A Silence In the Hills

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
A young woman returns home to her parents summer house in the quiet mountains. She soon discovers a terrifying truth.

Submitted: June 14, 2016

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Submitted: June 14, 2016

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It had been years since I had last returned to the small quiet town I once knew as home. A couple days ago my parents sent me an invitation to vacate from the city, they made sure I would have the place all to myself so that I could focus on my writing career. 

I sat down on the sofa and opened my laptop, but the words just didn't come to me. It had been several months and I hadn't written a thing. I was almost finished with the story. I was only set back one measly little chapter. I tried to reasure myself how easy it would be. Just start typing, I thought to myself. Suddenly I heard the floor boards from above start creaking as if someone were up in the attic. I gathered every ounce of strength I had to walk down the hallway. I flicked on the light switch. I swore I could feel my insides tremble as I tugged the staircase down. I managed to make my way to the top of the stairs where I found an old box labeled "kids photos". A sharp screach escaped my throat as two hands appered from the darkness covering my eyes. 

"I thought I might find you hear." This voice seemed familiar to me.

"Colin!" I spun around to hug him. "Don't you ever sneak up on me like that again!"

"Oh, Kitty Kat, you know I only do it for the fun."

"Let me have a look at you in the light." I dragged him down the stairs into the kitchen, where I studdied his features for a long moment. His medium length black hair was stragely, his irises a light grey-blue. "It's so odd, it feels as if I never left yet you're all grown up now and have stubble." I ran my fingertips across the slight dimple in his chin. "This look sort of works for you though."

"Tell me what's become of you Kate?"

"I'm a writer now, and you?" He choked.

"Actually not a lot has changed since you left."

"No new girls?"

"No." He chuckled. "What about you? Anyone?" I shook my head. 

As the night grew later I began to feel even more drowsy. At some point I think I dozed off, because I awoke in Colin's arms as he carried me to the bedroom. He tucked me under the covers and turned to leave the room. I caught his hand.

"Please don't go, I'd like you to stay, just like when we were kids." He slipped under the covers beside me and I fell sound asleep. 

I awoke the next morning, and Colin had been gone for some time. I worried that I might have done something to chase him away. Maybe inviting him for a sleep over wasn't the best option. Things had changed we were no longer two innocent children free of worry. I glanced at my computer on the coffee table, sighed and locked the house up as I left. It was maybe a five minute walk from here to the creek where Colin and I used to collect wild black berries in the spring. I followed a rocky path till i could hear the trickling water. I found Colin sinking stones into the bottom of a still pond, as if something bothersome was on his mind. I picked a couple berries, and made my way toward him. I stared at my feet as I walked, the berries dying the palm of my hand a deep purple. His gaze met mine for just a moment. He sprang up from an old tree stump and rushed toward me. Our lips met, it felt as if a jolt of electricity surged through my body. 

"I'm sorry...I just thought you should know."

It suddenly crossed my mind that I hadn't the slightest memory of what our friendship was like just before I had left town, in fact I couldn't even remember why I left at all. I sat down beside him on the tree stump. It was too late to catch the words that fell out of my mouth.

"I can't remember."

"Can't remember what Kitty Kat?"

"A lot of my past...it's like it's been erased." He pulled me closer to him with one arm.

"Well why don't we go back to the house and go through that old box of pictures, maybe something in there will catch you up to speed." Colin helped me up and walked me back to the house where I sat on the couch. He lifted the lid of the box and pulled out several stacks of pictures. We spent hours looking at the pictures and laughing. There was an old newspaper folded up still in the bottom of the box. I bent over to pick it up. "Kate no!" He grabbed my hand.

"What's wrong?"

"Don't open that!"

"Why not?"

"Please I'm begging you just don't." I snatched up the paper and ran into the bathroom, where I locked the door, unwrinkled the paper and began to read. Colin was banging on the door from the outside. "Don't read that Kate!" It was dated less then a few months ago. The headline said "23 year old male murdered". As I read on the pounding against the door subsided. I swung the door open, but Colin was gone. How could this be true? I was with Colin just moments ago and yet the article stated his exact time of death. I could feel it now, the tears forcing their way through. I couldn't stop the sobbing from escaping my own lips. I could feel his hold on me now, trying to comfort me. "Don't be sad Kitty Kat, it doesn't hurt anymore." He lifted my chin.

