everything is dark when the sound begins. it's loud and intruding, repeating its ways in the girl's ears. her breath is shallow and her throat is dry. surely the alarm has waken her parents, too. why, then, haven't they come for her yet? her young mind doesn't understand and she's paralyzed in the fear. it's scary to not know what is happening, to be alone in the dark with an unfamiliar noise pressing into your temple. she pulls her pillow over her head, her eyes wide. the sound grows louder, and then she hears voices. they're hushed voices in a claustrophobic silence. they're followed by echoing footsteps. the girl's heart is pounding through her chest, can they hear it? she longs for the security of being in her father's arms. then, there's a scream, a familiar one. it's her mother's. the girl with the pigtails jumps out of her bed and runs to the door. she peers through the crack; a strip of light falls on her baby face and her pale blue eyes land on the men in the thick white suits. they're filing in the front door, and she watches them take her mother, quietly. she watches with her traumatized eyes. a man with a matching white mask turns and he sees the girl. he sees her watching, with two frayed pigtails, wide blue eyes, a ratty white night gown, and a dirty teddy bear in her clenched fist. he sees her as he pulls the heavy metal door shut, leaving her again in the dark. the sound is gone, but it still rings in her ears, she stays, unmoving. a breeze blows in from the window, lifting the hairs that escaped from the pigtail. her mind is racing; the dark is no longer friendly, but cold. when the sun rises, through the window, you'll see the girl with the pigtails and teddy bear, watching.