Silence. No answer to her question. Just the two of them, rattling like ghosts around the storehouse.
And a growing sense that she was not going to find what she was looking for.
It shouldn't have been this hard (that's what she said
). This was a storehouse: if there were tools to find, she would have found them by now. She was beginning to feel frenzied, an anxious itch in her skin. Dying happy, ha. Not much chance of that, was there? Look how it was going so far. How everything conspired against her.
No, not everything. Everyone.
She sighed and shook her head, rattling through the shelves, hands trailing over clothes and goods. She knocked some down in frustration, then shook her head again. "Stupid," she grunted, rifling through the fallen goods, putting everything back on the shelves until all she was holding was a ball of damp string and a can of old Crisco. "Cris," she started. "I don't think-"
Footsteps in the dark. Tara tensed, mind filled with visions of some horror with a gun or knife, some Maxwell Lombardi or Hansel hunting already, and she flinched backwards and dropped the stuff in her hands and-
The joy in Cris' voice. So different from the disenchanted, uncomfortable boy she'd been talking to. She smiled slightly. Sounded important. Sounded like a way for him to die happy, even as she spiraled.
She picked up the can and the ball of string, and slipped them into her bag. She slipped through the aisles and back towards the door of the storehouse.
No need for her, in this scene. Best to let him find his piece of happiness, far away from her.
(Tara Behzad continued in The World Turned Upside Down