Ch.6: Flustered Evelyn
💙 Sienna’s POV 💙
Once I managed to rein in my emotions, I pulled out of the police station parking lot. No more rain fell from the skies. I drove down the drenched narrow roads of the town with a clear destination in my mind.
Feeling stuffy in the truck, I lowered the windows. My nose was met with the clean, crisp air. The smell of the after rain helped to calm my nerves. It reminded me that despite the downhill direction my life was heading, the world was still the same. It hasn’t changed. Only I have.
I pulled up to a house at the end of the one-way street and got out of the truck. It was a small yellow two-floor house surrounded by the most godawful fence I had ever seen. Even when it had received a fresh coat of pain some ten years ago, it was still hideous. Old weary gnomes littered the weed-infested, overgrown front yard. God knows how many complaints the city hall received because of the state of the house, and yet it retained the same level of neglect year after year.
Walking towards the door, I knocked on the door three times and waited. There was a car in the driveway, so the inhabitants of the house were most likely home. Minutes passed, and I grew impatient and was about to knock again when the door flew open.
The door opened to reveal a tussled Evelyn. Her brown hair was open and all over the place, resembling a bird’s abandoned nest. Her flushed face glistened with sweat making her bangs cling to her face. She wore an oversized shirt, and I could tell she wore no underwear beneath it.
“Sienna! what...a surprise.” She said breathlessly. Her eyes skittish and not meeting mine. She acted strangely, and I just took it as her embarrassment that I saw her in her state of dress. She always tried to keep herself looking perfect. Too bad her need for perfection only concerned her appearance and not the neglected house. I couldn’t blame her. She lived here only with her Nana, and taking care of someone was a lot of work.
“Evelyn, I need to talk to you,” I said, desperate. Right now, I really needed someone to talk to. She and Jax were the only people who truly still cared for me in my mom’s absence. I had no one else.
She took in my bloodshot eyes, tear-streaked face, and the messy black hair I combed my fingers through at least a dozen times today before she nodded her head and opened the door wider.
“Are you with someone?” I asked as an afterthought. I didn’t want to intrude on her time, but I really needed to talk to her.
“Umm... No, I was alone until you came.” She said quickly, and I smelled a lie. She acted so suspiciously, I couldn’t help but wonder what she had been up to.
As I headed upstairs to her bedroom, she tugged on my arm and instead led me to the living room. I looked at her, confused. We always used to hang out in her room. She said she never liked the living room because of all the china dolls her Nana kept there. There were shelves upon shelves filled with them, hung on pink walls. They all stared at us with beady eyes as we entered the living room.
As we sat down on one of the old brown couches, I spilled all that had been crushing my heart. I told Evelyn everything about mom, the creatures, and even about Luthias. I felt so much better after telling my best friend. It felt like a weight had been lifted off my shoulders. She was someone I trusted with my life, and I was so confident that she would believe me.
“Sienna...I...its just so hard believe. Did anyone else see?” She asked me, skeptical since the first word I uttered to her. After everything I said, it hurt that even with the most serious voice I could muster, I didn’t reach her threshold of believing.
“No. no one else saw them but me.” I said, disappointment hanging on every word. Why did I ever think differently? Evelyn had always mocked everyone in town who believed in the mystic. One of the reasons she had stuck with me through the years and considered me her best friend was because I was once like her. One of the sane ones as mom would put it.
However, I changed while Evelyn remained the same doubtful self. The world around me didn’t actually change. It had always been filled with monsters, I just couldn’t see it before.
“Sienna, please don’t get offended, but I think you should see someone. Mental health is a serious thing, and you should never feel ashamed. I heard of this place up north tha-”
“Are you calling me crazy? You could’ve just told me you don’t believe me, but you just had to question my sanity. What now? Are you gonna ask me if I am on drugs? That I am lying and looking for attention?” I shouted, jumping to my feet. My blazing eyes trained on her regretful face.
“No, it’s not like that! Wait, Sienna, your my best friend and I care about you. Please just consider it.” She ran after me as I made my way to the front door. I felt like the doll’s eyes mocked me as I walked, I just wanted to smash them all.
As I walked towards the door, the floorboards above us creaked. I froze, looking at Evelyn accusingly. “You said you were alone.”
“It’s... it’s Nana.” She said nervously.
“Your Nana uses a wheelchair. She never goes on the second floor.” I said angrily, pointing out the obvious flaw in her lies. I just spilled everything to her, and she couldn’t even tell me who was in her house, such a great friendship we have.
I was about to run upstairs much to Evelyn’s horror, but then I realized how much I really didn’t care. I turned and left the house with her hot on my tail.
“Ok, I’m sorry! Nana is at her Bingo thing. I was so embarrassed to tell you I was with a guy. His name is Matt, we met at the Bonfire, remember him? I thought you were going to judge me for bringing guy I just met home .” She said, hugging my back. I couldn’t see her face, but her voice sounded a little tearful.
“Evelyn, I would never judge you, you should know that. But please don’t lie to me. You’re still my best friend.” I said with a sad smile. “Even if you dont everything I say,” I added quietly.
