Friday, May 6, 2011

FICTION: Double Trouble by Haley Arias

My family is the vacation type. We have the luxury of being able to travel and see the world. My twin sister and I are adventurous, so we make the most of each place we go. Last summer we went to Hawaii for eight days, and it was the vacation that changed our lives forever. We stayed in a condo on the beach for most of the trip. When we arrived, there was a sign on the door that said, “Welcome Carmichael Family!” There was surprisingly plenty of space and bedrooms in the condo. There was the master bedroom for my parents, a bedroom for my older brother, and a bedroom for my sister and me. There was also this random bedroom that was extremely narrow and looked like a closet. The only things in there were bunk beds that barely fit and a television on the wall.

After Eden and I got semi-settled in, we went out to the beach to take a look around. I was taking in the beautiful sunset, when I heard Eden’s loud voice.

“Eliza, come here, quick! You have to see this!”

I ran over there to see what she was freaking out about. She pointed towards a pathway at the end of the beach.

“Wouldn’t that be the perfect place to go exploring?? I wonder if it leads to more of the beach or something else!”

“Yeah, we need to go check it out soon!” I replied. “You would be the person that notices that from way over here.”

Before we could do anything else, we heard our mom calling us from down the beach. “Girls, come back and get ready for dinner!” she yelled. “We have a reservation in less than an hour.”

We headed back that way with excitement. There was so much to do in Hawaii, and that included eating delicious food.

We just relaxed the rest of the night, and everyone did their own thing. Eden and I decided to watch a movie in the weird room with the bunk beds. We brought our pillow and blanket and got on the top bunk bed. We fell asleep about half way through the movie, and woke up when it was over. We definitely did not want to sleep in there, so we went back to our other room that is way more comfortable. We both left pillows, blankets, and phones because we were half-asleep and didn’t care.

The next day we went to the pool and beach, and tried to get some sun. All of us went snorkeling, and then swam with dolphins later that afternoon. We were exhausted after a busy day like that, so Eden and I wanted to take a power nap before dinner. We went to grab our pillow and blanket from the closet bedroom, and it was locked.

“Is this a joke?” I said. “There is no way it can be locked when we were just in there last night.”

We explained to family the situation, and asked if they had been in the room at all. No one had been in there except for Eden and me. From under the doorway, it looked like someone was in the room. Everyone was freaked out.

We went to dinner and tried to forget about it, and when we got back, no one wanted to go to sleep.

“Y’all are overreacting,” Dad said. “No one is in that closet. It probably locks from the inside.”

“Then how did we get in there to begin with??” I asked.

My brother Charlie was really quiet, but I knew he was scared.

“I think I am going to sleep on the couch just in case something happens,” Charlie said.

My dad started laughing at us and went to bed. Not long after, mom went to bed too and locked their door. Charlie, Eden, and I stayed up and tried to figure out if someone was really in there. Charlie got a steak knife from the kitchen and ran it underneath the door to see if someone was by the door. We tried everything to unlock it from bobby pins to scissors, but nothing worked. After an hour of trying, Eden and I went to our room and locked the door. We could not sleep obviously, so we talked about all the different scenarios that could happen. Eventually we fell asleep, but I woke up in the middle of the night because I was parched. As I was walking to the kitchen to get some water, I see Charlie running at me with a knife.

“Eliza!” He screamed. “What are you doing? You almost gave me a heart attack!”

“Well, you almost stabbed me!!” I said. “I was just getting some water! Goodness.”

“How was I supposed to know it was just you? Get your water and go back to bed.”

I woke up Eden to tell her what happened, but all she did was laugh and go back to bed. The next morning all three of us were exhausted, especially Charlie. We just pushed through it, because we were not going to miss out on vacation for a little rest. We went to breakfast right when everyone got up before it was too busy. After my coffee, I felt a lot better. I can always count on that to wake me up.

When we got back to the room, Dad called maintenance to come and unlock the stupid door. I think everyone was pretty much over the fact that there was no one in there, but we still needed our stuff regardless. The front desk told my dad that they would get someone to our condo as soon as possible, so we didn’t have an exact time. Luckily all the employees have a key, so we don’t have to sit around and wait for someone to show up. For the remainder of the morning we decided to look around all the shops for souvenirs, t-shirts and such.

After lunch, we came back to the condo to drop off our shopping bags. We did not want to carry them around all day. We were all sitting around, trying to figure out what we wanted to do next. Dad wanted to drive to one of the small towns nearby and look around, but Eden and I were not interested.

“Can we just have a relaxing afternoon on the beach??” I asked.

“I think your dad, Charlie, and I are going to go into town,” mom said. “If you girls don’t want to do that then I am sure y’all can just hang out on the beach.”

“Ok, perfect!” Eden said.

