"She killed my baby!"
CRACK! Jude used the tire iron to rip open the door to the tree house. He stepped inside and looked around. There was nothing unusual in there. He had a sudden brainwave and ran over to the loose floorboard. He pulled it open, found the backpack and opened it. The insides were so horrifying that he had to look away. And found himself looking at someone's feet.
"I couldn't have done it by myself you know." It was Penina. Jude looked up and saw her looming above her. So he stood up. She was holding something behind her back "Mia and Eva are just as guilty as I am."
She took a step towards him and Jude stepped back, pissed off by her words but also worried. What was she hiding behind her back? "You leave them alone." Jude hissed.
"Think about it." Penina smiled "Somebody had to have helped me. If they find that dress, they won't just be coming for me but for Mia and Eva too. Is that really what you want?" Penina was walking in a way that manuevered him away from the tree house door.
Jude decided to be brave and stand his ground "You're full of shit. I'm telling Mom what you did and you're gonna fry for it."
Penina sighed and her smile disappeared "All right. I was trying to be nice." And with that she produced what she'd been hiding behind her back. Charcoal lighter fluid. She squirted it at Jude's feet and all aroun the tree house away from her. Jude jumped back and away from the liquid. Penina smiled, took out a packet of matches from her pocket and lit one. Jude's eyes widened "Goodbye Jude."
She dropped the match and a sudden wall of fire appeared between him and the door. Penina smiled at him through the flames before going out through the tree house door to safety.
Jennifer was in the house on the phone and was emailing a picture of Penina to someone "It's called the Saarne Institue. S-A-A-R-N-E. Saarne. It's in Estonia."
Sister Judith was jotting down the information on the other side of the phone "Estonia? That can't be right, all her paper work is from Russia."
"Please, just try to find out if she was ever a patient there. I'm sending them a picture of her right now."
Smoke poured from the tree house. Penina was already at the bottom of the ladder, watching it burn with a small satisfied smile on her face. Inside the tree house, Jude was surrounded by flames and coughing on the black smoke. He stumbled towards the window and stuck his head out "Mommy! Mom, help me!"
The fire started closing in. The place was going up like a tinderbox. Jude started climbing out the window as gently as possible and clinged to the side "Mom!" He screamed again. The flames grew higher, licking at his feet. Jude knew he had to climb higher up because if he tried to jump down, he'd break his neck or worse. He reached for the edge of the roof and managed to pull himself on top. He slid though and nearly fell of the edge but just managed to grab hold in time. Penina gasped excitedly as if she were at the front row of a sports event.
"Mom, help me!" Jude shrieked, his heart pounding inside his chest and his cheeks now wet with tears.
Jennifer was still on the phone in Gerard's den. She walked over to the window and looked outside. Her eyes widened as she saw the thick smoke rising from the forest. Then she quickly hung up the phone when she realised what was happening and sprinted into the living room.
Jude was fighting desperatly to hang onto the tree house. Penina watched, eyes wide with exhilaration. For a long, sickening moment Jude hung there, dangling helplessly, fingers slipping... And this grip loosened. He let go of the side of the tree house and plummeted to the floor. He landed hard and didn't move. Penina walked over and crouched down next to him then checked his pulse. He was still alive.
Penina pouted, disappointed. And she looked around then smirked when she found what she was looking for. A heavy rock. She picked it up and walked back over to him. She lifted it above her head, ready to smack it into his head but before she got the chance she was pushed to the ground by someone.
She whirled around to see who it was. It was Eva and Mia was behind her. Penina's eyes flashed with rage but she didn't get a chance to hurt any of them because Jennifer was running up the path and Valeria wasn't far behind her. Jennifer saw Jude's lifeless body, screamed and ran over to him. Her whole world felt like it was collapsing "Oh my God, Jude! Baby, can you hear me? Please, baby! Wake up!" He didn't move. Jennifer turned back round to Valeria "Call nine-one-one!"
Valeria nodded and raced back towards the house. Jennifer caught Penina looking at her warily and glared at her with pure hatred.
Firefighters arrived to put out the tree house. Mia and Eva were in the house, watching as Jude was put into the back of an ambulance. He was still unconcious and in full cervical immobilization. Jennifer climbed into the back of the ambulance with him, angrily grabbing Penina by the wrist with her "She can ride with us." Valeria said timidly.
"I'm not letting her out of my sight." Jennifer hissed. Jude had already been hurt. She wasn't about to let Penina do anything to Mia or Eva.
The whole family sat in a waiting room. Gerard and Frank had showed up from the studio and were there too. The silence and tension was heavy as they awaited the news from the Doctor. The Doctor walked into the room and everyone stood up "We've stopped the abdonimal bleeding. You should consider yourselves very lucky."
Relief flooded over Jennifer and Gerard. Penina listened, intent... "Can we see him?" Gerard asked.
"In a little while. He's currently resting in ICU."
"Will he be able to tell us what happend?" Jennifer asked. There was a pointed glance between Jennifer and Gerard but the Doctor didn't notice.
"It's possible. There's no way of knowing for sure what he'll remember until he wakes up." The Doctor told them before walking away. Penina shifted uncomfortably. That was not the answer she was hoping for...
Jennifer took Gerard to one side and started talking to him in a low voice. She showed him two pieces of paper. The one that Penina had painted of the old gothic mansion and the other was a photograph of Saarne Institute "She told me she made it up but it's a real place!"
"There has to be some other explanation." Gerard sighed "She didn't come from an insane asylum."
