It’s time for another promptly penned – we all start with the same prompt and see what we come up with. This is part of an idea I have floating around in my head… The actual prompt is in bold within the fic. 🙂
Before I even got to the front door, I felt something was…off. And lately, with everything happening – my life being pretty much turned upside down – I’d learned to trust my gut. When I saw the door ajar, I stopped and lifted my arm to the side, stopping my sister in her tracks.
“What?” she said loudly.
“Go wait in the car,” I ordered. When she shoved at my arm and tried to move forward, I grabbed her elbow and added, “Now, Char!”
I pointed and watched as she looked up at the door. Her eyes widened and she turned to me.
“Why is it just me going to the car, then, you dumbass?” she hissed, reversing our positions, her hand now clutching my biceps, fingers digging in hard. Looks like I’d have some colorful bruises. Again.
“I’m going to go check it out,” I explained, pulling from her grasp. “Just go back to the car.”
“No way,” she protested, as I made my way up the steps onto the porch.
I pushed opened the door and stepped inside the dark house. My eyes adjusted immediately, and I surveyed what I could see from the entryway. It wasn’t a big house – a tiny two bedroom rambler with an open floor plan, so I could pretty much see everything except the bedroom and bathroom. Nothing seemed out of place, and there wasn’t anyone in sight.
“Cam! Seriously, let’s go. What are you going to do if there’s still someone here?”
Damn it, she was right behind me. Of course she didn’t listen. Because she never did. I turned slightly and stared at her hovering in the doorway. I sighed when I saw her pale face and worried expression. Shit.
“Go to the car,” I tried again. “Until I know it’s safe.”
“What about you? What the hell are you going to do if there’s someone…” Her gaze darted around, and she lowered her voice. “If there’s someone here? .”
I snorted. Charlotte may still me as her geeky little brother who’d been bullied all through school, who ran from rather than confronting anything physically threatening, but so much had changed. I was more than capable of taking care of myself against anything and anyone. Not that I could do much with her on my ass. Because she didn’t know…
I didn’t say anything for a while, just listened to the silence of my surroundings, trying to figure if somone was actually there in the house with us. I didn’t think so, but if I was wrong, she was at risk.
“Just call the police, okay?” she continued with a huff. “No one has time for your Nancy Drew shenanigans!”
“Nancy Drew?” I shot her a weak glare. “At least call me a fucking Hardy boy, Char.”
“I don’t think anyone’s here,” I said calmly. “But just wait in the car while I check the rest of the house. If I’m not out in five, call 911.”
“No way,” she said again. “I’m not leaving you alone.”
Damned her and her protective and stubborn tendencies. Though, it was definitely a shared trait so it was probably a bit hypocritical to fault her there.
“Well, stay back at least.”
“Whatever you say, Nancy.”
I didn’t dignify that with an answer and started walking across the living room toward the bedrooms.
“Use your phone for a light, so you can see.” she whispered.
I cursed under my breath. Right. It was dark as fuck, and I shouldn’t be able to see as well as I did. I dug my phone from my pocket and turned the flashlight app on. Without speaking, I made my way to the first bedroom – easy enough to clear since there was only a desk and a couple of boxes I had yet to unpack in there. Not much to see in the empty bathroom either.
The door to my bedroom was shut. I hadn’t closed it when I left. I took a deep breath as I grasped the doorknob. Turning it, I pushed inside the room. I listened carefully and glanced around the room. No one was here. Though I was sure of that, I still opened the closet and looked inside.
I walked back and flipped on the light, calling out to Charlotte. “No one’s here.”
I heard her shut the front door, followed by the thunk of the deadbolt sliding home.
“You’re still calling the police, right? Is anything missing?”
My gaze fell on my dresser, and my heart pounded wildly. Heat rolled over my body and my palms grew damp. No. No way. No fucking way. I stumbled the two steps to the grab the sheet of paper that lay on the wooden surface. Right where the stupid stuffed bear had rested. The bear he had won me on our first and only date.
Fingers shaking, I read the words scrawled across the paper.
Miss me, darling?