I just couldn't pass us up Emily's Fairy Tale Blogfest. You can go here to see the list of other entries. I hope I didn't embarass myself too bad with this. :) Enjoy....I hope.
“Are you sure he’s following us, Hank?” my little sister whispered. “I can’t see him anywhere.”
“Don’t worry Gretchen, he’s back there,” I whispered in return, making sure to keep my eyes pointed straight ahead. “Go ahead and drop another one.”
Out of the corner of my eye I watched as her little hands dug inside her basket and pulled out the chocolate kiss, wrapped in a shiny silver wrapper, then let it tumble to onto the path.
I kept my eye on Tilly to make sure she didn’t look back over her shoulder and notice my sister following my instructions. I had debated long and hard about letting Gretchen drop the kisses as we went along, afraid she might not be able to pull it off and get them both caught, but the basket she always carried with her was a perfect hiding place. Besides, she was so low to the ground it was a piece of cake for her to do it unnoticed.
I’m not sure how long we’ve been walking. Probably hours. The sun was high in the sky and the temperature had risen to the point where I already had to shed my sweatshirt, tying it around my waist. The trail we were on, if you could call it that, had disappeared long ago and now we seemed to just be taking what free space the forest could spare. I could hear Tilly several yards ahead of us, cursing under her breath and making less of an effort to conceal it. Why should she? Who we going to tell?
Out of nowhere we broke into a small clearing. In its center were a couple of fallen trees, Tilly went straight to one and propped her foot up on one. She scanned the area, considering something, then seemed to make up her mind.
“This’ll do,” she said. She slung her backpack from her shoulders to a spot next to the tree and sat down.
“I thought you said we were going to see a waterfall,” I asked.
“Change of plans.” She pulled out the water bottle from the side of her backpack and drew on it heavily.
“Can I have some water?” Gretchen raised her hand.
Tilly eyed my sister as she continued sucking water from the bottle until it was all gone.
It was all I could do to not jump on her and claw those teasing eyes out. “You have another bottle in your backpack.”
“That’s for the walk back and we have to conserve it.”
“But my sisters thirsty now!”
“It’s okay, Hank,” Gretchen offered meekly.
“SHE CAN WAIT!” Tilly responded with a raised voice, her usual way of ending any discussion. In her mind…volume equaled superior reasoning.
“If our mom were here….” I started, with no real intention of finishing the thought.
Tilly stuffed the empty bottle back into her backpack, laughing. “That would be just fine with me…then I wouldn’t have to put up with the two of you anymore.”
Suddenly there was a commotion behind us. I turned just in time to see our Uncle Brett stumbling out of the woods where we had just emerged.
“It’s about friggin’ time,” his girlfriend Tilly said.
I did my best to look surprised. “I thought you were staying back at the camp Uncle Brett?”
“I bet you did. I also bet you didn’t think anybody would catch that trail of kisses you left behind?” Brett’s smile with those foul teeth looked awful on a good day, but now it seemed downright evil.
Tilly’s face first registered confusion, and then anger. She took three giants steps and yanked Gretchen’s basket out of her hands before I could make a move to stop her. She dug into the basket, tossing out dolls and other playthings, until finally pulling back with a handful of kisses.
“What the hell?”
“It’s like they knew what we were planning,” Brett directed to Tilly.
Gretchen slid up beside me and wrapped her arms around my waist.
“They left a trail of these?” Tilly asked.
“What did you do?”
“I ate them.” I was sure I could still see the chocolate on Brett’s teeth as he smiled again.
Tilly glared at the two of us, then started tearing the wrapping off the kisses and jamming them into her mouth. She didn’t stop until she had devoured all of the remaining pieces.
“You were going to leave us out here to die, weren’t you?” I asked them. “That’s why you suddenly wanted to go camping, and why you picked such an isolated spot.”
Tilly swallowed the remaining chocolate. “It’s nothing personal. We just aren’t the parenting type. But if we gave you up to Foster care then we’d lose that trust fund your mom so generously set aside for us.”
I turned to look at Uncle Brett, my mom’s sister, but he wouldn’t make eye contact with me. He began making his way over to Tilly when he abruptly stopped short and grabbed a hold of his stomach.
“Gretchen,” I whispered, “get ready to run.”
Brett doubled over in pain. He shot a look at Tilly that was a mixture of puzzlement and desperation.
“We found the poison you were going to use on us,” I said to Tilly as she moved to catch Brett as he fell to the ground.
“I stoled it weeks ago…you know…when it went missing. That’s when you came up with this idea instead. Did you know you can hear everything said in your bedroom from the vent that leads to the basement?”
Brett was moaning loudly now, curled up in a fetal position.
“So we took your poison and coated the kisses in it.”
The recognition flashed across her face in stages.
We ran back in the direction we came. I could hear Tilly starting to follow us, and then a sharp gasp, followed by a thud.
We ran a couple hundred more yards before we stopped and looked back, but no one was there.
“Do you know where we are?” Gretchen asked.
I scanned the trail where we had just come from, and then up ahead of us. There laying in the middle of the path was a discarded silver wrapper. Good ole Brett!
“We’re going to be fine, Sis.”
- Continually trying to answer the question...can a man of few words write a successful novel?
I'm a Mystery/Thriller/Suspense writer from small town USA who struggles everyday to balance my passion for prose against the need to be a full-time bread winner. Finding ways to devote more time to my writing is the challenge, but for now all I can do is follow this tug at my heart to wherever it leads. I'm here primarily to soak up all the knowledge I can from the writing-centric blogosphere, but I'll do my best to contribute by thinking of new and innovative ways to churn the writing pot.