A blazing siren erupted from my left.
I woke up, wondering where I was. Until last light came flooding back to me like the sunlight that was now pouring through the curtains.
I turned the alarm clock off and got dressed. I left the room and closed the door. I looked to my left and saw her door. 'This way to paradise'. Like heck, I think, going in to the bathroom. Nothing in this house could be paradise. There seemed like an unwritten rule that her room should not be entered. I wonder how long it was since someone had gone in.
I combed my hair and brushed my teeth, and then went downstairs for breakfast. I was really hoping they didn't have breakfast altogether. To my relief, Debbie just said "morning" and led me to the cupboard full of ordianry breakfast cereals.
"Leila liked fruit in the morning though" she commented.
But I'm not Leila, I thought. I grabbed the nearest box and tipped some into a bowl.
Debbie kept her eyes focused on me, sipping her coffee thoughtfully. I ate standing up, I did not just want to leave her there.
"Um...about Leila's room. Whats the deal with it?"
Debbie shifted her feet, "her dad and I haven't been in there since the funeral. Her friend, Jenz, comes in every Tuesday to make sure it's doing okay."
Make sure it's doing okay? She makes it sound like it's alive!
"I'm sorry to bring it up, Mrs Bernstein, but how did...uh...Leila die?"
Debbie looked down and said simple, "traffic accident. She was late for school, so she was running down the road and a motorist pulled out just as she was halfway there. Not her fault at all, he was the one on the pavement. Stupid."
"I'm sorry" I said. I felt really bad for bringing it up. I was starting to think it was suicide, or a murder. Just a traffic accident, perfectly normal.
"i'd better be going," I said, "there's this strange thing called 'an education'"
She smiled weakly, "Leila would have liked you"
I smiled back and left, but secretly wishing she would shut up about Leila already!