enjoy?” his sudden

Long glance catches me by surprise, my first impression was easy going and light.

“No, I don’t think I would, but I don’t do stuff people don’t approve of,” I sound like a goody, goody,

“You should try it sometime.” He gets up just like that and leaves, leaving me with a million questions floating around in a big jumble in my head.

He’s now caught me off guard, what, like 3 times in the past 24 hours, how does he do that?

I get up and walk over to what I assume is the closet and am greeted by what probably made Kimmi cry when she saw it. A hoard of clothes. I assume Brad didn’t pick them, because the dresses aren’t all inappropriate. I notice something else, all. I notice something else, all my clothes, yeah they’re all size two.

Is someone’s way of hinting I should be size two? Because I doubt any of the other girls are. Other girls … I assume there’s about 10 or 15 in total.

I pull out a black skirt and a white shirt. I decide to put on black knee length leggings and knee high, black, high heel boots.

I walk out the door and am greeted by a maze of hallways. A group of girls all following a really young girl appear to be getting the tour. That’s what I get for sleeping in.

I slip into the back without being noticed. There’s about 20 girls/women including me, I think. Three of them I immediately recognise to be my step sisters. Tw chatty girls I don’t know. A group of five girls that includes Karly, but suspiciously not Kimmi is standing in front of me. Kimmi is slumped by herself leaning against her mother. The other parents or should I say mothers are all taking in the tour intently, thinking they should memorize every part, because this might be their new home.

“End of tour,” she says in a high pitched voice. “Any questions?”

“Will I live here if I become queen?” asks Kimmi and everyone shoots her an awful look.

“No,” replies the tour guide nervous to say more and scurries away.

The group unanimously decides to head towards the dining hall where we are greeted by food. As I’m going to sit something clicks in my head, if Karly and I are both here on their terms who’s here to be our guardian?

“Can I sit?” asks a voice next to me. I’ve finally found an empty table.

“Sure,” I don’t turn to see who it is, but I can hear it’s a guy.

“Lacey, I need to talk to you,”

“What?” I’m chewing on some sort of pastry dish the waitress put in front of me. I get thirsty and sip a glass of water. I appear to be the only one who chose water.

“Lacey, I’m you and Karly’s legal guardian now,”

“Dad,” I say flatly in a dangerous voice, “You have three seconds to get away from me before I beat the-“

My voice is cut off by the arrival of Dennis, Markus, Brad and not Lucas. He probably went off to watch some other pretty girl sleep.

“You can eat now blah, blah, blah whatever,” says Brad agitated. I suddenly notice I was the only one eating. Dam it.

I start on a cupcake, it’s really good, the icing is lemon I think. It tastes really good.

My dad has moved on to annoy some other daughter and I’m left looking like a loner.

“Hey come to watch me eat now?” I ask as Lucas finally makes a mysterious appearance.

“Yeah actually, you catch on fast,” so I’ve been told. I wonder if he knows about his brother.

“Fair warning I don’t think you’ll still enjoy watching me after seeing me eat.”

“Contrary to popular belief I don’t find girls who eat gross.”

I laugh and nearly choke on my food.

“Is that why your brother’s are sitting away from the eating girls?” I ask still joking.

“Something like that.” He replies ominously.

***

I wake up to a rapid knocking on my door.

“Dude, shut up, it’s like five a.m.! Don’t be a jerk. You shouldn’t even be awake, this is unnatural. It’s still dark!”

“Open the door Lacey,” says Lucas in a false agonised voice. He continues his rapid knocking and I pull myself to my feet.

I’m freezing cold and I pull on a thick, wool robe around my body and a pair of fuzzy slippers.

I walk up to the door and wrap my fingers around the cold door knob twisting it slightly to reveal Lucas staring down at me amused.

“You know, just because you are taller than me doesn’t make you better than me. And it’s not funny! Also, I know you are a creature of the night or of the dark or whatever, but I call this crossing the line. Also, won’t the sun rise soon? Won’t you like burst into ash or dust or flames or something?” I laugh at my own joke as usual even though its not that funny.

“The sun won’t rise so soon, but I’m going to see it anyways; whether or not I go up in flames from it. I was hoping you’d come with me so I can see something beautiful before I die.”

“I don’t know, going out all alone at night with the guy who is stalking me in my sleep doesn’t sound like a good idea.” I smile in spite of myself and can still feel the heat rushing to my cheeks. It’s as if my emotions aren’t aware that I just made a snide remark and no matter how sweet that compliment was, I can’t let him know that it got to me.

“Yeah well it isn’t advised that I go out all alone in the middle of the night without the girl I’m stalking. It’s not considered safe. Maybe you’ll even develop Stockholm syndrome.” He tilts his head all cocky. A stupid boyish grin on his face.

I shut the door and call behind me “not likely,”.

“What are the chances of me getting laid?” he calls through the door just a little too loud.

“SHUT UP! You’ll wake everyone up. And sleep deprived girls are less likely to put out.

“I’ve heard the opposite.”

I walk into the closet grab some long pants, leather boots, fur trimmed gloves, a fleece top and a fur lined coat. I exit the room mutely after slipping the knife in my coat pocket.

“You’re hair.” Lucas stares at me suddenly noting my hair.

“The colour is gone right? Now I just look like a plain old, boring blonde.”

“You couldn’t be plain or boring no matter how hard you tried. And I was actually going to recommend you put your hair up, the wind is strong this time of day-“

“Night, you mean this time of night,” I smile at his mistake. And take his advice tying my hair neatly in a braid to the side of my head. My neck is exposed and I tighten my coat around my body.

We exit the building onto a street that I guess is usually crowded, but is now only inhabited by people going to work early.

The cold air freezes my skin and makes my body go numb. I shiver from the cold and once again my neck is exposed. I should’ve brought a scarf.

Suddenly, he grabs my hand and takes off running pulling me along behind him as we run towards what looks like a tall hill amidst a meadow some distance away. First we run, then start sprinting, then we are going faster then humanly possible then we are just moving at an impossible speed as we crash in the hill rolling along the top. My body suddenly rolls over the edge threatening to spill me onto the ground far below.

“CAREFUL!” yells Lucas over the wind, pulling me back on the top laying me down carefully with my head resting on his lap. “You’re freezing. Here,” he hands me his scarf and pulls a fuzzy pair of ear muffs out from under his coat.

“How did you know?” I ask curiously embarrassed that he had guessed I wouldn’t bring enough layers and be cold.

“Lucky guess,” he shrugs. “Or maybe I just know you. Maybe I’ve just gotten a good grip on your personality. Maybe I’ve learned something from watching you so much. Like how you always open the door at night all the way so the door knob touches the wall before you close it to go to sleep. How you always forget to zip your sweaters up all the way when you are cold. How you always look for an exit from every situation. How you have isolated yourself in a way that no one has noticed. Only the slightest of pickiness while choosing your words. Just enough to never make promises you can’t keep or tying yourself down permanently and avoiding consequences. How you don’t think that people are worth trusting including your own friends and parents even before you met me. This is probably the only thing I can change in you, because if you didn’t trust me you wouldn’t be here right now.”

I breathe for a few minutes letting the silence settle and stare out at the first rays of dawns and turn to face him.

“How do you know I’m not just into watching the sun rise?”

He leans in close forcing me to make eye contact and I can feel his breath against my skin, but its not right. It’s cold like the sick or the dying. Like if the dead could breathe.

“You could’ve watched it from your window,” he says with his eyes lingering for a just a second and then looks away back to the sunrise.

We watch the sun rising in silence, looking in the distance. The sky changes from soft pink to its regular blue dotted with white, fluffy clouds.

Soon snow starts falling, landing on the fingertips of my gloves and I watch them slowly melt. I look up at him finally.

“How long have you been watching me? How long have you known me? Known about me, how long have I existed for you?” The way he is talking about me is like he has known me a lot longer than he has. Wait do I really want to know? Well too late now …

“Since you were 10.”

“I don’t understand, why?”

“Because you fascinate me and I-“

“We should be getting back, now.” That ends the conversation.

I notice something terrible, my emotional and mental barrier is deteriorating. I’m losing track of whose my friend and who is my enemy and don’t even get me started on the power surges. Constant, consistent and daily. Especially when I’m around Lucas. I think he makes me try to close up emotionally and my power wins over.

