Yet another part of my newest Short Story

*I HAVE NOT INCLUDED THE WHOLE STORY IN THIS POST, THIS IS JUST UP TO WHERE I LEFT OFF IN MY LAST SECTION OF THIS STORY. TO GET THE FULL VERSION, YOU MUST READ THE PREVIOUS BLOGPOST BEFORE THIS, located in the link below: https://woodhblog.wordpress.com/2013/11/22/revised-short-story-but-still-not-the-end/

“Today is March 17, 2014. I am Detective Fields here with Detective Vee and we are here to interrogate Brooke Stevens about the murder of her parents, David and Linda Stevens.” He looks into my eyes and asks plainly, “Can you lead me through the steps of what happened tonight and what you witnessed?” Starting from leaving for Jack’s party to the time the pair introduced themselves to me, I relive every gory detail: the last time moment I saw my parents alive, the party, the car ride with Kaya, the metallic scent, the red pools, the perfect slices, everything. A few times I have to stop because my crying fits change my voice to hopeless noises that cannot be understood by anyone, including me.
“Thank you Brooke, now do you think there is anyone who would want your parents dead?” Detective Vee asks me after I calm down from the last sobbing episode. “No, they were both great people. My mom’s an accountant and my dad’s a carpenter; they are—were average people. My mom would help the neighbors with their taxes for free and my dad would discounts to the majority of people he worked for. They didn’t do anything to make enemies!” I explain assertively. “Okay, so if they didn’t have a reason to have enemies, is there anyone close to them that you think could have done it?” Detective Fields presses, “Maybe your mom had a mistake on a neighbor’s taxes and it caused them to be bitter or maybe your dad didn’t give a customer exactly what they wanted?” “That doesn’t even make sense, even if those things did happen, I can hardly see either of them causing someone to do such a horrible thing.” Then again, none of this entire situation makes sense to me. “How about people closer? Did your parents have any problems with family?” Detective Vee asks. “Not that I know of. Most of my family on both sides lives in California. My parents moved to the East Coast before I was born, so I don’t get to see my family very often.” “Speaking of California, weren’t your two brothers, Craig and Eric, going there recently?” Detective Fields jumps on the mention of the state. “Yes, they were on a road trip to see our cousins. Like I said, we don’t get to see my family very often and my brothers have been looking forward for this trip for months.” “Alright, and when did they leave for the trip?” “This morning, but why does that matter?” “Don’t you think it’s a bit convenient that both your brothers just happen to be ‘leave the state’ the exact night your parents are murdered?” “Are you kidding me? You think Eric and Craig killed our parents?!” I don’t even know how to process the accusation. “Do you realize how ridiculous that sounds?” The hysteria in my voice must be matched with a crazy look in my eye because immediately Detective Vee begins to speak to me in a pacifying tone. “Brooke, we are just trying to get all the facts, so we can figure out who did this.” She puts her hand on my shoulder. “The more we know, the closer we come to solving this case and prosecuting whoever did this to your parents.” Detective Fields starts to ask another question when his partner stops him. “I think we have enough from tonight.” Detective Vee raises her hand to stop his action. With a frustrated groan, he storms out of the room. “Brooke, you can go now, but we will be in contact with you later today.” Detective Vee instructs and adds, “I know it’s probably the last thing on your mind, but try to get some sleep.” With a nod, I exit the room and find Nick asleep on the bench where I left him about an hour ago.
“Nick?” I give him a light nudge and he is startled awake. “Nick, I’m done. We can leave.” Fixing his eyes on me, Nick’s face relaxes; he stands up, and puts his arm around me and we walk to his car. The digital clock on the radio flashes 5:07 am when Nick turns on the car. “I called my mom and she set up the guest room for you,” he tells me as we settle in our seats. “I didn’t even think of where I would go, I forgot I can’t go home.” “Don’t worry about it.” Nick is still a little dazed from just being woken up and I have too much on my mind to even want to talk, so the ride to his house is a silent one. Walking through the door, Nick’s mom suddenly has her arms around me. “Oh honey, I don’t even
know what to say about such a tragedy! You don’t deserve this at all! You, your brothers, and your parents, are all such great people! I can’t believe this.” She pulls away and there are tears in her eyes. Suddenly I feel like I have tocomfort her instead of the other way around. “Mom, Brooke is understandably upset, I think she just wants to go to sleep. She’s been up all night,” Nick suggests. “To be honest, I don’t even think I can sleep. My body is physically tired, but my mind just has so many things going around it,” I admit. “I have just what you need! Go to the guest room and I will be there in a minute,” Nick’s mom, who has now controlled herself, pipes up.
Entering the guest room, I can smell the scent of newly washed sheets and notice a night gown folded neatly on the bed. On the dresser is a pile of fresh white towels and a box of tissues is on the nightstand.  Just like any mother, Nick’s mom has thought of everything. I sit on the bed and feel like I’m about to start crying again as I think of how my mom would have had the same standards for making a guest feel right at home. However, before I can even let out a tear, my hostess is at the door holding a glass of water and cupping something in her other hand. “Brooke, I want you to take these to get some sleep,” she directs as she gives me the water and two pills. Normally, I would have protested, but I definitely wasn’t looking forward to laying in bed crying, waiting for the police to contact me for more grueling questions. After I finish the glass, Nick’s mom sits on the bed next to me and takes my hand. “Honey, I don’t understand why this has happened to you, but just know that God has a plan for everything. It may not make any sense right now or even for a while, but God knows what He’s doing and He won’t leave you in the dark.” She leaves me in the room and I’m alone for the first time since I left Kaya’s house. Changing into the nightgown, I try everything in my power to not let my mind wander to my parents. I can’t think of them, it’s too painful right now. It proves to be a difficult task, but I am able to
distract my mind long enough until the pills take effect.
Unfortunately, I’m barely asleep with the door opens, and a figure is advancing towards the bed. I open my mouth to scream, but nothing comes out. Suddenly, the figure is on top of me. It’s dark and I can’t see a face, but I know my attacker is a man. I thrash about trying to get away, but his force is too strong.  Pinning me to the bed, he leans his head closer to mind, and whispers, “I got your parents and now I will get you.” I watch helplessly as he takes out a knife and runs it teasingly around my cheek. “Ah, just like the first two, my knife will go so smooth across your skin, like butter.” He positions the blade on my neck and again I try to scream. This time it works; I open my mouth and a piercing yell comes out. Now that I have this power back I use it for all its worth. I begin screaming over and over to get help. I am using so much energy  my vocal cords that I close my eyes to channel everything I have into yelling.
I feel a set of hands on my shoulders and I release my squint and open my eyes. Here I am in the same room, the same darkness, but no man is on top of me. Nick is sitting on the bed calling my name. “Brooke? Brooke, calm down. It’s okay. It was just a dream. You’re okay.” I position my mouth to let another scream when I stop myself. He’s right; it was just a nightmare. “Oh my God, Nick it was so scary. The guy who killed my parents came here to kill me. He had a knife and was about to slit my throat.” I begin to sob. I’ve held it off too long and now the dam has broken. I can’t do it anymore. Nick holds me in his arms and tries to stop my shaking by holding me tighter. “You have nothing to worry about Brooke, I will never let anyone hurt you.”

