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Shadows of the Past

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I’m your average teenager, some problems at school but good overall. Today was different, though; I didn’t want to go to school. That’s strange for me because I usually can’t wait to go. I also had a feeling that someone was watching me.

Of course, with no choice, I went to school. Janet picked me up at my house, and we drove off to Clarksville High. When we approached the school, we saw some of the familiar objects: the old fig tree, the gas station across from the school, and the sign “Clarksville High School: Home of the Knights.” That moment, I thought I saw a small figure, about the age of a kindergardener, by the tree. She had long brown-blond hair that somewhat reminded me of myself.

During lunch, Janet, Tana, and I went to go eat outside for a change, since the day was sunny; for the past few weeks, it had been dismal and stormy, and everyone was glad that it finally cleared up. I had the sudden urge to go to the bathroom, so I left my friends to go relieve myself.

On the way back into the main building, I heard small but fast footsteps behind me. They were too light to belong to any of the highschoolers here, and all the instructors we had here were old fat men. I didn’t dare to look behind, but from the sound of it, it was gaining on me.

Panting, I got to the bathroom and into the stall. I had just locked the door when the lights went off suddenly.

“Remember me?” said a small child.

At first, I thought it was one of the jocks playing a prank, but it wasn’t.

“Don’t you remember me?” She said again, after I made no reply.

“I don’t know… What’s your name, sweetie?” I asked carefully, trying not to show my fear.

“I still love you,” she said. Then it struck me.

“Emily, is that you?”

“You do remember me!” She replied with glee.

“But… How can this be? I thought...” I dared not finish my sentence.

“It’s ok,” my sister reassured me. “I just came to pick you up, because I wanted you to come with me.”

“With you…? Where?” I inquired.

“I was lonely, all alone… Grandma and Grandpa are always busy, and it seems like you and Mommy and Daddy all forgot about me.” Her voice filled with sorrow echoed.

“Baby, that’s not true. We miss you so much, ever since that—“

“That day when you let me die?!” She interrupted.

“Emily, stop saying that! We tried our best to keep you with us.”

“Then why am I not with you guys? Why am I dead?” I could hear her anger building up.

“Emily. Listen. I love you. Mommy loves you. Daddy loves you too. We couldn’t find any donors for you. We tried. And we miss you, so much. You were so smart, had such a huge life ahead of you. But it was too late. And I’m really sorry I couldn’t have done anything.”

“Then come with me. Come with me and keep me company. That’s the least you could do, after you forgot me for all these years. You couldn’t even recognize my voice!”

“You know that we didn’t forget you. When people die, we grieve, but we must move on.” I said firmly. “We still visit you at your grave on your birthday. We always leave your seat at the dinner table unoccupied, so you can join us. And your room has been untouched ever since. It’s all the way you left it.”

I got out of the stall, just to see her one last time. I didn’t want to talk to her blindly with the door between us. I walked over to the light switch where she was standing. Her ghostly pale figure stood in front of me. I realized that she was the child I saw by the tree.

“Then why can’t you come with me?” She asked again as she held her small hand out. “Then Mommy and Daddy can be happy together, and me and you can be happy together, too.”

I started to freak out. She seemed so happy with this idea. I couldn’t just destroy her dreams in seconds; she hadn’t even lived long enough to learn her multiplication tables yet. I wanted to make her happy.

“Will you let me go home afterwards? Or do you want me with you forever?” I thought in my head, but before I spoke, she answered as if she read my mind.

“Gracie, I want you with me forever.”

“Then I’m sorry. I can’t go with you.”

“NO!” She growled, almost like a demon. She quickly took my hand and dragged me out to where my friends were. I was immobilized. I wasn’t sure if Janet or Tana saw Emily when she forced me outside, but I saw Janet’s jaw drop in surprise.

When I finally had control of my body again, it was too late.

“Grace!” I heard Tana yell at the split second. I was in the middle of the road.

After that, everything went black.

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