Okay. Started late, but here it is. Six days down! Thanks to everyone who reads.
Hannah Martin liked dark places. She liked scary stories, black clothes, and Oujia boards. She believed in impossible things and once talked to her father into spending the night in a cemetery.
Her father encouraged her. He told her she was born at midnight under a full moon. He let her dye her hair black and fill her bedroom with curiosities and charms. But he wouldn’t talk about his mother or say how she died.
At six years old, Hannah noticed how her father would always glance in the direction of the Asylum when he drove nearby. At ten years old, she discovered that he visited the Asylum once a week. And after all these years, he still never talked about his mother in the past tense.
But all of inquiries about her grandmother were ignored, and Hannah decided to find out for herself. She wasn’t frightened by stories of the Asylum. Besides, she reasoned, even if her grandmother wasn’t there, the place had plenty of mysteries to explore.
Now on the inside of the Asylum grounds, Hannah left the rope hanging down the side of the wall and she listened for any sign that someone might have seen her. She hoped there were no guards making rounds.
Fairly certain no one had seen her come in, she looked up towards the roof. The angle was all wrong to see if the boy was still up there. Maybe this place let children out on the roofs at night. Who could say a place like this didn’t. Maybe the inmates ran the Asylum. What did she know? Rumor and speculation.
The night air was cold, but she was too excited to feel it. She took a few steps towards the nearest window when she heard the first bird overheard. Odd to see such birds this time of night. Another bird came, and another. She leaned back against the Aylum wall as the sky filled with black birds. They made no noise other than the flapping of their wings, and then they disappeared from her line of vision and were quiet.
Passing by the window, Hannah ducked down. She planned to find the back entrance and pick the lock. She’d bought a set of lockpick tools online, and she’d practiced on as many locks as she could with getting caught.
A great rustling of wings brought her to a stop. The birds soared from the roof in a tight flock. It looked for a moment as if they were carrying something. The boy? Hannah shook her head. She believed in fortune-telling, auras, and talking to the dead. But birds didn’t carry little boys of roof tops.
Watching the cloud of birds move away from the Asylum and over the woods, Hannah remembered the guys who’d come with her to the wall and who were supposed to be with her now. She didn’t regret leaving them behind, but she wondered if they were waiting for her or if they’d get lost in the woods on the way back home. She shrugged and turned her attention back to the task at hand. Being lost for one night in the woods wouldn’t do the guys any harm. Might do them some good.