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I interrupt your regularly scheduled programing...

…to share that my van that I decorated for the Catching Fire premiere was featured on the official Hunger Games Facebook. I know this blog is for writing, but I figure if I am going to write about sad thingfs like my struggle with anxiety and depression, I might as well share some good things! It might seem lame to some of you, but I am so happy people liked my car!

Ever since I first read the Hunger Games series a few years back, they have played such a big part in my life and even in my writing. I never connected to a book or felt so strongly about literature before. I plan elaborate more about that in my Portfolio presentation.

I’m sorry if this seems off topic, but I really wanted to share this 🙂 oh and more writing is on its way!

My Absolute Favorite Poem

Nelson Mandela read this throughout his prison sentence and I find it so inspiring, I felt the need to share it here.

*THIS IS NOT MY WORK. I COULD NEVER WRITE SOMETHING THIS BEAUTIFUL!*

Invictus by William Ernest Henley

Out of the night that covers me,
Black as the Pit from pole to pole,
I thank whatever gods may be
For my unconquerable soul.

In the fell clutch of circumstance
I have not winced nor cried aloud.
Under the bludgeonings of chance
My head is bloody, but unbowed.

Beyond this place of wrath and tears
Looms but the Horror of the shade,
And yet the menace of the years
Finds, and shall find, me unafraid.

It matters not how strait the gate,
How charged with punishments the scroll.
I am the master of my fate:
I am the captain of my soul.

 

Revised Short Story, but still not the end!

