This is hilarious laughed Aneta as she looked at the morning paper while i grabbed my coffee, sleep still in my brain. I yawned ignoring her as i put some of my favorite creamer in my cup. Bringing the steaming cup up to my nose to smell it hoping it would help clear some of the fog from my eyes, i turned around and leaned on the counter to look at my beautiful friend who was still laughing as she continued reading what she declared to be hilarious. she was very beautiful and i was very jelouse of her. she knew it too. she had stunning straight long blond hair that she could do anything with compared to my unmanageable curly auburn hair. she was also sports illustrated front cover thin with a perfect face and brown eyes. My coffee hadn't kicked in yet and i hated her in that moment, looking amazing when i knew she just rolled out of bed. I put a hand to my own head and let out a annoyed breath as i felt a tangled rats nest.
she broke her concentration on the paper to look at me. Her full lips curled up into a smile to reveal perfect white teeth. I really did hate her right now and needed to finish this coffee before i threw it at her. " I can't help the looks my momma gave me" she said with a wink, knowing just what i was thinking. It was a conversation
we had a lot.
I sat down at the table across from her both hands on my coffee cup soaking in all the heat that was coming off of it, It was a very cold spring morning. Aneta turned her attention back to the paper and took it upon herself to think i would be just as fascinated as her with what she was reading. "The Barrett family is smoking crack" she said " Mainly the Barrett brothers" she went on her full attention back on the paper as she read the article for most likely the 3rd time.
"They must be bored with finding their own victims to kill because now they are asking for people to come to them to get rapped and killed"
I looked at her now. My own interest peeked.
she went on smiling more now knowing i was interested too "They put an add in the paper looking for anyone who might be brave enough to live with them for 6 months, They will get a reward after the 6 months is over. But you have to agree to their terms and also sign something basically saying you won't talk about what happened to you. Probably because you won't come out of it alive, They really are a special kind of crazy!"
The Barrett family was well known in our small town and not in a good way. The family themselves has been here for generations. Its said they are one of the founding families and everyone speculates thats why they get away with so much. Ever generation gets crazier and crazier. They own over 500 acres just outside of town and its said that all the family lives on the property still. I know from pictures there is one very large house but i don't know if they all live in the same house. No one even knows how many family members there are. All anyone know is there is the mom, dad, grandpa, one daughter and two brothers. But its rumored to be more living there.
When people and animals go missing around the town the Barretts are the ones that are blamed even thought they have never been charged with anything. The brothers themselves are known for being abusive, with bad anger issues. Everyone gives them their space, thats for sure. I remember seeing them a couple times at the store. Everyone did their best to keep far away from them. Never making eye contact. I thought it was silly. That alone was giving that family more power then they deserved. People gasped as i went down the same isle as them once when i was at the store, I needed cereal and they where not going to scare me away from that. I don't know which brother it was that i had to reach around to grab my box of cheerios but i do remember the look he gave me.
He was hansom in the rugged way. They must have been heading somewhere nice because he was wearing a button down shirt that was tucked into dark grey dress pants that fit him in all the right places and held up by a very nice and probably expensive belt. You could tell under that matching dark gray suit jacket he was very fit. Living out on that 500 acres must provide a great workout. He was much taller then me but i didn't know how much because i tried not to look at him to long. One look into his piercing blue eyes was enough for me, i wanted to run out of that isle. But i didn't. I just let me skin crawl as i remembered all the stories about them.
He has an amused look on his face. Like i was a fun riddle to him. I could see his jaw clench under that sruff of his 5 o'clock shadow as he smiled at his amusement. That encounter was a good 3 months ago but it was still burned into my brain. Just something about that look that sent shock ways threw my body even now just thinking about it.
"Mandy!….. Yo earth to Mandy" I faintly heard Aneta say as i was blinking out of my daydream. " I don't know where you want just then but i have to get ready for work or i will be late. Are you working today?" she asked as she got up and put her bowl in the sink.
