*A teen Horror*
Jenny was alone in the park. She looked around with flustered eyes, searching for someone…anyone! She couldn't bear the loneliness of the park. As her eyes wandered towards her left, she saw a ghost. 'No!' she screamed and covered her eyes. She started sweating and cried loudly. She knew that any moment the ghost would get her. The way the teenagers had got the ghost. Just then, something hit her head and she collapsed onto the floor…
"Jenny! Wake up," Ms. Harold vigorously shook her daughter and sprinkled some water on her face. Jenny suddenly sat up as her head hit the bedside table. She was sweating badly and she put her hands around her knees, her whole body shaking. She seemed to have little effect of the injury caused by her head hitting the table. "The ghost…it was Peter, Peter Hughes…" Jenny stammered, her voice shaking with fear. "Jenny, calm yourself." Ms. Harold sat down on the side of the bed and hugged her daughter.
There was definitely something unusual going on. Jenny had been having nightmares for three nights in a row. It was since she had come home from the college trip she had taken. "Jenny, what do you see in the nightmare?" pressed Ms. Harold, curious to know what was going on. "Oh mother, its terrible. I can't describe it. Its…its… its so horrible, oh!" Jenny started shaking all over again and Ms. Harold calmed her. "Jenny, there is no use to worry over silly dreams," she said, holding her daughters shoulders. "But…but mom, they're not just silly dreams. I have them every night now. I think I'm haunted. I'm haunted by a lone lost spirit. The spirit of Peter Hughes," Jenny shuddered as she said the last words. "Who is Peter Hughes?" asked Ms. Harold. She had been hearing this name since Jenny had had these dreams. "Mom, Peter Hughes was an old man. He was a scientist and he believed he could discover how to re-born a human being. He thought the money he would get from his discovery would make his family rich who had been poor for centuries. Unfortunately, however, a week back he had an accident. A car driven by some teenagers hit him. All of his dreams were shattered. And now, he is going to take revenge. By killing all the teenagers who exist." Jenny stopped and hugged herself. She didn't want to die. Not so early! "Rubbish! There never was and is never going to be a Peter Hughes. Just get these silly ideas out of your mind. And now, you better go to sleep." Ms. Harold tucked Jenny in her bed and kissed her gently on her forehead. She then made her way across the room to her own bed where she lay down and sighed. Teenagers sure had a vivid imagination!
Ms. Harold and Jenny lived in a small one-room apartment. Ms. Harold was a working woman and she had never married. Asides from working, she was president of the club, H.S.C. 'Human Safety Club'. She thought that spending life on her own and being independent was going to be fun. But, that was when she had just graduated. Later, she started to miss the responsibilities of a married woman. She realized that she needed someone to share her mind out with. She was still against marriage, so she decided to adopt a girl, a young girl. She had adopted Jenny 6 years ago when she was only 10. Since then, they had been living in the apartment as mother and daughter and Ms. Harold almost felt as if Jenny was her own daughter. She liked knowing that there was someone she could care for and someone who could care for her. It was certainly better than the lonely life she had been spending.
When Jenny woke in the morning, she found her mother ready and seated at the foldable dining table in the corner of the room. She quickly had a bath in the apartment's small washroom and changed into a pair of jeans and a tight-fitted black and white striped T-shirt.
"Mom," she said as she sat down on the table herself. "I've been thinking about these nightmares of mine. Should I consider a teen counselor? Or maybe a psychiatrist." "Dear no. I would rather recommend you to talk it over with your friends who know you best. You could try Alan. She is certainly better than any teen-counselor," replied Ms. Harold, putting a pan-cake on Jenny's plate. "Mom, are you sure? I mean, Alan was the one in the first place who helped me discover Peter Hughes," said Jenny, biting into her pan-cake. "Peter Hughes, Peter Hughes! Can you forget him for a moment?" burst out Ms. Harold, frustrated. "Mom," said Jenny calmly. "Peter Hughes is not to be forgotten. He is the one who is causing this." "Jenny, don't mention Peter Hughes again. Get it?" said Ms. Harold, staring at Jenny. "Okay mom. Whatever you say. Still, I believe that a man with a broken heart can do anything," replied Jenny getting up from her seat. "I'm away to college," she said picking up her rack sack from the rocking chair put in a corner of the small, yet comfortable room. "Okay dear. I hope you don't have any after-college plans. I wanted to bake cookies for the fair with you," replied Ms. Harold, putting away the plates. "What fair mother?" asked Jenny stopping in her tracks and turning around. "Dear, there is a charity fair taking place in our community club. I decided to bake cookies," Ms. Harold replied, sitting down in a chair and picking up the newspaper. She used to go to office late on Tuesdays. "Okay mom. I'll be home." Jenny made her way out of the apartment and down the stairs of the big building.
As Jenny stepped outside the building, she noticed that clouds were quickly gathering in the sky and it was probable to rain soon. She hummed to herself and started skipping. As she neared the college, she saw the usual hush-bush at the start of the day. Suddenly, she noticed a big crowd near the fountain in the main grounds. A lot of people were still gathering. Jenny hurried towards the crowd and noticed her friend Alan standing at the edge of it. Jenny ran to Alan and patted on her arm. Alan turned around. Alarm clearly reflected in her eyes.
"What?" asked Jenny, scared. Something was definitely up! "Jenny…Jenny…Oh Jenny…" Alan stammered. "Alan, what is it?" cried Jenny, getting tense by the minute. "Pete…Pete…Peter…" Alan continued to stammer. " Peter what?" Jenny cried again. "There is a headline in the newspapers," Alan finally managed. "What? What headline?" asked Jenny shaking Alan. "Tell me!" she cried. Alan replied, her voice shaking with pure fear, "The headline says 'Teenagers Beware: Peter Hughes will take his revenge!'"
"Silence everyone!" cried Mr. Douglas. "Silence I say," he cried again. The teenagers seated in the room eventually quieted down. "Teenagers," said Mr. Douglas loudly. Whispers began. Mr. Douglas frowned. He certainly should not have addressed them as 'Teenagers'. "Everyone," Mr. Douglas tried again. The people stopped whispering and paid attention to what Mr. Douglas had to say. "Everyone! The headlines are certainly just a rumor and there is no need to make such a big fuss. None of you knows anything about Peter Hughes, do you?" he said. Jenny and Alan both shakily raised their hands. Mr. Douglas was their science professor and the head of the science department as well. He was one of the most comforting professors in the college and he certainly wanted to help teenagers out in all their problems.
Mr. Douglas's eyes popped wide open in surprise when Jenny and Alan raised their hands in response to his questions. All the girls and boys turned around to look at them and began to whisper. "Silence!" cried Mr. Douglas once again. Alan started to put her hand down but Jennifer held it up and whispered to Alan, "Look Alan. We have to tell this Peter Hughes man that he is not doing the right thing. A mistake made by some particular teenagers should not be of damage to all of them." A few tears wanted to shed out of Jenny's eyes at the thought of dying early but she held them back and kept her hand up using all the courage she had.
