Read An Excerpt of
“DREAM JUMPERS THE INHERITANCE”
Adrienne La Faye
“Malia, I need to talk to you,” the voice echoed over and over in her mind.
“Why do you keep calling me? What do you want? Why won’t you answer me?” She wanted to have a conversation with the Papa like voice, but it only responded by calling her name.
This voice terrified her. It had haunted her for months. Or had it just been a few weeks? Malia shook her head. She was more confused about what was real and what was not since Papa’s passing.
“Malia, listen up, child. It is me, your Papa. I need to talk to you now.”
“If you are Papa, tell me where you are,” she said in a barely audible voice.
Through her attic window, Malia watched a tornado-like formation of leaves on the roof. The sun winked behind the mid-afternoons spectacularly lit orange and yellow sky. The sky turned to a dark-charcoal with a lightning streak, in moment’s time, as if someone turned off a light switch.
This was not her first time watching the day turn to night in a matter of minutes, and she did not have a clue as to why. She’d realized a while ago that the weather turned its worst every time her grandfather called to her. Technically, she was not sure it was his voice because he was dead. Right? But something or someone was calling her.
Last Saturday she’d made up her mind to find Papa, wherever he was hiding. The next time she heard his voice, she would hunt him down. And tonight she’d wait for him. Her father was working late tonight, and her brother Micah was at their Grandmother’s (who they refer to as Grandone), house eating dinner. She’d waited for the voice and was ready to capture him.
Today was the day, and Malia crouched down on her knees, hidden behind the living room sofa, and waited, as she restlessly anticipated the voice.
Suddenly, she heard his voice calling, and she sprang to her feet.
“Malia, stop. Please, listen to me. Maliaaaa.”
She ran toward the voice, jumped over the coffee table, both feet clearing it. She sidestepped a floor-to-ceiling lamp, her socks skidding on the wooden floor as she passed the dining room entrance. She grabbed the doorknob to stop from sliding further.
“Stop talking to me, especially since you won’t tell me who you are,” she begged. She heard the voice calling from upstairs. She headed towards the third-floor stairs, two at a time--and then stopped. She stood precisely in front of the closet door in the hallway. Her right hand jerked the door open as the other grasped the doorframe.
The tiny room was empty. She could have sworn the voice was coming from inside the closet. Silently Malia waited to hear it again. As an athlete, she knew how to breathe quietly. Breathing in and out, swallowing slowly so she could hear every creak in the house.
“Malia, I’m in here. Come through the door. Hurry up. You don’t have much time.”
The voice grew louder and reverberated off the ceiling. The girl could not pinpoint its direction. She was determined to find the sound, so she jumped on the stairs handrail and slid down like a fireman sliding down a fire pole. She tiptoed through the house to the back porch and spying around. Malia, tiptoed down to the basement and peered into the darkness, and then quietly up the stairs back to the third floor. She heard nothing, checked the same the empty closet she’d jerked open minutes ago.
Malia waited. Standing on her tippy-toes, her feet began to shake out of pure exhaustion. Her body slid down the wall to the floor. The only sound she heard in the dead silence was the swishing of her blouse against the wall. Her legs met the coolness of the wooden floor rose up to reach her slumping body. She used her hands to drag each leg up as her house slippers scattered off her feet. She buried her head between her knees and rocked back and forth.
Her heart burst-opened with pain from grief, and loss, and she wept. Her tears splattered downward until the wetness clung to her clothes. Her grandfather had taught them everything, how were they supposed to have healthy lives? Malia wrestled. Maybe, Papa was torturing her because she had somehow let him down.
She knew Papa was dead, but, what if he is alive? Yes, he was playing a joke, but that would be a cruel joke to play, and shuddered from the thought. Even though she was afraid she kept asking the voice what it wanted, but it never responded. Slowly she stood, dragging her feet to her bedroom, and was relieved the room was across the hallway. Her naturally braided past the shoulder-length hair, swung silently. This was just one her many hairstyles, and she loved creating new hairstyles. She had mesmerizing eyes that would suck people wondering, who is this kid?
Underneath her breath, she whispered, “Help me to help you. Tell me how to find you.” she thought about her looks and how she compared to other girls looks her age. Since the twins were homeschooled, they did not have friends, and no other kids lived on their block or in their cul-de-sac. So she’d searched online and stared into the permanent smiling faces pretty girls on her laptop.
Malia saw herself as an average looking girl, maybe more than average, but it was important she wasn’t too ugly, that’s why she checked. She was of average height, slender built, and with caramel brown skin. Had her twin Micah, had heard the voice, too. She would ask him. Too tired, too scared to search anymore, Malia resigned herself to remembering the question her grandfather asked her entire life: Do you remember your gift?
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