Chapter 24: Decision

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Abby faced Mr. Harmon. "I brought my stepdad, my mom, and a few cops. They're all dead a ready to be sacrificed."

"Good job, dear," Mr. Harmon praised.

"Will I get powers like you now? Making paint come to life! That's so epic," she said.

"Of course," he said.

"Abby, what are you doing? You were supposed to help me!" I yelled.

"Oh, yeah. I never mentioned the real reason you stopped hanging out with Violet years ago," Abby said. "I'm Violet's halfsister. My mom told your mom about it, and she didn't like it one bit."

Total mind games right now. Half-sister?

"I sacrificed my soul. Too bad Violet was too much of a wimp," Abby said.

"Don't call people names." Mr. Harmon waved a finger. "Even though, it's true."

"What? Then how come you look so young?" I asked him. Everything was still confusing.

"The book gave him that," Abby said. "The book gave us so much, don't you see that Emily? I could live among the dead and do so much more. I mean, not as much as Dad." She rolled her eyes. "Book. Sacrifice. Power. Get it?"

"So, that's what this is about? After everything, you think I'd just join you?" I asked, looking at Mr. Harmon. "Join? Then what?"

Abby stepped in front of him. "You don't have to do it for him, just for me. At first, I was a bit mad that you thought you were better than me at hide and seek then. It was about revenge to me. You pissed me off for too long. You're a bitch sometimes. An immature one. Plus, I thought-" she placed her hand on the needles on my eyes then they fell off. I blinked about a hundred times "you could join me; imagine the people we can bring here. Imagine the power! Imagine what's beyond! There's so much more than just to live." She pointed to her father. "It's right in that book."

Suddenly the room was full of the 15 players who played hide and seek along with the cops, and Abby's parents. My parents, Caleb, Jasper, Violet, all of them. I looked at every single one of them.

"You have a choice, Emily. Be like us! Be like us and let's rescue humanity and show them what living truly is," Abby said. "But don't be like those who denied us. Except for Mrs. Harmon," she pointed to the other played.

Mr. Harmon nodded. "Maybe this seems like a horror story, Emily. But horror stories can have happy endings."

The flames got closer to us. So close, I could feel the heat. Mr. Harmon was right. Not all horror stories end badly. They don't have to.

"What happens to those who don't join you?" I asked. "I'm just curious."

"Of course you are," Abby said. "They become whatever my father wants to them to be. His sacrifice, his power, and his will. The book doesn't like those who deny the offer. Those who don't commit to their sacrifice, suffer! Forever."

"You can convince all of them to join us." Mr. Harmon said. "They'll listen to you. You could be with your parents forever!"

There was another explosion. This time, the walls in front and behind us blew off. We watched as the house burned, flames reaching toward us next.

"Emily, you can have your happy ending. Don't let your story end in horror. Pledge your loyalty to the book, and you can be just like us." He stood beside me with his hand on my shoulder. The flames were so close to us. Abby walked up to my other side and placed her hand on my shoulder.

Be like them and guide people to their doom. I couldn't believe that I was about to make my upcoming decision. I mean, they were right. Horror stories don't have to end badly.

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