An arm floated up, seemingly unattached from the body, and a childish finger pointed at the chest of drawers.
"I went there," Meredith said. "I went to Chest House. I learned about your family. I'm so sorry. But—"
She broke off as the finger jumped up and down inagitation. Frowning, she stared at the chest. The child had to be pointing to something on it. Quickly she slipped out of bed, and barefoot, padded across the floor. Picking up the photograph, she held it out to the ghost, who had once more retreated inside the misty cloud. "Is this what you're pointing at?"
The mist faded a little. With a sense of desperation, Meredith snatched up the clock. "Is it this?"
The ethereal cloud dwindled even more.
Meredith pushed the clock to one side and took hold of her statuette. "This?"
She caught her breath as the cloud exploded with light. The child's face gazed out at her with such a beseeching look in the blue eyes that Meredith cried out in frustration. Then, in a flash of a second, she was gone.
With fingers that violently trembled, Meredith stood the statuette back on the chest. For several long moments she stared at the delicate figure of the mother clasping the tiny baby to her breast. Tears pricked her eyes. The poor child missed her mother. How dreadful that they hadn't been reunited in death.
Meredith caught her breath. Was that what the child wanted? To be reunited with her loved ones? Was that her mission? To bring them all together in death, as they had been in life?
But how was she to achieve this? She knew nothing about the world beyond the living. She had assumed that Kathleen had come to her as a ghost because she was trapped in the school grounds and Meredith was her closest friend.
But Kathleen had brought the child to her just before she had passed on. Surely she knew that Meredith wasn't capable of such an enormous task—to reunite a family separated by death?
Climbing back into bed, Meredith muttered aloud. "You expect too much of me, Kathleen. I have not the slightest idea how to go about such a quest."
She closed her eyes, making a determined effort to goback to sleep. It was a long time, however, before she could let go of the guilt and frustration enough to drift into a doze.
She was dreaming. A burning house and she was inside. Searching for something, yet she had not the slightest idea what she was searching for or where to look.
Once more she jerked awake, to find the first fingers of daylight creeping across the sky. Then it came to her, what she must do. The dream. She had to search the house. Emma's house. The answer lay there. She had no idea where, only that it was there, and Emma wanted her to find it. With a renewed sense of hope, she scrambled out of bed.
Grace huffed and puffed as she tramped along the wet road, trailing behind Olivia, whose brisk step had taken her several yards ahead.
The rain fell steadily, dripping off the brim of Grace's hat and soaking her gloves. Although she did her best to avoid the deeper puddles, the wet hem of her skirt flapped around her ankles, and her feet squelched inside her buttoned shoes. This, she thought sourly, was even worse than being jolted around in a smelly farmer's cart. Right now she'd gladly climb aboard anything that had a roof and a dry spot to sit.
Ahead of her, Olivia spun around and beckoned with an impatient arm. "Come on, droopy drawers. We'll never get there if you don't hurry up."
"We're not going to get there, anyway," Grace grumbled. "Not if we have to walk all the way."
"We won't have to walk all the way, silly." Olivia raised her hands to tighten the scarf she'd tied over her hat. "Once we get to the crossroads, there'll be farmers on the way to town. We'll get a lift, like we did last time."
"Last time it wasn't raining." Grace caught up with her friend and gave her a fierce glare.
"What's that got to do with it?" Olivia turned her back on her and continued marching forward. "We're suffragettes,
Mitchel Scanlon - (ebook by Undead)