By Emma Glanville, TIWP Student
A quite cold and dark night dwelled upon the Kosla Manor, a very not-humble abode that sat atop a hill that was forever blackened by the everlasting shadow from the perpetual clouds above it. Below lied a supposedly haunted forest that many people have entered but not returned from. The house resided in a small, lowly populated town that went by the name Orinda. No one knew how or when the mansion was built there because it seemed out of place, for Orinda was an endearing and twee little spot, very unsuitable for the Manor.
Eventually, the land was fenced off by the neighboring people because they didn’t want other citizens or their pets to accidentally wander in, even though it would be bright and sunny over the town, yet gloomy and tempestuous in the Kosla Estate. No one knew if the house was filled with a family or their corpses. Even if there were people, not a single man, woman, or child would dare to stop by to say hello.
There was, in fact, a family living in the house—Mr, and Mrs. Kosla—but they weren’t given any first names so that’s how they were always addressed. The two had one daughter; her name was Drey. But because of her eccentric and quirky nature, Mr. Kosla called her Odd Drey and the name stuck. Odd Drey and her parents were surprisingly very kind people. All the previous owners of the Manor said they were exceptionally mature and witty. Many thought they seemed older than they looked, especially young Odd Drey.
They inhabited the mansion there for many years and grew old along with it. But the whole time, they always wondered why no one ever came to visit. They lived there for such a long time and no one ever rang the doorbell. It disappointed them a lot that the people of Orinda didn’t want to be friends with them. Many times, Odd Drey wanted to go and talk to the other kids, but she didn’t want to leave her house behind, since she was very attached to it.
However, a common hobby of hers and her mother’s was watching other families walk quickly past their home and occasionally glance at their house. Everyday Odd Drey would ask “Mother, shall we go look at the passing people?” and Mrs. Kosla would say “Yes, come now. I will prep the window, my forever child,” for that’s what she called her daughter.
Usually, both would be upset that no one came, but this day was different. Very different. A new day. Breaking the monotonous routine of ignoring the Manor, a young boy—definitely not in Odd Drey’s generation although he looked about the same age—stared longingly at the Kosla property, studying the structure and sky intensely.
“Look, mother! The boy!” Odd Drey perked up. “I think he saw us in the window! Let us wave!” And they both rigorously moved the surrounding air that they called their hands. “I think he’s coming!”
Odd Drey’s eyes widened with the amazement of how the boy could climb and jump over the fence and how he bounded through the forest. His red baseball cap peeked through the dense black branches of the trees with every strike of lightning as he moved with frightening speed.
Soon, he approached the front of the Kosla Manor, something that was unprecedented. “Father! Father! Someone’s at the door! Come quick!!” Odd Drey was so excited that she felt the sensation of blood pumping in her heart, something that she hadn’t felt in a long time.
“My forever child, stand next to me. Let’s make a good impression on this boy, he is our first visitor,” Mrs. Kosla remarked. Mr. Kosla hurried in and stood to the left of his daughter while his wife was on the right. The doorbell rang and echoed throughout the house; it was a sound the Koslas had never heard before. With big and bright smiles beaming from their mouths, they opened the door for the boy, but his scared face soon turned puzzled because he didn’t see anybody.