Everything changed that one hot summer when a young girl not much older than me and my sister twin were at the time had been mur-dered. I wasn’t supposed to know about it. I was eaves-dropping on a conversation between my mother and fa-ther.
Later, though, it was mouthy Camille Sothern who couldn’t wait to run her mouth about poor Brennie Goodson and the gory details about her murder. Brennie had been found half-dressed like a Goth, the rest of her clothes scattered around her and a red cross painted on her forehead that ran from her hairline to the tip of her nose. Her nails had been painted black and her lips smeared with black lipstick. I’d heard rumors that Bren-nie wasn’t the first girl of her age that had been found in the same condition, nails and lips painted black and all.
I heard my mother tell my father that vile things like this didn’t happen in their little town where everyone knew everyone and watched each other’s back. Daddy told her things like this happen everywhere. Big cities. Small towns. And all spaces in-between.
After that tragedy, my parents wouldn’t allow me or my sister twin, Marly, to go anywhere alone for the longest time. Our brother, Rondell, took us everywhere that our parents couldn’t for a few days. Any activity that wasn’t totally necessary was abandoned until such time the threat to young girls was over.
I could tell my parents were troubled by what was happening, especially since they learned these same type of killings had been done several years before we moved to Clifton Falls. Listening to them discuss the dreadful slayings and their insistence on keeping us close to home was troubling. To their way of thinking, neither myself nor Marly would be in danger of being the next victim of a serial killer if we never left home unless someone was with us.
I never forgot that summer. I was one month away from becoming a teenager and was counting the days.
We were sister twins in the spying game and we were going to find out who the killer was before we became the next victims.