The girl smiled as she looked down at the application form she was filling
out for a library card. The lady behind the big oak desk glanced sternly at
her then returned to typing, her skeletal fingers flying over the
keyboard. Taking another application from the stack in the corner she walks
to the far end of the room and sits at a table by the window. Outside it
was bright and hot ,inside was rather warm and stuffy, most of the books
had never left the shelves .
Returning her attention to the application form the girl began to fill her
name into the blank. Claudia M. Evernsfield, her hand writing was large and
decorative. Sighing she looked back at the first form she had began filling
out. In the slot for name she had written Khalia Lorenai Delacreu. But that
life was gone now.
She ran a hand through her long brown hair, and sighed once again twirling
a long lock in her fingers then placing it in her mouth. She continued on
with the form. It had taken her so long to memorize her knew name(and she
still made mistakes ) let alone her address and phone number.
It had taken a while but she was finally done. Stretching ,she picked up
her belongings and the form and walked groggily back to the Librarians
desk. The frail woman behind the desk was still typing ,the clacking sound
was loud in the empty building. Claudia stood for a while debating on
whether to clear her throat or tap the little bell on the counter. She knew
the woman saw her standing there but as to why she didn't say anything
Claudia had no idea. Finally she gave in to impatience and sneezed quite
loudly. The sound seemed to echo but the librarian didn't pay any attention
to the girl. If anything her insessive typing seemed to quicken and grow
louder. Leaning over the counter Claudia tried to get a look at the
computer screen around the woman's head.
"Just leave it on the counter ." Came the woman's croaking voice as Claudia
began to walk away. Pissed Claudia returned to the counter and laid the
paper down where the woman had directed .With all intention of telling her
off Claudia opened her mouth but was at a loss for words. The woman had
left the her chair and was standing clear across the room. A bit spooked
Claudia decided it was best that she shut up and leave .
Outside the dusty old building the sky was bright and clear. It took a
while for her eyes to adjust but Claudia was just glad to be outside in the
somewhat fresh air. Her blue mongoose mountain bike was still chained to
the railing of the stairs. The bike rack had been full when she came here
earlier. Surprisingly the bikes were still there although she had been the
only one inside. Unchaining her bike she mounted and turned towards North
High street. It was hot but when she got moving the wind cooled her off.
She had moved to a rather nice neighbor hood on the upscale part of town.
Her parents were still back in the city trying to close up all the loose
ends they'd left behind when they abandoned their old life . She didn't
care for them much as it was .They were always gone off to one place or
The large peach house with a wrap around porch sat at the top of hill.
Flower baskets garnished the verandas of the top floor. The porch was over
grown with wild flowers and morning glories hung out over their pots
dangling from the ceiling. A lazy three blade fan stirred around the hot
air causing the flowers to sway and the hinges to creak noisily. Somewhere
up the block a dog barked then quieted down.
Claudia left her bike in the front garden by the fountain and wandered
around to the back yard. Hoping the small white picket fence she hiked the
deserted ant hill and stumbled through waist deep weeds. She knew the large
brown snake would be sunning its self on the rock behind the clothes line,
the one legged raven in the mango tree croaked out a welcome and hopped
down to stand in her path. Smiling she fished a cracker out of her back
pack and tossed it to the toll keeper before climbing the three broken
steps to the back door.
On the back porch her parents kept Layla and Mooba their African gray
parrots. When the screen banged closed the startled birds let out a squawk
then began their senseless chatter. Walking past their cage Claudia
entered the house through the kitchen and closed the door behind her.
Inside was dark and dust motes floated around the empty living room off to
the left. Through the window over the kitchen sink the girl could see the
large snake slide off the rock and watched his path marked by the twitching
of the tall grass until he slithered out of sight behind the tool shed.
A noise from the foyer startled her ,turning she saw a dark shadow moving
across the living room towards her. Terrified but for a moment the girl
sighed and glared at the green eyed menace approaching ,toenails clicking
on the wood floor.
"Mojo!" she exclaimed lowering a hand for the large dog to sniff. "I didn't
know you were back." Sighing she sank to her knees and wrapped her arms
around the animals neck and dug her fingers into the thick scruff of his
neck as he licked her face.
Two hours later the phone rang, a loud echo in the almost empty house. The
rest of the furniture was still on the way but Claudia's room was fully
intact ,only a box containing her collection of stuffed animals were
The phone was in the foyer by the front door. Racing down stairs two at a
time she picked up on the sixth ring .Out of breath she panted out a rather
weak "hello?" a piercing tone issued from the phone then the line went
dead, not even the sound of static accompanied the tone. Pissed, Claudia
slammed the phone back on the hook and started back up the stairs. Mojo
stood on the landing above her, his large head drooping .As she passed
Claudia scratched his neck ruff playfully. He followed her back to her
brightly lit room and flopped down on the circular rug in the middle of the
The room was quite large. The bay window was piled high with pillows and
small stuffed animals a little blue journal with a silver dragon embossed
on the cover sat amongst the bears. Settling herself down Claudia began to
write once more ,her large handwriting filling up the small pages.