I run my hand across my forehead in an attempt to dull the throbbing against my skull. I’ve been at this party too long. I look at my phone and the time reads, “2:04 am.” “I have to get out of here,” I try to tell my friend Kaya over the blasting music. “What?” she yells in my ear, sending a shooting pain burrowing deep in my head. I take out my car keys and point to the door. Kaya’s face contorts disapprovingly and she grabs my arm to lead me to a quieter area of the house. “You want to go home already?” she complains. “I have a headache and I just want to go to bed,” I reply. “You want to go to bed? But it’s so early!” I show her my phone and Kaya gasps. “Exactly, I’m gonna go to the car. Say your goodbyes and meet me outside,” I say a bit more sternly than I had planned.
            When I’m outside, away from the heat of an overcrowded house party and the booming music, my headache finally begins to weaken. The fresh, cool early morning air feels relaxing as I take long, deep breaths of it. By the time I am in my car, the pain in my head is gone and I take a sigh of relief as I drive up to the house and see Kaya waiting on the curb. “Thank God, you are so responsible! I would have stayed at that party forever and missed work completely tomorrow!” Kaya exclaims. “I try, but hey, sorry I snapped at you back there. I’m just so tired.” “Don’t even worry about it,” she waves her hand at me, “Like I said, if it wasn’t for you, I’d be a mess.” Kaya lets out a small laugh and for the remainder of the time she is in my car, the only noise that fills the air is the low radio playing between us. After the half mile ride, Kaya and I say our farewells and I make my way home.
            Walking to the front of my house, I take out my keys and clumsily unlock the door in the dark. I take special care to open the door very slowly, so I won’t wake up my parents. Ever since I have turned eighteen, they took away my curfew because they feel I’m responsible enough to make my own choices. However, as my dad always says, they “can take it back anytime, if I betray their trust.” Immediately as the door opens, I am hit with a strong metallic smell. Turning on the light, I see my illuminated living room, my knees go weak, and I fall to the floor.
            Our beige carpet is stained a deep red in two awful puddles. The source of those puddles? My parents, both slain on the floor, laying still. As if they were both done simultaneously, my mom and dad have matching slices across their throats. I close my eyes, this can’t be true. I passed out at the party and this is all just a horrific dream. Taking a deep breath, I open my eyes and the two bodies lay in front of me, in the same positions I left them in. I want to scream, but I can’t. It’s too much to take in and let out noise at the same time. I desperately crawl to my mom and grab her hand. “Don’t worry Mom, I’m gonna you and Dad help and it will all be okay.” Suddenly my brain starts to work. I have to call 911. Trembling, I take out my cellphone and dial the three numbers. “911, what’s your emergency?” the operator on the phone asks in a plain female voice. Again, I am struck speechless. I can’t say it out loud, it’s too horrible. “Hello? Are you there?” the voice continues. “Yes, I, I, I just came home and my parents, they’re really hurt. I need an ambulance.” “Ma’am, what happened to your parents?” “My mom and dad are both slit in the throat. There’s blood everywhere. Oh my God, you have to get someone here fast! You can’t let them die! Please get an ambulance now!” “Ma’am, you said they were slit in the throat, do they have pulses?” I kept hold of my mom’s hand as I feel her wrist. “I can’t feel anything on my mom. It must be really weak, but wait, let me try my dad.” Doing the same process with my father, I get the same results. “My dad is the same way. Don’t you see, the longer you wait to call someone, the worse they’re going to get!” “I understand. What is your name and your address. I will send a police officer over right away.” “Brooke Stevens, 316 Oak Drive in Little Falls.” After a brief pause, the operator speaks, “Okay, Brooke, someone is coming now. Now, as calmly as you can answer, I need you to let me know, are you safe? Did you check the house to make sure no one was in there with you?” “No, I didn’t even think. . .” my voice changes to a whisper, “You’re right, the person that did this to my parents could be here, waiting to do it to me!” “Brooke, take a deep breath, don’t think that way. Don’t move from where you are, until the officer gets there.” “But I could be a sitting duck, just waiting to be shot, or cut.” “You have to trust me. Everything will be better if you wait for the police officer. Please stay on the phone with me, okay?” “Okay.” Kneeling between my parents, I hold a hand from each in mine. “When the police get here, you’ll both be okay.”
