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Grade
9

Never break the rules. The rules are sacred to 'mommy'. Do as she tells you, address her as mommy or mother, do not disobey her, and never leave the house. I've been ‘free’ because I've been a good girl all this time. I've obeyed her, I've called her mommy, and never have I ever left the house. Those are the rules I must abide by if I don't want to be locked up in a mirror for all of eternity. I know I'll escape the house eventually, it's just a matter of when. All I have to continue doing is what she says, until the day comes when my soul can be free.

 

I looked out the old window and at the family. They smiled. They laughed. They looked happy... I already recognized them from the last time they came. There was the daddy, the mommy, the brother, and the little girl, Anna. She had pale skin and light blue eyes; she was beautiful.

The last time she came, she spoke with me. When she saw the tears streaming down my eyes, she asked me to stop crying, and dried the tears away for me. When Anna asked me why I had been crying, I confessed that I missed my family, she smiled at me. It was a warm smile that made me feel as if she empathized with what I felt. She shoved her beloved teddy bear into my arms and hugged me, “Her name is twilight. She'll keep you company until I can come back. After all, I'll be living here.” It was all too cute. I shook my head, no, and put pink bear back into her arms. I warned her – I told her not to come to this house again… I told her to tell her mom that she didn't like this house, but, my plan did not work out as planned.

For a brief moment, the little girl looked up at me and waved. I tried to return the greeting, but by then, she had turned back to her face her brother. They hauled large suitcases out of their car and dragged them to the entrance. Before I could turn to go down and properly greet the little girl, mommy put her hand on my shoulder. I looked at it; her thin, pale fingers were covered in scars,

“Look at me.” I turned and lowered my gaze to her feet. Unlike the white skin on her hands, her legs were black, and they looked leathery…

“Yes, mommy?” I forced the words out of my mouth and balled my fists. Having to ‘respect’ the epitome of evil was a difficult task on it's own.

“Will you be a good girl this time?” She asked as she pat my head.

“This time?” I grit my teeth. “Why, of course.” She chuckled and turned. I looked up as she walked away. Not only were her legs scarred with the horrendous burns, it was her entire body; she was completely deformed. Even her scalp had the same leathery texture that seemed to look as if her skin had been liquified, then solidified for the second time.

Once she left, I hurried down to the room that would soon belong to the girl, Anna. With all the years I had been in that putrid house, I had grown used to being alone. I had grown to like it as well, it let me reflect on how happy I once was. My thoughts were the only thing I owned, that and perhaps the hate I held for my beloved mommy. But, once I had gotten a taste of how it felt to speak with someone I truly wanted to speak with, I longed for more of it. As selfish as it may be, I hoped to see that little girl. Be it in the house I hated so much, or in the afterlife.

Loud footsteps that approached the door interrupted my thoughts. I hurried into the closet and sat on the cold floor. I crawled up into a ball and held onto my knees for warmth, but there wasn't any heat coming from my 'body'. When the bedroom door burst open, I closed my eyes and wished to disappear. She had her own life to enjoy, whilst I didn't and I envied that. But, at least one of us could enjoy life, and that made me happy. I let myself drift to sleep…

When I woke up, I felt drowsy. I walked into the well lit room. It had been a while since I had seen light sourcing from a light bulb and it took some time for my eyes to adjust to it. The brightness snapped the drowsiness right out of me. I looked around and saw the little girl sleeping on a small white bed. The room looked alive for a first time in years. Anna slept soundly, and the thought of how peaceful she felt caused the corners of my lips to curve upwards. I sighed and pulled her blanket up to her shoulders, I hoped it could keep nightmares away.

“You slept for a long time,” a familiar voice squawked.

“Oh? How long?” I asked, I tried to sound like I cared, but it was difficult. Mommy was nowhere to be seen, but her voice sourced from the other side of the door which was across from the bed.

“Watch your tone, girl,” she lectured. “Anyhow, it's been 13 weeks.”

“Mother, you have no idea how fascinating that is to me,” I scoffed. She cleared her throat. After a while her presence was no longer felt beyond the door.

I looked at the four pink walls which were much more vivid than the light gray that had been there. I looked at the little girl that snored beside me, drool flowed out of her mouth. She reminded me a lot like myself as a child, innocent, happy, oblivious to the outside world. Eventually, she would find out about the hidden evils inside the hearts of all people. I stopped staring at her and turned the bright light off. I wanted to play with the little girl again, but that could wait until morning.

