She would not budge. Sitting on that rock, arms tightly wrapped around her knees, eyes staring at something possibly existent only in her imagination, Anise was humming some melody that Joe couldn’t recognize. Then again – he wasn’t a music expert by any means… He just wished she’d let him take her home. Or wherever to that matter. Away from here…
‘Anise, sweetie, we have to go…’
‘Go…’ she repeated absently.
‘Yes. Just think, your Mom is worrying sick, your Dad keeps saying it is his fault’
Now what? Joe was running out of ideas… He did not want to simply carry her to his truck and drive her back, who knows what she went through in the last few hours…
‘Purple… and red… why red?’ still staring at what seemed to be the same spot Anise spoke softly.
‘What was red and purple, sweetie?’ Joe asked gently, trying not to spook her out.
‘She was… her dress… purple… with red… why red? suddenly she turned her face and looked at him for the first time since he found her.
‘Anise, I honestly don’t know why, but we have to go back…’ he started
‘No! I have to help her!’ suddenly she slid down off the rock, as if she made up her mind, walked towards Joe, grabbed his hand, looked him in the eyes and said softly: ‘we have to go there.’
Joe thought it was better than her sitting on that rock, so he said: ‘sure. Lets go’ and slowly led her toward his truck.
As they were slowly driving away from that place, Anise closed her eyes and sat down quietly as if she had fallen asleep.
‘Great, now what’ he thought.’Which way am I supposed to go?’ Just as he turned, deciding to drop her off to her parents, she opened her eyes very wide and said firmly : ‘no. Not this way.’
‘Okay, you lead then’ he simply answered, not daring to argue.
And she did.
After they drove about half an hour, she told him to stop the car.
Quickly she jumped out and started running. Joe went after her, surprised how fast she went, even though she seemed so weak just a few minutes ago.
Anise stopped in front of the little wooden log house. She pointed at the broken door and said simply: ‘In there’.
Again she grabbed his hand and pulled gently, making sure they went together.
In the middle of the medium-sized living room, on what used to be white carpet, was a body of a girl, purple dress with a big splotch of red right on her chest. Joe looked at her face and jumped. It was… but couldn’t be? He turned around and saw Anise standing right behind him. Then he looked down again… The girl lying down on that carpet… She looked exactly like Anise…
‘Am I dead, Joe?’ Anise whispered, her lips dry and white.
‘Of course you are not dead. How can you be dead and talk to me?’
‘Maybe… maybe you’re dead too…?’ again that barely audible whisper.
Could he… be dead too? I mean, is that how being dead feels? But wait…
‘Anise I was driving. My car.’ whatever was wrong with her, seemed to be contagious! ‘How I’d be able to drive if I were dead?’
‘I don’t know Joe! I haven’t been dead before!’
‘For goodness sake Anise, I am sure there is an explanation for it, and first of all we have to call the cops!’ It was just getting too much for him. ‘And dead people do not drive cars!’ He added for a good measure. Not that he was so sure of anything anymore himself…
They turned around and were on their way back, when they noticed that the closet door was half opened, and something was sticking out of it. Anise looked at Joe, her eyes filled with fear yet again. As they came closer to check it out, the door gave way and swung open, making them jump.
‘What the…!?’ Joe yelled.
‘Joe, look!!!’ it was the first time Anise spoke louder ‘Joe… it’s… you…’
Written for #fridayflash, possibly will be continued…