“Luci, Luci! Can I come too?” I smile down at Heidi, bouncing one of her blonde curls.

“Sorry, kiddo, not this time. Be a good girl for your daddy, okay?”

She wraps her small arms around my neck in a hug, nodding.
“Okay, Auntie Luci. Bye Momma!”

Ana waves goodbye to Blake and her daughter, practically dragging me out the door.

“Thank you so much for coming with me. Work’s been hectic and Blake wants to spend some time with Heidi” she says as we load the groceries into the car.

I look at my sister.
“It’s just a shopping trip, Ana; it’s no problem.”

I slide into the car, turning on the radio to a random station as we drive.

“I was meaning to ask you if Mom got the food for the barbecue. We need to get it soon, if not. Maybe I’ll call her.”

“I’m sure Mom can handle it herself; she’s a grown woman!” I laugh.
Ana is a perfectionist and planner, which basically means she loves to be in charge. Even when we were little.

“No wonder our parents named you Anarchy; you were always fighting with them over who was in charge.”

She just rolls her eyes. “Makes you wonder why they named you Lucifer.”

To this day, I can’t believe my parents named me after the devil. I mean, anarchy is bad enough, but Satan is on a whole other level.

“Ha. Ha. Very funny, Ana.” When she doesn’t answer, I look up to see that we aren’t moving.

“Ana?” Large red trucks line the street, smoke billowing above us. Within moments, Ana is out of the car, leaving me to chase her up the sidewalk to their house.

But there is no house.

What used to be a small home with a small garden growing out front is now a charred disaster. The only thing left is a half melted dollhouse with a pink roof and yellow carpet.

“Where are they?! Where is my husband and my daughter?!”
Ana sprints toward the nearest fireman. He stands still, hands twitching at his side, and immediately I know.

They didn’t make it. Somewhere in that burned mess is Blake, wearing white tennis shoes covered in blue and purple sparkly nail polish. And Heidi, who probably still had her favorite race car gripped in her sticky hands.

I find myself walking into the still burning house, coughing as smoke fills my lungs. The burnt wood surrounds my ankles, searing the skin.

My feet ache forward, pleading me to move, but I can’t. Terror surges through my body: what now?!

I focus on the crack in the driveway, reaching down to drag my finger across the jagged line. Fitting; my life has been ripped in half just like this slab of cement.

Someone pulls me up from the ground by my armpits, settling me in their arms.

“Luci, honey, everything is going to be all right.”

I look up at my father.
“Please. Please don’t lie to me.”

Hope you liked it! Make sure to tell me what you thought. (Honesty is obviously appreciated 🙂

And a big thank you to for Elm editing!

-AKA Aspen

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