Sometime later, Teddy rested in the bedroom upstairs. She had been tucked into bed. Grandma Rose was worrying over her, humming softly and dabbing her forehead with a cool washcloth.
Teddy woke slow at first, but as the night's events returned to her, she sat up fast.
"Where's Isabelle?" she said, panicked, searching the room with bulging eyes.
"Lay back, dear," Rose hushed. "I promise I'll explain everything."
It was still dead of night, and Teddy was exhausted. She was frightened, too. She had seen so many horrible things in the basement, and in the back of her mind she knew the truth. She couldn't comprehend it, it didn't make sense, it wasn't possible, but she knew.
Snickers jumped up onto the bed and curled into a fat ball in the crook of Teddy's arm. Although she was deathly afraid - of the house, of Mr. Poole, of Grandma Rose - something about the cat put her mind at ease. Snickers had never lied to her, and right now, the strange old cat told her "SAFE."
So she relaxed against the pillows again, and allowed Grandma Rose to press the washcloth onto her forehead.
"Grandma Rose?" Teddy said.
"Yes, dear?" Rose said.
"Are you dead?"
A long, heavy silence passed. Grandma Rose looked old, Teddy noticed, for the first time.
Rose sighed sadly.
"We're dead, dear. Everyone here is dead... I would've told you..." Rose struggled to find the right words. "It's just so infrequent that we have visitors."
Snickers purred, nuzzling closer into Teddy's side. "LOVE."
A lump formed in Teddy's throat and hot tears sprung from her sleepy eyes. She was afraid, but more than anything, she felt overwhelmingly, desperately sad.
"I thought I lived in the house alone, with Snickers and my books and my papers," Rose explained. "But one day, my heart gave out. And I realized, only after I was already gone, that I had wasted my life. But then I met Mr. Poole, who had lived here much longer than me."
The old woman sounded sad, but she did not cry. She continued her tale.
"Mr. Poole is a brilliant, dark, lonely man," Rose said. "He took my body to the basement, to join his, and Isabelle's, and Henry's..."
"The spiders?" Teddy whispered.
"I had my second chance at life," Rose smiled sadly. "I got to meet you, my great-granddaughter."
Rose stood and kissed Teddy on the forehead.
"What will happen now?" Teddy whispered.
"I'm going to clean up the basement," Rose smiled, eyes misty.
YOU ARE READING
The Face in the HouseHorror
A twisted tale of death, love, and magic. Enter the mouth of the face in the house.... WATTPAD PICK: Stranger Summer Reads ☀️😈 Rose White's little old house is filled floor-to-ceiling with books, newspapers, and other fragments of a life spent shut...