I live by myself, in the middle of a barren plain where the grass is too tall and there’s never another living human in sight for miles. No, no it’s not some fallout world, but that’d be cool. No, sadly it’s not that interesting a story. My aunt had won it in an auction online and left it for me in her will. I sometimes wish I had kids, or even a simple roommate to help fill the empty space and kill off the dreaded silence. I can understand why nobody wants to live out here though; you’d have to drive thirty miles just to get into a rinky dink town. I’ve left tons of adds in the local papers, hoping someone would answer. Living in a giant house by your lonesome kind of drives you to the brick of insanity.

3:23: I was sitting on my porch by myself reading one of my aunt’s old Stephen King books when a nice looking car pulled into my gravel driveway, I didn't look up at first so the only indication was the sound. When I DID look away from the gruesome paper made scene, I saw a nice sleek car with shiny black paint and the number five stenciled in red on the hood. I was baffled by the visitor being as I had no family members that didn’t hate me. Being your rich aunt’s favorite nephew or human for that matter can cause some tension.

I mark my place in the book by bending the corner of the page and stand up. The windows had too dark a tint for me to see who was in the vehicle. I walk over thinking it was some big-shot city boy who needed directions to a night club or something. Yet to my surprise, a tall slender woman in a teal button down shirt and normal jeans walked out. I stood frozen, slightly confused as to why a woman like her would be out in the middle of nowhere.

She looks back inside the car and signals for someone in the passenger seat to follow her. I force myself to snap back to reality and walk down the steps to her. She smiled widely at me causing my heart to skip a beat. She was rather pretty.

“Hi, I’m Jessica Gates. I’m here about your add. Um … you’re the one who was looking for a roommate right?” I say nothing yet nod uncontrollably. She looks back in the car and calls for her friends to exit.

“Come on, girls. Won’t you at least try to be excited?” Two small, barely audible sighs comes from the car followed by a, “okay mom …” The woman turns back to me and begins talking about how a life out in the country side seem quaint and peaceful perfect for raising a family.

Out of the car stepped two girls, one a bit taller than the other. The first had long silky black hair that reached her shoulders and deep blue eyes; she looked like Jessica’s reflection but younger. The second one was short and glum, had long nappy, stringy brown hair and half lidded green eyes that were locked in a glare.

“Oh and I hope its okay but … these are my daughter Nicole, and Olivia.” I look at her and laugh. “Jessica was it? This house is plenty big enough to support twenty kiddos. I was planning to sell it but … it was my aunts and she wanted me to live here and … well I’m not sure. Guess I’m just her spoiled brat.” We both laugh heartily at my remark.

“So no old man. I hope you don’t mind my asking but what happened to-“”Oh he’s … He isn't with us anymore I'm afraid, he lost his life in a car accident with our son Richard about a year ago." 

“I’m really sorry for asking mame…” The entire time she spoke I could see the corner of her mouth twitching. Olivia looked like she was ready faint, from the long drive I suppose, the other one shifted awkwardly fiddling with her long sleeves, the purple jacket a bit too big for her, even with her unappropriated arms.

We talked for a while, about normal things. Jessica and I had plenty in common despite our different appearances. By which I mean she’s a young pretty girl dressed in clean clothing and I’m an over educated redneck who’s been wearing the same shirt since the dawn of time, or at least three Thursdays ago, yeah laundry isn't really a top priority around these parts.

After a while she called some people, who I assumed were her friends, came over with her things. It only took about a day and a half to move everything in. We set her daughter Nicole up in the room down the hall, and Olivia next to her. Miss Jessica got the room next to the bathroom, which used to be my aunts room.

I even told her it was where she spent her last moment. She said it was fine and set up shop. It didn't take long to get used to the new family in my home. I kind of liked all the new obnoxious noises and yelling.  I was just happy knowing there were other human beings in my house.

7:03: I sit up and stretch my arms out as the light from the sun peeks threw my blinds. Right away I hear Olivia running around getting ready for school. The patter of her feet hitting the oak floor became so familiar that I’d freak out if I didn’t hear it.