"Yes Jenny and Alan. What do you have to say?" asked Mr. Douglas. Both of them put down their hands. "Umm…" began Alan but stopped. She glanced over to Jenny who glanced back. "Don't worry. Please share your thoughts with us. They would be of a lot of help," said Mr. Douglas, encouragingly. "Sir, it goes like this," began Jenny pulling herself together. "When the English department went for the college trip this weekend, we were with them. And, in the library part, we decided to choose a random personality. The name Peter Hughes sounded appealing to us so we decided to do a research on this random person." Jenny stopped and looked over at Alan for help. "Well," continued Alan, her voice shaking. "We found only one book on this person written by Mr. L.M. Hughes. He is Peter Hughes grandson and he is a novelist. The book was newly published, just a day back. It said that…" Now Alan stopped and looked down. She was sweating badly. "It said that Peter Hughes was an old and ambitious man. He thought he could discover how to re-born the human being," continued Jenny. The whole class was listening with pure interest, but more with fear. "Well, a week back, he got killed in an accident. A car driven by some teenagers hit him and he died of his injuries. Mr. L.M. Hughes wrote that Peter Hughes stated before he lost his last breath that he would surely take revenge and kill all the teenagers. Because he thought his discovery could make his family rich which had been poor for centuries. Now, I know he'll take revenge. We shattered his dreams. Now he is determined to shatter ours." Jenny stopped and looked at Alan. Alan squeezed her hand and smiled an artificial smile.
"Girls. I'm proud of you. It certainly took a lot of courage to relate this event. Now, let's get back to our work," said Mr. Douglas. The science lesson was very boring. More than boring, no one could pay attention to it after all that had happened. All the girls and boys were sad and the faces of some were as white as a sheet. None of the teens were brave enough to talk about it in during the lesson. They were not afraid of Mr. Douglas, but they were afraid of the answers they would receive to their questions.
Later that day, Alan and Jenny met at the college café. They sat at a booth opposite to a full-length mirror. Alan had her back to the mirror but Jenny could clearly see her reflection and she was surprised to see the shock struck expression on her face. Jenny saw her sandy blonde hair form waves around her neck, her hazel eyes reflected fear and her dimples which appeared when she smiled were far from appearing. Although, Jenny looked pretty weak, she was the possessor of a very strong character and for the last days, the fright of dying was actually getting to her and she no longer felt strong. On the other hand, Alan was plump, had long auburn hair, a fair skin and was strong looking. Still, however, she was not so strong in real.
"Jenny, are we really going to die?" asked Alan, putting her face in her hands. "I don't know. I think we should fight back. Fight back for what we deserve. We were not the ones who killed him. Also, we have to make him realize that he could never have discovered how to re-born man. That's only in God's will and it's only God who's the Supreme Being. Other wise, no one can ever, ever re-born the human being," Jenny replied and dug into her strawberry sundae. "Oh well. I guess I should eat as many sundaes as possible before I die. Because, I don't think these sundaes are available in Heaven or Hell," mourned Alan, biting into the chocolate chip wafer. Despite her worry, Jenny burst out laughing. "C'mon Alan," she said in between giggles. "We are not going to die. Do get serious." "As if I'm not serious enough," said Alan. "Oh, I wonder if God will give me Wall's Cornetto. That's my favourite." Jenny again started laughing. Then suddenly she drew her face in a line and stared straight ahead in space. "I wonder if we really are going to live any further. I wouldn't want to die. I wanted to become a doctor. Oh! All my dreams are shattered," Jenny cried. "What about his dreams? Weren't they shattered? If I had the chance to make my last wish, I'd kill those people who killed Peter. It's all because of those silly drivers. And, I'd kill the person who gave them a driver's license and the person who put him in charge of giving licenses and the person who put that person in charge who had to put that person in charge who gave licenses and that person…" Alan trailed off. Jenny smiled. "If you kill so much people it would end up to only me and you in the world," she said. "That'd be better. Than I could enjoy all sorts of treats without giving any money because there won't any people to receive the money." Alan smiled and put a spoon of chocolate syrup in her mouth. The two girls sat there in silence for a long time, Jenny somewhat enjoying her strawberry sundae and the peace, while Alan eating her chocolate syrup with wafers in deep thought.
As both of them finished their treats, Jenny said thoughtfully, "Alan, follow me." Alan hastily put her long, slim glass of chocolate syrup and wafers aside and quickly followed Jenny. Jenny led Alan to the college library. When they entered, Alan mourned, "Jenny, couldn't we have come to this place later? I'm more interested in eating my whole syrup which maybe won't be available later on in my life." "Alan, get serious. We've got to find that book. What was it called?" asked Jenny. "'Last Wish'. How can I forget?" replied Alan. Jenny took out the index cards and searched for the book she was looking for. "See, it just got here yesterday. 'Last Wish' by L.M. Hughes," she said taking out that particular index card. "Yeah, whatever," said Alan. Both the girls traced out the book in the large biography book section. They opened it up and spread it onto one of the library study tables. Jenny searched the whole book but finally she slammed it shut and put it back, frustrated.
"What Jenny? What were you looking for?" asked Alan, confused still. "A picture of Peter Hughes. I really have to get it," replied Jenny looking at Alan. "Couldn't you tell me before? Look, L.M. Hughes is a novelist. He must have written a book on all his family and that would contain Peter Hughes picture," suggested Alan, casually. "What a good idea!" Jenny snapped her fingers in pleasure and made her way to the index cards once again. She searched for a long time and then finally turned to Alan. "I found three books by L.M. Hughes. 'The Life of Truths', 'The Dream' and 'The Beard'," she said. "Great. Let's look in 'The Dream' first. Maybe its about Peter Hughes dream," Alan suggested. "Okay," replied Jenny and pulled out the book from a nearby shelf. The two girls looked in it but found out that it was about L.M. Hughes's dream to become a novelist.
"What about 'The Beard'?" asked Alan. "Peter Hughes was an old man, he must have a beard." "Right," Jenny replied. After what seemed like hours, but was just a few minutes, she found the book. It was L.M. Hughes first book and that was clearly obvious from the look of the book. The cover was old and was covered with dust. There were many folded corners telling that the book had been issued many times and had been popular when it had been written. Jenny excitedly opened it and flipped the pages. "No luck," she said gloomily. "What is it about?" asked Alan. "It's about how teens grow up and go to their old age. That's why its called 'The Beard'", replied Jenny. "I guess that's why so many teens took it," said Alan. "Only one book left," said Jenny. She took out the book 'The Life of Truths' and put it on the table. She opened it gloomily but what she read on the first page of introduction seemed to fill her with life.