            After what seemed like the longest ten minutes of my life, a knock on the door startles me. “Police, open the door,” a male voice commands. Still on the phone with the 911 operator, and not wanting to let go of my parents, I yell, “It’s open.” Two policemen stand in front of me. “Oh, thank God!” I exclaim. “Come here and help them, I don’t think they have much time left!”  The taller officer gives his partner a look, yet stays where he is. I can feel my emotions rising. “Please, don’t just stand there!” The shorter one kneels by me and checks for pulse too. He knows what he’s doing; he’ll feel it! With a shake of the shorter officer’s head, I lose control. “Why haven’t you called for an ambulance yet? Can’t you see my mom and dad need help! What are you waiting for?” “Let me talk to the operator while you and my partner go outside.” The taller one says matter-of-factly. “No, you aren’t doing anything! If I go outside, you’ll probably forget my parents altogether!” “Let me talk to the dispatcher so I can call who we need. And to let me help them the best way is if you go outside so I can get everything done properly.” the taller cop reasons. Simply nodding, I hand over my cellphone and walk outside to the wicker couch on my porch. Sitting down, I stare into the morning darkness, trying to figure out what is going on. Who hurt my parents? Are they going to be okay? “Is there anyone you want to call to come over here with you?” The shorter cop asks, pulling me out of my daze. “My brothers. I forgot about them. They’re on a road trip to California. I can’t be the one to tell them this. I don’t even understand what’s going on. I come home from a party and my parents are laying in pools of blood. How do I explain that? Please, if I give you the number, can you tell them?” I plead.
            He agrees, I give him my twenty-three year old middle brother Eric’s number. Just as he begins to speak, an ambulance pulls up and I take a sigh of relief. Finally, Mom and Dad will be alright. After I watch the EMTs rush in, the officer hands his phone to me. “Eric?” “Brooke, I can’t believe this happened. I can’t believe we aren’t there to be with you.” Already my brother was hiding his own emotions to try and protect me. “I know. It’s so horrible. Seeing them on the floor like that, I’ll never get that picture out of my mind.” “Brooke, did they. . .do you think they’re going to—?” Before Eric can finish the sentence, I interrupt him. “Don’t talk like that. The EMTs are here and soon they’ll get to the hospital. Where are you guys?” “We’re in Indianapolis and can’t be home until at least tomorrow night. I think you should call Nick, okay? Craig and I don’t want you being alone right now and we know Kaya doesn’t have a car to get to you. Please Brooke.” “Okay, I’ll call him.” “Alright, now let me talk to the cop again, but text me when Nick gets there.” “I will.” “I love you Brooke.” “I love you too, and tell Craig the same.” “Will do.”
            Once he’s off the phone with Eric, I ask the officer to use it again to call Nick, my boyfriend of eight months. After a tense few rings, a groggy voiced Nick answers. “Hello?” “Nick, it’s Brooke.” “What? Did you get too drunk at your party and now you want me to come pick you up?” He asks belligerently. “No, Nick please. I know we’ve been fighting, but I really need you right now. My parents had both their throats slit right in my living room.” I hear a gasp on the other end. “Right now the paramedics are working on them, but I don’t know. Craig and Eric left on their road trip this morning, and I just can’t be alone right now. Can you come over?” Nick starts to answer when a black van pulls up to the front of my house with the words “CORONER” printed on the side in yellow letters.