My only complaint was the fact that she awoke way to early, meaning she’d also go around and wake the rest of us up. I sit up and groan loudly.

“Nikki, get up!” She Olivia yelled at her younger sister. I smile and walk out of my room there on the floor laid the small brown haired child. Olivia had dragged her out of bed and into the corridor. She just laid in her purple night dress with her bear clutched tightly in her arms.

“Come on guys you’ll be late.” I lightly shove Nicole with my foot moving her out of the walk way. Olivia chuckled as her sister jumped up. Her normally half-lidded eyes widen in shock. She looked around as if searching for someone. Once her eyes meet mine she locks them in a glare and storms back to her room, slamming the door behind her.

After the girls got dressed they piled in the cars. Jessica drove Olivia to the Library; it was down the street from her job at Starbucks. I took Nicole being as her Middle school was next to the public library, where I planned to get a few things done, just stupid stuff about the house.

I waved bye to Jessica and Olivia who waved back happily. The two drove off blaring what sounded like death metal, not really what I pictured either or them preferring in music, leaving me with grumpy little Nicole. She climbed into the car, and threw her bag on the floor. I get in my seat and take off.

Needless to say it didn’t take long for an awkward silence to develop. She kept her gaze out the window, even though there was nothing but grass, a long wire fence and, the forest.

“So kiddo, wanna talk about something?” No response. She kept staring out the window at the plains. I felt like I was being ignored. Then I looked closer, she wasn’t just gazing out the window she was staring at the trees beyond the fields.

“I'm fucking sixteen, seventeen in a month, so stop calling me kiddo.” she huffed. I rolled my eyes, typical teenagers. The silence slithered back over us soon, enveloping both.

"Oh and, it ..wasn't a car crash" She blurted out a hint of annoyance in her voice. I was so shocked I almost swerved. “Ma' just likes to cover up ya know.” 

“That’s your father, how can you talk about him that way?!” She looked away from the glass and stared intently at the wheel.

“If I decided I wanted to die right now in the truck, I’d grab the wheel and end the both of us. We’re such insignificant creatures that ours deaths will mean nothing. Humans … what pitiful animals, and one more thing Steven!” She looked back to the window.

“That man wasn’t my father, he was my step-dad, and his death meant nothing to me being as we had no bounds, not to mention he was-” she cut herself off, I was never able to find out WHY she cut her statement off, or what was so bad about the man who attempted to raise her. I swallowed the lump in my throat and kept my eye straight ahead. I knew Jessica wouldn't believe me if I told her about this, about Nicole, who awful she felt towards the world. She's a kid, why should a kid have these kind of thoughts?

“I get that he wasn’t your real dad, but he was still a living breathing human. He probably loved you, Jessica, and Olivia too!” She scoffed at me and crossed her arms. “Listen Stevy, you know my name, not my story."

I was relieved when I saw the school.Nicole seemed like she could care less, and slowly left the car shuffling her feet across the grass, the dew without a doubt getting into her sneakers. I wait a few minutes before I take off, my mind set on one of the only places I believed that could possibly get me any of the information I needed.

11:22: I sat in the back of the library reading old papers. Though my intentions were to read about the house, I ended up looking for anything with information to Nicole's Step-father’s death. 

By the time I’d finished it was almost time to pick up Nicole. As I begin to sort all the papers I notice one picture that stood out. A horrific picture where the poor man laid face down in a bed, a large gaping wound in the back of his head, and under it was two words.  "Issac Gates"

I must say I didn't really believe Nicole at first but, ... Gates...

3:03: I wait outside the school, waiting for the girl to coming running out with the rest of them. Though it took a minute for her to get out into the yard as she walked at a slow pace with her hands in her jean pocket and a scowl on her face. I greeted her hesitantly, earning a glare.

We pile in the car and take off back home. Once again she stares out the window, ignoring my every attempt to make contact. It wasn’t until we got half way there she even spoke at all.