My thoughts were interrupted by a malicious aura that surrounded Anna. I could barely make out the shape of Mommy's body. I shot up and smacked Mommy's finger away from Anna's forehead. I could feel the anger that radiated from her soul, “Do you want to be stripped of all your privileges, girl?” I shook my head, no. I didn't want to push my luck, and have her lock me into a mirror. Nor did I want her to try and posses Anna…

“Of course I don't. But, please, don't touch this girl, I don't want her hurt. Please – just stop,” I begged. I silently prayed that from that moment on, Anna wouldn't be touched by that woman's tainted fingers. Nevertheless, I understood I had disrespected her. She wouldn't let me get away with such a crime without punishment. Her long and thin fingers slowly reached for Anna's neck. I couldn't stay quiet, “Stop!” I yelled. I had asked nicely, yet she insisted to act upon her sadistic ways.

“Who do you think you're talking to?”

“Please stop,” I corrected both my words and my tone. She chuckled as she closed the distance between the both of us. When she was only inches away, she hissed in my ear, “Wouldn't you prefer her keep you company for all eternity?” I could smell a strong scent, similar to beef, it was her burnt skin.

“No – I want her to enjoy her life. She's only a child, please, even if it's only her...” She put her finger on my lips, as if to hush me. She chuckled for the second time. She seemed amused to have finally found a weakness for me.

“Fine, but it doesn't matter anyway. The father has already tampered with the Ouija board, soon enough, they'll become the real owners of the house. Just as you and your father did.” My heart stopped, that's how it always began, with a curious cat. She disappeared. Mommy was all about those flashy exits that were much too predictably for her own good.

I hurried to turned the light on, between her forehead was a large bruise. Anna was drenched in sweat and she seemed to be having a bad nightmare. I leaned down and kissed the bruise, instantly it cleared up; her expression relaxed. But, she still continued sweating profusely. I sighed and ran my fingers through her soft hair. She'd heal on her own, eventually.

 

Mommy is not my mother. She was a woman that despised me for getting in the way of her relationship with my father. When she found out she was infertile, she expressed all of her hate towards me. One day, when I was looking for her, I happened to search in the basement. There she was, with a little girl's idle body in her arms. Fear completely took hold of me. The only thing I could do was shiver.

“Call me mommy!” She yelled into a large mirror. In the mirror's reflection was the same child. Unlike the corpse in mommy's arms; the child in the mirror banged on the glass, it cried, it yelled for help. It was stuck. And it wanted to get out. Never again did I go into that basement, I learned from that mistake…

 

As I walked from Anna's bedroom to the attic, I stopped in my tracks. When Anna's mother passed right through me, I looked back. I was unsure that I had seen what I thought I had seen. I ran into the room that she had walked into. The familiarity made me cringe, it was the same room Mommy and my father slept in when I was a child.

Anna's mother stared into a mirror, and I stared along with her in order to look at her face. I sighed; I was disappointed, they had already lost their mom, she was basically dead. Her gaze seemed to lack the curiosity and the excitement of the living. In the center of their mother's forehead was a dark bruise. Veins popped out of her skin and specifically led to the bruised area. In addition to the odd bruise, her eyes were red; pig eye.

When did they use the Ouija board? Was it while I slept? I sighed, that I confirmed that they had already done it. By contacting Mommy through the tasteless “game”, they had been tricked into agreeing to her rules. As long as they were in the house, she owned their souls. They too, had to address her as mommy, never disobey her, and not leave the house without her permission.

Their rules were different than mine; if I were to ever step outside, I'd be sent to the afterlife and all of Mommy’s efforts would have been in vain; the house owned her soul and she wanted the company. However, the house only held on to mine. Mommy's only objective was to make me feel pain; she wanted to share her sorrows with the person she hated most… When she found out I was six months pregnant, her rage had finally reached it's peak.

It was because of her that I was still locked up in that forsaken place, her jealousy and her envy, were what caused her me to be bound to the house, along with her.

“Good morning Naiah!” Anna sung in my ear, when I walked into the room. She looked excited and happy, despite looking like she ready to vomit on everything. Anna still looked sick, but at least she was still conscious of her own actions. I smiled, which surprised me. I hadn't smiled in decades, literally. It felt odd, smiling didn't quite feel right, yet it felt soothing at the same time.

“Good morning Anna,” She leaned over the bed and stared into my face as I sat on the floor beside the bed.

“You're smiling,” she giggled.

“Yeah, I am. Guess why.” She hummed to herself, as if thinking up an answer.

“Did your family come back?” Her face lit up.