"What?" asked Alan sensing that Jenny had found something. "This book is about L.M. Hughes biography, meaning," Jenny trailed off. "Meaning it may have a picture of his grandfather," finished Alan. Jenny nodded and flipped the pages of the book. Finally, she found a picture on the last page. It was of an old but smart man in front of a graveyard and beneath it, it was written, 'Grandpa Pete in front of the graveyard when he was coming back from visiting Grandma Ann's grave'. "That's it!" cried Jenny. She took the book to Mr. Hendon, the librarian and asked his permission to take out the book for making a carbon copy of the picture. Mr. Hendon said yes and Jenny quickly made a carbon copy. "Done!" she finally said to Alan who had trailed her everywhere from taking the book away and to returning it.
"Thanks goodness. Now, what do we do with it?" asked Alan who was tired out of her wits. She couldn't understand why Jenny was so desperate for a picture. "Well, what has to be done with this, has to be done tomorrow. So, let's get back to our lectures now," replied Jenny, carefully putting away the folded picture in her jeans' pocket. "Well, ma'am, if you're in your senses, we lost around three hours making this picture. So, we missed all our lectures and stuff," replied Alan, her hands on her hips. Jenny slapped her thigh. "Damn! I had to take the maths lecture. I don't understand those square root sums a bit," exclaimed Jenny. "Oh well, life's more important than square root sums any day." "Right, and I'd prefer defending myself than solving square root sums, though, I don't understand why you wanted the picture. Still, you wanted it, you got it," said Alan smiling her dazzling smile by which she often led herself out of problems. "Yeah, and I'm glad. I guess I should head home. Mom wanted me to bake some cookies with her. Want to come along?" asked Jenny. "No, I don't think so. I'd like to spend as much time as I can with my family. After all, Peter Hughes may get away with it," said Alan, a slight bit of emotion in her voice. "We won't let him," replied Jenny hugging Alan tight and both of them blinked back tears as they rested their heads on each other's shoulders.
When Jenny entered her home, the room was empty. Maybe Mom is late. I wish she wasn't. I wanted to see her, thought Jenny, putting away her things. Suddenly, her mother came out of the washroom, her face wet. "Oh Jenny!" she cried and hugged Jenny. She wept on Jenny's shoulder and finally calmed herself.
"Dear," she said. "What will I do without you?" "Mom," replied Jenny. "I'll never leave you alone. I promise." Jenny wiped away her mother's tears with her hands and kissed her on her cheek. "Don't worry. Things will turn out all right. Just pray mom, pray. God will help us." Jenny hugged her mother and helped her to the rocking chair. Then, she put her head in her mother's lap as Ms. Harold stroked Jenny fondly. After a few minutes, Jenny gently got up and put a cushion behind Ms. Harold's head. Ms. Harold fell to sleep and Jenny decided to bake the cookies her mother and she had planned to do, as she did not want her mother's plan to bake the cookies to flop. She took out the dough her mother had made before she had come and cut out different shapes. She took out some party cookie cutters and cut them out neatly. Then, she spread them onto a square baking tray and put them in the oven to bake. Finally, when the cookies were baked, she put them to cool before she decorated them and sat down on a chair to rest.
The aroma of the cookies woke her mother and she sat up sniffing. At first, a smile crept onto her face, but then suddenly, she remembered the 'Peter Hughes dilemma'. She frowned and then noticed Jenny resting in the chair.
"Jenny?" she said gently, not wanting to wake Jenny if she was asleep. However, Jenny flipped open her eyes and glanced at her mother. "Yeah mom?" she asked. "Nothing." Ms. Harold looked over at the kitchen counter and noticed the cookies. "Thanks for baking them," she said. Then she got up and hugged her daughter again. "No prob.! Any time!" Jenny replied smiling. Ms. Harold nodded, obviously not very happy. "Hey mom," said Jenny. "Yeah?" asked Ms. Harold. "Cheer up!" cried Jenny. She hugged her mother and grinned. "Mom, tell you what? I think this is kinda fun. I mean, it's cool. Being the victim of a ghost," said Jenny, smiling, the dimples in both her cheeks appearing. "Yeah, cool for you. Gloom for me," replied Ms. Harold, still sad. "Mom, let's have a mother-daughter kind of day. What do you say?" suggested Jenny. "As you say," replied Ms. Harold. "Well, you got to be smiling. Or I won't do it." Jenny pouted and Ms. Harold laughed. "Okay, okay! Alan has her magic smile and you have your magic pout!" she said. Jenny held her mother's hands and they both danced around the room grinning all the way. Jenny didn't feel that happy, though, she knew that she didn't want her mother to be sad. This was maybe her last day with her and she wanted her mother to be the happiest mother on earth that day!
That evening, Jenny sat down after she had decorated the cookies with her mother. It had certainly been a mix-up kind of day. Starting with nightmares, psychiatrists, headlines, lessons, sundaes, books, pictures, carbon copies and ending with tears, cookies, fun, music and decorating. It had been fun and sadness, combined.
"Mom," Jenny said, sitting down on her bed. "I think I'll try to solve some of those square root sums for tomorrow and I need to make some preparations." "Okay. Do what you please. I'm going to sleep," said Ms. Harold. "Mom…again? I don't care but aren't you a bit sleepy head today?" asked Jenny, her eyes wide open in surprise. "I don't think so, dear. Last night, I couldn't sleep a wink and even today, the rocking chair wasn't so comfortable," replied Ms. Harold. "Right mom." Jenny put away the things they had used to decorate the cookies that were now lying on the counter and took out her rack sack. She took out her math notebook and started on some sums. After half an hour, she put her notebook away and got ready to do some serious work.
Jenny opened the cupboard and took out her old wooden box. From inside it, she took out a sheet of white construction paper and some glow-in-the-dark golden markers. She then pasted the picture of Peter Hughes on the construction paper and wrote beneath the picture, 'Beware of this man: He'll do anything to hurt teenagers, try to attend the special assembly in the college auditorium at 9:00 a.m.'. After this, she put on her sneakers and asked her mother for the permission to go to her college.
"I don't think I ought to let you. Its too dangerous," replied her mother. "But mom!" protested Jennifer. "If I don't do this, many people will remain oblivious of what's happening." "Okay. But, only if you take Alan with you. Plus, I'll drive you there," agreed Ms. Harold. This was not what Jennifer had in mind because she wanted to go to every teenager's house she knew, make a kind of a procession and then go to the principal's house to convince him to have an assembly. Then she could paste the poster on the college gate for people who were not present in the procession. Still, something was better than nothing, so she nodded her head.
"Mom," she said. "I want to tell you something." Then, she shared her thoughts about the assembly idea with Ms. Harold who agreed to the idea. They decided to leave for Alan's house in Ms. Harold's green pickup, then, they could pick the teenagers who could sit in the back of the pickup. This way, the journey to Mr. Crejin's house would be quick. Mr. Crejin was the college's principal who lived downtown away from the college and most of the teenagers' houses.
As the Harold's car neared Alan's house, they noticed that all the lights were out and that the doors had been locked and the curtains were drawn across the windows. Ms. Harold drew the car to a stop and Jenny jumped out of the car and skipped to the front door. She rang the bell, though, obviously the electricity wasn't working so it didn't sound. Finally, Jenny rapped the door hard with the brass knocker and stood in the shelter of the low roof, waiting for someone to open the door. She heard someone coming to the door and signaled to her mother that she'd just be back.
