Remember Where the Truth Lies (Part 2)

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Recap of part 1: It was September 8th, the anniversary of Sydney Whitlock's death in a fire seven years ago. Her sister Shae and her had been eight years old.

Shae is now fifteen. She fell asleep outside and woke up to see what she believed to be her sister's face in the window of her house. What will happen now? Read on to see...

Created by: Fallout3
  1. I'm insane. At least, that's what I tell myself over the next few days. I couldn't possibly have seen my long-deceased sister through the window of my house. After all, it had been nighttime, and I had just woken up...but I'd seen her face with such perfect clarity. Not like last time. I shudder as I think of the first time I'd seen my sister after her death.
  2. I'd been ten, and my mom and I were going through boxes of the few things that had survived the fire. We would have done it sooner, but we were both afraid of the painful memories that would come with it. Eventually we just decided to suck it up and sort our things. As we rifled through old, mostly useless junk, I'd come across a photograph. It was Sydney and I at about six, sitting on our front porch, giggling and trying to cover our faces as our mom snapped pictures. It brought tears to my eyes, and I'd quickly looked up, away from the painful image. My eyes had drifted towards the staircase, where I saw it. It was just a flash. A millisecond of dark hair and pale skin on the landing before it disappeared. But it was enough.
  3. "Mom!" I'd cried, panicked. She whipped around, alarmed. "I...I saw Sydney! She was right there!" I pointed to the now-empty landing, beginning to sob hysterically. My mom had suddenly frozen and gotten the strangest expression on her face--something between pity and...was it guilt?--before gathering me in her arms and rocking back and forth, whispering soothing words in my ear as I cried. "But--she was..." I tried to protest, but my mom shushed me. "It's okay, Shae," she'd said in an oddly hollow voice. "Sydney's not here."
  4. Those words didn't change anything, however. I still saw my sister, just not as well. Every year around September--the anniversary of her death--I caught glimpses. Flashes of hair, soft voices murmuring words I couldn't make out. Then it'd be over after a month or so, and I'd tell myself it was all my imagination. But this time--I can't pass this off as imagination. It was so clear, so real. My mind isn't creative enough to dream up the precise details of the face I'd seen.
  5. I rub my temples as my thoughts become a jumbled blur. I decided to just quit thinking about it--easier said than done. Leaning back against the couch, I turn the TV on. I would go somewhere and do something to take my mind off the other day, but apparently bursting into the house in the middle of the night didn't sit well with my parents, so now I'm grounded. Fine. I'm mad at them too for not waking me up--they just left me asleep, outside, in the dark. What role model parents.
  6. Some old sitcom rerun plays and I groan at the corny jokes. Seriously, who writes these scripts? I don't know how much time passes before I hear a voice over the TV's blaring. Aaron's voice. "Haha! You're funny!" he exclaims. My eyebrows draw together in confusion. Mom and Dad are at work; who is he talking to? I haul myself off the couch and head to Aaron's room, pausing at the closed door to listen. "Your favorite color is blue? I like orange." he states, before laughing again. I slowly push the door open. "Aaron?" I call out tentatively.
  7. My brother looks up from a piece of paper he's drawing on. "What are you doing?" I ask curiously. "Drawing and talking to my friend." he replies. I do a quick scan of the room only to find that he's alone. My first guess is an imaginary friend. Aaron's eleven, a little old for one...but what else could it be? "Your friend?" I raise an eyebrow. He nods. "She's funny. And," he gives me a once-over. "Looks a lot like you." With that, he goes back to scribbling on his paper. I pause. She looks a lot like me? What does that mean? I go stand beside him. "Can I see your drawing?" I question. Aaron nods and hands me the paper. I expect to see something normal, maybe an animal or a person. Instead I freeze when I see the image he's created.
  8. "What--what is..." I trail off, lost for words. Etched carefully into the paper is a bracelet. A beaded purple and blue homemade one that's obviously been through some rough times if the loose threads are any indication. This is my sister's old bracelet. We had gone to summer camp together when we were seven. I'd made her this bracelet during one of our craft sessions there, and she'd made me a red and yellow one. We had worn them every day for a year, refusing to take them off even to shower. Hers was nothing but charred ash by now; it'd been on her wrist when she'd died in the fire. I'd thrown mine out right after her death. Merely looking at it made me feel angry and bitter. "Why would you draw this?" I finally whisper, my voice breaking. Aaron stares at me, concerned. He must not understand what meaning this holds for me. "It's my new friend's," he tells me quietly. I can't breathe. "What's your friend's name?" I ask, dreading the answer. "Sydney."
  9. End of part 2
  10. Thank you so much for reading my story! A special thanks to ivoryleaf, vulturemonem, and xxblutixx for commenting! I really appreciate you telling me your thoughts and constructive criticism. A couple more author's notes before I go... 1) This chapter is twice as long as the first. I had some people say it was short, which was because it was kind of a prologue. The others will be about this length. 2) I took into consideration people's comments on how I need more detail. I tried to do that with this chapter; please tell me what you think about it. Thanks again! -- Fallout3

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