"How do we know? The orphanage we thought she came from has never heard of her. Everything about her could be a lie."
"We have her passport," Gerard said patiently "Her birth certificate, her school and medical records-"
"That's just paper Gerard! And they came from halfway around the world!" Jennifer cried "This isn't just me being paranoid. Call Saint Cabrini's if you don't believe me." Gerard looked like he was wavering "Valeria was there this time, your best friends wife. Only Penina or Jude could've started the fire. I know who I think did it. Do you?"
"I don't know what to think anymore."
"Well, I'm done connecting the dots for you. You believe whatever you want about me. Blame me for everything. I'll leave tonight if you want me to, but on one condition. Penina goes too."
Penina watched Gerard and Jennifer nervously. She couldn't hear what they were talking about and she hated that. She turned to Frank "Can I have a dollar for the soda machine?" She asked sweetly.
"Alright." Frank smiled back at her and gave her a dollar. Penina grinned and headed off towards the vending machine. Mia and Eva watched her go, glancing at each other nervously.
But as soon as Penina was out of sight, her cheery grin turned to a look of anger. She put the dollar in her pocket and sneaked away.
Back at home, the phone rang but of course there was no one there to hear it. The answering machine picked up. A man with an Estonian accent left a message "I'm calling for Jennifer Way. This is Doctor Varava from the Saarne Institute. Please call me immediately."
Penina peered through a door at the hospital and found Jude lying unconcious on one of the beds hooked up to several machines. Penina approached his bed slowly, and closed the curtain around it as she did so. A heart rate monitor was clipped to Jude's finger. Penina unclipped it and put it on her own finger. The machine continued to beep, registering her heart rate as his. Slowly, she climbed up onto the bed. She carefully stradled him and took a pillow from under his head. This caused him to stir. His eyelids fluttered. At the last minute, he saw her looming above her...
And just like that Penina smothered his face with the pillow. He struggled but he could barely move. His screams were muffled under the pillow. Penina vicously pressed down on the pillow with all her strength...
Eva and Mia kept an eye on the corridor as they sat in between Frank and Valeria. They exchanged a look. Penina should be back by now. Eva stood up so Mia stood up too and took her hand worriedly. They walked towards the corridor "Where are you girls going?" Frank asked.
Eva and Mia ignored him and went round the corner to where the vending machine was. Of course Penina wasn't there. They shared a scared look.
In the hospital room, Jude had stopped struggling. When Penina finally lifted the pillow his eyes were lifeless. Penina smiled and gently slid the pillow back under his head. Then she climbed down off the bed, clipped the heart rate monitor back onto his finger and ran out of the room. An alarm started ringing when the machine registered no heart rate.
Mia and Eva ran down the corridor and grabbed at Jennifer's arm urgently, trying to warn her. Eva was a mute and couldn't say anything and Mia was too scared to talk "What is it Sweetie?" Jennifer asked, looking exhausted.
Suddenly there was a call over the speakers "Code ninety-nine, ICU."
The Doctor that had spoken to Gerard and Jennifer about Jude started running at full-speed towards his room. Jennifer and Gerard exchanged a look before running after him. Valeria and Frank had to grab Eva and Mia to stop them following "Jude!" Jennifer cried "Jude!"
They both tried to enter the room but the ICU nurse wouldn't let them "What's happening?" Jennifer asked, her eyes filling with tears.
"You have to stay out here." The nurse told them firmly.
They waited outside for a while until the Doctor came out "I'm sorry. His injuries were more severe than we thought."
Gerard choked back tears and hugged Jennifer close as she sobbed into his chest "No... No... My baby..." She cried.
"We're so sorry." The Doctor whispered "A terrible loss, we're so sorry..."
Jennifer pushed Gerard away and went into Jude's room, just in time to see the ICU nurse put the sheet over Jude's head. Jennifer collapsed to the floor, weak with horror and grief. Gerard tried to comfort her but then Jennifer thought of something. She pushed him away and stood up "Where is she?" Jennifer hissed, storming out of the room, her face a mask of fury.
Gerard ran after her and Jennifer found Penina returning from the vending machines, innocently sipping a can of soda "What did you do!?" Jennifer screamed. Heads turn to look at them. Frank, Valeria, Eva and Mia were all shocked. Jennifer ignored all of them and strided towards Penina with a face like thunder but Penina just stared at her with a half-hidden smile on her "What did you do to him, you bitch!?" Then she slapped Penina as hard as she could, sending her to the floor.
Everyone was horrified and Gerard ran over "Jennifer! Stop it!"
Jennifer looked ready to hit her again but a nurse held her back "Orderly."
Penina touched her mouth and found she was bleeding. For a moment she just sat there, stunned until Gerard glanced at her. And then she burst into tears "Daddy! Daddy help me!" Penina sobbed.
Gerard scooped her up in his arms and Jennifer roared "She killed him! He was going to live and she killed him!"
"She was out here the whole time!" Gerard snapped.
The Doctor ran towards Jennifer with a needle "No! Get away from me!" Jennifer shrieked.
"Hold her still." The Doctor said before plunging the needle into her arm.
Jennifer screamed "Please! Somebody listen to me! She killed my baby! She killed my baby..." Her eyelids drooped and she went limp.
[A/N] - So sorry I didn't update again last night, my step-dad unplugged the internet and I don't even know why!? He's working no where fucking near where the internet gets plugged in! He was out so I plugged it back in and like a couple of minutes after he got home, he unplugged it!? What the fuck!? D: