We laughed as we sat on the roof. Happiness, for once, filled me. Rose and I played and pushed each other around on the roof of her large, 3 storey mansion. She was so pretty, her thick blonde hair, always tied up in a red ribbon, and bright blue eyes. How we managed to climb up there, I don’t know. But it was worth it. As the sun was setting, we ran about on the roof top, right up to the chimneys. She pushed me and I slipped, but I stood there and steadied myself. We laughed and screamed. We were the best of friends in Dorset, we got along so well.
I pushed her harder and we laughed even louder, but she couldn’t steady herself. She slipped down and down, cutting and bruising herself on the slates, until she wasn’t on the roof any longer. I panicked and cried and cried until I had to go back inside. That was the last time I saw Rose, and her family. They wouldn’t even let me to the funeral. I thought I would never find happiness again.
Two Years Later ***
I started at Pine Crest High school one summer ago. I hated it there. My family moved as my father lost his job, he had an argument with the manager and because of what happened to Rose. No one wanted us in Dorset any more. Mum wasn’t too happy about it either; she liked living in Dorset. But the only place Dad could find a job was having his own book shop, here in Pine Crest. Mum loved the idea of it, so we moved immediately. They didn’t ask for my opinion on the topic though. Pine Crest was rather empty, if you ask me, but I guess I was used to the big city. I didn’t know if I liked it at the time. Romeo, (my cat) certainly didn’t.
The cottage was gorgeous though. It had that old, cosy feeling about it. I found a lovely room, small enough and on the third floor, to hide away in. Perfect. Once I put all my things in it, the room looked so pretty, it was untrue. The slanted roof leading to a window with an amazing view of the sunset every evening set the scene so much.
No one liked me at the school. I felt so lonely. I was so different from everybody else; with my sharp green eyes and dark, curly hair. Everyone else has blonde or brown coloured hair. The most embarrassing thing must have been having to walk into that class, everybody looking at me. I went as red as a cherry. I had to sit next to this boy named Zack. He was horrible; he sneered at me and bullied me for being so different. He was the worst person I had ever met. It felt as though my parents had forgotten about me too, they were completely in awe of each other, not noticing when I came home from school, or went to school. Not even when I went up to bed. It was as if I was invisible, and no one could see me. That was, until I met Annie.
“Brooke, may I see you after form please,” Miss Smith said, as we sat down quietly for form. Great. In trouble already, for what? Everybody turned around to look at me, which made me go even redder, if that was possible. I had only been there a couple of weeks.
“Certainly, Miss,” I replied nervously.
“Don’t worry Brooke, you are not in trouble.”
Phew. At least I hadn’t done anything wrong. I didn’t really like all the attention, so I tried to be as quiet as I could, really. Zack didn’t sit with me anymore. He moved to sit next to one of his friends. Just because I am shy doesn’t mean I am antisocial. Then I had to sit all alone at the back of the classroom. Joy.
I stayed behind as Miss Smith had told me, it was really awkward. “I see you are settling in well Brooke,” she said.
“Yes, Miss,” No.
“And you have made so many new friends,”
“Loads, Miss,” None.
“So you like this school?”
“I love it, Miss,” I hate it.
“I am glad you do, Brooke. Thank you for taking your time to see me. I will give you a note so you won’t get told off for being late in P.E.”
“Thank you, Miss.” Yes. That meant I could be as late as I wanted for P.E. I hated that subject with a passion. Miss Smith scribbled the note and I closed the door behind me, as I trudged slowly down the corridor. I sat in the changing rooms for a bit, until there was five minutes to go until the end of lesson.
The bell rang for the end of the day and I swiftly walked out of the school, to enjoy my walk home. It started to rain as I got down the second alley way. Do you ever get the feeling of someone watching you? I had it at that moment. I stopped, in the middle of the road and looked behind me. No one was there. I kept walking. I heard a voice. It whispered my name. I moved swiftly, without looking back that time.