            I drop the phone and jump up. “Coroner? Wait, that means. . .What are they doing here?” I shout at the officer that is giving me a sympathetic look. “No, they didn’t. My parents they’re… they’re dead?” Every ounce of control that I foolishly thought I had is gone. “No, no, it can’t be true.” I look at the cop with tears welling in my eyes. I want to shake him until he tells me it is a mistake, a wrong turn, not meant for my address. Then, three men get out and remove two stretchers from the back of the vehicle, both containing black bags. “They were dead when we arrived on the scene,” the officer confesses. “No, you’re lying. This is a sick joke! My mom and dad aren’t dead! They can’t be.” I run towards the house, but the cop stops me. “You can’t go in there; it’s officially a crime scene.” I am broken. I am alone, out the cold while the bodies, no, corpses of my dead parents are being put into black bags to be wheeled away and examined. I want to cry, but I feel too numb. It doesn’t feel real. I can’t connect to this reality. It can’t be mine. I simply look off into the darkness yet again, still pleading to be somehow woken up at any moment.
            Soon, I hear a voice, not an unfamiliar official voice, but a caring, voice I know. “Brooke?” Nick asks softly. He sits next to me and wraps his arms around me. “I’m sorry baby. I know this is such a tough thing to deal with,” he soothes. I put my arms around him and sob. “They were just there when I left at ten and now, now they’re gone.” Nick tilts my head back and I’m looking at him. “Brooke, you’re going to be okay. I promise.” He kisses my forehead and I again bury my face in his chest. “Miss Stevens?” Yet another voice fills my ears and I turn my face to it. “I’m Detective Fields and this is my partner Detective Vee. We understand this is a difficult time, but you have to come to the station with us.” “You think I killed my parents?!” I am yelling in disbelief. “Brooke, no one is jumping to conclusions, we just need you to make a statement for our records,” says Detective Vee. “Can he come with me, he’s my boyfriend.” “For right now, you have to ride with us, but he can follow us there.” I look back at Nick and he gives me an approving nod. “I’ll be right behind you. You won’t even know I was gone.” He gives me one last hug before I follow the detectives to their car.
            The ride to the police station is torturous because I’m left with my own thoughts in the eerily quiet car. Just a few hours ago I was at a party and I was worried about waking my parents up when I got home, and now they’re gone. That word doesn’t even seem real to me, gone. My parents can’t be gone. My mom is the one that makes the dinner, tells me to wear a jacket when it’s cold, and always has the best dating advice. My dad is the one that puts up the Christmas lights, mows the lawn, and always knows exactly what to do when my car is having trouble. I can’t not have a force like that in my life; it’s too horrible to imagine, much less live through. A lump forms in my throat and I feel like I’m going to start crying again. I turn around to look out the back window and Nick is in the car right behind us, just like he promised. The sight of his face calms me down just in time. “Brooke, we’re about to be there. We’re gonna go in, ask you a few questions and then you can live,” explains Detective Fields.
            Entering the station, Nick is told to wait on a bench as I am escorted to a room with a small table, three chairs, a lone light bulb hanging over head, and two-way mirror. The detectives sit on one side of the table while I sit on the other. As they are setting up the room and getting together their paperwork, I study their features. Under the light, I can see them both clearly for the first time. Detective Fields is a husky man at about 6’2 that seems to be in mid-forties and needs a shave to remove the five o’clock shadow that I would now classify as ten o’clock shadow. Detective Vee is another sort all her own. She is a younger thin woman of average height with strong bone structure and blonde curly hair tied in a ponytail. It may seem foolish, but I’d do anything at this point to distract myself until I have to relive every details of my parents’ murder. Even in my head, the word spends a chill down my spine. Just then, the click of a tape recorder turning on rips me from my thoughts.  
            “Today is March 17, 2014. I am Detective Fields here with Detective Vee and we are here to interrogate Brooke Stevens about the murder of her parents, David and Linda Stevens.” He looks into my eyes and asks plainly, “Can you lead me through the steps of what happened tonight and what you witnessed?” Starting from leaving for Jack’s party to the time the pair introduced themselves to me, I relive every gory detail: the last time moment I saw my parents alive, the party, the car ride with Kaya, the metallic scent, the red pools, the perfect slices, everything. 

