Whitney didn’t sleep much that night. As if her insomnia wasn’t bad enough, she couldn’t get the thought of blood out of her head. It reminded her of her parents.
After a sleepless night that felt like forever, Whitney decided it was time to get out of bed. She got up, opened the bedroom door and had a mini heart attack when she saw her little raincoat cousin standing in her path. She jumped back a little bit grabbing her chest and catching her breath. “Good morning” said Whitney. Her cousin said nothing, she just stuck her hand out slowly as if to apologize. Whitney reached out to accept. Before she could, the little girl quickly pulled her hand back and ran down the hall. Even though she only saw a glimpse of her little hands, Whitney could not see any cuts or scratches, at least nothing that would justify how much blood was on her hands the day before. Whitney took a moment to think it through before she went downstairs. Whitney had been through a lot, but after almost no sleep, she wanted to be sure she wasn’t seeing things.
Whitney slowly made her way down the staircase to see her Aunt in the kitchen making breakfast. As grateful as she was for food and shelter, Whitney was not in the mood to sit down with her aunt at the moment to eat. She just grabbed some toast and made her way outside. Whitney grabbed a seat on the back patio and took in the view of the water. As stressful as the past few weeks had been for her, the water always relaxed her. Getting lost in the moment, enjoying the quiet breeze and the warm air, Whitney fell asleep.
Hours later, Whitney awoke to the sight of her cousin strolling along the beach, chin down, dragging what looked like a small animal. Whitney shouted for her attention, but got no response. The little hooded girl just kept meandering the beach dragging the small carcass through the sand. Barefoot, Whitney leaped to her feet and rand down the hillside to her. The trail between the backyard and the beach was covered with bushes and the ground with shards of broken glass from old beer bottles. This didn’t stop her. After a minute of painfully running the trail she reached the beach. She ran toward her cousin, twisted her around by the shoulders and looked into her eyes through her mask. “What are you doing with that!” shouted Whitney. The little girl dropped a dead cat at Whitney’s feet and turned around. She quickly ran in the opposite direction.
Whitney was shocked. She knew her cousin was shy and not too open to people being around, but she thought she was on a lot better terms than that. Whitney was at a loss for words and just accepted her cousin running away from her. At that point Whitney was just hoping her cousin had nothing to do with the poor cat’s death, but had no idea why she would be interested in dragging it around. The lack of connection between herself and her cousin brought a tear to Whitney’s eye; as always, she falsely blamed herself.
Whitney picked up the cat by the tail and carried it back up to her aunt’s beach house. Her feet were still dripping blood from all the glass shards she had to hike through. Upon reaching the top Whitney went to her aunt for first aid. Lily carefully removed the shards from her feet with a pair of small tweezers and helped her to her feet. She did’t say anything to Lily about the cat. After she was comfortable on her feet again, she disposed of the kitten properly.
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