Are You Coming Over?
The table was set just as it had been for more than sixty years. The place settings grew from two to thirteen in the early years, but for more than forty years, it had been set for two. Marjorie sat at the table and lightly spread orange marmalade on her toast and looked out into the backyard that was once filled with laughter. Now, snow was starting to fall on long silent echoes of the past. She looked across the table at the empty place setting. A silent tear trickled down her cheek.
When she was finished with her morning toast and glass of water, she washed her dishes, put everything away, and listened to the silence. The birds had left weeks earlier and her neighbor poisoned all the squirrels, so it was very quiet now. There used to be ten families of squirrels that would eat, chatter, run, and play all year-long in her garden. Their happiness attracted the winter birds to the garden. She and Bill would sit for hours holding hands and watching the animals play as their child once had.
All was silent now. Their children all grown and long since moved away. Henry and Francis were lost in the war, cancer took Sally, and Benjamin was too busy with his children. She understood. That was the way life worked. Still, it would be nice to hear from him once in a while. She was so tired of the quiet. So very tired.
A light knock on the door caught her by surprise.
“Just a moment,” she called out.
When she opened the door, a little girl in a white summer dress stood on her door step and shivered.
“Goodness,” Marjorie said, “Who are you, and why are you out here in the cold without a coat?”
The girl rubbed her arms and said, nothing. Marjorie could not understand why this young girl was all alone and most certainly without proper clothes, Since the little girl was not speaking, Marjorie tugged at her arm and pulled her inside the warm house.
It was obvious that this little girl did not come from a home where there was enough money and things. Her feet were very dirty and her hair looked as if she had not ever seen sight of a hairbrush. Underneath her fingernails appeared to be dirt or mud. She was very dirty in appearance and Marjorie was feeling more pity as she studied the little girl who was before her.
The little girl said nothing, but gave special attention to the pictures Marjorie had upon her walls. She also rubbed the frames each one by one with her fingers as if to study the woodwork. She remained quite but acted as if she knew this house and all that was inside it, like an old friend. It puzzled Marjorie but her thoughts gave way to finding some warm clothes and running the little girl a very hot bath, with which to bathe herself. Her mind also thought that perhaps she should call the police and report this little girl to them, but she felt a sense of nurturing and wanted to make the little girl as comfortable and warm ass possible.
Although the little girl did not respond she acted as if she knew where the bathroom was and led her own self up the staircase and into the vicinity of the bathroom, waiting for Marjorie to follow in behind her. Marjorie dismissed this odd and strange coincidence as that little girl must have heard the running tub water, Although in the back of her mind she was starting to get uneasy at how comfortable this mute little girl was, in her house.
Marjorie found some clothes and handed them to the little girl and told the little girl to go ahead and wash her self, put on her clothes and then come downstairs and that she would find her something to eat. The little girl just stared at Marjorie for a couple of very silent seconds and then turned towards the bathroom, went inside, gave another look at Marjorie and then shut the door behind her. Marjorie said to herself, “Well I think she knows what a bath is at least.” It appeared that way at least.
In just a little under an hour Marjorie was so sad and feeling so very lonely, yet now she had a complete stranger in her own bathroom, with no explanation or resolution as to how or why. “Stranger things have happened”, she thought to herself. Or have they? She quickly went about looking for something with which to feed the little girl when she came downstairs. She remembered that once there was a story kind of similar that appeared in the local newspaper.
It was a grim story though and the ending was way to tragic to think upon. The story went on to speak of a little girl who apparently showed up at the door of a person living near where Marjorie lives now. The little girl was also mute and found to be very strange and yet very comfortable around these people, just like this one Marjorie had in her house. The story went on to write about the investigation of this little girl and showed that this little girl had been abused by her mother and father and then buried alive out back of her family’s yard, while still alive. The little girl in that story actually unburied herself, and never was the same. Although the house she stumbled upon took her in and tried desperately to help her, the little girl had remained mute and eventually was found hung ni the storage building out back.
No one wanted to rehash that story up since there was such mystery surrounding it and such tragedy. Marjorie recognized the similarities in that story and the happening with this little girl, could it be the same child? “Preposterous” , she thought. Maybe it was her own grief clouding her mind and judgement.
Just why the little girl had chosen to come now seemed to perplexing. The Story of what occurred to her was heart rendering but she wasn’t convinced it was not all just an urban myth. Marjorie went to see if the little girl was OK, as she walked into the bathroom she noticed the rope mark around her neck leaving a red sore mark that refused to heal. The little girl had tied her hair back after brushing it and had washed revealing under the dirt very white skin almost alabaster like. Marjorie smiled and asked if she was getting on alright, the little girl turned and Marjorie saw in the girls eyes ebony blackness, no white of the eyes just deep black voids and as she stared into them almost hypnotised by them, she could hear screaming and crying, as if within them someone was trying to escape. Marjorie was transfixed and overwhelmed and tears filled her own eyes as she realised the little girls spirit was trapped within this body unable to get out and find peace at rest after being buried alive by her parents. Marjorie reached out to the little girl.
Marjorie woke up on the bathroom floor. She had no idea what had happened, she remembered reaching out to touch the little girl then everything went black. With some effort she picked herself up and searched for the girl. It was dark now, and as she walked downstairs in the dim light a he saw candles leafing from the stairs to the living room. Marjorie followed fearfully, hesitantly, what was happening she thought? As she enter red the front room the girl was sitting cross legged on the dining table surrounded by candles in a meditative position and was chanting mysterious words and incantations.
Marjorie looked on horrified and asked in a stuttering meek voice what was happening and why did the little girl come here?
What followed took Marjorie aback
The story died here
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