“Lizzy, it’s me.” I said into the phone.
After the little scene out in the clearing and after I had regained my composure I made the decision to go back into the house to confront Jack, or whatever he said his name was. When I made it back inside I went right back to the office hoping he was there so I could try and apologize for my behavior but he wasn’t. Instead I was met with a dying fire and no intention to get back to the book I had left sitting on the coffee table. I thought about exploring the rest of the house in search of him but then the phone sitting on the desk caught my eye and next thing I knew I was dialing the only number I knew by heart.
“Melody what the hell!” Elizabeth screeched into the other end of the line. The sound of her voice relaxed me more than I thought it would. “Where are you? I’ve been trying to call you for the last couple of days. Why haven’t you been picking up and who’s number are you calling from anyways?”
I chuckled. I missed the erratic behavior of my best friend so much. Her rambling continued and I had to hold the phone a little ways from my ear so it didn’t turn to mush. My hand still throbbed and I was positive now it was broken but I didn’t care. I just wanted to be right here talking to Elizabeth until the sun came up. I had so much to share with her and she would not believe anything I was going to say. But I knew in order to do that I would have to speak to her in person so right now I just needed her to know that I was still alive and hadn’t forgotten about her yet.
“Lizzy look, I don’t know how long I can talk to you. I just wanted to let you know that I’m okay and I’m going to try and find a way home.” I said, interrupting her.
“Find your way home? Mel, is everything alright where are you?”
“I don’t exactly know and yes everything is alright, kind of. Look when I get back I’ll explain everything to you okay. Just do me a favor and don’t say anything to anyone. I don’t really want my family to know you talked to me. I’m pretty sure I messed up badly and they’ll probably kill me when I get back so lets hold up on planning my funeral ok.”
“Mel I will be damned if I let anything happen to you. Of course I’m not going to say something to your parents. Besides, they probably wouldn’t even give me the time of day. It’s just so good to hear your voice.”
We sat there on the phone for a few moments longer, neither saying anything, just taking solace in each other's company. “I love you Elizabeth.” I said, using her full name. It wasn’t something I did often but it felt right at this moment.
“I love you too Melody. Be safe.”
With that I hung up and deleted the call from the recent call log. I didn’t want anyone to know I called her, afraid they would somehow trace the number back and take her too. Looking down at my hand again I wasn’t sure if I would be able to one hundred percent keep my promise to her of being safe but I was determined to try. Just as I was determined to get back to Falkirk and hug her again. I put the phone back onto the desk and turned to walk out of the office. I had to find Jack or anyone really. Someone needed to look at my hand before the pain got any worse.
The house was large, larger than any house I had ever been in. I had been walking around for roughly twenty minutes and I was yet to find another living soul. As it turned out there were multiple bedrooms down the hallway from the office and each one was set up roughly the same. It reminded me of a hotel. Which was admittedly weird for a home but at this point weird wasn’t beginning to cover any of it. I also passed another, less formal office with multiple desks and what looked to be a large conference room. Still there were no people occupying any of the spaces. It unnerved me, the emptiness of the house. I had never felt so lost in my entire life. Even when I had run through the woods on the night of my birthday. At least then I had some inclination to where I could be or to where I could be headed. Here it was like endless hallways and empty rooms.
Opening what felt like the millionth door I stepped into a large kitchen and the smell of something divine filled my nose. My stomach growled, reminding me that I hadn’t in fact had anything to eat in a while. I took a moment and breathed in the wonderful scent. With a quick investigation I found a pie baking in the oven, its golden crust bubbling with a dark sticky syrup. Opening the door a little I sniffed the air again, it was blueberry my favorite. The gnawing hunger bit at my stomach again and I had to fight back the urge to stick a finger into the syrup and taste the pie. I was so hungry.
“Hello there. The pie will be done in about an hour dear, why don’t you have a seat and I can make you a quick snack to tide you over.”