“Look, I am sorry for even suggesting your anything but perfectly sane. But you know how I am about the folklore shit? My whole life would’ve been a lie if I believed now. I’m going to need some time to process what you told me.”
“Fine, but even if you can’t believe the monster’s bit, what about my mom? How do you explain her disappearance?” I asked, my voice solemn.
“I’m sure she will be back for you. Maybe she needed a change of scenery or something. It’s not unusual for people to up and leave this stinky little town. If I didn’t have Nana to take care of, I would certainly get on the first bus out of here. But, if it makes you feel better, I will help you put up some missing person posters.” She said assuringly. I shook my head. I had a feeling that posters weren’t going to bring my mom back.
“I will see you later,” I said, making my way to the truck. As I walked by Evelyn’s car, something caught my attention.
Moving closer to the window, the brown beat-up leather jacket stood out to me against the torn grey seats of the car. I knew who owned it as the initials on the back of the jacket were unmistakable. J.P.
“Why do you have Jax’s jacket in your car?” I asked, my heart sinking. I know I shouldn’t jump to conclusions with no proof, but my boyfriend’s prized possession was in another girl’s car, my best friend’s car.
“Oh..he left it in Josh’s van when he was driving us back from the party. I was going to give it back to him today, but the weather was pretty nasty.” She said quickly. “You know what? I think I made Matt wait quite a long time upstairs on his own. Sorry but I gotta go.” She added before speedwalking back into the house.
I was left staring at her back, with my mouth hanging open. For a person who was simply meaning to return something, she sure was defensive. Still, I found myself relaxing slightly as I recalled Jax wearing it at the party.
I felt so stupid for blindly accusing her. Today our whole interaction was uncomfortable and suspicious. I missed how we used to be, back before I knew or saw what others couldn’t see. Back when we would hang out and tell each other everything. Back when we made fun of the superstitious townsfolk. Back when we lay on our back, in my backyards among the flowers, and watch the night sky. Back when mom was still with me, greeting me every morning with a kiss on the cheek. All of that seemed so far away, like a distant memory.
Walking to my truck, I called Jax’s cell, waiting for him to pick up. The call went straight to voicemail, and I couldn’t help but feel disappointed. I texted him to call me when he gets a chance and then got into my truck and drove home.
I wondered how he would react to what’s happening to me. Will he believe me? Or will he react like Evelyn and suggest I go find me a shrink?
As I pushed the front door open, I couldn’t help but dread the hollow feeling surrounding the house. The place was eerie with mom gone, and I didn’t want to stay a second longer. All its warmth had gone when its owner abandoned it without explanation.
Still, I entered, shutting the door behind me. It was the only home I ever knew, and there was nowhere else to go. I also wanted to be home when mom comes back, and ends this sick joke she is playing on me. I wanted to scream at her when she came back, telling her how much she hurt me.
My stomach made itself known after not receiving a bite of food the whole day. Not even during my break from work did I eat. I was so worried, with so much weighing on my mind to indulge in my stomach’s wants.
Without bothering to change out of my uniform, I walked straight to the kitchen. As I opened the fridge, a folded piece of paper blew out from under it, brushing against my feet. I picked it up to examine it, almost dropping it as my eyes skimmed over the words written on it.
′To my dear Sienna.′ was scrawled on the folded note in my mom’s cursive handwriting. She had such beautiful handwriting, one that I would forever envy. I inherited all my looks from her, but her handwriting was something that never passed on to me.
Nervously, I picked up the note and unfolded it.
Dear Sianna, If you are reading this right now, It means that I was taken. After all those years, I naively thought they will not ask for the payment. I made a deal with them in exchange for something I’ve wanted all my life. However, these creatures always deceive the humans they make deals with. I was warned many times, but being foolish and young, I reached out to them. Told them my wish and accepted the price.
Just know that I love you, and I don’t regret my actions. I am sorry I could no longer be there for you. Please do not look for me, I am beyond your help. Instead, you should do what you’ve always craved. Go to the city, I am no longer tying you down.
I love you,
Running down my cheeks, salty tears spilled onto the letter, dissolving the black ink. A chocked sob forced its way out of my soul, my whole world crumbled around me. My only family was gone. Taken.
The letter must have been blown under the fridge by the wind from the open window, thats why I didn’t see it until now. If only I had open the fridge on Saturday. Then I would’ve found it sooner and learned what happened to mom.
My heart burned with fire, pumping the flammable fuel around my body. Whatever these creatures were, they were going to pay, dearly.
There was something I couldn’t wrap my head around. Mom was always against all the supernatural stuff, and yet in this very letter, she mentioned dealing with them. This was definitely one of her numerous secrets, hidden behind the curtains of her mind.
’If only you had told me the truth, I could’ve helped you!′ I thought bitterly.
I needed to know what the creatures were, and there was one place where I could find the answers. It was a place that mom had always forbidden me from. Seeing her strong insistence that I don’t set foot there, I just knew my answers were lying there.