Alan's mother, Mrs. Jazz, opened the door. "Hi," she said. Her hair looked wrecked unlike always. Whenever Jenny saw her, Mrs. Jazz always had a neat bun. It looked that she had been working pretty hard and her eyes were red, probably from crying too much. "Come on in," she sniffed. "Umm, Mrs. Jazz, can you please call Alan? I'm making a procession and we are going to Mr. Crejin's house to persuade him to have a special assembly," Jenny told Mrs. Jazz. "Sorry dear," Mrs. Jazz said, rather harshly. "Alan has been grounded for the rest of her life." "What?" Jenny exclaimed, shocked. "But, for what? What did she do?" "She actually went away all on her own to Frisbee Town just to get a look at Peter Hughes grave. She didn't tell anyone and we were all worried sick about her. His father almost had a heart attack. And, now she returns with her knees and elbows scratched and tells us that she had gone to Frisbee Town, fell into the river on the way, got wet and was late because she had to visit her friend Mary Summons who lives near the river to get fresh clothes. Is this what I get for raising her? That she thinks she can go simply anywhere without permission plus she can return home with a smug smile on her face when her family is drenched in tears? And with all this Peter Hughes stuff going on…" Mrs. Jazz broke off and started crying again. She dabbed at her eyes with an already wet tissue and tried in vain to dry them. She raised her head, "I'm sorry, I can't send her. And, the lights are also out and Mr. Jazz told me to draw all the curtains for we have three teenagers in there who are not safe." Saying this, Mrs. Jazz closed the door and locked it up.
"Mrs. Jazz! You've got to open this up," Jenny shouted, hitting the door with her fists, refusing to give up. About two minutes later, Mr. Jazz opened up the door. He was a blonde with crystal clear blue eyes and a nice smile. He looked down at Jenny, his brow furrowed. "Stop this. The noise is deafening. Okay, you win. Wait here. I'll send Alan down," Mr. Jazz finished and turned around to shout for Alan. Alan came down slowly, thinking she was in for a lecture but when she saw Jenny, she bounced down.
"Alan Jazz! You surely did something very wrong," said Jenny. "Aw, c'mon Jenny! Don't start lecturing me," complained Alan. She quickly twisted her waist long auburn coloured hair into a bun. "Okay, whatever. Just quickly come with me." Jenny grabbed Alan's hand and dragged Alan to the pickup, waving to Mr. Jazz.
Once seated in the pickup, Jenny related everything to Alan who listened admiringly. She stuck a pencil through her bun and tucked stray strands of her hair behind her ears. She looked really pretty in a pair of black jeans and a black button down shirt.
"I guess you really want to do something about it. I'm almost glad because my mom was ready to kill me. I always went around like this, but today, the lectures were infinite," said Alan, agreeing to all the plans. "Well, are you ready to jump into this? I mean, are you ready to take the challenge of fighting for ourselves?" asked Jenny turning toward Alan. Even in the darkness, she could see her friend's dark brown eyes glint. "I'm ready to jump into it," replied Alan staring into space. "With hand and foot!"
As the green pickup with ten girls reached Mr. Crejin's house, it was 8:00 p.m. Mr. Crejin was napping in his rocking chair and he woke up with all the noise the crowd created. He finally stepped out of his house and raised his hands for silence.
"Listen girls," he shouted, noticing that no boys were included. "I can't have an assembly tomorrow because I'm not feeling well. How about day after tomorrow?" "Tomorrow, tomorrow!" the girls chanted. They were in no mood for a 'no' and Jenny had taken good care of building up their emotions. "But, I'm not feeling well," cried Mr. Crejin above the noise. He was an old man, was bald and he liked wearing a gray suit that the teens really thought was dull. They noticed that he could do with a good dress designer. Still, Mr. Crejin had his own appropriate taste and he certainly wouldn't look good in jeans and shirts.
Suddenly, Alan stepped forward and raised her hands to quite the teens. She then turned to Mr. Crejin and said, "Sir, couldn't someone else conduct the assembly? Like a parent maybe? Look here sir, days are not what count, lives count and all the lives of the teenagers are really in danger. One day could turn out to be the day of doom for all of us and you'll be the one to blame." At that time Alan looked really sophisticated in the dress she was wearing plus her hair style but Mr. Crejin was not really interested in that. He said, "Alan, the college is my responsibility and I know how to conduct assemblies. No one else has a chance." "Well then, Mr. Crejin, if we all die tomorrow, you put this on paper that you will commit suicide," snapped Kathy, a black headed girl from the crowd. She wore glasses and a pair of denim shorts and a red T-shirt.
"Kathy, I can't do that," exclaimed Mr. Crejin. "Well, then, who is so very sorry for his own health and not cared about the teenager's lives who study in a college which is his responsibility?" Kathy stressed the word 'his' so that Mr. Crejin winced. "Kathy, look here. This is serious stuff. I may have a heart attack. I have heart problems and so I can't go. Mrs. Crejin won't let me," said Mr. Crejin soothingly. "I don't care. What if we die? You only have chances of an attack and still you can be saved. You have seen the world. We have not. Please Mr. Crejin, help us," with this, a tear trickled down Kathy' s cheek and she looked down. "Hey Kathy," said Mr. Crejin, slowly tilting her head and wiping the tear off her face with his index finger. "No need to worry. You won't die." He pushed back the hair from her face and she hugged him. He then took her inside to Mrs. Crejin.
Mrs. Crejin was just as soothing as Mr. Crejin just as good and although she was old, one could see from her clear blue eyes how pretty she once must have been. She took Kathy in her arms and said in her clear voice, "Dear Kathy. God is the one who protects us. If you've done nothing wrong, you won't die. And if you do die, don't ever blame someone for it. It had to happen so it did. You can't stop death." Kathy stood up, thanked her and weakly made her way back to the procession. Soon, everyone decided that Ms. Harold would conduct the assembly and she beamed with pride.
Finally, the girls gathered back in the pick-up and Ms. Harold steered the car out of the curb and it sped away towards its first destination. Ms. Harold glanced at her daughter who sat in the passenger seat grinning widely. She knew she had done what she had planned. And it was going to be like this all the way through!
Next morning, Jenny was very cheerful because they had posted the poster at Frendonburgh College. Jenny hoped it would do its trick and fetch lots of people but she knew that the people who did attend would be thankful that they did so.
Jenny took out a cheerful red coloured dress and black leggings. She was feeling cheerful and wanted to express it in her clothes. She also took out her new black high tops that although, she had decided to save for Christmas, were an irresistible temptation to wear with her dress. Jenny was already 5'7" and with the tops she looked at least 5'8" because it had a high heel.
"Mom," Jenny said as she stepped out of the washroom. "What are you going to wear today?" "This!" replied her mother standing in front of Jenny. She was wearing a black skirt with a white shirt and black coat. She was also wearing black high heels. Her dark brown hair had been swept neatly into a bun and she was also wearing her gold rimmed glasses.
