The funerals for Andrea Jennings, Don Krenshaw, Justin Ryan, Jill Oberlin, Karl Muffen and Eve Clemens were held the Sunday after they were supposed to return home from a trip to Justin’s cabin in upstate New York. Andrea’s parents had returned only one day earlier to hear the terrible news of the fire in the cabin, and the tragic death of their daughter.
There were many attendants to the sad event. It had been so terrible. A fire had started in the cabin and Justin Ryan had called the police. By the time they got there, there was not much left of the cabin, and fire was spreading. They had been able to put out the fire, but no survivors could be found. Police had no idea how the fire had started.
Among the attendants was Miss Carol Bennett, a local English teacher. She was crying, she had had almost all of those kids in her classes. They were great students. They had wonderful imaginations. She was so sad to hear of their tragic end.
After the ceremony, a policeman came up to her. “Are you Miss Bennett, the English teacher?” he asked. She nodded solemnly.
“Well, amazingly there was one thing that survived the fire; I’m really dumbfounded and intrigued as to how it happened. Anyway, I thought it should go to Mr. and Mrs. Jennings, but it’s written here that it is for you.” He held out a notebook filled with writing. Carol took the notebook gingerly. She knew she must read it later, but not here, at the cemetery.
Upon arriving home, Carol opened the notebook, wondering exactly what it contained. She read the inscription and sighed heavily.
Carol knew her students regarded her as an overgrown flower child. She talked way to much about flowers, smiles, and sunshine. The real reason, though, was that other stuff, the reality of the big, bad,n world, scared her. So much could go wrong. The funerals proved that. She remembered a story Justin Ryan had written that had really moved her, yet she had marked it down because it scared her. Carol had a terrible fear of the dark. She’d had it since childhood and had never overcome it.
A little offended, but not extremely so, Carol began to read. She read until long after the sun set, until she reached the end. It certainly was not a story of sunshine and flowers.
Again she remembered the story written by Justin Ryan. It had been recounted in Andrea’s journal. She, too, remembered writing the comment about there being no such thing as vampires. Now she had serious doubts. She wondered how long Richard’s curse would last. Was this the end of the vampires, or would they come again?
Carol Bennett decided she had better sleep with the night-light on.
So, there you have it. Voila, the end. And someday I’m going to post about what writing this little “novel,” as riddled as it is with problems, taught me as a writer. But that will be another day.