The fact that a problem is occurring is soon obvious. I don’t know why, but my eyes have begun changing colour uncontrollably. While we are walking back, we pass by a clumps off trees and the nervousness and jittery and fear that is rattling through my bones and visible in my eyes force me to look away. I stare at the tree and watch it die.

All the leaves turn brown and fall to the ground. The tree shrivels up and dies. I look away sadly.

I don’t know what’s happening, some people say that when people with abilities reach certain ages they sometimes get stronger, but not like this. This isn’t age this is emotion and it’s him! He is doing this to me, I don’t know how he is doing this though. And I don’t know how to stop this.

Another problem is obvious, but even more destructive. There was always obvious tension between me and Lucas, but I think the need to be friends might have-may be forced. I just feel this thing when he touches my hand to help me up, like this desire to be …

Bad, bad, bad! Remember what mother said? Don’t fade now Lacey, hold it in, if you feel they’ll all know. If you feel you won’t be able to control it. If you love you will kill them or you.

Do you know what a demon is Lacey? A being without a soul or emotions, not a shred of humanity.

That’s wrong. I remember something now. Evil is made not born, good is either. Natural born demons were presumed evil by their unholy characteristics. Most of them just acted as their truly evil and only role models do. That’s why everyone assumes they are all bad.

A truly evil person wouldn’t pick me up if I fall while ice skating or take me sledding. Okay, maybe a real evil demon would throw a snowball at me, but really that’s a petty evil deed. What’s their main agenda steal candy from babies and massacre Barbie dolls? Yeah that shit is evil.

A lot of the other people gave me weary looks and murmured about my mental state, but I didn’t mind.

Now I do.

One of my step sisters, Ella, decided to give Brad a second by second walk through of everything I’d done.

After that everyday became school. We had different classes.

Our schedule soon becomes wake up, eat, learn, eat, train, eat, free time, curfew. I particularly enjoy training, because I’m good at it. During free time Brad almost always comes and takes me somewhere until curfew. Lucas still comes at night and watched me. If I wake up in the middle of the night we talk.

One night, I wake up at about 2:00am.

“Lucas?” No answer.

“Lucas?” No answer.

“Fine, don’t reply.”

I get up to go to the bathroom and hear noise in the hallway even though it’s way past curfew.

Then something, someone a voice sounds really loud in my head.

Drip, drop, tick, tock, broken watch and damaged clock. Tick tock, drip drop. Waters flowing down the hall. You can run, but you can’t hide, no escaping what you can’t fight, no control, only impulse. Death to those who don’t move on. Drip, drop, tick tock, time is running out for us. Tick, tick, drip, drop, someone’s clock is already stopped.

The voice soon turns to screaming, someone else not the voice is screaming a real person and my head feels like it’s going to explode.

Somehow a noise registers through the screaming.

“She’s dead.”

“What do we do with the body?”

“Shouldn’t we wait for father?”

“For what? So he can scold us for not already disposing of her?” the voice is clearly Lucas and I burst my door open to see a stone cold body in Markus’s arms.

The girl is none other than Kimmi.

“Oh my gosh, DID YOU KILL HER!?” I practically scream the words at them

“I wish,” says Lucas thinking a snarky comment will help ease the mood, it doesn’t.

I study the body more closely and notice the puncture wounds on her arms and leg and strewn across her body, leaving holes in her once beautiful, but now bloody dress. Her face is even worse.

On closer examination it is clear one of her eyes was gauged out of its socket by whatever stabbed her so many times. I stare at the horrific carnage that is the remains of my sister’s best friend.

“We should burn her,” suggests Markus. What a pig, he wanted her here, because he was “interested in her” it was probably a rape and murder on his behalf.

NO matter how much I despised Kimmi in life, I can already tell I will mourn her in death and no doubt Karly will bawl for days. I hope they have a closed casket funeral. Wait it will have to be closed casket if they want to burn her, if they even want to give her a funeral.

“NO!” I shriek my stuck wide open if a mix of protest and disgust and desperation.

“She deserves a service, that’s the second person you pieces of shit have murdered, FROM HER FAMILY!” I practically yell in outrage. I’m trying to draw attention, because what’s one girl against four male demons? It’ll take them one hand to restraint me. Sadly I catch the wrong person’s attention. He comes strolling down casually and his calm demeanor demonstrates that he is completely unfazed or unaware his sons are in possession of a dead body. In fact he walks up to Markus and with a blow so hard it resonates through the building he slams his sons arms in a strike that would’ve snapped a human’s wrists so that Kimmi falls out of his arms. Her head hit’s the floor. Hard.

