Ringer

Read Ringer for Free Online

Book: Read Ringer for Free Online
Authors: C.J. Duggan
Ringer?” she asked,
cocking her head with interest.
    Here we go.
    I inwardly sighed, shaking my head no as I
munched on some grapes.
    “Really?” She straightened, her eyes alight
with interest. “What is it?”
    I slurped on my cold … cordial? Wow, tea to
cordial. Things were starting to get wild.
    I cleared my throat. “If I tell you, you
have to promise not to tell anyone, okay?”
    “Oh, I won’t, cross my heart and hope to
die,” she said, physically crossing her heart. I was just about to reveal my
actual namesake when I was beaten by the distant calls of Moira’s mum.
    “Moira? Come leave Ringer alone and have
some dessert.”
    Penny Henry stood with her arms wrapped
around herself as if warding off a chill that didn’t exist on the tepid
February night.
    Moira grimaced. “Muum.”
    “Now, Moira.” Penny’s voice went down a few
warning octaves; it was enough to have Moira jumping off the beam and rolling
her eyes.
    “I better go, she is in the worst mood
since Miranda’s come home.”
    Really?
    I lifted my brows with interest, which only
encouraged her to continue.
    “Mum and Miranda always fight, you should
hear them go at it,” she said conspiratorially.
    “I hope I never have to find out.” I
smirked.
    “Ha. You’ll be lucky.” She laughed.
    “Moira Henry!”
    “Oh, I’m coming!” she yelled, before
turning to me with a double eye blink. “Night, Ringer.”
    “Night, Moira.” I stood as she skipped off
towards her fuming mother. I lifted my hand to give a polite smile and wave,
which elicited a head nod in acknowledgment. It was any guess why she would
fight with her daughter, probably because they were so much alike … no doubt.
     
    ***
     
    I dreamt of dust, and exhaust fumes, the
whoosh of air as I had sailed through it, right before my life had flashed
before my eyes. The images of my dealings with death played out in my
subconscious like a horror movie on a continuous loop except each time it came
to flipping me off, it wasn’t Miranda doing it, it had been one of my mates.
Sean, Toby, Stan … a different mate on each loop, always flipping me the
finger, before tearing away, and leaving me behind in a cloud of dust. The
sound of the car seemed so real, so loud, so …
    I stirred. Lifting my face from my pillow I
struggled to decipher my new surroundings. I gingerly rolled onto my back
wincing at my rib cage where a bruise was slowly surfacing and providing me a
constant reminder of my fall. I rubbed the sleep from my eyes, sighing in part
relief that I had woken from my nightmare, a nightmare that seemed so real, so
loud, so very … current. I froze, listening to the very sound that had plagued
my dreams; I sat up, cocking my head to listen intently. It was the sound of
the Mazda; the beat-up devil car (if you could call it a car) certainly sounded
like it was manufactured in hell: wheezy, rackety and, in this case, failing to
start.
    Good .
    It was about time it was put out of its
misery, I thought, as I lay back down, linking my hands behind my head. I
smirked in the dark, listening to its continued struggle as it refused to kick
over and come to life. I waited for it to die so I could relish the fact of not
having to listen to the sound again … ever . I yawned lazily, reaching
for my Nokia on my side table to check the time.
    I frowned at the illuminated screen. What
the hell was the Mazda doing being started at one in the morning?
    Before I could think too deeply about the
reasoning, I found myself moving towards my door, clasping the handle and
cringing as I twisted it slowly, hoping the sound of the creak of the hinge
wouldn’t alert me to anyone, not that they would be able to hear it over the
sound of the ghastly, spluttering motor. Unable to see much through the crack
of my door, I moved slowly to poke my head out and sneak a look down the
verandah towards the Henry homestead, where the Mazda had last came to a stop.
I slid along the wall of the huts, skimming

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