It’s time for the final Bray post! Since I started writing her story the idea itself has fizzed out and my excitement for it has died down, so there won’t be any more unless something rekindles my excitement for it.
Now, without more rambling on my part –
here ya go 🙂
She was back. My hands were sweating, my heart was racing. I tried to focus on the music coming from my headphones, but it was no use. Even without looking at her I knew that she was watching me in the covert way she had done before. I could see her faint reflection in the window, blending into the landscape. We were both looking outside – she couldn’t even see me since she had her back turned – but I knew that her eyes were on me. It was just the two of us on the bus, besides the driver. There was another kid sitting in the front, but he got out three stops before me and she had always gotten out after me.
My mind was racing for the entire bus ride. I had a feeling she’d get out with me and follow me home, maybe even try something before we got to my house, but there was nothing I could do about it. What if I got out a stop earlier? A stop later? Would that work or would she just get out with me, no matter where that would be?
We approached my stop, and my heart fell when she got up from her seat. She was definitely getting out with me, and there was nothing I could do about it. I couldn’t defend myself, and I wasn’t overly strong or flexible. I was fast but I had mild asthma, so I wouldn’t run very far if it came to that. My house wasn’t far but there was a quiet side alley I had to walk through. There was always the long way around, but if I had to chose between being followed for longer or getting to safety sooner, I’d definitely choose safety.
I breathed a sigh of relief when I spotted my grandma waiting for me. Mum hadn’t told me she was going to visit, but it didn’t matter. I wouldn’t be alone, that was all I cared about in that moment.
‘Hi, grandma! What are you doing here?’ I threw myself into her arms the second I got off the bus. Her arms closed protectivly around me as she laughed and tried to swing me around. She wasn’t strong enough for that any more, but she had always done it since I had been a baby. It had become a habit, and right now I was grateful for the bit of normalcy.
‘Can’t I want to see my youngest child?’ We both laughed as we started walking. Mum had always been a career woman, focused on her job over me and my sister. Grandma had raised me on her own while my parents had been at work, so she saw me as her sixth child.
She must have noticed my urgency, because we picked up our pace. I turned around briefly to see where the woman had gone, but I couldn’t see her any more. She must have gone the other way.
‘Where are we going? The house is that way.’ There were other ways to get home, but this was the easiest and Grandma wasn’t great on her feet any more. I had no idea why she would chose the longer way around.
‘We’re not going home, puppet. This is important, so listen carefully. That woman who was on the bus with you is dangerous. I need to get you away from her, but you have to trust me.’
I tried to swallow past the lump in my throat, but came up dry instead.
‘I trust you.’ My Grandma was the only person I really trusted. I didn’t care where we were going, I just wanted out and away.
I could still feel that woman’s eyes in my back. She hadn’t left or gone the other way. She was right behind us, out of sight, tailing us.
‘I know, puppet. Trust me.’
And I did.
All writing belongs to the author, Sarina Langer.
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