“Mummy” Mummy I got you a present!” charlotte screamed, running through the back door and into the kitchen where her parents were cooking dinner. Her mum was stood facing away from her, chopping something to put in the oven for their dinner. Charlotte hoped it was chicken, her favourite diner. She much preferred it to the nasty vegetables her mother cooked and then forced her to eat.
Her daddy was sat at the kitchen table, typing furiously on his laptop, a cup of coffee next to him. Charlotte could smell it from the other side of the kitchen, he hated the stuff. She’d accidently drunken it once and nearly been sick.
“Mummy!” she shouted impatiently. The gift was still in her hands, and she was so proud of it. She was sure her mummy would love it! Of course she would, she loved everything her daughter brought her. Charlotte wanted to stomp her foot, but she knew her daddy hated it when she did that. He always said that when she did that, she was acting spoilt.
“Linda, pay the child some attention will you? I’ve just got to write this email.” Her daddy complained. Charlotte knew how important his emails were. She didn’t know what he did, but it seemed that emails were a big part of his work, he was always sending them.
“Okay. Sweetie, what is-“ Her mum turned and gasped, the knife in her hand dropping to the floor, clattering as she did so. The sound resonated through the kitchen. Charlotte frowned, her mother seemed to not be breathing. For a sickening moment, nothing happened, and then her mother collapsed to the floor. Charlotte gasped, but she felt as though she couldn’t move.
“Mummy!” she cried, and in seconds her dad was sat next to her, but he hadn’t spared charlotte a glance.
“What happened?” He asked, looking to Charlotte and the dead magpie in her hands. She smiled, glad that someone had acknowledged her gift. She could feel the remaining warmness of it in her hands, feel the blood dripping out of it, and she couldn’t decide why her mother didn’t like it.
“Charlotte what is that?” Her father asked, his eyes wide in surprise and shock and a new emotion that Charlotte’s brain couldn’t pinpoint. Her frown deepened, she dint want to frown, and her teacher told her it would give her wrinkles later in life. She didn’t want wrinkles, not at all.
“It’s a bird.” She explained, her head moving in the way it did when she thought something was obvious.
“Is it dead?” He asked, and now charlotte could pinpoint it. It was disgust. The type of feeling she had when her mother gave her vegetables. But her couldn’t be disgusted at her gift, could he? She felt the tears well up in her eyes, she’d done it right, and she’d gotten them a present. Why did they not like it?
“Charlotte why do you have a dead bird?” charlotte looked in confusion at her mother, who had woken up, and was leaning against one of the counters, so even at six years old, charlotte was taller. “Why, charlotte?”
“It was a present.” She murmured, suddenly getting the feeling that she’d done something wrong.
“Why did you kill a bird?” Her mother said, and charlotte could tell that she was scared, terrified even. And that scared her, she wondered what there was to be afraid of.
“Because the walls told me to do it.” She said, shaking her head at how stupid her parents could be. The walls were always talking, couldn’t they hear it too? They only spoke at night. Maybe they were always sleeping when they spoke.
“The walls?” Her daddy asked, and she nodded her head, her messy, dark hair swishing around her face.
“Garret, call the number.” Her mummy said, a charlotte was confused as her mother grabbed the knife from the floor and pointed it at her daughter. Charlotte cried out, confused. Why would her mummy want to hurt her, what could she have done wrong?
Her parents both stood up, stepping away from Charlotte, her father grabbing a weapon from the side in the kitchen. Something shiny and pointed, although charlotte had no idea what it would be used for. She whimpered, her arms going limp, the dead bird dropping to the floor in a flash of red and black and white, and charlotte stepped away from her parents, the dead bird lying in the floor between them.
“Did I do something wrong?” She asked in a small voice. And her father’s expression softened. Before her eyes turned a glowing red.