"Your father's name... it wasn't by any chance Issac Gates was it?"

“You read the papers didn’t you, oh and again, STEP father.” Her voice seemed rasp and gravely, almost angry. I nod gripping the wheel.

“Then you know that he wasn't truly in a car accident” I nod slowly. 

"But, what about Richard. she said he had died with Issac."

She gripped her knees and bit her lip, I could almost detect a hint of sorrow masking her face.

"He deserved to die after what he di-“She stopped herself in mid-sentence. I take my eyes off the road for a moment, and in that small period of time, I saw something in the girl's I hadn’t seen since they day I met her. Fear, whether or not it was legit terror or a false attempt to make me uneasy I'll never know.

“You have to promise you won’t tell Ma'! If she found out I told anyone … “I nod my head in agreement. After all, if she had tried to cover up two deaths, it may have been for a reason.

“He was an awful man, and Ma' knew it, She watched him do B...bad things to all of us... and I guess she just, couldn't take it anymore."

The lines on the road seemed like a blur of yellow and white as I fly by at an ungodly speed. I had to get home! Nicole buckled her seat belt and grabbed what the world seems to have deemed the ‘oh-shit-bar’. Once the house came into view I released the throttle and my breathing became calm. To make sure I knew what I was getting into I looked to the child in the passenger seat.

“Are you sure ...?” 

"That's the thing about maniacs, ...they look just like everyone else."

She nods signaling for me to pull into the driveway. Jessica and Olivia were already home, the black car was pulled in. I swing my door open and storm inside. Jessica sat on the couch watching law and order with Olivia sitting on the floor in front of her. My hideous glare turns into a confused gazed. Her eyes seemed too happy and bright. I thought to myself there was no way in hell that she killed that man, then again … it doesn’t make sense!

I walk to my room and slam my door locking it behind me. I needed time to rethink life, and all that was in it ... My lord that felt terrible to write down, my apologies for being terribly generic. I plop down in my bed and let the soft sheet surround me. I try to keep my eyes open but the bed was just so comfortable. My eyes shut as I embrace my sleep, why fight it, a nice nap seemed to be a rather nice thought...

It was a short dreamless sleep, though when I awoke hours later in a total haze the sun had already hidden behind the horizon. I yawn and stretch like a nimble hillbilly cat. Well my nimble cat ears happened to hear what sounded like sobbing, faint soft sobbing, from someone not exactly a child, but not exactlly an adult.

I leave the comfort of my small stuffy room and venture out into the hallway which was a bit darker than I’d like. Ignoring the little voice in my head I search for the source of the sound. It seemed to be coming from Olivia’s room. Hesitantly I open the door and flip on the lights.

Right away I wished I hadn’t. The sight before me was beyond horrific; Olivia laid on the bed with her arms spread out wide sewn to the bed with red thread, her cherry red dress shredded though still concealing a small portion of the blood. Her eyes had been gouged out and replaced with two roses, the pestles falling over her pale colorless cheeks. I knew she was still clinging to her life. Her stomach moved up and down slowly and tears still fled down her cheeks mixing with the blood. Her head had been completely shaved with one little patch on the side, bruises ran up the side of her badly tore body along with the words "YOU'RE WELCOME" carved into her collar bone, from one side to the other.

I race to her side and try to pull the thread out but it wasn’t just one piece of thread, it was several. A few even made their way into her eye brows.

“Olivia! Olivia, oh god! Jessica call 9-“I clamp my hand over my mouth. Jessica! Jessica, the woman I trusted and welcomed into my home. She slaughtered her own husband and now her daughter. What kind of mother kills her own child? I felt tears falling down my cheeks. The little girl before me was suffering, bleeding out.

I hated myself for it, I still do, I always will. I took the pillow next to me on the floor and held it over her face. I knew she couldn’t kick so I relied on the slight heaving of her chest to tell if she was still alive. After a moment I gave up and threw the pillow to the door.