"Mom you look fabulous!" cried Jenny who usually saw her mom in jeans and shirts. Ms. Harold beamed and then suddenly became serious. "Well," she said. "Shouldn't we get going?" "Yeah," replied Jenny. "Anyway mom," she began. "Isn't this the new gothic look you said you would try out. Since I've read Sweet Valley High, I wanted to join the new gothic club myself." "Well, it is the gothic look but I wouldn't really recommend you to join the club," said Ms. Harold settling down in the driver's seat of the pick-up. Jenny hopped in beside her. "Why mom?" she asked. "Because it's too sophisticated and all-alike. I think everyone should have her own style. I didn't join the club, I just tried out the look," replied Ms. Harold steering the pick-up towards the road that led to Frendonburgh College. "Yeah, and it's fabulous," commented Jenny. "Oh well, let's just listen to the news right now. I'm in no mood for early day arguments," said Ms. Harold, tuning in the morning news on the radio. Jenny nodded her head and rested it on the headrest through the rest of the ride.
When Ms. Harold and Jenny reached the college, lots of people were crowded around Jenny's message and Jenny was genuinely happy. Both, Jenny and Ms. Harold stepped out of their car and Jenny helped Ms. Harold to the auditorium. Ms. Harold first reported to Mrs. Gregory, Mr. Crejin's secretary. Mr. Crejin had said that she would tell Ms. Harold all that was needed to know to conduct an assembly. Mrs. Gregory was an old woman and she had a lot of school experience. She told Ms. Harold that the first thing was to make sure everyone in the audience was well under control and that was by letting everyone know that you are the boss. Ms. Harold digested all these instructions well and soon Mrs. Gregory declared that she was ready to conduct an assembly.
Ms. Harold made her way through the crowded hallway to the auditorium. She found it locked so she knocked on the door. Mr. Knight, who had all the college keys, opened it from inside. "Sorry, just cleaning 'em all up," he said, pointing to the chairs. "These kids really bug me." Ms. Harold nodded and smiled at the old man. He certainly had an odd way of speaking and whenever he opened his mouth a slight dimple appeared in his right cheek.
"Umm, know who you are kin' ma'am?" Mr. Knight asked, peering at Ms. Harold curiously from behind his spectacles as she made her way to the stage. Mr. Knight was wearing blue overalls with a white shirt and he looked very worked out in them. "Sure. I'm a substitute to conduct the assembly," Ms. Harold replied. "Aah, saw only a few subs in my long experience ma'am," commented Mr. Knight still over curious. "Oh. Mr. Crejin is sick so he picked me to do this honour," said Ms. Harold admiring the big chandelier that hung over the whole room. "Crejin, that ol' lad. Tell 'im agin and agin to take care but nah…he too worried 'bout his poor wife to take care of 'imself," said Mr. Knight dusting off a few chairs. "An' honour, you say?" he continued. "With these pests in the room, I never expect it to be an honour." "Sure. But, for me it is," replied Ms. Harold walking to the podium and resting her hands on it's stable top. "This thing is cool," she muttered. She had seen podiums in her college debates but she had never stepped onto one. And, she found that standing there, she must look really commanding.
Suddenly, some teens burst in, all wearing black clothes. Ms. Harold realized that they must belong to the gothic club. She scrunched her nose as she saw a girl with black lipstick, black hair, a black full-sleeve T-shirt, black trousers and even black mascara and black nail polish sit in the front row. She promised herself she'd never let Jenny enter the gothic club. It was too black. After that, teens just poured in with a few parents as well and they all tried to find seats near the front. When, all the chairs were filled, people started to stand near the walls and Ms. Harold saw Mr. Knight bring in some folding chairs for the standing old people. Jenny was happy to see such a good turn out and she gave Ms. Harold thumbs up, who was standing at the podium, looking and feeling very confident indeed.
When every one had settled down, Ms. Harold rapped the podium three times for attention as Mrs. Gregory had told her to do. When every one was attentive, she opened the mike, rapped it once to make sure it was working and then she said aloud, 'Good morning everyone and welcome to this specially arranged assembly just for you." She smiled widely as if nervous, but at heart, she had begun to ease out and found it easy to continue. "I'm Ms. Harold and I'm here today because of a special group of girls who persuaded Mr. Crejin yesterday to have this gathering here. These girls are seated at the back of the auditorium and they certainly deserve a lot of credit." Ms. Harold nodded towards Jenny and her friends who were seated near the walls of the auditorium. The crowd looked towards the beaming girls and applauded loudly.
Without warning and soundlessly, the big chandelier on the ceiling started to rock to and fro and suddenly, the whole room was rocking to and fro as if in a swinging motion. Ms. Harold glanced around frantically looking for something to hold on to while this earthquake lasted. She clutched an iron rail at the far corner of the stage and sat down beside it on a cushion she had grabbed from the nearby sofa. Nobody noticed how the chandelier was rocking itself. Then, all at once, it fell down, right on top of Helen, a red headed junior in the college. She had been part of the campaign that had gone to Mr. Crejin's house.
Helen shrieked as the big chandelier fell on her. Pieces of glass shattered and everyone screamed and shouted as they ran away from her body. Ms. Harold collected herself, got up and rushed to the body. Blood was splattered all over Helen's face and she was covered with splinters of glass. "Is she dead?" cried Jenny coming over to Helen's body. No one noticed that the rocking of the room had spookily, suddenly stopped. Jenny bent down and held Helen's bloody hand in hers. She felt her nerve and said relieved, "She's not yet dead. Call an ambulance somebody, quick." Ms. Harold saw Mr. Knight rush out of the room. Suddenly, the whole room became eerily quiet. No one could bring himself to talk. A voice boomed over the loudspeakers, "This is just a warning. Remember, I will not leave you."
"Somebody must be in the control room," cried Alan. She and Jenny ran to the control room to find nobody there. "He's run away," said Alan, looking over at Jenny. But Jenny was pale and pointed to the chair. Alan followed her gaze and saw a black cape drowned in blood sitting at the swinging chair.
Later that day, Jenny was sitting in the one-room apartment her foster mother owned. "Oh, I don't know. I'm just glad Helen could make it. She's so strong. I just can't assemble what would have happened if it had been not her. Someone else may have…" Jenny broke off and a tear trickled down her cheek. "Hey, hey. No tears!" said Alan coming over and rubbing Jenny's back to comfort her. Alan had come over to Ms. Harold's apartment to help them pack up. Jenny and Ms. Harold had decided that they would spend the 'Peter Hughes Time', as they had named it, at the Jazz's house. Mr. Jazz had invited them in the first place and they had not wanted to refuse the Jazz's hospitality so they had agreed.
Ms. Harold was busy packing two small bags on the kitchen counter top. "Why don't you help me instead. Jenny?" she asked stuffing a stocking into Jenny's pale brown leather bag. "Okay," replied Jenny, getting up and helping her mother to pack things up. Just as they were about to leave, Jenny hung back, picked up her 'Ghost Calling Techniques' book by Ronald Mason and stuck it into her purse. She had bought the book about two years ago but she had a feeling that she would need it.
