NINEMature

Inside of the farmhouse, it was too dark to see. I'd inched my way around the room, all the wile trailing my hand along the wall, hoping to find a light switch. When I found it, I flicked it on, illuminating the room in a dull glow.

The floor was covered with an old looking carpet, and the walls were lined with bookshelves, but other than that the lower part of the house was pretty bare. Not that it mattered, since we only needed a bedroom and bathroom. We wouldn't be doing any reading.

“I expected there to be more,” Perry said, glancing around. “You know? But this will do, as long as we have a place to sleep.”

Stepping down another hallway, I located the kitchen. It was a light yellow color, the white fridge pushed against the wall. I gripped the silver handle and pulled it open, finding the shelves empty. Great.

“Kitchen's bare!” I shouted.

“Of course it is,” Perry answered, sounding annoyed. “It looks like no one's lived here for years. Why would there be anything left?”

“We have another problem,” Charlotte said, coming to find me. She leaned against the door frame, her dark eyes narrowed. “There's only one bed and a couch upstairs. So what do we do about that?”

“You take the couch,” Perry called from the other room.

I ran a hand through my hair and sighed. “Just do it, Char. I don't want any more fighting. It's late and we've all had a really, really bad day.” When Charlotte went to grab my hand, I stepped back. “I told you, we're over.”

Her eyes narrowed. “Don't be such a prick, Parker. You know, it's your fault we're in this fucking mess in the first place.”

My mouth twitched. “Yes, this is all my fault. Perry leaving and the car dying had nothing to do with you.”

“Perry's not dead,” Charlotte answered, rolling her eyes. “Stop being dramatic. And the broken down car is your fault. You should have gotten it checked weeks ago and remembered to put the gas in the goddamn tank.”

While Charlotte yelled, I closed my eyes, attempting to tune her out. But the same chill as I'd gotten before came over me, only this time, it had turned into pain. I gasped. Whatever it was had me doubled over, and when I opened my eyes, Charlotte was still yelling.

Only she was yelling for Perry.

I could never tell them about this.

The End

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