It had been hours since Rinoa said she’d be back.
Where was she?
“Grandmother.” Leona said to me as I walked past her bedroom.
I was startled that she’d heard me; I was being as quiet as a mouse in my opinion. I didn’t want to start anything, or trigger any violent moods in her, so I crept by without a sound.
I walked back into my room, and plopped down onto my bed. I lie back on the smooth comforter and felt the aching pain in my back that comes with old age.
My eyes inched across the walls of my bedroom, taking in all the familiar sights. When my eyes reached my nightstand, my breath caught in my throat.
The Family History was not there, where I’d left it the previous night.
I got up quicker than my body would have likes and I felt my back crack as I knelt on the floor checking to see if it had slipped under the bed.
I checked everywhere and turned the room upside down.
It was nowhere.
I sat down on my bed again forcing myself to think, to see if there was any possible way that I’d left it downstairs, or in the bathroom, perhaps?
I was kidding myself, I knew I hadn’t. As a thought seeped into my mind I felt myself overcome with rage and worry.
Rinoa took the book and left. And she’s not coming back. Not until she has her “cure.”
I knew this had to be it. It was just like Rinoa to do something so foolish, something that hadn’t had a lot of thought put behind it.
I went back downstairs; forty-five minutes had passed since I had been down there.
I picked Rinoa’s not up off of the counter and re-read it a second time. This time I was able to pick out her “hidden” messages.
“Don’t worry about me, I’ll be fine.”Obviously she’d written this so that when I figured out her plan—which she knew I would—I wouldn’t be worried. Well, newsflash for her, I was.
I needed to reach her. I picked up the phone and dialled the number I remembered to be her cell phone number.
It rang. And rang. And rang.
Finally, someone picked up.
“What do I tell her? It’s my grandmother!” I heard Rinoa’s voice on the phone, but she wasn’t talking to me, it was muffled, like she had her hand over the receiver.
“Here,” I heard another voice, a male’s. Who was she with?
“Hallo?” The male changed his voice so that it was very deep, tinged with a Southern accent.
“Could I speak to my granddaughter?” I asked.
“Um.. I’m ‘fraid yous got the wrong number, m’am,” the person on the other line said.
“I hardly believe you,” I said impatiently, “Put Rinoa on the phone now before I call the police a report her as abducted.”
“M’am, I’m serious, there ain’t no one ‘round here called Rinoa,” He said.
Wow,I had to hand it to Rinoa, she really didn’t want me to know where she was.
“Fine.” I said, fed up, “But you tell her that I know what she’s planning and that it isn’t going to work, okay?” I hung up.
Angered, I slammed the phone back on the table.
I was very annoyed with Rinoa, she knew how I felt about wild-goose chases. And what she was doing wasundoubtedlya wild-goose chase.
Henry is nothing more than an old fool, he’s older than I am, and I hadn’t talked to him in years.
I thought back to the last time I was in contact with Henry, and then I instantly regretted dragging up the memory.
There was a Family Reunion. Henry had gotten drunk and made a scene in front of everyone, he’d spoken of crazy things, apocalypses, demons, poltergeists, and he’d even ended up sticking his foot in his mouth by insulting almost every member of the family.
When he finally sobered up, it was too late, nobody wanted anything to do with him, so they shut him out, ignored him, casted him off as a crazy old man. Henry could tell that everyone was done with him, which is why he moved to a small, isolated cottage in the mountains.
I’d never told Rinoa the story behind Henry, I didn’t want her to know, I figured, she already knew that he family was different in a paranormal way, I didn’t want her to have the burden of having a schizophrenic family member as well.
That was why I didn’t want Rinoa going to see Henry, not because he was crazy, but because the letter claiming he had found a “cure” was probably just a ruse to get the family to talk to him again.
I walked back into my bedroom and sat down on my bed. I could’ve read a book, or took a nap, but I was too fidgety, the knowledge that I was alone in the house with Leona finally started sinking in.
Even though I had a good four or five days before Leona would undergo her fit of rage and destruction, she was still rather harsh and cruel, and I didn’t want to get mixed up in it.
I sighed and closed my eyes, telling myself to relax.
“Grandma,” My eyes snapped open to see Leona was standing in my doorway, her voice sounding sugar-coated, fake and ready to manipulate.
“Y-Yes?” I stammered, I wasn’t sure if it would do harm or not to let on that I knew what was happening to her. Didsheeven know what was happening to herself? Was it conscious knowledge, or did she not even notice a difference?
Her sugary-sweet facial expression dropped, being replaced by a hardened glare, “I’m all out of coloured paper. And I need more.”
I nodded, never taking my eyes off of her, a pain was welling in my chest, I was afraid of my owngranddaughter.
“Would you like me to go out and get you some more?” I asked warily.
“Of course,” She said, annoyance oozing from her voice, “I wouldn’t havetoldyou about it if I didn’t want you to go andgetsome.” She turned around in a huff and stormed off.
I got up from the bed, jumping at the chance to get out of the house.
“I’m going to get you some coloured paper now, Leona, I’ll be back soon!” I called to her on my way out the door, not even waiting for a response.