Previous Challenge Entry (Level 3 - Advanced)
Topic: On the Telephone (11/18/10)
TITLE: The Babysitter
By Shann Hall-LochmannVanBennekom
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Sure enough, after last-minute instructions had been given, Mrs. Shelley tried to hand her over to Kara and she immediately started screaming. However, once her parents were out of sight, Tiara quieted down and started giggling at her brothers’ antics.
Kara plopped on the couch and all three kids jumped on top of her. “Oh boy, you guys sure are wound up tonight. I’m glad it’s bedtime.” She shook her head to the groans, but the kids soon settled down after baths and a couple of stories.
Exhausted, Kara grabbed the phone and dialed her friend, Amy, “The little rugrats are in bed. I don’t know how I’m ever going to repay you for recommending me for this job.”
Laughing, Amy replied, “Oh,they’re not that bad, especially after their parents leave. Besides, the Shelleys pay better than any family in the neighborhood.”
“They have to, or no one would put up with the antics of Timmy and Eddie. Those two are little tricksters. When I was getting Tiara ready for bed, they managed to grab the baby monitor and started barking in it. I spent ten minutes afraid a dog had gotten into the house before I realized it was them. That Eddie really can bark.” Kara and Amy both laughed.
Suddenly,the lights flickered, Kara let out a small yelp. “The storm better not knock out the power. It’s spooky enough here…”
“Oooohhhh, sounds like the beginning of a slasher film. Lock all the doors, Kara. Someone may be out there.”
“Amy, you are the biggest brat in the world!”
Just then Kara heard a deep voice, “This is the right one.”
She whispered into the phone, “Amy, did you hear that? There’s someone in the house.”
“I heard a deep voice. Are you sure Mr. Shelley isn’t home?”
“No, I’m sitting where I can see both doors. There’s no way anyone came in.”
“Maybe it’s the boys playing a joke again.”
Tears were filling Kara’s eyes. “No, it was a really deep voice. Besides, they’re asleep.”
The silence was pierced once again by the deep voice, “I don’t know why I get all of the messy jobs.”
Kara started whimpering, ”Did you hear it, Amy?”
“Yes, hang up and call the police.”
Kara stood up and started slowly walking through all of the rooms, “I don’t think there’s anyone here. I’m checking again. Don’t you dare hang up on me, unless I scream and the phone goes dead; then call 911.”
The eerie voice penetrated the walls, “Why can’t you do it, Ivy?”
Whispering into the phone, Kara’s voice started to shake,”There must be two people in the house. He’s talking to someone named Ivy.”
The only thing Kara heard on the other end of the line was laughing, “Amy, have you gone mad? I told you I think there are two people in the house. Why are you laughing?”
“I’m sorry, but I just remembered the lady next door is named Ivy. When the boys were barking into the monitor, did you turn off transmitter in Tiara’s room?”
“Yeah, so what?”
“If you didn’t turn it back on, then the receiver in the living room will pick up the nearest signal. The voice you hear is the neighbor’s. They have a baby monitor, too. I remember Mrs. Shelley telling me once that both pieces needed to be turned off or it would pick up the neighbor’s monitor. She heard them talking one night and recognized their voices.”
Kara walked into Tiara’s room; sure enough her monitor was still off. She reached over and turned it on. Then she went back into the living room and listened. The only thing she heard was Tiara’s gentle snores.
“I hate modern inventions.”
“You should be grateful for the phone because I was able to keep you calm and help solve the mystery.”
“Amy, if I remember correctly, you’re the one who freaked me out with talk of slasher films.”
“Well, I can hang up if you want.”
“No, that’s okay, but let’s talk about something fun. Isn’t Aidan the cutest guy you’ve ever seen?”
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