4. Little Brother. (Crispin's POV)

"Hey bro,

This is going to be really hard to say but, I'm not going to be around any more. You can't understand why, it's something complicated going on in my head. I just wanted you to know that I love you. And I didn't tell you that enough. All those stupid fights we keep getting into... It's just hard to think that you don't like me very much and I'm not going to be around to sort it all out like I wanted to.

Mom and Dad are going to be really upset for a bit, so try and keep out of trouble. No racing around the house, knocking over everything in sight, no cheeking your teacher or any of the other kids at school. Just be a good boy, yeah? For me? And make sure you and Eliza are okay all of the time... I mean, Mom will probably be crying so make sure Dad cooks you the right food and puts out the right clothes for school, make sure you actually get to school. I know you're only 10 and it is going to be tough on you, but you need to try... Be a man. I know you want that.

Be good and look after Eliza for me,


What does this mean? I found this letter in my sock draw when I got home from school this afternoon, and yeah, she is right saying I don't understand. Has my sister run away or something? It really doesn't sound like Julia, at all. She has always been the good child. Always gets the best marks in tests, always does everything Mom and Dad ask, always does her homework. So, yeah, she was pretty much perfect. Whereas I, on the other hand, am the bad child of the family. I do try and behave myself most of the time, but it never really works out and I'm always getting into trouble. If anyone was going to run away, then I guess you could say it would probably be me.

A police car turned up to our house just after I got back from school and the owners are currently in the living room with my parents and my Grandma, who has come over to look after me and my little sister. They haven't even spoken to me yet, not Mom, Dad, Grandma, no one. How the hell am I meant to know what is going on? For all they know, I could have run away with Julia or I could be sat here on my bed crying my eyes out and they wouldn't even realise. Sucks to be me.

Eliza comes running into my, sobbing. "Why are the police here?" she cries as she jumps on my bed, next to where I am sat. It's unlike Eliza to come to me, but I guess she has to now that Julia isn't here and Mom and Dad are downstairs.

"I dunno," I tell her. She has brought her Baby Annabelle doll in with her and is currently cradling it, telling it to stop crying because she isn't going to be arrested. Sometimes it is like Eliza is actually the doll. Everyone shelters her from everything. Mom and Dad haven't even told her that our sister is missing yet. Then again, they haven't actually told me, either. It's like they we are just little kids that don't understand anything. And that is probably true for my little sister, but it isn't for me. I mean, I am ten years old already and everyone still treats me like I'm Eliza's age. Ok, I might not be the smartest kid when it comes to maths and science and stuff like that, but I know when something is wrong. Like now.

"Lize, go back to your room for a minute," I'm sick of just sitting here wondering what is happening with the police and my family downstairs. And I'm tired of being the last person to know anything. Running down our old stair case, I make sure to make a lot of noise before I enter the living room. Without thinking, I twist the brass door knob and enter the living room, to where my mother has collapsed into my dad and everyone is crying. And instantly I regret it.

Two police men are sat on dining room chairs they have obviously pulled in from the neighbouring room. They look kind of awkward as everyone around them has tears falling from their already swollen, red eyes. When they finally see me standing in the middle of the wooden doorway, they exchange quick glances and walk over to me. My parents and grandmother haven't even noticed I'm here.

"What's happened to my sister?" I snarl at them. They look quite calm, like they have dealt with my type before.

"Son, I think you should go back upstairs for a minute. OK?" The taller of the two police men tells me. He has a friendly face, like he should be a teacher or something. He doesn't look like the sort of person you would expect to go on crazy police chases and arrest evil people. Or the type of person that will find my sister.

"No!" I yell at them, "Where's my sister? And why is my mom crying?"

For the first time my family look at me. It looks like they wish I wasn't here and, to be honest, I wish I wasn't here as well. I don't want to see my parents like this. I think I can sense some guilt in the way they look at me. Probably for not even speaking to me when I came home from school and the fact they haven't bothered to mention to me or my sister that Julia is missing. Sometimes it's like they only have one, perfect child.

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