The Sorority A novel

Abby Grimes is a new sorority sister at Delta Phi Delta house. When she, and her friends are stalked by a killer, they put their lives on the line.

The new thriller novel by Robert Helliger.

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1. Abby Grimes

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It ​wasn't my time to freak out today. I was going to be a sorority sister at Delta Phi Delta house in Louisiana; I was going to be popular. Or I hoped​ so. "Abby Grimes", Principal Larsen said. "Yes", I said. I didn't need to be in trouble; I wanted to know that I had great grades for college; I had to pass all of the tests; I had to...Well, it's a long, boring, tale that I don't want to bother all readers of my story with. I had spent my childhood in the deep bayous; I had wet my cold, freezing, feet in the frigid water. My older brother Tad was fourteen, a year older than me. Tad and Dad went hunting during the season which was September and October. I had long, black hair, brown eyes, and petite; Tad also had the same hair, eyes, and was taller than I was. At thirteen, I had Muse posters on the creamy bedroom walls; I loved the UK rock band. Mom worked as a nurse in the Louisiana State Hospital. Mom and Dad were both forty. I stared at the English homework. I finished it in one hour. Afterwards I watched 'The Worst Witch​' on Netflix; I used the time to listen to music afterwards on Spotify. I checked for signs that Tad and Dad were back from hunting; I was thinking that they wouldn't be harmed due to the alligators in the swamp. Then I remembered cooking chilli con carne in the spacious kitchen. I cooked two pieces of bread in the silvery toaster. By four o'clock PM, on Friday, May 7, 2017, I knew that I was nervous as I checked on Facebook on my I-pad. Suddenly my phone rang. "Hello, the Grimes residence. Abby speaking'. "Abby, it's Kristen Barr. I was thinking that you'd be perfect for being a sorority sister". I had dreamed of being part of the sorority since I turned twelve. I am thirteen now. "Delta Phi Delta is for the rich girls who have boyfriends....", I begun to say. "I'm seeing Chase Rivers. We go to the movies, and kiss. And so on". I blushed at her news. "You don't have to tell me that, Kristen", I said. "I'm fine with telling you, Abby. You need a boyfriend". I took a long, deep, breath. I then regained my lost composure, then I spoke to her. 'I'll be fine, Kristen. I'll be at the sorority at ten o'clock AM tomorrow morning. Good bye!", I said. "Good bye, Abby". And I pressed the END CALL button...and I waited for my brother and Dad, as well as my Mom, to come home.

~~~~

I went to the restroom. Afterwards, as I flushed then I dried myself on a red towel that was on a silver rail. By the time I opened the door, I knew that I wasn't going to be alone for too much longer. I checked the Mail Online app for the news across England, (and across the World); I scanned the news because I wanted to know whether I wanted to know if there was a political scandal, or about some kind of wars that destroyed poor countries. I stopped reading, and I glanced at the woods. The sound of gun shots were heard nearby. I made myself a cup of steaming coffee, as I read '​The Dead Zone​', the classic supernatural thriller by Stephen King from 1979. I finished reading the prologue. After I put down the hardcover book down on a black seat in the lounge room, dark, threatening clouds hovered in the bleak sky. I heard the sound of thunderclouds. I watched the thunder boom violently; I was prepared to find candles just in case of a blackout in the forbidding house. I smiled at Rufus our black dog. He was eight years' old. He was the perfect guard dog. "What's the ,matter Rufus?", I asked him. Rufus was scared of lightning. "It's going to be okay, Rufus", I said to him. Rufus stared at me with questioning brown eyes; he placed his right, furry, paws at the glass window. And I saw the body of Alison James lying down in the heavy rain that had taken its toll in the southern city of Louisiana.

~~~~

The loud sounds of police sirens blaring in the afternoon gloom caused me to shiver. Alison James was thirteen. She was the popular girl at school; she was dating Bobby Loman. He was fifteen. She was a member of Delta Phi Delta for two years; she was the Head Girl there. I had read a school report that four teenage girls had disappeared from the Sorority over the last five years or so. Since the winter of 2012, up to 2016, parents in town always drove their sons and daughters to school. They didn't want to think that they were harmed at all; they didn't want to think about the deaths that had gripped America. Louisianans were comforted in sticking together through thick and thin. I was a southern girl through and through. Suddenly the lights dimmed. Then, by six o'clock PM, my home was in the grip of blackness...and I screamed.

~~~~

I felt like Audrey Hepburn in the 1967 classic thriller '​Wait Until Dark'.​ I was blind temporarily. I was gripped by a need to look out of the window to see some lights outside my house; I was gripped by the shattered need to think that the terror I felt became a sense of impending dread that had forever tainted my soul. Seconds later, I crawled towards the red carpet. I didn't see my brother, Dad, and Mom; I didn't see their happy faces.   Seconds later, I heard the sound of heavy footsteps coming towards the grey porch of the front door. Rufus barked...and barked. "It's okay, Rufus", I said in the darkness. Then I saw the flashing lights of police cars. And I knew that they were on the case of Alison James. I reached for the front door. I struggled to open it. When it was open, I saw two young policemen in their twenties holding their flashlights in their hands. "Is this the Grimes residence? I'm Officer Al Kane, and my partner Kerri Markham".  "Yes, it is. I'm Abby Grimes. The blackout is nasty". Officer Kane nodded. "Louisiana is off-line for three hours". I nodded. Rufus remained at my side. "Tad, my brother, and Dad are hunting", I said to them. "And your mother?", Officer Markham asked me. "She's working at the Hospital. She won't be home till later on. Midnight, I think". Officers Kane and Markham nodded. "There's another matter. I saw Alison James's body. She's part of the Delta Phi Delta sorority house". They whispered to each other. Then they talked to me for the next two hours about her.

~~~~

"Alison James was bright, beautiful, and had everything", I told the police officers. Hang on, I'll get some candles". I searched the house for them. Suddenly the power was on. Relieved, I saw the power was turned on. When the house was illuminated by a bright light, Rufus was in a good mood. He stood guard as I saw Tad and Dad arrive at the house with a lost look on their faces. :What's going on with the blackout?", Tad asked me. "The power was off, Tad. And Alison James was killed". Tad stopped in his tracks; Dad also stopped in his tracks. "What happened?", Dad said. Rufus was near the police officers. "Mister Grimes, I'm Officer Kane. This is Officer Markham. Apparently there's a killer on the loose. Your daughter was alone with her dog". Dad shook his head. "Abby. What happened?", Dad said.  "I saw her, Dad. She died near the bayous". I cried. "It's alright, Abby", Dad hugged me; Tad stared at the deep swamplands. :Rufus, come here", he ordered. Rufus jumped onto my brother's body. "Hey! Get off me!", he laughed. And, as the police officers wrote everything down, they left us to go to the swamps...and cornered off the place with CRIME SCENE yellow tape across the oak trees. And they were there all night.

~~~~

By Midnight, Mom was home. She was concerned about our welfare when I told her what happened. "She was dead, Mom; she died​ at the hands of a killer". I cried. We were dressed in pyjamas. "The blackout created mayhem at the hospital. But it's over". Mom said. She didn't care about the killer. "Mom, someone killed her". "Let the police deal with it. I'm tired Abby. Let's go to bed. Good night!". And that was the end of our conversation. Rufus followed me to my bedroom. And we all slept knowing that someone was in the city eager to attack again.

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