I jumped back away from the oven at the sound of the gentle voice behind me. When I turned around I was met with the face of an older woman who stood against the counter. She had a smile on her face that was stretched from ear to ear and she watched me closely. Unlike Jack who seemed to look at me with cold, possessive eyes this woman looked at me with a kindness that made me choke back a sob. The last time someone looked at me like that I was saying goodbye to my grandmother.
“Don’t be afraid dear, it's okay.” The older woman continued. “Besides, it’s been a while since I’ve been able to cook for someone new. Maybe you’ll actually appreciate my cooking.” She chuckled.
She started walking towards me and I watched as she gracefully maneuvered through the kitchen. There was a regality about her that made me think of royalty. She was also extremely beautiful. With long chestnut hair down to the mid of her back and green eyes, she looked like an older version of the man I had argued with earlier. I wondered if she was somehow related to him, to Jack. The woman was tall too, almost as tall as Jack if that was even possible. She towered over me and I had gotten used to being one of the tallest girls in our school so the sight made me a little nervous. I bit my lip as I tried to think of an acceptable excuse for my snooping but I couldn’t think of anything.
The hunger got the better of me. “I would appreciate something to eat very much. Thank you.” I said, sitting down on one of the bar stools at the counter.
“It’s so refreshing to see a new face in BlueHaven, especially one as beautiful as yours.”
I watched her rumble through the fridge, pulling out what looked like the fixings for a sandwich. My mouth started to water and I had to swallow back the drool that started to blanket my tongue. Her hands moved swiftly as she assembled the most delectable looking sandwich I’d ever seen and when she set it in front of me I couldn’t help but dig in like a starved child. The woman smiled again, a light laugh filling the quiet kitchen. She watched me eat, occasionally picking at a plate of fruit that she had set down next to me also.
“Slow down child,” she giggled, “the food isn’t going anywhere. No need to wolf it down like an animal.”
I choked, looking up at her. Was she making fun of me, did she know what Jack and I had talked about outside. Was this all just a part of the game that I was sure was going on here? Suddenly I lost my appetite and pushed the plate away, leaving the last half. Picking up the napkin she gave me as well I wiped my face.
“Thank you. I think I’m done now, you were right, that was delicious and I appreciate your time.” I said, scooting the stool away from the counter.
“Oh dear, I said the wrong thing. Please forgive me child.” The woman stood straight, moving to clear the plate away. “I didn’t mean it like that sweet heart. I know you must be starving after sleeping the last few days but I didn’t mean to make you uncomfortable about it.” She scrapped the leftovers in the trash and ran the plate under the water from the faucet. I hesitated to leave.
“I’m just so used to watching the boys eat everything in sight like monsters I wasn’t thinking.” She continued, “Like I said, it has been a long time since we’ve had a new face around her. I’m a little rusty on my etiquette.”
“It’s ok really. I just, I feel like the wolf comment was…”
I stopped, unsure how I was going to continue. I didn’t want to sound stupid in front of this woman. I mean I didn’t even know if I believed everything Jack had told me and if it all was a lie then I was probably overreacting.
“What wolf comment?” She asked, turning around to face me again.
“I’m sorry just forget it.” I sighed, moving closer to the counter again.
That was it. I was just overreacting. There’s no way she was as crazy as Jack. She probably didn’t even know what he had told me. I just needed to think things through and not bite the hand of the one person who had shown me genuine kindness since I woke up here. It was nice to be here in this kitchen with her, it reminded me of the times Elizabeth and I would sit with her mom in their kitchen. We’d watch her cook and attempt to steal pieces of food in silent giggles. Oh god, I needed to stop thinking like that. Like I would never see my best friend again. That shit wasn’t healthy.
“Mommy, mommy hurry. I think something is wrong with Jackie, he won’t come out of his room and I heard something break. It's scaring me.”
I watched as the cutest little girl ran into the kitchen and grabbed onto the leg of the woman. Her breathing was frantic and she was starting to sob.
“Goodness, not again.” The woman said as she picked up the little girl and fled from the room.