I don't know why I here after avoiding this place for months. It's our place, we used to come here and sat by the rocks almost everyday after school. Even now on a cloudy, snowy and miserable afternoon we would be here sitting on the dock together.
Charlotte would dare me to jump in the water and when I would wind myself up to look like I was about to do it she would scream, "Lukas don't you dare, I don't want to have to jump in a save your stupid ass." Charlotte was great at swimming but me, not so much.
It's been almost three months since she disappeared and I'm not expecting to see her again. I hope she forgives me for thinking that but I guess I'm here to say goodbye. I pick up a rock and toss it into the water as I walk further down the sand bank. I re wrapped my long grey scarf so that it protects my neck from the icy winds.
Tiny snowflakes fall around me and disappear once they touch the ground. I hear a noise closer to the thick woodsy area and hesitate before turning around. It's probably just the wind blowing the trees around but it sounded more like a thud. It was still light out so I have some time before my dad comes looking for me.
My car is parked right on the other side of the trail, not that I'm worried about it anyway. My boots sink into the ground where the water is washing the stones back into the sea. I crane my neck to look over the taller grass because I see something grey waving around. "Is somebody there?" I call out
As the wind picks up and I walk closer, I can hear a crinkling sound. The snowflakes are turning to ice pings that bounce off my winter coat. I squint my eyes, it's a tarp probably left by someone who used it to cover their ATV. The weird thing is that only the one side is flapping around in the wind.
I walk closer, through the grass that comes up to about my hip and almost step on a snake that is slithering past. "Jesus!" I yell all manly like and jump backwards. I watch the snake make it's way up the bank and into the woods before walking closer to the tarp.
I see something sticking out of the tarp and walk closer to get a better look at it. My stomach lurches as I force myself to walk closer. My palms start to sweat when I see something a dark colored spilling out from underneath the top of the tarp. "No, no no no." I mumble as I rip it off.
I let out the world's most ravenous scream I can muster and fall onto the rocks. Charlotte is lying there in an off white muddy tank top, torn in many places and a pair of underwear. The burst of red in the middle of her stomach is what makes me scream even louder.
I lean down next to her listening for a heartbeat, looking for a flicker of life in her eyelids but all I see is an emaciated girl. I turn away from her, holding in the sick that is rising in my throat and take off my jacket to drape it over her body. The sound of a raspy breath escapes from her lips and makes me gasp.