Page 53 of Daisy Darker

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“Whatisthat?” Lily asks.

“I don’t hear anything,” says Conor.

“I can hear it,” Trixie says.

“So can I. Shh. Listen,” says Rose.

We all strain to hear the sound coming from somewhere outside the lounge, possibly outside the house. Nobody has left the room since Rose went to the bathroom.

“I’ll go,” she says.

The gun in Rose’s hand is a surreal sight to see.

Conor shakes his head and picks up the flashlight.

“No. We’ll all go. We should stay together,” he says.

Without another word we all leave the room, except for Poppins,who is fast asleep by the fire. Conor and I lead the way, with the rest following close behind, so close that Rose nearly walks right into me. Lily is holding Trixie’s hand; I doubt she’ll let her out of her sight again after what happened earlier.

We follow the sound of ringing to the kitchen. The back door is open, letting in the rain. The door bangs loudly, and the gust of wind that is battering it blows a swirl of dead leaves inside. One by one we all look up at the chalk poem on the wall and see that once again, some lines have been struck out.

Daisy Darker’s family were as dark as dark can be.

When one of them died, all of them lied, and pretended not to see.

Daisy Darker’s nana was the oldest but least wise.

The woman’s will made them all feel ill, which was why she had to die.

Daisy Darker’s father lived life dancing to his own tune.

His self-centered ways, and the pianos he played, danced him to his doom.

Daisy Darker’s mother was an actress with the coldest heart.

She didn’t love all her children, and deserved to lose her part.

Daisy Darker’s sister Rose was the eldest of the three.

She was clever and quiet and beautiful, but destined to die lonely.

Daisy Darker’s sister Lily was the vainest of the lot.

She was a selfish, spoiled, entitled witch, one who deserved to get shot.

Daisy Darker’s niece was a precocious little child.

Like all abandoned ducklings, she would not fare well in the wild.

Daisy Darker’s secret story was one someone sadly had to tell.

But her broken heart was just the start of what will be her last farewell.

Daisy Darker’s family wasted far too many years lying.

They spent their final hours together learning lessons before dying.

The wind outside howls like a choir of ghosts.

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