At the Jazz's house, Ms. Harold and Jenny were ushered to a small bedroom by Alan's room. It had a small pink coloured double bed and the walls had pink and white striped wallpaper. Two, small pink lamps were lit on the tables which stood on either side of the bed. A small shelf had been fit into the corner for the bags. There were no cupboards so Jenny estimated it was a storeroom that had been transformed. Jenny put down her bag on the shelf and helped Ms. Harold set hers there, too. Then she sat down on the bed just as someone knocked. Ms. Harold opened the door. It was a stuffy room and Jenny stretched herself to open the single square window. It was too small to make the room nice and airy but Jenny opened it anyway. Through the door came Alan holding a tray with two glasses of red coloured liquid.
"Blood," muttered Jenny unconsciously. "Nope," replied Alan, smiling. "It's raspberry juice." Jenny shook her head when Alan offered the juice. "I'm cutting down on everything red," she explained. Alan just smiled again and said, "I guess I'll leave you to yourselves." She went out of the room while Ms. Harold held the door open for her. Then she sat down on the bed and contentedly sipped the juice.
"Mmm…" she said. "This thing's good." Jenny nodded her head but her mind was somewhere else. She got up and fumbled in her purse for the book she'd brought. Finally, she found it and glanced at its cover. "Be right back," she mumbled to her mother as she hurried out of the door. Ms. Harold shook her head. The 'Peter Hughes Thing' was getting to her daughter and she was just a teeny tiny bit worried about losing her daughter even before Peter Hughes could snatch her away!
That evening, Mrs. Jazz prepared a special tea for the guests. Everyone was present at the table, including Johanna and Ben, Alan's brother and sister who were twins and were both 19. Johanna picked up the chocolate cake and offered a slice to Jenny. "C'mon Jenny. Help yourself," she said. Jenny reluctantly took another slice. She had already eaten two and although the cake was undeniably tasty, she knew she would burst soon if she kept on eating. Just as she finished her cake, Ben helped himself to a sandwich. Suddenly, he realized that he had not offered any thing to any of the guests. So, he thrust the sandwich dish under Jenny's nose. "Umm, take one," he said, oblivious that Jenny had already eaten a bit too much. "It's okay. I don't need a sandwich," replied Jenny, her eyes closed. Even looking at more food was making her sick. Ben was known to be really shy so he just shrugged and put down the plate. Mr. Jazz thought that Jenny just felt bad that no one was treating her well. So, he just picked up a sandwich and put it down on her plate. Jenny felt that she was about to throw up. She looked at her mother pleadingly but Ms. Harold was deep in conversation with Mrs. Jazz. Finally, Jenny took a bite out of the sandwich. It was really nice so she stuffed it into her mouth and before anyone could offer her anything else, she excused her self and hurried to her room.
There she plopped down on the bed, head down and groaned. She was feeling really sick. She made her way to the bathroom that was down the hallway and went inside to wash her face and maybe take a bath so she'd feel fresher. She went to the sink but as soon as she looked down to spit, her eyes opened wide. Opened really wide. And then she screamed! "Aaaaaaaaaahhhhhhhhhhhhhh!"
It soon appeared obvious that the red liquid in the sink Jenny had thought was blood, was actually just tomato sauce. Really thick tomato sauce. Ben admitted that he had spurted some sauce on the sink thinking it was the sink cleaner (the nerd!) but when he went to fetch the real cleaner, he was ushered to the tea table. And obviously, he had not cleaned it up.
Everyone thought it was just a coincidence. However, Jenny knew it was no coincidence. She told her mother that she had suddenly started to feel insecure. Everyone's feeding her to death. Didn't they see her mother? It was no coincidence. Jenny was the next on Peter Hughes target list and she was sure she would die!
The next morning when Jenny woke up, she saw that her mother was already up, as usual. She went to the washroom but found it was occupied. So, she decided to find the clothes she would be wearing. She opened her bag and the thing that she found at the top was a black cardigan. She really was in a black mood. Jenny remembered that when she had been in class five, she had read a poem called Colours. It defined black as the colour of death. And Jenny was really thinking she would die. So, why not die in the colour of death? She pulled out the black cardigan and found matching jeans. But, unfortunately, she had no black top. However, she knew that her mother had one. So she pulled it out of her mother's suitcase and pulled on the clothes. She decided not to have a bath as she already had one the last night, after the blood-ketchup coincidence.
When she went to the bathroom again, it was still occupied. She banged at the door in frustration and Ben's voice came from inside. "I'm sorry. Be out any minute now." Jenny blushed in embarrassment. She really hadn't expected Ben to be in when she had banged. She quickly walked away. As she entered her room again, she found her mother sitting on the bed, very red in the face.
"Anything?" she asked, sitting down next to her mom. "No nothing. Mrs. Jazz just told me that I should try to be a bit more of the modern race. It really got me blushing…" Ms. Harold broke off. "Her nerve…" started Jenny. "You can't do anything, she's right," said Ms. Harold putting her hand on Jenny's shoulder. "But Mom…" protested Jenny but broke off as Alan appeared in the doorway.
"Umm…" she said. "Please come over for breakfast." Jenny nodded and got up. She helped her mother get up too and they both made their way towards the dining room. Then, Jenny remembered that she still had to wash. She hurried to the bathroom and was relieved to find it vacant. She made her way inside and quickly brushed her teeth with the brush she had stuck in her jeans' pocket. After that, she ran back to the dining table. Breakfast had already started and there was a lot of hush shush. Jenny who was used to eating in piece had a headache. She ate as quickly as she could and soon she got up to go to her college. It was then that Ms. Harold noticed Jenny's outfit.
"Jenny," she said sharply. "Yeah?" asked Jenny turning around sharply on her heel. "Your clothes…trying the gothic look?" she asked. "No, I'm just wearing black clothes," said Jenny. She had not been expected this and by now four pairs of eyes were on her. "Oh-okay. Take care," muttered Ms. Harold returning to her bacon. As Alan took the bus to college, Jenny decided to board that too.
Together as the girls boarded the bus, they immediately noticed that there was an emergency. Georgina, a girl who was in Jenny's Civics class lay in the middle of the bus gasping for air. There was a cut across her neck and Jenny came to know that the paramedics were on their way to the stop. Soon they were there with all sorts of emergency items. Jenny sometimes used to sit behind Georgina and she knew that Georgina had a small brother and no other family. Her brother would starve if Georgina died. Georgina known as George to the whole of college, was an athlete. She competed in all sorts of games. She was brave, strong hearted and boyish. Jenny sat down at the far end of the bus crying and wished this nightmare would be over soon.
Although, George had a severe cut, she managed to survive. The doctors said that she had been cut in such a way that was humanly impossible. Claws of an animal, probably a lion or a bear, had dug deep into her, though, no marks showed on the outer surface. That was impossible and looked like the work of a…a… a beast! However, Jenny knew quite well whose work it was!
