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Dave Barry

“Get away from the door." she whispered. "Both of you get out of here NOW." "Miss," said Alf. "We don't mean no..." "You don't know what you're getting into." she said. "You must leave here this instant." Alf, his face worried said to Peter. "Maybe we should..." "No," sad Peter, furious. "We've come this far, and we're going to go in there, and she can't stop us." "Yes I can." said Molly, her voice dead calm. Peter and Alf both looked at her. "I can scream." she said. "You wouldn't." Peter said. "Yes I would." "You don't dare." said Peter. "You're not supposed to be here, either. You'd be in as much trouble as us." "I could say I heard a noise," she said. "I heard something fall." she pointed to the padlcok. "I came to investigate, and when I saw you I screamed." "All right miss. said Alf. "No need for that." he put a hand on Peter's shoulder. "Come on lad." "No," said Peter, shrugging off the hand, glaring at Molly. "You go if you want. She doesn't scare me." "I'm going to count," said Molly. "If you're not gone when I get to ten, I WILL scream." "You're bluffing." said Peter." said Peter. "One." said Molly. On the floor Leatherface stirred, rolling over, resumed snoring. "Little friend." whispered Alf, his tone urgent now. "I'm going." "Go then." said Peter. "Two." "Please little friend." "NO." "Three" "All right, then." said Alf, shaking his head. "Good luck, then." "Four" Alf was up the ladder and gone. "Five" "Why are you doing this?" hissed Peter. "Six. Because I have to." Her face was grim. "But why?" "Seven. I can't tell you." "Tell me WHAT? Why can't you tell me anyway? How do you know if you don't try?" "Nine. Because I... Because it... it's so..." Molly's voice broke. Peter saw she was crying. "Molly, please, whatever it is, JUST TELL ME.. Maybe...maybe I can help you." For several seconds, Molly looked at him, a look of lonely desperation, tears brimming in her luminescent green eyes. Then she made a decision- Peter saw it happen- and her expression was grim again. She's going to say ten, thought Peter. She's going to scream. Molly opened her mouth. "All right, then." she said. "I'll tell you.”

Dave Barry
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