*Note to possible readers–this chapter contains a small nipple shot, and one violent blood scene. If either of these things offend you, please don’t continue*
Time flew by quickly for me and my family. Months after our honeymoon I had given birth to twins! We named them Drusilla (after Shane’s grandmother who we called Drew for short) And Demi. Shane and I had decided, we needed to buy a bigger home. Our home although cozy, was way too small for a family of five. So we spent all of our savings and then some on a brand new home. But it was gorgeous and had a ton of room for our quickly expanding family.
Mornings were always hectic around the house. Especially weekdays, when Shane had to work, and Cole went to school. The twins were now two years old, and I now sympathized with my mother having raised 3 children on her own, with no help what-so-ever. I had a wonderful very hands on husband, and even then, I still felt like my house was always a mess, and I was always two steps behind.
Cole, ever the slacker had to be constantly reminded to do his homework. This morning he was trying to finish it before the bus arrived.
“I told you to do your homework last night!” I scolded him.
“I started too..” he began.
“Well then you finish. Tonight after school you will sit down at the table and finish your home work until its completed and checked by either Shane or I.”
I was tired of this. Cole was a bright kid, but lately had taken to skipping school and not turning in his homework assignments, or even bothering to complete them most of the time. I was tired of being called into the principles office because Cole was always getting into trouble one way or another. He definitely took after me. God help us all, I thought.
“Have a good day at work sweetheart.” I hugged Shane wishing he could stay and help with the twins. But since the birth of the twins, I hadn’t had time to even pick up a paintbrush, and right now Shane was our only source of income.
“Hopefully the twins will take a nice long nap for you today.” He said his voice oozing sympathy as the twins hollered to be let out of their cribs.
“Yeah that’s doubtful.” I said tiredly. Rubbing my eyes.
After dressing the girls, and giving them breakfast I finally had time to breathe. Cole was at school. (I had called and checked) The phone rang in my pocket.
“Hello?” I said hiding out in the alcove by the front door so I could hear as the twins started fighting over the same toy.
“Hey its me.” My sister said.
“Hey Nancy Drew whats up?” I asked.
“I take it you haven’t seen the news yet or read the paper this morning.” She asked.
“Are you kidding me? I can’t even pee in peace let alone read the newspaper.”
“I’m on the news again.”
I said goodbye to my sister and I turned on the news. The news story began with information I already knew. Brennan had witnessed a local crime boss murdering his girlfriend when she was following him for a story she was writing for a national newspaper. She was the only witness, and was set to testify in his trial.
After I watched the news, I got the paper. I sat down at the table with my second cup of coffee that morning. The twins were quiet, which ment trouble, but what was new?
Worry and anxiety chewed at my gut as I read the article. This family didn’t need any more drama. I always worried about my husband and his line of work, but it was my sister that was the cause of my stress this time!
The rest of the day was spent chasing the twins around the house and trying to wrangle them down to take a nap. I was unsuccessful, as I would lay them down and they would start screaming loud enough to wake the dead. I gave up and watched them play while I cleaned up behind them. It was amazing to me at two years old what distinct little personalities they both had. Demi was the little tom-boy who followed Cole around like he was god. Drusilla was very prissy and girly, and didn’t like to be dirty. If there was a spec of dirt on her, she would scream bloody murder. I loved them both dearly, but they were exhausting, and I felt it down to my very bones.
I was more than happy to see Shane come home an hour early. He was good at watching the twins so I could take a much-needed nap. But today, I had too much on my mind to sleep.
“I’m worried about Brennan.” I said to my husband. He wrapped me in a protective hug that did little to ease my fears.
“Your sister is a tough cookie. She’s very brave going up against Nino Shapiro like she is. This city will be a much better place when he is put behind bars.”
“What about his associates?” I asked. “I’m worried about them retaliating.”
“Honey, stop worrying. You are going to worry yourself sick!” Shane tried to comfort me, I brushed his arms off.
“This is serious” I said working myself into a frenzy. “She has already received threats, and her office at the newspaper has already been ransacked.”
“And that’s why we have a patrol car patrolling through her neighborhood. Your sister is safe Breelynn. Stop worrying.”
“I’ll just be happy when all this is over…” I said rubbing my tired eyes.
“Mom?” Cole asked quietly. I didn’t even notice his school bus had pulled up.
“Yeah hun?” I said distantly, my mind elsewhere.
