The sharp, shrill of the doorbell rang out through the house. I tumbled down the stairs to answer it. It was Mr Randar, mum's client. I let him in and showed him to her study, calling her when I got there. She flew down the stairs to see what I was shouting about, before realising it was only him.
I trundled back upstairs, tripping over the cat. It had been eight years since I had found the big black book and I was fifteen. I had pushed the memory out of my mind for the present, for it seemed trivial and unimportant. It wasn't a memory that worried me night and day. I forgot all about it several months later. But on that day, the day Mr Randar came to the door, the book came out again. That evening I saw it on the sofa, with my mother's papers. I couldn't quite remember where I'd seen it from, but once again, I got the undying urge to look at it.
The next evening when my mother was at zumba and my father at grandma's, I took the book up to my room and flicked through the pages. It was filled with pictures of creatures, the writing in my grandfather's hand. But now there were more pictures. Illustration, almost filling the pages. The pencil smudged under my fingers, obviously drawn that day. There were two handwritings. One was messy and unrecognizable. The other was my mother's.
Flash forward, it's saturday night. My father had just got back form the gym, part of his 'stay healthy' idea. I was studying for a french exam I was to take the next day. I could hear voices downstairs
"Darlett, it's too risky!"
"But, I need to."
"Andy. They would hurt the whole human race."
"I don't care, I can't risk you going. I'd rather everyone hurt than me be fine and you gone."
"Andrew be sensible now. What about Sophie? And Lisa? You need to pull yourself together, it's my job anyway. If you can't handle it then what's the point?" She was shouting now.
"What are you suggesting?" Before he got the answer the front door slammed.
I felt suddenly sleeping and wide awake at the same time. I hit my elbow onsomething as the world went red.