Ms. Harold declared that Mr. Knight had been on the bus so the doctor should ask him. But, when the bus crew was investigated about Mr. Knight, the people said they had never seen him on the bus. Ms. Harold admitted she had just had had a thought and it could possibly be wrong. But still, she went over to the college and asked a man sweeping there whether he knew Mr. Knight. The man replied that he had never heard of a Mr. Knight. It was all very strange for Ms. Harold to take in and she decided to go to her office. However, she met Mr. Knight on the way but something told her not to tell this strange man of the responses she had been getting when investigated about him. Mr. Knight mumbled a hello and rushed past. Ms. Harold turned to see what the sweeping man would do as Mr. Knight rushed past. But, the sweeping man didn't take any notice what so ever, even when he had actually been facing Mr. Knight!
Ms. Harold sighed and went back, hoping no one she knew would see her. She was soon back in her green pickup. Her Peugeot 306 was in the parking near her apartment so she was using the pickup. She rolled down the windows to let out the heat and then started the engine. It rumbled to life and soon she was soaring along the highway towards her office in a nearby town.
She was at her desk around 30 minutes after and was working on some safety rules for the swimming pool. Ms. Harold worked in an architect's company called 'Good Homes' and right now they were designing a house for one of the richest person in America. A good Californian house was what they wanted and the Californian heat certainly recommended a swimming pool.
At lunch, she went to her boss and told her that she wanted to take a half-day because she had to go to her home for she was worried about her daughter. She explained the 'Peter Hughes' crisis to her boss, and her boss agreed that she could go home early that day and take the next day, off, as well.
Once on the highway again, Ms. Harold switched on the radio and tuned in to Shania Twain's song, 'And that don't impress me much!' It was a really cool one so Ms. Harold listened to it until suddenly, the song stopped and an announcer said, 'Disaster strikes! Frendonburgh College has been assassinated again. A young boy slips down the stairs that had been purposely wetted with coke. The boy has said to be drinking coke before he slipped but someone says it is the work of the inhuman being. Two other girls slipped down and one broke her collar bone, before the stairs were taken care of.'
Ms. Harold sped up because Jenny had a class on the third floor and she could have been the one who slipped down. She was driving so fast that she didn't realize she had broken the speed limit until a police car came zooming behind her. They took $50 from her on account of been driving so fast. However, when the policeman saw the sticker 'Frendonburgh College is a place for freedom!' he associated his expression of regret.
Ms. Harold had tears flowing from her eyes by now, and she sped up again, though not past the limit, and was soon near the college.
As she got off, she saw a crowd gathered near the fountain. Her heart was skipping as she neared the fountain. However, it was the Frendonburgh College Charity Fair she too had baked cookies for. She decided to go home and fetch the cookies before doing anything else. The cookies were in her flat and soon she got them out for the fair. She drove them back and handed them over to Ms. Denting who was the president of the fair.
Then, she hurried over to the inside of the college building. Another crowd was gathered in the halls, around a girl whose voice shook with fear. Ms. Harold was forced to run over, and so she did. In the center of the crowd, Jenny was standing, safe and sound, but her voice and sweat cleared that she had had a scare.
'And, Kevin was walking down the stairs drinking the coke. There was still around half of the bottle left but he put it down. I was following him closely. Suddenly, the bottle picked itself up from the ground and tilted and poured coke all over the stairs. I stopped in my tracks but was too shocked to have warned Kevin. He just kept walking and then…and then…' Jenny broke off, and a few tears shed from her eyes. She couldn't believe that she had witnessed a murder.
"Mom, today my friends will be coming. Mind?" asked Jenny, putting her clothes back in the closets. They had moved back into their apartment when they had experienced only one disastrous day with the Jazz's. Even if they were good at heart, their living style was different from the Harold's.
"No dear. I'm going out today already, so I won't mind spending a few hours out," replied Ms. Harold. As the apartment was one-roomed, the mother and daughter tried to
co-operate when one of them called guests. "Oh not for a few hours. Just for one hour," assured Jenny. "Fine, I'll be gone around two hours anyway, so I don't mind," Ms. Harold said. "What are you calling them for?" Jenny fingered her Ghost Calling book. "Nothing special," she said aloud. "Okay, but please don't leave the apartment. I'll be worried already having to leave you alone, and if you go away, I'll have to cope with heart attacks, I'm sure," Ms. Harold started to mix the batter of the cake she was baking. "Do you want me to bake a cake for you too?" she asked. "Umm no. I don't think so. Also, don't worry about me. If you want to, lock us in," re-assured Jenny, smiling as she hung her mother's clothes now in the closet. "Fine, I'll think about locking you in," said Ms. Harold, obviously pleased with the idea. "C'mon mom! Are you serious?" asked Jenny laughing. "Yeah sure. It's a good idea and it'll save me the worries," replied Ms. Harold nodding. "Mom! We're teens!" Jenny laughed again, her sandy blonde hair bouncing from side to side as her head cocked. "That's why I'm locking you in. You're teens." Ms. Harold spread the batter in the mold and finally put it into the oven. She sat down on the rocking chair to rest and glanced over at Jenny.
"Mom, no offense or anything, but we can take care of ourselves fine. We don't need motherly touches. Like locking us in. Still, if you want to lock us in, great. That'll save me getting up and locking it from inside and then opening it for you," Jenny said, getting solemn again. "Fine Jenny, fine. I will lock you in," Ms. Harold said, closing her eyes and letting her face muscles relax for a while. Jenny wanted to reply, sarcastically, maybe, but one look at her mother's peaceful face ceased her from doing so.
After half an hour, the aroma of the baking cake woke Ms. Harold from her conscious sleep, and she got up to take the cake out of the oven. The cake smelled fine and by inserting a toothpick in the middle of the cake, Ms. Harold found that it had been fully baked. She got the cake out of the mold and put it into a cardboard box labeled 'Congrats on the Kill!' Jenny guessed that Ms. Harold had a meeting with her boss or was making the cake for one of her friends or colleagues. She usually used spicy titles like that for fun. She was a very good cook and everyone knew how well she made cakes and cookies.
When she was finally done with decorating the cake and the box, she put the box in a bag and told Jenny that she'd be leaving soon. Jenny nodded and kept sitting on her seat. She couldn't start the preparations for her guest's arrival unless her mother was gone. As soon as her mother stepped out of the bathroom Jenny got up. She wanted her mother to go and forget about locking her and her friends up. But, instead she sat there and said that she'd wait until Jenny's friends arrived. Jenny could do nothing except nod because she knew her mother to be a firm woman.
After about ten minutes, three of Jenny's friends came. They included George, Alan and Stephanie. Stephanie was a freshman in the college. However, everyone had gotten to know her as she was warm and was friendly as well. She had hazel eyes and light brown fuzzy hair. After about three more minutes, the other two of Jenny's friends arrived. They were Debra and Michelle. They were both in Jenny's math class and Jenny liked them. They both stuck together like twins. It was strange how they spoke for each other and how you never saw one of them, you always saw them both.