“Talia Jones at school told me that Aunt Brennan wouldn’t be in trouble if she just kept her nose out of other people’s business.” He said. “What does that mean?”
I pinched the bridge of my nose as my head was starting to pound. I sighed.
“Honey, your aunt Brennan witnessed something very bad, and she has the chance to make it right. Do you understand?”
“I think so.” Cole said looking down at the floor for a minute. “You always say spying on people is wrong, but that’s what aunt Brennan does right?”
I thought for a moment. “Aunt Brennan doesn’t spy on people. She reports the news, and sometimes has to follow people around under cover. It seems like spying sometimes, but it is different.” I said.
“But Talia says” I cut him off.
“Cole, Don’t listen to Talia Jones, she is a little trouble maker, and just wants to start drama.” I said.
“Aunt Brennan is very brave, and everything will turn out just fine–you’ll see.” I said trying to believe the words I said.
I scooped him up in a hug.
“Go do your homework, I’m going to start dinner. Everything will be fine, I promise.” I repeated hoping it was a promise I could keep.
My mind was far away as I prepared dinner. I was even more upset now that Cole was being picked on at school because his aunt was all over the news. I felt a little surge of anger that was unwarranted I knew, but I couldn’t help the way I felt.
Brennan was known for doing the hard-hitting news pieces, and this wasn’t the first time she had been in hot water . She had uncovered an embezzlement ring that had resulted in the loss of a few jobs around town, and had since been a pariah around town. I loved my sister more than anything, but I couldn’t help wish she could just mind her own business sometimes!
I listened as Shane helped Cole with his homework as I stirred the pot of goopy carbonara. I smiled a little, Shane was such a great father, I was truly lucky to have him. I felt some of the tightness loosen in my chest.
“Breaking news out of Morreaux Louisiana tonight…” the tv that was left on blared from the living room as we sat down for supper.
“Turn that off!” I barked wanting to enjoy dinner in peace. I jumped up and grabbed the remote off the coffee table and clicked the TV off.
“So how was school today Cole?” I asked, my shoulders tense with stress.
“Oh you know, it was ok.” He shrugged his shoulders. “Can Oliver come over after school tomorrow and play video games?” He asked hopefully
“Yes, but homework is to be done before there is any video games, ok?”
It was after midnight before I finally had peace and quiet and time to myself. I finally had gotten the twins to sleep ten minutes ago. I was sweaty and exhausted and wanted nothing more to relax in a nice warm bath.
I lay back against the cool tile and closed my eyes. I felt some of the tension leave my body. To make matters worse and add to my stress level was the fact I was pregnant again. I ran a wash cloth over my flat stomach, it would be awhile before I started showing.
I hadn’t told Shane the news yet as I was not sure how I even felt about it yet. The twins left me exhausted and drained on the best of days. How could I deal with another child. A baby? We had talked about having one more child, but not so soon. We wanted to wait a couple more years until the twins were older, but life doesn’t ever go according to plan, and now a new baby would bring our family to six.
I was heading into the bedroom when my phone beeped in my pocket. A text message. I turned on my phone my eyes scanning the message quickly
Text received-Brennan Gallagher-1:03 am
I just heard a noise at my door and I’m totally freaked out. Can you or Shane come over?
I stared down at my phone and debated on waking Shane. He was better at this kind of stuff then I was. I felt like my heart was pounding in my chest. This whole murder trial had us all on edge.
I snuck a look at Shane. He was sleeping and looked so peaceful I didn’t have the heart to wake him. I shoved my feet into my boots and hurried outside to the car.
I texted Brennan back and was concerned when I didn’t get a reply. I debated on calling the cops, but thought better of it. It was probably nothing, and didn’t want to make a big deal out of nothing.
At this late hour the streets were empty. My new house was across town, and it didn’t take me long to get to my old neighborhood. I pulled up in front of Brennan’s house and ran inside when I saw the front door was wide open!
I wasn’t prepared for what I saw next. The next few minutes happened like something from a nightmare. My big sister was laying in a pool of blood. The glow from the moon made her skin appear like it was made of ivory. I ran in, and slid to my knees in the blood that was still warm and tacky.
“Wake up Brennan!” I screamed! I flipped her over in my arms and desperately trying to find a pulse. “Wake up!” I screamed my voice raw
I dialed 911, I don’t even remember doing it, I mumbled the address into the phone and hung up and stared down at my sisters still pale face. She was so pale, and there was so much blood. I felt like I was outside my body watching this happen to someone else.
I tipped my head back and screamed!