I Didn’t Know...
Kara and Amanda got off the school bus at the end of Kara’s driveway. Kara had lived in the country all of her fifteen years and loved the woods and wildlife. Her driveway curved nearly a quarter of a mile with trees and wooded area on both sides.
Kara had never stayed home alone and she would have the house to herself for the weekend. Her parents had gone to help her great aunt Mary who had just been released from the hospital after a fall had broken her hip. They’d had discussions about Kara staying by herself and explained they had no reservations trusting her judgment or deportment, but worried as parents do, about their little girl being alone. She explained she was not a little girl and could handle anything while they were gone. Kara mentioned that maybe a friend could stay with her.
At lunch the next day Kara mentioned to her best friend Theresa the idea of a weekend of movies at the house, but Theresa was leaving town with her family. Amanda was sitting nearby and exclaimed she would love to do something like that.
Both girls were sure they would have a great time. Amanda had wanted to invite some boys they knew from school and have a real party. Kara was firm as she explained what the weekend was she had planned. Amanda relented and promised Kara she would tell no one they were alone, or invite them to visit. She had her backpack stuffed with clothes she could never wear at school, school books, and several movies. Amanda had packed several changes of clothes including a black silky blouse with a shockingly low neckline and tight-fitting hip hugger pants to match.
“How far is it? We’ve been walking forever.” Amanda said.
Kara laughed. “We’re almost there.” They rounded the curve in the driveway and saw the two-story old farm house she had known as home all her life, surrounded by trees of crimson red, brilliant yellows, russet and various muted shades of green, lit in the setting sun.
Amanda stopped. “Check out all the mums your mom grows.”
Kara laughed and agreed with her as they hopped up the steps of the wide, wrap around porch. “I like them except when I have to help weed, separate, and plant them.”
Kara unlocked the door and they sat their things down on the living room couch. The big house had lots of windows letting in bright sunshine. “I guess the first thing I can do, is give you a tour of the house, so you’ll feel at home, then we can do whatever we want.”
“I brought all kinds of movies. I have scary movies, I even got a video of the ‘Texas Chain Saw Massacre’ and ‘Psycho,‘ funny movies and the new Jim Carry one everyone is talking about, love stories and some that just sounded good. I have a feeling, we‘ll have more fun than you ever dreamed.” If Kara had glanced at her friend, she might have wondered about the sly smile on her face.
The girls left the large living room they had entered by the front door, to a small hall leading from the living room to a bedroom and bathroom. They went back through the living room to a dining room complete with fireplace and French doors leading out onto the side porch. Behind the dining room they went to the large, friendly kitchen. It was in the kitchen most meals were eaten and many happy hours of visiting took place. At the back of the kitchen was a door leading outside, and the door to the basement.
The upstairs of the house had two large bedrooms and a connecting bathroom. Kara‘s room had a cheerful look with light rose colors and matching bedspread and curtains. Amanda complimented the heavy old antique desk and dresser in the room. Kara explained she loved those pieces not only for how they looked, but because they had belonged to her grandmother. They glanced in the parents’ room as they continued.
“That’s a lot of guns in there. Does your father hunt or what? Amanda said.
“Dad loves to hunt and some of them belonged to his father. Grandpa passed away last year and they are keepsakes for Dad.” Kara led the way down the stairs.
At the base of the stairs sat a large mixed breed, fluffy, yellow cat cleaning one paw. He stood and walked to Kara rubbing against her leg at the base of the stairs.
“This is Tom. He thinks he’s king around here, and we let him. Hope you like cats?”
Amanda stooped and gently petted the big, old yellow cat as he arched his back appreciating the attention. “I like cats just fine.”
Darkness came quickly in the Autumn of the year. Kara noticed the yard was already in shadows, and began to check and make sure all of the doors and windows were locked.
Amanda saw her checking the back door, and grabbed her arm. “What are you doing? You live so far back in the country that no one could find you, let alone try to break in. If you lock all the doors and we have some surprise company, they might feel unwelcome,” She said with a giggle.