"No i have the next three days off thankfully" I responded as my brain was struggling to come back to reality. I needed more coffee.
" Well don't party to hard then" she said with a wink, giving me a kiss on the check as she walked out of the kitchen. I laughed because we both knew how that wasn't going to happen. My idea of partying is curling up on the couch to a book and a glass of wine. My life sucked!
I leaned over in my seat to make sure Aneta was out of sight and then grabbed the paper she had just been reading. It was a couple days old which wasn't surprising. I flipped to the center page where the classified were and sure enough there was a long listing that took up almost three long columns.
'The Barrett family is opening their doors for the first time in 400 years to anyone who thinks they can withstand 6 months of living on our property and obeying my our family rules and laws'
i scoffed at 'laws' before i continued reading
'the individual must be of sound mind and body, between the age of 25-35 and willing to sign a none disclosure agreement for the time you remain here. In return for giving us your life for 6 month we will make sure all your affairs in the outside world are taken care of. If you can and do withstand the 6 months at the Barrett estate you will be handsomely rewarded and free to tell your story if you so choose. Are you looking for a change and challenge in your life? then this can be your perfect opportunity. We will be taking applications…..' I stopped reading and shook my head in disbelieve. What game are they playing? Is the gene pool getting a little swampy out there and they are looking to expand their horizons. Or maybe Aneta was right and they where getting tired of hunting for their prey so they are letting their prey come to them. I am sure there are 100s of people applying to this who are just as crazy and screwed up as that family.
I laughed to myself as i threw the paper back on the table. It sure would bring some excitement to my life and lord knows i am strong willed and stubborn. They would never be able to brake me down. I shook my head again and more giggles came from my mouth as i stood up and headed to the bathroom. I sighed as i looked in the mirror. My sleep ridden auburn hair that i put up in a bun last night was a mess as some of my curls tried to escape their prison on top of my head. i wasn't fat but i had curves for days and tried to hide them most the time with overly baggy cloths. I wiped at the remaining mascara i didn't take off last night that made its way under my hazel eyes making my eye bags look even more black then they really where. I really had to start washing my face when i get home from work. I was just so tired though most nights thats washing my face was the last thing on my mind. I didn't particularly like my job as a hostess at a local restaurant but it paid amazingly and i had benefits. I took one last look in the mirror and thought screw it, its my day off, i don't have anyone to impress.
Aneta poped her head in startling me. "Hey scaredy pants, i am off. see you tomorrow?"
"Yeah" I responded only slightly recovering from her fright. Man my life was lame! I thought about that add promising adventure but quickly shock it off.
I went to the living room and plopped down on the couch, pulling the blanket that was on there over my to warm up. I grabbed my phone that i left on the end table last night and was disappointed by the lack of notifications. My heart dropped a little too, maybe no one cared. I looked in the kitchen at the table where the paper sat taunting me. I exhaled loudly and got up, walking over to the table i grabbed the paper and read threw the add again. It was put out a couple days ago so i highly doubt they were still looking for someone. Plus they probably had over a 100 applications. People were nosy and crazy like that. But I clicked on my phone and opened my email anyway. I was curious. I opened a new email and put in the email address that was given in the add. I didn't know what i was doing or going to write but i just started to let the words flow from my fingers.
'Hello Barrett family,
My name is Mandy, I am applying to the add you put in the paper. I am a 29 year old female who has a pretty boring and uneventful life so it would be easy for my to drop everything and try out your 6 months challenge. I am of sound mind and body' which might be debatable being i am writing this email i thought but kept that to myself and continued with the email 'and honestly would be up for a little challenge in my life. I would love to say i actually did something fun or interesting in my life for once. I have no problem signing your none disclosure agreement. I am sure i can also handle any challenge that is thrown my way in the 6 months i would be staying with you.
I sincerely hope you consider me for this position, Mandy. '
Before i could even think or question myself i hit send. I stared at my phone blankly for longer then i thought i should. I have lost my mind.