Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: Sad (07/26/07)
TITLE: The Third Request
By Caitlynn Lowe
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She sat down on the stained mattress and opened her notebook. Something didn’t feel right about ending it all silently; she needed to write out her farewells. She thought about everything that had led her to this point as she put the pen to paper. The death of her precious baby daughter, followed by the decay of her marriage and the subsequent divorce--all of it contributed to her sinking lower into depression, until finally even the medicine stopped working. Left with nothing, Amelia felt as though death was her only option. Those were the thoughts that had driven her here to this empty motel room, and those were the thoughts she tried to put down on paper one last time:
To who-so-ever may find me,
Do not pity my death; pity my life. Many events have brought me here, and this is my only option. I have but three requests:
First, please bury me beside my daughter, Anna...
The loud crash startled Amelia out of her writing. She got up and cautiously opened the door. No one was around in the hall. The surrounding rooms were empty as well--not only were all the lights off, but she had specifically requested a room surrounded by vacancies. After a few moments of uneasy searching, Amelia resumed her dreary task:
...Anna Grace Johnson. She was my greatest and truest joy in life, though my time with her was short.
Second, please inform my ex-husband--Jeremy Johnson--of my death. Please let him know that I never stopped loving him, and that I’m sorry for how things turned out between us. After our daughter, he was my second greatest source of happiness.
Tears began pouring down Amelia’s face as she continued to write. Deep inside, a part of her really didn’t want this...but the pain was just so great...
She paused before writing her third and final request. She was shivering all over now. Was it fear? No, it was just cold. Glancing over to the thermostat, she noticed the temperature in the room had dropped significantly. Why was it getting so cold? She shook the question off...soon enough, it wouldn’t matter. Turning her attention back to the paper, she began to write again:
Lastly, for my third request, I ask that...
Again, loud noises startled Amelia out of writing. This time, however, her face immediately turned white with fear upon looking up. Before her stood a man and a woman, both dressed in sixties’ garb...but there was something especially peculiar about them. They did not appear as flesh and blood; rather, they were pale, see-through forms. And though they seemed to be arguing with each other, Amelia could hardly hear a word being said.
A cold sweat came over her now...these couldn’t be ghosts. They didn’t seem like ghosts should. Their actions seemed less like they were happening presently and more like they were actors in a movie. No, these weren’t ghosts or spirits coming to haunt her--this was an imprint in time itself, of an event so dramatic that the walls absorbed its very substance and were replaying it in front of Amelia now.
She watched in wide-eyed anticipation, both terrified and transfixed. The two argued heatedly, when suddenly, the man hit the woman, sending her flying to the ground. The vaporous woman lied there as her male counterpart continued to beat her. Finally, the man dropped something in front of her and left, disappearing into nothing.
Amelia’s breath evaded her when she saw what he had dropped: a gun. She could now hear the other woman weeping--it was the loudest, most vivid noise she had heard all night. Amelia tried unsuccessfully to break her gaze when she saw the woman slowing put the gun to her head. She wanted so badly to scream, but she was frozen in place. And then, with tears streaming down the faces of both women, the trigger of the ghostly weapon was fired--BANG!
Immediately after hearing the shot, Amelia fled, leaving behind her gun, her lone bullet, and her suicide note--the third request, forever unwritten.
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