Kara did not miss the look. “What do you mean, company? Company like who? How would they know where to find my house?”
Amanda had a sly smile as she answered. “Who knows? Maybe Steven and Michael might miss us so much, they found a way to hunt us out, and surprise us.” She had a big toothy grin as she spoke.
Kara did not look happy or excited as her friend did. She had made promises to her parents, and intended to keep them. Her parents would not trust her to stay alone again her if she betrayed that trust.
They bought frozen pizza, and a whole sack of snacks so Kara would have a good time.
“Amanda, what have you done? Don’t you tell me you went and invited Steve and Mike to come here. You did not tell people my parents are gone, and we’re here alone, did you?”
Amanda tried to look contrite. “You know I’d never go telling people we’d be here alone while your parents are away. I brought a whole sack of movies, didn’t I? I might have accidentally mentioned to Steve at lunch, about us watching all these great movies and eating pizza. I can’t remember.”
“My parents told me I could do whatever I wanted, as long as it was just you and me, we had a good time, but were safe. They’d have a fit, if they thought we had guys over here, and you know it. Tell me now what you’ve got planned. I’m not going to screw things up for the future.”
Amanda threw her head back and laughed. "Kara, Kara, just relax a little. What ‘Goodie two shoes’ truck did you fall off of? Girl, you’ve got to give it a rest and relax. If you invited boys, or threw a party you could feel guilty. You didn’t do any such thing. You were a good girl and did just like Mommy and Daddy expect you to. Here’s the deal. You can’t help it, if someone comes to see you, can you? Is it your fault if some guy drives all the way out here to no-where’s land just to visit and talk?”
Kara was angry “What time are they supposed to come out and visit?”
“How would I know? I didn’t tell them to come here.” Amanda appeared to be pouting.
“First of all, you’re the one that brought it up, and I really do live back in the country, in as you call it no-where’s land. If you didn’t have directions, you’d never find my house in a million years, and you know it.” Kara looked sternly at her friend.
“Don‘t get so bent out of shape. You got the whole house alone, a guarantee of no one around for the whole weekend, and you want to sit and sniff flowers and watch movies? I know you got more life in you than that.”
“Amanda, I told you what I had planned, and you said it sounded great. If I want to sit and sniff
every flower on the place, and watch every movie I can find, at least I don’t have to lie about it later. You bitch, your mom never trusts you. Can you think of any reasons why?”
“Don’t get mad at me. I didn’t mean it that way. You’re my best friend. It’s just that it slipped out at lunch. Steve is everything I’ve ever wanted, and his best friend Mike, thinks you’re cute. Can’t you see this isn’t bad?
Kara began to have a dim view of the week-end to come. She had no fear of staying alone, but then again, there had been all of those phone calls where no one said a thing. That’s no big deal, she thought. There were also the times she walked alone in the woods, that she could have sworn she was being watched. Her parents thought the phone calls were from some prank, and said not to become paranoid. Amanda’s idea was another issue entirely.
“Amanda, you have to understand. My parents don’t lie to me and I don’t lie to them. They worry . I’m not afraid of the guys. Can’t you enjoy the weekend like we talked about it?” Kara didn’t really want to be alone and Amanda might decide to leave.
Amanda smiled. “It’s cool. Maybe this is part of why I like you. I don’t know anyone at the whole school that would think twice about not telling their parents the whole truth. I can see it‘s a real
issue with you. If the guys show up we can visit for awhile then tell them to go.”
“I have a better idea. Why don’t you call, and don’t tell me you don’t have their number, and let them know the party’s off for now.” Kara was firm and Amanda could see it was no use to arguing.
Before Amanda could answer, the telephone rang. Kara answered it but no one spoke, as with the other calls they had recently had. Amanda took out her cell phone. With no answer after two tries, she said she would have to try again later. It was totally dark outside. Both girls deliberately tried to relax and ease the tension. Kara started to fix the pizzas.Kara turned the porch light on. Amanda laughed, “I thought you didn’t want the boys to find us? Now you turned a light on for them.”