“Hi.” A voice said. I looked around nervously, to see that someone was walking beside me. She came from nowhere. How odd. She was ever so pale and had thick, curly, blonde hair with a red ribbon tied like an Alice band. She was really pretty; Large blue eyes and soft red lips.
“Oh, hello,” I replied. “Who are you?”
“I know. I am in form 9e, I saw you in assembly.”
She looked about two years younger than me, but happened to be in the same year. It seemed like I knew her, she looked so familiar.
“Oh. Nice to meet you, Annie,” I replied.
“So. Where about do you live, anyway?”
“Silver Birch House. And you?”
“Acorn House, we live next door to each other!”
“We could be best friends,”
“Yes, definitely,” She wanted to be my best friend?
“Well, bye then,” She said happily.
We got to our street. As I walked down my path, I watched her walked down hers. How peculiar. As I unlocked the door, I watched her walked through hers. Literally. As if there was no door there. She hadn’t opened it. I thought it must have been my imagination; I needed to get to bed.
I woke up that morning to a lovely sunrise, making my room glow orange. It was beautiful. I got up and looked into the mirror. My hair was such a mess, strands of hair going in every direction. I looked in the mirror again and saw a face. It was a pale face, almost transparent. I quickly turned around and found Annie right behind me. She hid something behind her back. I couldn’t see it as I turned around.
“How did you get in here?” I screamed at her.
“The front door was open,” She laughed.
“Brooke, are you okay? What got in your room?” Mum yelled up the stairs. I panicked.
“Oh, um, don’t worry Mum, just a spider,” I told her. “Annie, you shouldn’t creep up on people like that, I thought you were a ghost!” I whispered that time.
“I-I’m sorry. I’m just not used to people. I don’t really um, get out much.” Annie said, looking worried. “And, there is no such thing as um, gh-ghosts,”
“Don’t worry, just don’t do it again.”
I walked to school with Annie and somehow, she was allowed to sit with me in my form room. I wondered how she managed to get away with it, and just walk across the school and sit in my form. Miss Smith didn’t really notice her though. I talked to her all the way through form. It was quite fun actually.
“Brooke, can you stop talking to yourself please? It is putting me off the register.”
“I wasn’t, Miss. It was obvious I was talking to An-,”
“I don’t care what you were talking about. You are interrupting me.”
Why did she think I was talking to myself? I was clearly talking to Annie.
I walked down the front of my class as bell went for end of day. I was the last one out.
“Brooke, you know, it is odd to see people talking to themselves,” Miss Smith said, worriedly.
“I wasn’t talking to myself! I was talking to my friend Annie. She was sitting right next to me.”
“Brooke, there was no one next to you. I promise.”
“You probably couldn’t see Annie as Zack’s head was in front of her.”
“Well, maybe. I hope you’re okay. Off you go.” She said anxiously. She waved her hand, as if to dismiss. I walked out of the door.
As I walked through the door, mum gave me a hot chocolate and had me sit down for a chat. I wondered why, but I guessed it was because she wanted to catch up with me as I hadn’t talked to her in a few days.
“How is everything, sweetie,” she asked kindly.
“It’s really good thanks,” I replied.
“You made any friends?” She asked worriedly.
“As a matter of fact I have. Her name is Annie,” I said, getting frustrated. My face reddened as I got angrier. Why was everyone questioning me today?
“I had a phone call today, from your form tutor, Miss Smith; she said that there is no student registered as Annie.” Mum said. She sipped her coffee calmly, crossing one leg over the other.
“Well, there must be. I talk to her all the time and she lives next door!” I said angrily. I stood up quickly, and without meaning to I dropped half of my hot chocolate down my lap.
“Oh, lovely to hear. Maybe Miss Smith was wrong. Maybe she can come round our house? Careful, honey, don’t spill all of your drink!”
