The first two parts are here:
What do you mean it’s a dead-end?” cried her sister, who now more than ever wanted an exit when just seconds ago her life depended upon staying put.
“I mean it won’t open,” Kate said, standing up. She tried it again now that she was more composed, that lapse into irrational fear, she told herself, would only scare her sister into frozen-solid state with all forward movement suspended indefinitely. She had seen it once before at Faye’s piano recital. She had practiced the piece non-stop until everyone in the household hummed the tune subconsciously. Really, it held the family unit in one piece, the glue so to speak, however temporary it felt. There was no back-up, and they rallied behind Faye so that it became too much pressure. She had called it stage fright, but Kate knew better. Faye was as tough as nails usually; she just had a soft spot for practicality, for common sense, and that was fuck all right now. Kate could only stare at the solid oak door before her.
“Let’s check the other door. A window?” Faye looked up to her.
“Okay,” said Kate, out of breath for some reason. Being near the door had drained her energy, and she dragged behind Faye.
Buzzing ahead, Faye ran smack into their father, who seized her shoulders and squeezed at them. “Stop. Not so fast.” One look into his piercing slits of eyes, and Faye ran up the stairs to her bedroom.
“Faye, stop,” Kate called after her, while Kyle collapsed his chin on his chest, silent. The plan to investigate another outlet was now up to Kate, who shifted unsteadily on her feet, weaving around her father. He gazed up at her when she bumped him. A few more steps, and it occurred to her that he blocked her at every turn, seemingly preceding her actions, a foreshadowing of sorts.
Had she stopped moving, would everything come to a screeching halt? Her mind felt pinned against the wall, and her body shuddered under cold, iron weight, pressing, suffocating, as her legs felt ready to buckle under her.
And then there it was. Their eyes deadlocked. She stared into two dark liquid voids and all she wanted was to break free from him. With only inches between them, she jumped into a run, hoping it was enough to outpace him. astounded she needed to at all. With the easiest route up the stairs, she knocked at Faye’s closed bedroom door. fooling herself she could comfort her. The door or window would have to wait, and her phone was downstairs, too. Somewhere.
“It’s Kate. Open up, Faye.”
“Knock it off,” Faye said, biting her lip. “Don’t knock.”
“Sorry.” Kate gasped, and held her sister tight. “We’ll be okay,” she said, kissing the top of her head.
“The knocking stopped,” Faye offered. “Right? I don’t hear it.”
True, it had stopped, but something was askew. Kate looked up into the corner of the ceiling where it was cracked and warped with water damage. Askew, and not air tight.