Thursday, November 21, 2019
By Randy Romero
Kayla Wren–a short seven-year-old girl with a pallid complexion and shoulder-length strawberry blonde hair–stood at her parent’s window, staring out at the empty street below. Her eyes shifted back in forth between the desolate street and the cloudless sky.
It was a strikingly sunny day in early May, but Kayla wasn’t surprised to see the neighborhood deserted. Kayla knew something. Something even her parents didn’t know. Something her neighbors never saw coming.
Max and Alyssa Wren woke up just after 10 o’clock. It was a Saturday and Max usually slept in as late as he could on his only day off.
Alyssa was the first to notice Kayla standing at the window.
“Kayla? Are you sleepwalking again?” her mother asked, rubbing sleep dust from her eyes.
But Kayla was wide awake. She looked awfully pale and seemed distant, yet calm, serene. Eerily calm.
Kayla had heard her mother’s voice, but didn’t turn to face her. She just gazed skyward at the blistering sun.
“Today is a beautiful day,” Kayla declared. “We should make the most of it. It will be our last.”
Alyssa gasped, Max sat up straight in bed.
“Kayla! What an awful thing to say,” Alyssa chided. “Why would you say such a terrible thing?”
It wasn’t just what Kayla had said. The frank, matter-of-fact way that Kayla spoke frightened her mother, chilled her to the bone.
“But it’s true,” Kayla said.
“Who told you that?” Max asked.
“Who, sweetie? Who?” Alyssa asked.
“Who are you talking about?”
“The Dark Men. They’re coming to get us. They got Mr. and Mrs. Harper next-door. They got the Sanchez family across the street. Everybody on this block is gone. And we’re next. There’s no stopping them. ”
Max and Alyssa exchanged looks of concern, then turned their attention to Kayla, who still had her back to her parents.
“Today is a beautiful day,” Kayla repeated. “We should make the most of it…”