Time to Write?

I probably shouldn’t be writing this, because it’s a confession of failure, but I am finding it so difficult to get time to write. It reminds me of the essay we read in the beginning of the semester with the women who were busy housewives who not only felt they didn’t have time to write, but also that they didn’t have a space to call their own to write. I have the space, but with holiday hours at my job and papers, presentations, and other projects as the semester winds down, I feel like there’s no time! I know I have to make the time, but so far I have been not devoted as much time as I need. That is my new goal. No matter what, I must set aside at least 30 minutes a night for writing or it will never get done. Tomorrow I will start; this blog will be my testimony! My story isn’t going to write itself and it deserves to be finished! I may be scared that it will not come out as I planned, but not doing it is only making it all the more worse. Time to get my priorities in order!

Short Story #2 (Work In Progress) PLEASE GIVE ME FEEDBACK :(

A complete work in progress! A title has not even been thought of yet. I would really appreciate feedback on this, even though it is an incomplete short story. Please and thank you :)!

            I run my hand across my forehead in an attempt to dull the throbbing against my skull. I’ve been at this party too long. I look at my phone and the time reads, “2:04 am.” “I have to get out of here,” I try to tell my friend Kaya over the blasting music. “What?” she yells in my ear, sending a shooting pain burrowing deep in my head. I take out my car keys and point to the door. Kaya’s face contorts disapprovingly and she grabs my arm to lead me to a quieter area of the house. “You want to go home already?” she complains. “I have a headache and I just want to go to bed,” I reply. “You want to go to bed? But it’s so early!” I show her my phone and Kaya gasps. “Exactly, I’m gonna go to the car. Say your goodbyes and meet me outside,” I say a bit more sternly than I had planned.
            When I’m outside, away from the heat of an overcrowded house party and the booming music, my headache finally begins to weaken. The fresh, cool early morning air feels relaxing as I take long, deep breaths of it. By the time I am in my car, the pain in my head is gone and I take a sigh of relief as I drive up to the house and see Kaya waiting on the curb. “Thank God, you are so responsible! I would have stayed at that party forever and missed work completely tomorrow!” Kaya exclaims. “I try, but hey, sorry I snapped at you back there. I’m just so tired.” “Don’t even worry about it,” she waves her hand at me, “Like I said, if it wasn’t for you, I’d be a mess.” Kaya lets out a small laugh and for the remainder of the time she is in my car, the only noise that fills the air is the low radio playing between us. After the half mile ride, Kaya and I say our farewells and I make my way home.
            Walking to the front of my house, I take out my keys and clumsily unlock the door in the dark. I take special care to open the door very slowly, so I won’t wake up my parents. Ever since I have turned eighteen, they took away my curfew because they feel I’m responsible enough to make my own choices. However, as my dad always says, they “can take it back anytime, if I betray their trust.” Immediately as the door opens, I am hit with a strong metallic smell. Turning on the light, I see my illuminated living room, my knees go weak, and I fall to the floor.
            Our beige carpet is stained a deep red in two awful puddles. The source of those puddles? My parents, both slain on the floor, lifeless and cold. As if they were both done simultaneously, my mom and dad have matching slices across their throats. I close my eyes, this can’t be true. I passed out at the party and this is all just a horrific dream. Taking a deep breath, I open my eyes and the two bodies lay in front of me, in the same positions I left them in. I want to scream, but I can’t. It’s too much to take in and let out noise at the same time. Suddenly my brain starts to work. I have to call 911! Trembling, I take out my cellphone and dial the three numbers. “911, what’s your emergency?” the operator on the phone asks in a plain female voice. Again, I am struck speechless. I can’t say it out loud, it’s too horrible. “Hello? Are you there?” the voice continues. “Yes, I, I, I just came home and my parents, oh my parents, they’ve been . . . been…” I start to lose control of my thoughts and begin to cry. “Ma’am, I need you to stay calm. What happened to your parents?” “They’re dead. My mom and dad, both slit in the