"Why can I feel your touch like gentle soft butterfly kisses?"

"It's ok, I'll be here as long as you need me to." I went to the bedroom still in tears, broken inside.

"How could this have happened, how could I just have left."

"Don't blame yourself, you had no control over this." I placed my hand on his cheek. 

"I can't...my heart is breaking...I need some time." I tightly shut my eyes, and when I reopened them he was gone. I made my way to the bedroom, where I cried myself to sleep. At some point I awoke in the night. My eyesight focussed on a bottle of pills. I didn't want to feel the pain anymore, I just wanted it all to stop. I swallowed countless ammounts until there was only but a few pills left in the bottom of the jar. I could hear faint distant whispers of my name.

"What have you done? Kate stay with me!" Everything was blurry, and then all was silent. A thick blanket of darkness consumed me whole. I inhaled a sharp breath as I awoke from what felt like a horrible nightmare. The pill bottle on the night stand was no longer there. Colin sat in a dark corner of the room, his knees bent as he held his head up with his hands. He sat beside me on the bed now with trails of tears streaking down his face. "How could you do something like that, you scared me half to death." I giggled. "Do you think this is funny?"

"No, what's funny is that you're the dead one yet youre here making puns about death." He stared at me for a long moment with dissaproval. 

"I have to go, there's some place I have to be right now. You need to rest." I turned away, and could no longer sense his presence around me. For about an hour I tossed and turned, then I retrieved my computer once more where I stared blankly at the screen. The sun was now rising above the mountain tops. I didn't realized that I had zoned out for several hours. Out of the corner of my eye I saw movement. A tabby cat stood pacing back and forth on the island centered in the middle of the kitchen. I patted his head and he purred. 

"Where's your owner little guy?" I checked his name tag, but it was blank, all but a single phone number. I reached for the house phone and dialed the number. My stomach twisted as the cellphone in my pocket began to ring. It wasn't adding up, nothing made sense, was this cat mine? I spun back around, but the cat had dissappeared. I assumed he'd snuck out the half open window in the kitchen. I had grown curious, more now then ever. I went up to the attic space, where I found several more boxes that I carried downstairs. I found an old picture drawn by a child. It was a drawing of two large figures, one small figure and a pet. I hung it up in front of the window. There was a trail of more drawings, leading into the guest bedroom. I picked up the pictures, studying them carefully. At first the pictures were happy. There was a drawing of my parents on the old porch swing, another of Thanksgiving diner depicting both our family as well as Colin's coming together, but the final picture was dark. The mood had somehow changed and the drawing wasn't that of a child's either. It was a picture of my father outside, angrilly chopping wood. I could feel Colin's presence behind me as I sat staring into the vanity desk in the guest room.

"You are so beautiful, just as the day we first met." He spoke softly. 

"What is it? What am I not remembering?"

"What does it matter Kate, the past is the past we can't change what happened."

"There's a reason I came back, I need to know."

"It will change you." I ignored his warnings, and got into my car where I drove to the old cemetery. I contemplated weather or not I should get out of the car. I held my breath and tightly clutched the door handle. It felt as if it took every ounce of my strength to lift my feet. I wandered the cemetery, until I found Colin's grave. Images blurred through my mind as I knelt down at the headstone. 

I remembered it just as if it were yesterday. Colin approached me at the creak where we followed it up for some time. I began to slip off a rock covered in plant growth. I landed in a pool of water. Colin held out a hand toward me after chuckling. I yanked him into the pool with me. His dark hair clung wet to his face. His hand gently cupped my face. I dragged him to the house, lightly pushing him against the door, where I jumped into his arms.The memory ended. I felt a hand against my shoulder. I wiped the tears from my face, and turned to face Colin's mother.

 


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