I began to cry harder than I’ve ever cried in my knowing life. I killed her, I killed a little girl. Jessica murdered her, but I killed her. I wanted nothing more than to drag a razor blade across that bitch’s neck then spit on her corpse.

Just as I clench my fist and begin to yearn, a scream, Nicole’s scream. All logic left my mind in a split second. I leave a blazing trail behind me as I dash to her room. The rug in the hallway nearly flew from underneath me.

When I try the door I find that it’s locked, pissed off and terrified for this young girl I grab the ebony table and smash it into the door a few times. When my muscles feel like they’re on fire, I give it one last bash sending it flying open.

The first thing I see is Jessica tied up in a chair with a gag in her mouth. Confused I rush to her and pull the cloth out, half tempted to feed it to her. She sobs and coughs like a pathetic child.

“She-she did this! It was her! She … she killed him, I-I just wanted a fresh start I swear! … Oh god oh god oh god... She hurt my baby... my god please not my baby!" Jessica's face was stained with tears, her eyes puffy and red with black mascara running down her face.

My face twisted into a new horrified look I didn’t believe I could make. Jessica wasn’t the killer, but then who was, I mean my god who else was there!?

“Jessica, who did this? Olivia,Nicole, who did this to them?” I put my ear next to her heart, her pulse was slowly declining. She coughed up blood, spilling it on the top of my head.

“It's my fault isn't it, It's my fault for not leaving him, for not standing up, for trying to live out a god damned facade!"

“Olivia … he, he did things to my Olivia, She was just trying to help her big sister and I beat her for it. We called her STABBY. I'm a terrible mother aren't I?!"

“Nicole … it was Nicole wasn’t it? She … she did this?” I can tell my voice cracked. I trusted her, I listened to her, and I even believed her when she told me that her own mother did it. God I felt so naïve and stupid, I was ready to snap.

“Oh now you speak up, typical bitch.” The voice of a girl echoed throughout the room. I bite my lip in an uncontrollable rage. I turn and see tiny Nicole, her purple Jacket tainted with blood, brown hair in a nappy mess masking most of her face leaving only one bright green orb to gaze out through the matted curtains of hair.

“You little bitch!”  I have to speak through gritted teeth. “What the FUCK are you?”  She showed no fear as she walked towards me. Slowly she reached into her pocket and pulled out an old kitchen knife with a damaged hilt and soiled blade.

“I am Nicole, I am the beaten, I am”  she turns to look at her mother " The one that isn't DISCIPLINED?!.......but I like the other name a lot more, so why don't you, little Mister Stevy call meeeeee..." Within seconds she was right in front of me with a knife over her head. “STABBY~!” I grab her wrist and try to keep the tip of the blade away from my skin. Nicole, or shall I, Stabby struggled and broke from my grip. I give her no time to react as I kick her to the floor.

She was about to pop up and begin swinging when I set my foot on her chest and kept her suspended on the ground. I bent down and grab the knife from her. The child screams bloody murder and bites my hand as it retracts, my hand red with bite marks. I leave her on the floor, thinking she was helpless without a weapon. I cut the ropes on Jessica releasing her. Right away she grabs the knife from my hand and pushes me aside. I wasn’t expecting her to so I ended up on the floor, a bad bruise quickly developing on my ass.

“This is for my real baby!” She screamed as she went berserk and plunged the blade into her left eye. I shield my eyes and jump up. I grab her shoulder and pull her away from the child. Jessica fought and screamed begging for me to let her go. She's just tried to murder her own last remaining daughter in the name of revenge. Have we humans no limit? I know it was wrong, but this thing ... I have no words to fill the blanks I'm leaving.

“That’s your daughter! Please just walk away!” she declined and grabbed Stabby by the rim of her jacket tearing the fabric a bit. I plea over and over for the girl’s life, but she wanted vengeance for her daughter and husband.