throat. There’s blood everywhere. Oh my God, how could this happen?” “Ma’am, what is your name and your address. I will send a police officer over right away.” “Brooke Stevens, 316 Oak Drive in Little Falls.” After a brief pause, the operator speaks, “Okay, Brooke, someone is coming now. Now, as calmly as you can answer, I need you to let me know, are you safe? Did you check the house to make sure no one was in there with you?” “No, I didn’t even think. . .” my voice changes to a whisper, “You’re right, the person that did this to my parents could be here, waiting to do it to me!” “Brooke, take a deep breath, don’t think that way. Don’t move from where you are, until the officer gets there.” “But I could be a sitting duck, just waiting to be shot, or cut.” “You have to trust me. Everything will be better if you wait for the police officer. Please stay on the phone with me, okay?” “Okay.”
            After what seemed like the longest ten minutes of my life, a knock on the door startles me. “Police, open the door,” a stern male voice commands. Still on the phone with the 911 operator, I open the door and two policemen stand in front of me. “We got a call for a murder” The taller one introduces. “Two actually. They’re right here,” I point at my parents’ bodies. I can feel my emotions rising again and cops can too. “Can I talk to the operator while you and my partner go outside?” The taller one asks calmly. Simply nodding, I hand over my cellphone and walk outside to the wicker couch on my porch. Sitting down, I start to cry. The cop puts a hand on my shoulder and asks, “Is there anyone you want to call to come over here?” “My brothers. I forgot about them. They’re on a road trip. Oh, no, I can’t be the one to tell them this. Please, if I give you the number, can you tell them?” I plead.
            He agrees, I give him my twenty-three year old middle brother Eric’s number, and before long the officer hands the phone to me. “Eric?” “Brooke, I can’t believe this happened. I can’t believe we aren’t there to be with you.” Already my brother was hiding his own emotions to try and protect me. “Eric, stop. You had no way of knowing. Where are you guys anyway?” “We’re in Indianapolis and can’t be home until at least tomorrow night. I think you should call Nick.” “Our parents and dead and you want me to call my boyfriend that I’ve been fighting with for weeks?” I hear him take a long breath, as if to control himself. “Craig and I think it’s for the best until we can get there. Okay? We don’t want you being alone right now and we know Kaya doesn’t have a car to get to you. Please Brooke.” “You’re right,” I confess as I think of the alternative of trying to sleep alone in the house where my parents were murdered. “Let me talk to the cop again, but text me when Nick gets there.” “I will.” “I love you Brooke.” “I love you too, and tell Craig the same.” “Will do.”
            Once he’s off the phone with Eric, I ask the officer to use it again to call Nick. After a tense few rings, a groggy voiced Nick answers. “Hello?” “Nick, it’s Brooke.” “What? Did you get too drunk at your party and now you want me to come pick you up?” He asks belligerently. “No, Nick please. You’re going to think I’m joking, but my parents were murdered.” I hear a gasp on the other end. “Yeah, right in my living room. Look, I know we’ve been fighting, but can you come over? Craig and Eric just left on their road trip and I don’t want to be alone.” After hesitation, he clears his throat, “Of course, I’ll be right over. Don’t even worry about it.” “Thanks Nick.”
            Despite the cops taking so long to get to my house, Nick is over in flash. I see his car pull up and I run to it. Just as he gets out, I wrap my arms around him and sob. “I’m sorry baby. I know this is such a tough thing to deal with,” he soothes. “They were just there when I left at ten and now, now they’re gone.” Nick tilts my head back and I’m looking at him. “Brooke, you’re going to be okay. I promise.” He kisses my forehead and I again bury my face in his chest. “Miss Stevens?” This time the shorter cop is talking and I turn around, wiping my face. “I understand this is a difficult time, but you have to come to the station with us.” “You think I killed my parents?!” I am yelling in disbelief. “Brooke, no one is jumping to conclusions, we just need you to make a statement for the records.” “Can he come with me, he’s my boyfriend.” “For right now, you have to ride with us, but he can follow us there.” I look back at Nick and he gives me an approving nod. “I’ll be right behind you. You won’t even know I was gone.” He gives me one last hug before I follow the police to their car.

