Today’s Theme: The Afterlife
Abigail, Meet Abigail
Brainstormed With: Chelsea Gumbley
Written By: Robin Gagnon
Abigail laughed, as she chased the bunny through the trees. It was running slowly from her, as though it didn’t even know she was there.
“Run, bunny,” she giggled, trying to make it hop faster. “Run.”
The light filtered through the trees, making the area seem almost magical. A butterfly floated by, catching the five-year-olds attention. She chased it for a while until it fluttered up into the leafy, green trees.
Looking for something else to play with, she skipped farther into the woods in her flowery dress and nice, white shoes. Something moved in the corner of her eye, but when she looked in that direction, it was gone.
“Bunny,” she called out, her red hair bouncing against her back as she moved. “Where’d you go?”
The sunlight began to seem dimmer for some reason and Abigail began to get nervous. Was it going to get dark soon? She didn’t like the dark.
She looked up and the trees seemed to grow even higher, blocking out most of the light that tried to filter through. Something rustled in the bushes to her left and she stopped walking to stare fearfully around her. There were shadow people weaving in and out the trees, to fast for her to see.
Abigail’s eyes began to tear up and she clutched her hands to her chest. She didn’t like the forest anymore, she wanted to go home. Where was her mom?
A hand touched her shoulder and she screamed. When she finally spun around, she came face to face with an older woman. She had red hair, just like her, but there were grey streaks in it from age. She was wearing a blue polka dotted dress and she held out her hand to Abigail with a warm smile.
“What are you doing out here?” she asked in a light, playful tone. “You’re not supposed to be here.”
Abigail didn’t speak, she just stared at the woman in fear. Her mother had told her not to talk to strangers.
Noticing the little girl’s hesitation, the older woman bent down so that she could be at eye level.
“It’s okay, you can trust me,” the woman assured Abigail, holding out her hand one more time. “I’m going to take you back to your mom.”
Abigail hesitated at first, but looked around and realized that the forest around her had become completely dark. Green and yellow eyes stared at her from between the trees, so out of fear, she took the old woman’s hand.
They walked quietly through the dark forest hand-in-hand for a while, until things started to brighten up a bit and the old woman spoke up, “My name is Abigail Walsh, by the way.”
“Oh!” the girl replied in excitement. “My name is Abigail too, but my last name isn’t Walsh.”
“That’s too bad,” the woman smiled, the forest becoming brighter and brighter with each step. “It’s still lovely to meet you.”
They walked a little while longer, until the woman came to a stop and pointed up ahead.
“You need to go to your mother now,” she told the little girl. “It’s time for you to go back.”
Abigail looked in front of her to see that they were now standing at the edge of the forest, across the street from a car half-submerged in a small pond. In the driver’s seat was her unconscious mother, her head just above the water.
Abigail moved forward to cross the street, but the woman didn’t budge.
“Aren’t you coming with me?” Abigail asked the older woman, who was looking towards her mother with a forlorn look on her face. “Come with me and meet my mom.”
“I can’t go with you,” the woman replied apologetically. “You have to go on your own, but first you must wake yourself up.”
Abigail let go of the woman’s hand and turned to look back at the car. In the backseat was her in her flowery dress and nice, white shoes. There was a gash on her forehead and half of her face was under the water.
“What am I doing there if I’m here?” the little girl fearfully asked. “Why is my mom sleeping?”
Abigail turned to look back toward the forest, but the woman was gone. Not knowing what else to do, she carefully crossed the street, after looking both ways, and made her way toward herself in the car.
Grabbing herself by the shoulder, she tried to shake her self awake by yelling, “Wake up! Wake up! Come on, wake up!”
A bright light enveloped her vision and she was blinded. Suddenly, her head hurt and she could hear people moving all around her. There was a voice louder than anyone else, but it took her a while to come to and realise what was going on.
“Abby,” her mother’s tearful voice cried out in relief, as the little girl coughed up water. “Oh, my baby girl.”
“You should go with the paramedics now,” a voice that sounded like her father’s was saying. “She’s going to be alright.”
“I’m not leaving her,” Abigail’s mother spat at her husband. “This was my fault. All I had to do was pick her up and drive her home from school, but I couldn’t even do that.”
“It wasn’t your fault,” Abigail’s father assured his wife gently. “You couldn’t see anything because of the sun got into your eyes after you turned that bend. Anyone could have made the same mistake.”
Abigail opened her eyes to see her two parents standing over her, as a paramedic crouched just above her. He was checking her vitals and making sure that she was responsive before putting her onto a stretcher. Her parents followed her into the ambulance and it was then that Abigail noticed the matted blood in her mom’s red hair.
“Mom, you’re bleeding,” she commented weakly. “Are you hurt?”
“I’m fine, sweetie,” her mother replied, looking down on her injured child. “Mommy’s really sorry for all of this.”
“It’s okay,” Abigail smiled. “I met a nice lady that had red hair like us! Her name was Abigail too, but she said that her last name was Walsh. She found me after I got lost in the woods.”
A look of shock crossed her father’s face and Abigail’s mom broke down into tears.
The little girl didn’t understand why her mother was crying, so she asked, “What’s wrong mommy?”
Once her mother had composed herself enough to speak, she looked down at her daughter with a sad smile and replied, “Honey, you met your grandma.”