“I mean we are sixteen,” I added. “I think we can handle being alone for a couple of hours.”

By the time they actually got out the door, Eden and I were upstairs changing and watching TV.

“We are leaving girls!” mom yelled. “Bye! Be safe.”

“Bye!” We said in unison.

After a few minutes of being in the house by ourselves, we decided to go out to the beach. Neither of us wanted to stay in the house alone, because the closet hadn’t been unlocked yet. The plan was to tan for as long as we could, so we finished getting ready and headed out to the beach. We were burning up after only thirty minutes of tanning. We got in the water to cool off, and then just chilled in the waves for a little bit. Then all of the sudden a light bulb went off in Eden’s head.

“ELIZA!” Eden screamed. “This is the perfect time to go explore that secret part of the beach we found the other day!”

“Oh yeah!” I replied. “I completely forgot about that. Let’s go!”

It was late afternoon when we started walking over there. We walked to what felt like the end of the beach to get there.

“It seems a lot farther than it did last time,” I said.

Although it was kind of a pain to get there, we were both really excited. This stuff is right up our alley.

“And the adventure begins!” Eliza said as we arrived.

“Wow,” I replied. “You are such a dork.”

We started off by walking-- well climbing-- on huge rocks. The waves usually hit the rocky areas pretty hard, so it was a struggle to stay on our feet. It was fun, nonetheless. Once we got up past the rocks there was some sand mixed with plants and seaweed. Honestly, it didn’t look very promising because there was barely anything around. I really wanted to see exotic animals or something. After we walked around for a little bit, we realized there wasn’t anything we would be interested in. So, we climbed down the rocks and thought of another idea. Since there wasn’t anything above the rocks, maybe there would be something below. Eden went to grab our goggles, and we swam underneath the rocky cove in hopes of finding a cave or animals. When we went under, we found a little opening, not so much a cave, but we could swim up in there to breathe. There was very little light in there, and it was a very tight space. Something glinted in the distance. We came closer and froze in dismay. It was my phone and blanket that had been locked inside the closet. We rushed out of there because we had to get back and tell the others that we think something is wrong. By the time we came back to shore it was dark.

“Wow.” I said. “How is it already this dark?”

“I bet mom and dad are freaking out,” Eden said. “We better hurry and get back.”

We walked back with a quicker pace. We kept walking and walking for what felt like forever. There were just miles and miles of beach ahead of us. Finally we reached a point where Eden nor I recognized anything. The pressure felt like a ticking time bomb, because if we didn’t get back we feared that something bad was going to happen.

“I think we are lost.” Eden said.

“There is no way,” I replied. “We walked back the exact same way we came from. We probably just passed it.”

So we turned around and walked the other way for quite a while. It was pretty late into the night by now, and I was just about ready to give up. Both of us were crying, and it was just a disaster. There were just miles and miles of beach houses and condos, and we could barely see anything. All of the sudden I heard this voice and it sounded just like Dad. We waited until he got a little closer, and then once we knew it was him we both took off in a dead sprint.

“Where were you guys??” Dad asked. “What happened?”

“We just went right down there to a cave, and I guess we got turned around because it was dark! Dad we found my phone and blanket that I left inside the locked room. That means someone has been going in and out of our condo!”

Dad was mostly confused, but we had some time to calm down and think everything through on the way back to the house. When we got there, mom and Charlie were nowhere to be found…and the locked room was wide open. But there was a message on our outside door that maintenance couldn’t make it by today, and they would come tomorrow to unlock the door. All three of us were in shock, and didn’t know what to do. I walked into the room and spotted the blood.

“It must be a kidnapping,” I said. “Someone took Mom and Charlie, and it looks like there was a struggle.”

The three of us sat down to really think everything through. We replayed in our heads everything that has happened since this morning.

“The only place that they could be is in the cave,” Eden said. “It is the only place that makes sense.”

“Let’s go!” My dad yelled. “We can’t wait until morning because they might not be alive then.”

He grabbed the biggest knife he could find out of the kitchen and a flashlight, and the three of us were on our way. We ran as fast as we could, but we slowed down as we started getting closer so we didn’t make noise.

We swam up to the cave as quietly as possible, but it was so hard because we could barely see. Dad shone the flashlight inside the cave, and we saw mom and Charlie tied up in the corner. Dad started to walk towards them to untie them, but he spotted a shadow in the darkness. They started fighting, and Dad hits the man in the head knocking him out cold. We are able to rescue Mom and Charlie, and get the heck out of there.

On the last day of the trip, we stopped by the police department to make sure the man was in custody.

“So who exactly is this guy?” Mom asked curiously.

“Well we thought he was just a homeless man passing through, but he turns out be an escapee from the sanitarium. He had been put away because he murdered his entire family.”

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