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The Tangled Web
“Allie, do you know where my basketball is?” My twin brother, Alex, stood by the door, running his hands through his sweat-matted brown hair. I sighed and shook my head, heaving a box right next to my bed. Just two hours moving in and he was already barking me down for a stupid ball. I ignored him, hoping he would just drift away and back into his bedroom.
But, unfortunately, Alex still loitered and wouldn’t take ‘no’ for an answer. He started to snoop through the boxes, sniffing around as if the scent of rubber could trigger his nose nerves. I dropped the box onto the floor, a loud boom rattling the bedroom. “What?” I snapped, aggravated to the fact that Alex had been lingering in my bedroom for the past twenty minutes. His emerald green eyes flickered to my identical ones, a smirk etching his face. It was the same smirk he used to threaten me with his irritating behavior. Giving up, I dug through the box labeled ‘Girl Things’ until my eyes met the faded orange basketball. My hands clasped it and tossed it to Alex.
“Thanks.” Alex spun the ball with his fingers, perching himself against a box. I could feel the blood pulsing through my veins with anger. From the way Alex was laid there nonchalantly, he wasn’t going anywhere.
“Allison,” At the doorway, was my lovely mother Meredith. Her limp red hair was curled into a bun, her green eyes omniscient. I remembered when her hair was vibrant and green eyes filled with happiness. But, like my father, those wonderful features were long gone and a ghost of the past. “Alex, I just saw your room. I can’t even find your bed.” Meredith hissed, pushing him out of the room as he stumbled out. After he was out, Meredith slammed the door and placed herself where Alex was.
“Allison, I know you don’t like Greene, but you know I had to leave New York City for a reason.” Meredith pleaded, her eyes boring onto my back as I scooped out all of the books. I honestly didn’t know why she had to flee. Her career of being the author really took off in the past lifetime, and a wonderful home to herself most of the time at the Upper East Side. She had it made.
“Why just you?” My voice cracked as I flipped through one of her books, Leaving Home. But, the question was painfully obvious to me. My father, Mr. Goode, had cheated on Meredith with a much younger woman. It was later revealed that Mr. Goode cheated with my best friend’s younger mother. Of course, Lucy was ecstatic, since Mr. Goode and Ms. Remington would marry. But she failed to see that it killed me. Lucy never cared about anyone.
Meredith flung her arms over her head and stormed off. She said a couple of things under her breath, mentioning that Mr. Goode was nothing but a lying, cheating pig. I inhaled deeply, enjoying the silence until Alex resurfaced, this time the smirk wiped off.
“Allie, play ball with me.” Alex begged, dribbling his ball at the door. I felt my jaw clench for the fortieth time that day. If anyone could exasperate me, it was Alex. I nodded at him, and placed my feet into my blue sneakers and followed Alex out of the stone cottage.
The salty water and the pungent smell of skunk filled the air as Alex swerved the ball into our new trash can. The ball bounced off numerous windows and doors and walls, occasionally some heads. As much as I hated to admit, Alex was pretty good. For the eight years we spent at Victorian Evening Academy in Manhattan, the number one most recruited for Victorian Evening Athletics Program was, you guessed it, Alex.
“Can’t touch this,” Alex yelled as I attempted to knock the ball out of his grasp. He spun around, his foot lunging at my shin at the process. Alex launched the ball into the pine green can. Though Alex was a pretty nifty athlete, his aiming was yet to be desired. The ball recoiled off the rim and down the cliff that separated the driveway and the beach.
Alex and I raced over to the cliff, peering down. The cliff was approximately five feet, looming and menacing, casting a tremendously dim shadow. The ball was nowhere to be seen. “Come on.” Alex jumped off the cliff and then beckoned me, not bothering to help me down.
I kicked off the electric blue canvases, my toes molding to the mushy sand as Alex and I trekked the beach. The waves crashed against our ankles, causing me to shiver endlessly whereas Alex merely busted with Goosebumps. The sun was setting, radiating gorgeous hues of blue, pink, and purple.
The sunset was soon eclipsed by darkness, and it began clearer and clearer that we were hours away from home. “Allie, what if we can’t find the ball?” Alex’s voice cracked like he was about to cry. My jaw dropped with disbelief. Hours away from our new house in a village we barely are aware of and he only cared about a ball.
My eyes gaped towards the horizon, an orange flash of light glimmering. The light which I assumed was fire was also accompanied by music and laughter of the teenager type. “Come on.” I barked at Alex, dragging him down with me towards the mystery people/