It’s scorching down here, and let me tell you I am NOT a fan of slogging around in 90 degree humidity all day long. I’m seriously covered in sweat 24/7. Gross. I have also had no time to write or think or sit down (I wrote the following post last week), which is okay for now. College is fun (minus the boys below us whose music makes the floor vibrate).
Speaking of boys, you met Mr. Green Eyes last week. I like him a lot, but he isn’t in today’s excerpt. Setting: Sophie has just arrived at her aunt and uncle’s house in Morrow, Oregon.
Imagine a place that looks something like this...
I unlock the window latch, heave up the frame. Salty air races into the room, blows through my open duffel like a tornado. Something outside jingles and footsteps slap on pavement. I squint through fat raindrops.
The house across the street’s close enough to see the silhouette of someone in the upper floor window, a girl with hair just above her shoulders and a laptop. She drops the blinds.
Cause of me, or cause there’s someone wandering the cul-de-sac below us? The jingling sound sends tingles up the back of my neck. Jingling like bells and silver and bracelets.
A shadow crosses the street and the tingles hang around my hairline. This evening isn’t a dog-walking evening, plus the person doesn’t have a dog. One house’s motion light flicks on and lights up the shadow’s pale skin and skirt before she moves back into the rain.
Something slimy like intrigue coats my skin with sweat. That metallic sound clinks. And I think I hear a voice, an old woman’s voice, sort of trembly with age, saying —
“Come have, come have…”
The words are siren calls. All dizzy and clammy, I lean out the window. Rain pelts my forehead and I shove it out of my eyes. “Wait!”
The call’s faint now, messed up by the sound of raindrops pinging on the roof.
“Come back,” I whisper. But the woman vanishes into the rain.
“That’s weird,” Luke says in my head. I cut him off. Yeah, it’s more than weird. I slam the window shut and the glass seems to shut out my fear, too. When I touch my forehead, it’s dry. Hot and dry, like I have a fever or something.
I am weird. I talk to people who don’t even exist —
I turn on the desk lamp and dresser lamp and nightstand lamp, and the brightness banishes the quivery call from my mind. Sort of.