Chapter 57: Longing

"You know what is right in yourself."

Who was she to tell her what was right and what wasn't right, thought Maine as the group walked into another room. Who gave her the authority to tell her what was the right thing to do? Maine bristled with anger. But deep down inside, she knew that her bitterness was caused by the resurfacing of unwanted memories. Why were those memories coming back now? Some of them she hadn't thought of in years. Maine couldn't help but feel a heightened sense of paranoia. First the book, then the knife, and now this mysteriously locked door. Maybe the house was manipulating them.

She turned to Aliryia and felt a sort of longing. She wanted to tell her everything, be free of the secret that had burdened her so long. But she couldn't. She wouldn't. And yet, she felt that eventually, she would have to.

Eru took them to a large sunny room, and the girls panned out and began looking around. It was filled with paintings, and a few tables were scattered around.  Maine stopped at each one, staring up into the faces of the people portrayed in the portraits, trying to read their expressions. Some looked serene and wise. Others looked proud and frightening. And one looked cheerful and innocent. Maine stared at it mournfully.

"Look at this." She walked over to where the voice had come from and froze. Aliryia came over and also stopped short, turning to Maine. There, on the table the girls were crowding around, was the book.

"Let us open it." Eru reached for the book, but the pages started flipping by themselves.

The End

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