Depression is a funny thing.

It comes out of nowhere and strikes like a viper on the prowl. One minute, I’m enjoying school and the next my entire mood changes just because a professor didn’t like the structure of my research paper. Suddenly, I’m holding back the tears and panic that are raging inside me, just wanting to be released. But no, I can’t, not in school, not in a classroom of my peers. However, as soon as I get in my car, I let it all out. As I drive down Morris Ave., tears rush down my cheeks as I try to continue breathing between sobs. I get home and no one is there. Part of me is relieved as I climb up the stairs to my bedroom. There, in those four walls, I am completely myself, a side no one gets to see. I let out every emotion until there is nothing left to give. Then, although I have so much homework and reading to do that it makes me nervous to just think about it, I just lay in bed. I pride myself on my 4.0 GPA, but I can’t bring myself to concentrate. My mind is too broken down that it can’t work properly to write my short story or do my math homework. I fear I am entering the “Dark Times,” as I call my depression/anxiety filled episodes. Last time, it was so bad, my parents begged me to drop out of college because they felt “no degree was worth losing your sanity.” I have to agree with them, but I decided to stick with it and power through. However, now I’m not so sure. Maybe my mental obstacles are too much for me to overcome and ultimately they will win.

One thing I know for sure, they have won today.

Where are the Ideas for my Next Short Story?

As insomnia keeps me up yet another night, I can’t help but wrack my brain for ideas on what my next short story will be about. Whether it is the exhaustion of being up at 1:30 in morning or having just written a seven page research paper for an Earth Science class, I seem to come up dry on the well of creative ideas. I hope this doesn’t last long – actually, I refuse to let it last long! Tomorrow I shall observe my enviroment more closely and find a story that is out there waiting to be told!

T’was the Night of Halloween

T’was the night of Halloween
And all through the house,
Every creature was dressed up,
Even the mouse.

Pumpkins were carved in faces with care,
In hopes that trick-or-treaters would soon be there.
Spooky Halloween night,
Every child is affright.

Candy fills bags with cheers of glee.
“Full-size candy bars? YIPPY!”
“Trick-or-treat” rings through the streets,
As children are given free sugary treats.

Witches, vampires, and superheroes, all in a line,
As scary decorations send shivers down each spine.
At the end of the night, the children go home
And through their mountains of treasure, they roam.

The parents warn, “Don’t eat too much!”
But the children send them away with, “Oh, hush!”
As desserts shrink, children’s opinions soon revert.
T’was the night of Halloween, and beds are filled with bellies that hurt.