“No,” I chuckled so that she wouldn't feel bad for mentioning a sensitive topic. “It's you that make me smile, you remind me of me.”

“Really? You don't look like me...” She got closer to my face and squinted into my eyes. Such a curious girl in such a dangerous place.

“Of course not, that's impossible. You act how I acted like as a little girl.”

“I'm not little! I'm a big girl, I help my mother wash the dishes.”

“Oh, my bad, I hadn't realized what a grown young lady you were.”

“Mhm,” She laughed. “I'm basically an adult now.”

“Impressive.”

“Hey, Naiah,” Anna reached down and grabbed my wrist and lifted it up to her height on the bed. “What are these thingies on your hand?” I looked at the chain that went from wrist to wrist, then at the chain that split off from that and went to my neck. I had grown so used to having it in on, that I forgot it wasn't part of me.

“One of the reasons I haven't gone to heaven, yet.” I explained. I wanted her to understand what I was trying to tell her.

“You don't want to go to heaven yet? Why not?” She pouted.

“Well, it's not that I don't want to go. You see my mommy, a woman in black, is always in the basement and she's hiding the key from me.”

“Why does she hide in the basement?”

“Because it’s closer to hell,” I responded.

“Do you want me to go get the key?”

“No, that's too dangerous for a little girl like you.”

“I'm not a little girl,” she mumbled with a pout.

Heavy footsteps began approaching the door, and we both looked up. When the door pushed open, a tall man stepped in, the daddy.  “Anna, who are you talking to?” He asked and put his palm on her forehead. After several moments, he shook his head, the fever was high.

“I'm talking to Naiah.”

“What?” He looked scared, he searched around the room.

“Daddy, she's right there...”

“There's nothing there!” He sighed. “I don't want you talking to that thing, Okay? It's the reason mommy is sick, you hear me?” He shouted at me. I frowned and glanced at Anna, whom frowned back at me.

“No, daddy! It's the woman in black that hurt mommy! Naiah is nice!” The loud, eerie bell interrupted their argument.

“Are you sure that there is a good one?”

“Yes! I’m sure.” Her father sighed, and hurried to the door.

I looked up at Anna, she hurried out of the bed and threw her arms around me, “I'm gonna help you go to heaven. I promise.” Was what she whispered in my ear. I smiled and rubbed her back. After some time, Naiah's father called. “Come down here!” His voice boomed throughout the house.

When we got to the main entrance everyone stood there. Fortunately, the only exception was Mommy. Anna's mother laughed wildly and paced over the same same spot. The bruise had gotten large in the short; it spread to her entire forehead. Anna held her brother's hand. While Their father made conversation with a priest.

“We must purify this spirit in the name of god!” At the entrance was a stubby priest. The priest held a bible and a cross in both his arms and he looked like he was ready to exorcise a demon. I giggled at the sight of him, he wasn't exactly needed to abolish Mommy, all they had to do was burn the mirror. Not throw holy water on it, the most that would do was burn her skin. If I didn't stop it, it would all happen again.

“No! Burn the mirror!” I yelled. My voice had woken her up, I had to tell them before she managed to stop me. Although Mommy and Anna could hear me, the foolish priest could not. He continued spatting unnecessary nonsense, and I was getting frustrated. The same thing always happened, different priests would come, but each of them would have the same ideology. Each time I tried to help, and each time the priests were too busy in their own little bubble to open their eyes and listen. Taking a spirit concentrated with evil head on was a foolish thing to do, a priest, of all people should have known that.

“Daddy, Naiah wants us to burn a mirror!” She was ignored, her father was too busy listening to the preaching. Time was running out, I could feel Mommy walking up the stairs. Mommy was furious with me, until now, she didn't know that I knew her secret. And what's more, I was trying to pass it on to a living person.

“What? Who's Naiah?” I heard the elder brother's voice for the first time.

I looked around, I needed a last resort… I grabbed a knife from inside the kitchen sink and ran to the wall that stood adjacent to the priest and I wrote. I carved the words I had been trying to tell them, “BURNTHEMIRRORBURNTHEMIRRORBURNTHEMIRROR.” They finally knew what to do, my work was done. Even before I turned, I felt her presence. I hadn’t looked her in the eye since she killed me. Her skin sizzled, and I smiled at her anger. We both knew that her end was near. Once they burned that mirror, everyone that she had murdered would be free; all the children she had tortured, my baby.

“Don't hurt her! Leave her alone!” Anna's sweet little voice sobbed, I smiled at her for the last time.

State
New York
Zip Code
10452