I run up to her to see if she’s okay and remember she is dead.

“I saw we dump the body into a casket mail the smelly corpse to her parents and take a load off them by letting them do a double memorial and save time and money,” says Michael with a smile that says he finds this to be absolutely hilarious.

“See little girl, no reason we can’t be reasonable,” says Michael turning to me.

“You’re all sick!” I scream.

Then it hits me. Literally. The blow to the back of my head is so strong that I fall forward onto my hands and knees weakly.

I won’t cry I won’t cry.

It’s been a long time since anyone could take me down and honestly between that and being called little girl and the hysteria from the tragedy unfolding before me, I’m mortified.

No more feelings. I don’t care about anyone except for Karly. No one else matters, nothing else matters.

I feel like a part of me has died, I don’t understand it, it’s like I’m being pushed and pulled from two sides, conflicting interests. Like some snarled part of me has its own motives and interests that aren’t going to benefit Karly.

Do I have my own intentions? Is it possible that I’m not what I always expected of myself, hoped of myself, dreamed for myself? I dreamed to be my mother. What would my mother do in this situation?

She’d stand up, first of all, I think she would anyway. Oh and stand straight showing off her pride. Always have dignity in spite of shame for you never know who is truly testing you. She treated as a sort of test. The pass and fail kind. I think that runs in our family, good and bad. No average, perfect, terrible, bad, trying. Just good and bad. I don’t know where I stand anymore. You think it’d be easy to tell with two positions, but I somehow seem to be the only person who’s perspective seems to shift in light of every situation. I think my sense of right and wrong is faltering.

They are all watching me, they want to see if I’ll stay cowardly on the floor or look up reproachfully, but fearfully. I don’t know who knocked me to the ground, but I know they’ll all be shocked when I stand up straight, head held high. I’m almost right. Lucas doesn’t look impressed, but more expectant. Michael stares at me with his piercing glare. Like the saying says you never know who’s testing you so always assume you passed.

That’s my interpretation anyway.

I hold their astonished gazes for a long time. No one says anything, but I start to cringe, something smells bad. And then I make a shocking realization; Kimmi’s body is rotting, but this doesn’t make sense. For her body to be decaying the kill must not be recent or fresh. She was murdered and then abandoned. This kill was a message. I think.

I also shove all accusations towards the people glaring at me. They may be evil, but this is one kill I don’t know if they should be credited for.

I pick myself up and with confidence return to my room. The weight of their stares fees like the weight of the world being lifted off my shoulders with a slam of the door.

How do I go back to sleep after watching my sister’s former best friend’s remains’ disposal being debated.

I turn on the TV and flip through channels pretending not to acknowledge the audience waiting outside my door.

No doubt this all be gossip tomorrow and I’ll be bombarded with questions. I should probably get some sleep in preparation for the post Kimmi’s death interrogations from my step/half-sisters.

There’s a late, LATE, night horror movie showing, probably a marathon. It’s ironic how books and movies always seem to reflect current predicaments. The movie portrays a girl falling in love with a monster.

Kind of romantic actually, makes me think how maybe I can let someone in, maybe they’re not all as bad as my mother and teachers and family say.

There’s a first time for everything right? Even things that are considered wrong can be right?

Right?

For some reason I expect an answer from someone, but I’m alone and didn’t even speak the words, no one knows of my question. Therefore and sadly no one can present me the answer I’m so desperately seeking.

But I think I already answered the question for myself.

I turn my attention back to the television and watch the rest of the movie without any further analysis of my current and tragic predicaments.

I feel kind of bad for the girl, she had so much more to lose than I do.

She left behind her life to be with someone considered evil, I wonder if I could do the same thing. Sacrifice my current life for one with someone I love, even if everyone considers it wrong.

I think it’s 3:00am, the sun will be up in a few hours. I need to get some sleep.

I decide to finish the movie before I return to my slumber.

I almost go to sleep with a smile, the movie ends with the monster ripping her throat out.

It wasn’t worth it


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