“Remind me why we’re waiting in this line again?” I ask Kaitlyn. “You don’t believe in this fortune-telling stuff, do you?”

Kaitlyn smiles and shakes her head. “I don’t know, Jane. But it’s always fun to have an idea of what might be lying in the future. After all, uncertainty is terrifying.”

 I laugh at her. “I didn’t know the gateway to this Carnival was an entrance to the 1900s.”

“Okay, the two of you can come in now,” says the man in the draped long top, who had just emerged from behind the curtains between us and the fortune-teller.

We walk into the room where the fortune-teller sits on a mat. There’s a subtle woodsy smell with a hint of some flowery fragrance, that wafts through the tiny room. The fortune-teller is gazing deep into the crystal ball placed in front of her.

After a few minutes of hand motions and lots of murmuring under her breath, she looks at Kaitlyn and in a steely voice, she says, “The one that you accompany brings pure evil into the world. Born to do evil, they will bring forth terror and darkness. For the sake of your own life and that of your family’s, keep your distance.” In a sudden movement, she then looks at me with eyes that could pierce through my soul, which she now deems to be that of the devil himself. I want to laugh at what she just told me and call it ridiculous but something about her tone, words and gaze has me paralyzed in my place.

Kaitlyn stands up and pulls me up by my arm. “This is not just ridiculous; it’s also extremely mean. I shouldn’t have brought us here. Let’s go, Jane.” She walks off, still holding my hand. I can’t help but look at the fortune-teller glaring at me, while I walk away.

Once we’re out of there, Kaitlyn gives me a hug and asks me if I’m okay. I can still hear my heart throb. “It’s okay, Kaitlyn. It’s just some stupid fortune-teller making a random assumption about me. She knows nothing about my life at all!”

Kaitlyn nods her head. But she, too, is clearly scared and uneasy.

Trying to lighten the mood, I say, “Anyway, if I do turn out to be evil, you now know who I’m going for first!”

Kaitlyn slightly smiles. “Let’s just go home. I’m sure we’ll feel better and forget that silly woman once we have some rest.”

After Kaitlyn drops me home, I rush straight to my room. I needed to just lie down and rest for a while. I look around my room. There’s a picture of my family on this wall. I’m standing with my mom, dad and my little brother Abel, in front of the Taj Mahal. It was taken at least 7 years ago. The memory brings a smile to my face. I close my eyes and listen to my heart race.

I don’t know how much time has passed by when I’m interrupted by a few knocks. Maybe dad’s back from work. I wait for mom to get the door. I hear the knocks getting faster and louder. Maybe mom’s not home.

I open my eyes and rush downstairs. It’s night time. The lights are all off downstairs. No one is home. I walk towards the light switch when the knocks turn into loud, urgent thuds.  Something is really wrong. I attach the security chain of the front door and slightly open it. There’s no one out there. The streets outside are filled with dead silence. I look around to see if it’s just some teen who’s trying to play a prank. I see no one.

Suddenly, the thumping sounds start again. This time someone is using both their hands and are moving even faster. I am petrified. The door is half-open and there is no one outside but I can still hear the thumps. I slam the front door shut and start running up to my room. The thumping sounds are now echoing through my entire house. It also feels like someone is screaming and crying for help. But I don’t know if my mind is playing tricks on me.

I lock the door of my room behind me and cover my ears. But the sounds now seem louder. I get up and look around. There has to be a source to this sound. That’s when I realize where they’re coming from – my closet. Not only can I hear the sounds coming from my closet, but I can also see the doors of my closet shake with the thumps. Like someone is hitting it, from the inside. Aghast, I stare at the closet move and slowly move my hands towards the handles and open it in a sudden motion with my eyes closed. The sounds have stopped. I open one eye and peek at what lies inside it.

It’s just my clothes. There is nothing out of the ordinary here. I’m perplexed. I wasn’t imagining the sounds, was I? *THUD* There it is! I hear it again. The sounds pick up their pace once again. But they’re not coming from inside the closet. They’re coming from the mirror. The sounds are coming from inside my mirror.

Trembling, I shut the closet while looking down at the floor. I’m too terrified to look up and into the mirror. The sounds continue and get louder with each bang. Soon, it’s too loud to bear. I can’t take it anymore and let out a loud scream. “Stop! Please! Stop!” I rush to the other side of the room and pick up my brother’s hockey stick and run towards the mirror, ready to smash it into pieces. That’s when I catch a look into it.

No, this can’t be! Stunned, I am stuck in place. I drop the stick.

Inside my mirror, I see them. Mom, dad and Abel. They’re standing right in front of me. But on the other side of the mirror. Blood dripping from their heads. They’re grinning at me, their mouths filled with blood. Half of Abel’s face is smashed in. Like he was repeatedly and aggressively hit with something blunt. “Hi, Jane. You left us. You left us here and went to the carnival. Why did you leave us, Jane?” Abel is talking to me. His eyes are filled with tears but he is smiling so wide.

 Mom moves closer to me, holding Abel’s hand. “What happened, Jane? Remember our argument last night? Did you get the money you wanted? Will you be going for the trip? We can’t seem to remember anything after that. You must remember something, right?”

Dad interrupts her. “Honey, do you not remember being woken up from our sleep that night? When Jane came to visit us?”

Abel laughs. Then he looks at me and his smile suddenly disappears. “Yes, Jane. You went to visit them last night. I heard the noise and came to check on them. You were holding my hockey stick in your hand. What happened after that?”

At that moment, it comes rushing back to me. I fall to the ground and begin sobbing.

I hear mom speak again “Aw, honey. Don’t you cry. Come here. You can join us.”

I look up at all 3 of them and see them moving towards me – tears in their eyes, smiles on their faces. They’re a couple of steps away from me. I don’t want to move. I wish they take me. I stretch out my hand towards my family and that’s when I hear the front door break open.

“Police! Stay put. Jane Brown, do not move. We found your family’s bodies buried in the backyard. Your fingerprints are all over. We’re coming upstairs.”

I laugh. I guess I’m evil, after all.