“NO! She killed my baby, that’s not Nicole anymore … it’s that … Stabby.” She manages to pick her up and throw her far enough to where she went through the window. I was amazed by the sudden wave of strength and the fact that this woman had just threw her child, her youngest daughter out of a window, it was a second story window at that.

I shake her harshly by the shoulders screaming at her, asking why … why she would do such a thing. Murder always seemed like a coward’s way out.

After enduring ten minutes of my lecturing and crying she broke away and ran down the hall. I followed close by to make sure she didn’t do anything else she’d regret.

She pulls the front door open and looks back to me, “you don’t know what it’s like … she killed my husband, and made me watch he kill my baby girl!”  After that she just sobbed and stared at me, it took at least five minutes of silence before a maniacal laughter took over the room. I tried to pull her back in but I just wasn’t fast enough. I can’t help like feeling if I had caught her, she’d still be here. I missed her by a second.

Stabby, in the confusion of the moment, appeared from behind her and pulled Jessica down by her long black hair. Instead of diving in and saving her like a hero, I backed away like a coward. I only saw enough to know she slit her throat with a shard of glass. I covered my face in my hands, I could faintly hear the gurgling of blood as Jessica choked on her own blood. The metallic tang wafted to my nose, I hate that foul scent, I HATE it!

It lasted longer than I wanted; I sat through ten minutes of the sound of tearing flesh and blood dripping to the floor. It wasn’t until I heard her feet creak on the old oak floor that I knew she was approaching me.

I sat at the edge of the stair case still weeping like an infant. A small cold hand rested on my shoulder. I couldn’t stop the tears, they just kept pouring.

“You can’t tell anybody about me. Ma'did this … you know murder suicide.” I somehow manage to break my hands away from my face, my pale trembling hands. Stabby grabbed them and held them.

I steal one glance at her and gag. The once grungy yet like-able little girl was now a dismembered monster! Her left eye was gone revealing the inside of her head, A giant shard of glass stuck out of her right shoulder, a few smaller ones stuck from her skin like a voo-doo doll here and there, and she was covered in scars, scraps, and blood, needless to say it wasn’t all her own. Her dark purple jacket was tattered and soiled with blood.

I turn to my left and emptied my stomach content. That horrific face was too much for me to handle. She slaps my cheek hard. Hard enough that a trickle of blood ran down my chin.

She looked at me hatefully tilting her head "And you where the only one that could almost understand.."

“Tell them what I told you to say, or share their fate!” I nod and wipe the rest of the bile from my mouth, I’d never felt fear like this before in my life, this girl, this child could kill me at any given moment.

“You’ll tell the police that She did this … my body is hidden in the woods somewhere. Tell them you saw her do it and said nothing!” I nod like a mad man sending tears flying off my cheeks.

“Call them … when you wake up.” The last thing I remember was Stabby slamming my head into the hand rail knocking me out cold. I’m ashamed to say it but I did what she said. I called the police and reported a murder suicide. I told them I dropped “Nicole” off at home then went back out to the store. When I got home she was just gone, I found Olivia up stairs sewn to the bed and I witnessed Jessica slit her own throat. I even managed to say it all without my voice cracking.

To this day that girl’s face haunts me. Same goes for Jessica and Olivia, I couldn’t save them. I hear their screams every night. I can’t keep living like this, they’re torturing me. Why though, is because I lied, or is this all because of Stabby. I can’t really tell you, but one thing I can let you in on … I’m going insane I can’t wait for death any longer. I only hope somebody will find this note and spread the word maybe even find her.  I'm still under going therapy, I even often have night terrors, I just don't feel safe anymore..

As I write this note on my worn cherry oak desk, I can't help but constantly replay that scene in my head. I'm tired of this fight in my head. I'm slipping away, I only pray that what ever god there is sees mercy upon me. My eyes keep glancing at the 50 caliber  next to my bed side table. I think I'm contemplating on something, but what?

I don't want to die, but I don't want the image of that girl in my head any longer!m

I'll work something out, the good guys always win!