Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Sibling(s) (05/01/08)
TITLE: Have You Seen Belinda?
By Chrissi Dunn
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I prop Belinda’s body on the chair. Finally, I lift back the bed-covers and place the decapitated rag doll’s head just under the sheets.
Guilt threatens me as I close the bedroom door, but not for long, as I remind it that revenge is necessary. John, Ricky and I spent hours working on our battery operated robot. CO-BO360 was by far the best moving model out of all the Science projects in our year group. Until some prying little hands couldn’t resist making him move across the kitchen table, and somehow forgot to stop him veering off the edge.
As I slip into my bedroom, I hear a timid voice at the door.
“Go away! I wish you weren’t my sister!”
This time a more firm voice interrupts.
Mum stands behind Anna, holding a box. She sits on my bed, and Little Miss Angelic positions herself on her knee.
“Anna has something to say to you.” Mum explains. She nudges my sister, who stares ahead, stubbornly.
“Sorry.” she eventually blurts out.
“Anna and I have been busy downstairs.” Mum opens the box in front of her, to reveal CO-BO. CO-BO looks pretty much the same, apart from some cracks in his yoghurt pot feet, which have been glued over. “Try him.”
Sure enough, CO-BO’s LED light-up eyes glow, as I press the switch.
“Anything you want to say, Sam?” Mum tries to make eye-contact.
“Thanks.” I mumble.
“I forgive you, Anna. I’m sorry for saying I wished you weren’t my sister.”
“That’s OK, Sammy.” Anna grins and guilt burrows into my soul. Oh, what have I done?
I tiptoe quickly across the hall, as they make their way back downstairs. I pick up Belinda’s body from the chair, and stuff it under my jumper. A few little stitches and all the damage will be repaired.
I gasp as I lift the covers. Surely I remember setting the head here. Or do I? Perhaps it’s fallen down the back of the bed. But it’s too late! Approaching footsteps force me to hurriedly carry one part of my victim back into my room. My heart races, as I shove what is left of Belinda into the wardrobe.
“I hope you’re both getting ready for bed!” Dad’s voice calls.
“Yes, Dad!” our two voices answer simultaneously.
My stomach feels sick as I know that Anna insists Belinda sleeps beside her every night. The wardrobe in front of me spins, as I try to figure out where the missing part could be.
“Have you seen Belinda?” I hear Anna asking Dad.
“No. Have you looked under your bed?”
“I’ve checked everywhere, but I can’t find her.”
“Well, it’s getting late, honey.” Dad reasons. “We’ll have a good search tomorrow. Go and take those pink ribbons out. Sam, where’s that book of Bible stories?”
I make my way towards the room where my hideous crime took place. Dad proceeds to tell us the story of Joseph, and his forgiveness towards his brothers.
I toss and turn through the night, a picture of Belinda haunting me. As I fall asleep, dreams of being chased by her headless body waken me.
Even as I crunch my cereal the next morning, I can’t look at Anna without thinking about it.
“Don’t forget CO-BO.” she says sweetly, handing me my box.
John and Ricky are full of excitement about the project as we sit on the school bus. They talk about winning first prize, but I can’t seem to join in.
Even as the other kids set up their robots in a line along the classroom, I can only think of Anna’s precious doll. And that’s when I see it. John and Ricky gasp in horror, as they remove a pink-ribboned, glitter-glued CO-BO from its box. In place of his tin face and glowing eyes, balances Belinda’s head.
“Awww. Sweet or what?” Andy, the most popular kid laughs, as he walks past.
Others begin to point and whisper. My cheeks blaze. Disappointment is written on my friends’ faces.
Belinda-Bot stares back, with a permanently frozen, cheeky grin.
No-one is more surprised, or embarrassed than me when she places sixth, gaining a prize for originality. Thanks, Sis!
Numbers 32:23 - '...you may be sure that your sin will find you out.' (NIV)
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