1

The cool October breeze met me when I stepped off the bus. It sped away, leaving me in a cloud of exhaust.I coughed,wafting it away while I walked to the door and opened it. The house was silent,so I know Mom's at work.I threw my bag onto the couch and went straight to the computer. My friend,Renee,wasn't at school today,and I wanted to check on her by Tinychat.I waited until her cheery face popped onto the screen.

''Hey!''she trilled,blowing a piece of brown hair from her eyes.''Was it really boring without me?Did you miss me,Nicki?''Wow,she must've been really bored.I nodded at her,causing her to smile very big.''Naw!Anyway,I missed the bus and my brother wouldn't drive me to school,so I stayed. What happened?''

''Not much. We have homework in Math,did a lab in Science,played with volleyballs in P.E., Library is the usual,and we had a sub in Social Studies.''

''Wow...Oh,did you hear about the Hanson Manor?''

''What about it?''

The Hanson Manor was a luxurious mansion up the road from where I live and has been abandoned for nearly 10 years. Apparently ,the owners were murdered one day,but the bodies were never discovered to be proven true.

''Well,some neighbors are reporting seeing someone in there. My dad's checked them out but found nothing.''

Her dad came into the room,still dressed in his police noticed the camera,waved at me,then turned to her. After a couple minutes of mumbling,he left and she came back.''Hey,I gotta go. My dad wants me to help Derek with supper.I swear we have bigger-''

Mom walked inside,carrying an armful of groceries.''Hey,see ya tomorrow,''I said before closing the laptop. Mom handed me some bags and I set them on the counter. Then, she sent me out to get the rest. As I skipped outside,I noticed something at the Hanson Manor: the steel gate opened,waited a few minutes,and someone left. Mom's yell interrupted me and I finished getting the bags out. I plopped back on the computer and looked up random things.

Minutes later,my sister, Carrie, pulls up. To mostt people,she looks like a model that just stepped off the catwalk. With her blonde hair,always wavy,and her blue eyes,I sometimes think that she was adopted. But one thing I was certain about would scare off her boyfriends:she gets what she wants. And today was going to be proven. She saw me at the computer and said,''I need it. Get off.''

I turned around at her.''No and you can't make me,''I growled,narrowing my eyes at her. She smiled devishly and,without warning, pushed me out of the chair,sending me crashing to the floor. She sat down,and rolled up to the computer. Sometimes,I wanted my own laptop. Instead of arguing at her like I usually do,I retreated to my room up the stairs and watched SpongeBob Squarepants.Since this was the only thing on,besides Here Comes Honey Boo Boo,I decided it was good enough.