“Yes! What a brilliant idea mum! She can come round today, and then I can prove it.” I said happily, but sly. I was flustered and began to walk up the stairs.
“Ok then, just be sure to introduce her to me.” I heard my mum say as I stomped to the top of the staircase. I sat down on my bed and breathed heavily.
I jumped up quickly and put my scarf, hat and wellies on. Ready to go. I kicked the snow as I ran to the garden gate. I knocked on the door to Silver Birch House, and stood back ready for the door to be answered. The door creaked open slowly as her mother appeared at the door. She was more ghostly than Annie herself. An almost white face, and white hair too. Her voice was really soft.
“Can I help you?” She said politely.
“Yes. Please could Annie come round for dinner today? We can take her back at seven,” I asked.
“Ah, you must be the famous Brooke. Annie always talks about you,” She laughed.
“Oh, really? How nice!” I said happily.
“I’ll call her right away! One second,” She replied and closed the door to talk to Annie.
“You know what to do, Annie. Good luck,” I heard her mother say. I wondered why Annie needed luck?
Annie and I skipped to my house and shouted to see if mum was home. That was odd. She wasn’t there. Maybe she went out to do the shopping. We took off our coats and ran upstairs. Somehow, she knew where she was going. As we creaked my door open, I saw Annie holding something again. I couldn’t see exactly what it was but, she hid it quickly behind her back, as she saw me turn round.
“I love your room! It is so, so tidy!” She squealed with happiness.
“Thank you, I can’t wait to see yours,” I replied kindly.
Annie went silent then. She looked sad. I wondered why.
“What do you want to do then?” I asked her.
“How about…dressing up!” She said childishly.
“Um, okay, not something I do every day, but oh well!” I replied anxiously.
We threw all the clothes in my wardrobe on the floor, but there wasn’t many. Picking up the dismantled clothes on my bedroom floor, we chose various items and put them on hurriedly, as we sang along to music. We then got my makeup out and started making each other look like clowns right away. Once we had gotten a few items on and then looked in the mirror and laughed together happily.
I looked at her reflection and I saw what was in her hand. A knife. Why did she have one? I was scared then. What was she going to do with it?
“Annie what are you going to do with that?” I asked, pointing at the knife, my hand was shaking.
“Oh, this? Nothing in particular. I just like to carry it around.” She said sarcastically.
“What’s the matter Annie?” I asked nervously.
Without replying, she raised the knife and pushed it hard into my back. Starting as a whimper, I screamed out in pain.
“You know why I have done this, don’t you” She yelled at me.
“No, no, I don’t!” I struggle to say, feeling dizzy.
“I am Rose. Remember me? I change my name and you forget about me. Don’t you remember what I look like?” She cried tears flooded her eyes and her cheeks and I began to cry too.
“Rose! I am sorry, I am so, so sorry,” I cried and screamed. Blood was draining slowly from my body.
“You pushed me off that roof on purpose. So this is sweet revenge!”
“Rose, I am so sorry. I didn’t mean to, I swear! Please stop this! Please,” I screamed even harder, yelling out for help.
I didn’t know what to do. My breathing became hoarse and I couldn’t move. I felt tension and ever so much pain. I was screaming and crying. My eyesight was fading. Blood was on the carpet, on her, everywhere. I lay on the floor, unable to move without the sharp blade tearing my skin. An eerie silence seeped into the room. I blacked out.
I woke up. I wondered how I did wake up and how I had survived. The funny thing was, that there was no one in the room that day. Only me. Then I realized. There was no Annie. Or Rose. Had I killed myself, or was it just guilt tricking me? What have I done? I am dead. I must be. I am a ghost. The living dead. They thought I had been murdered by someone. No. I did it myself. Why? Why did I think someone had done this to me? Could I not see the knife behind my back, or feel my angry thoughts. I felt like I was haunted, haunted by me, by myself. Is that possible? All I can say is I wish I had never lived. It was a ghost only I could see.