Ms. Harold locked the door considering that five girls, five teenagers, alone in her house, was going to be dangerous. Not that doors could stop ghosts but well… As soon as her mother stepped out of the door, Jenny stood up and drew the curtains of the window. She then switched off all the lights and took out a torch to read her books.
"Ooh," Stephanie whispered. Jenny took out her book and showed it to her friends. "Umm, what are we really going to be doing?" asked Alan, her voice shaking. She glanced at her watch. It said 9:00 p.m. Even so, it was so dark outside as if a storm was coming. This thought had only just crossed her mind when some clouds rumbled and rain began to pour in heavy showers. Alan put her hands on her ears and stared into space. George waved her arms across Alan's eyes. "Hey Alan, wake up!" Alan murmured something and looked at George. "What?" she asked? "Well, in answer to your last question all I can say is 'what the hell do you think we're gonna do?' Call Peter Hughes ghost of course!" George cried. Alan and Stephanie sighed. "No way!" Alan said. "I'm outa this." "Please!" Jenny protested. "We need at least six people for this ghost calling. You've got to help us!" Alan reluctantly sat back down.
"Cross your legs and let's sit in a circle. We are supposed to be holding hands," Debra read from the book. She put it down in her lap as she joined hands with Jenny and Michelle. Michelle joined hands with Debra and Stephanie. Jenny joined hands with George and Debra. George joined hands with Alan and Jenny. Alan joined hands with George and Stephanie and Stephanie joined hands with Michelle and Alan. Finally they were all sitting cross-legged on the floor in a perfect circle.
"Now," Debra read. "We need a glass and four candles." Jenny got up and took the glass and the candles she had put on the kitchen counter. She also got a coin, A bowl of water and matches. Then she sat back down. "Put the bowl of water in the middle and surround it with the four candles. Light the candles and put the coin in the water. Then chant the spell given below. When the coin starts to shake, cover it with a glass. The spirit is in the coin and you've captured it." Jenny did what Debra said. She put the glass within easy reach and said she'd capture the spirit. "We can't break our circle, also we need to keep our eyes closed and concentrate as we chant the spell," Michelle added. She put the book in the middle and they all started chanting.
"Oh ghost 'o' ghost, do come up here, Peter Hughes we need you near, Oh ghost 'o' ghost, do come up here, Peter Hughes we need you near, Oh ghost 'o' ghost, do come up here, Peter Hughes we need you near, Oh ghost 'o' ghost, do come up here, Peter Hughes we need you near…" They had to chant six times, but the clouds rumbled so loudly and lightening brightened the sky for a moment. Stephanie opened her eyes and stared in fear outside. She broke the circle and shrieked. "No!" Jenny looked up in frustration and shouted, "Why did you break the circle, silly?" Stephanie shivered and looked down. "Sorry," she muttered. "Okay," Jenny said. "Let's start again."
They all started again and when they came at the sixth chant, they started shivering. Even Jenny and George were shivering from head to toe. They stopped and opened their eyes, all staring at the coin intently. Sure enough, about ten seconds later, the coin started shaking. The water started to splash around the bowl. The candles suddenly went down. Jenny's torch had already been switched off, so everything went pitch black. Even so, the coin was shining so much that it's light illuminated the surroundings. Jenny grabbed the glass and got the coin, shivering all over. Her hand shook with some sort of current when the glass touched the water and water splashed.
The friends sat there for a long time before a voice came from the glass. "Let me free, hey." It was the hoarse voice and when the girls heard it they wanted to run away. "Who are you?" asked George, with as much courage as she could. "Peter Hughes," came the voice. "We want you to leave us teenagers alone," said Michelle. "No!" cried the spirit. "Please, or we won't let you out," added Stephanie. "Don't," replied the spirit, sarcastically. Jenny motioned her friends to be quiet. The coin was shivering from side to side, trying it's level best to get out, but it couldn't.
Five minutes ticked by and nothing happened. Then the spirit said, "I give up." "Well, then you promise you won't do anything to us," Debra said. "I wouldn't. I just want to get those teenagers," he said. "It was an accident, and you could never re-born man," insisted Jenny. "It was not an accident," the spirit said. "Then what happened?" asked Alan. Everyone was starting to ease out now. "Those teenagers were actually representing a human safety group. Their major project was to tell people how to save themselves from death. In Fridgy, a village where I lived, it became famous that I was learning how to re-born man. That human safety group is from Frendonburgh. They killed me on purpose because my success would close their club and the President was just going to give them $1000. They would get none if their club closed," the spirit paused. "That's why I want to kill them. When someone like us poor do get dreams, they're shattered," the spirit seemed to cry. "Don't worry, but what can we do for you?" asked Jenny. "You couldn't re-born man, anyway." "I know. It was just a disguise for a puppet show I was planning. It was a surprise for my family and everyone. I could earn loads of money through that," the spirit said. "Sir, we know you're right but, how could we now kill those people?" asked Alan. "How can we help you?" "Just set me free and before that tell me about the club. If you help me, I promise you that I won't hurt you. I only killed Kevin because I had seen him driving the car. Can you tell me about the club?" the spirit asked. "Sure, can you tell me the name of the club?" asked Jenny. "H.S.C.," the spirit replied briefly. Jenny's breath caught in her throat. "But, my mother is the president," she muttered. "She'll have to die," the spirit said. "Or you all have to."
"Jenny, we'll die. Save your mother," whispered Alan. Jenny knew her mother had given the order for the killing or knew about it at least. She had written, 'Congrats on the Kill', on the cake. It was her. "Go kill my mother," she said as she raised the glass. "After all, she's a foster mother." The coin escaped and the spirit said, "Thanks!"
"Jenny," Alan cried. "She wasn't my mother. I guess paper relations are not as thick as blood relations. I'm ready to sacrifice my hypocrite mother for a race of new better people!"
Jenny got up the next morning. Obviously, her mother had died the night before in an accident. That was what Jenny thought, anyway, as her mother hadn't come home. Jenny was sad and wanted to keep crying but still. She opened up the newspaper, which had been pushed in the door. Jenny expected to see the headlines, 'Peter Hugh's other victim' or something like that but she was shocked to see them. 'Peter Hugh kills six girls who tried to capture him! He declares that they tried to come equal with the evil!'
Peter Hughes was an evil man. He had no intention of doing anything written in the books or as explained in newspapers. He was the writer of all the books and newspapers, himself. He was the Evil. And Jenny had joined with the evil. She wanted to come equal with him and she was not as clever. She lost, she lost miserably. No one competes with the Evil. Or you die!
This story is written by me, ShahBano. I hope you enjoyed it. I convey my special thanks to everyone who helped me through writing it. My friends who encouraged me in school and at home, especially to Khaula Husnain who proved to be an eager friend throughout I wrote this story. This story is written for pure pleasure and should not be taken seriously.