Terri looked down at the earth far below her. The wind whipped her curly red hair in her face, but she enjoyed the feeling of such freedom, the freedom she had when there were bars holding her back. She turned from the ledge and walked back to where her black-haired sister Maria waited for her.
“How can you do that?” Maria asked, shivering as they turned toward the lodge where they were staying.
Terri smiled. “I like it. It feels nice out there.” She took a deep breath of the misty air. “It makes me feel free.”
“It makes me feel like I'm about to fall.”
“Then it's a good thing that you don't go out there.”
The two girls walked to the back porch of the lodge and sat on the old, weather-beaten red couches, resting their feet on boxes they had found in the basement of the house. Maria leaned her head back and sighed.
“I don't get why Mom and Dad had to bring us out here.”
“I love it,” Terri said contentedly. She paused. “I only wish they would talk to us more. It's like they don't even remember we're here.”
“Yeah...Mom used to say things were going badly, remember?”
“Uh-huh. She never used to say exactly what, though.”
“I don't know. She never actually told us anything—she'd just mention it with Aunt Sara.”
Terri huffed impatiently and swung her feet off the couch. “I'm sick of sitting around on back porches waiting for something to happen.”
“And standing on ledges,” Maria added.
“Right. Let's go explore.”
Terri stood up and looked at Maria.
“Well,” Maria protested hesitantly. “Mom and Dad said—”
“They won't even notice, I promise.”
“Are you sure, Terri?”
“Of course. C'mon, let's go do something interesting.”
Maria got up slowly, still contemplating whether or not to do it. But she always did what Terri said.
“Forget about Mom and Dad. Relax. You worry to much.”
Terri swung her red hair dramatically and stepped off the porch. Maria followed her and they set off across the vast, open dirt field that surrounded the isolated lodge. The wind whipped furiously, sending loose particles of dirt flying into the girls' eyes. Maria let out a cry whenever this happened and rubbed her watering brown eyes.
Suddenly the wind stopped. There was an eerie feeling that crept over the landscape, like the feeling in the beginning of a nightmare. Everything was hushed—the only sound was the rhythmic crunch of Terri and Maria's footsteps on the bare earth.
“Why is it so quiet?” Maria asked tentatively.
“Hey, how should I know?”
“Maybe it does that around here. We've only been here for three days.”
The sisters walked on, sighting neither other building nor land feature, except the continuous river that dropped down hundreds of feet to their right. When Terri turned back to look at the house they were staying in, she saw only a speck in the distance. She stopped, surprised, and tapped Maria's shoulder.
Terri pointed to where they had come from. “See that? See how far away we are?”
Maria let out a gasp of surprise. “How'd we get this far without realizing it?”
Maria looked concernedly at Terri. “I think we'd better go back.”
“Why? We've come this far—” Terri waved her arm in a sweeping motion behind her “—why go back?”
“Mom and Dad won't know where we are.”
“They never know where we are and it doesn't bother them.”
Terri turned toward the wind, which had just picked back up and restored sound to the deserted plain. How she loved being free.
© Copyright 2012 Emma Keynes (UN: emmakeynes at Writing.Com).
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