Thirteen year old Anna Compton stepped out of the principal’s office with tears in her eyes. She was immediately greeted by her angry mother, Lois. The young girl informed her mom that she had just been suspended.
“What have you done, Anna? I raised you better than this.” Lois harshly scolded her daughter in front of the bewildered school staff.
“But Mom, you don’t know what happened. It wasn’t my fault,” she insisted.
“It’s never your fault, Anna. Why can’t you be more like your big sister? No one ever has a problem with her.”
“No more buts, young lady. We’ll talk about this when we get home.”
Lois practically dragged her daughter out of the school and toward their waiting Jeep Cherokee. A teacher ran after her, carrying a thick folder.
“Mrs. Compton, you forgot the papers you came here to get,” the teacher said as she caught up with Lois.
“Right now I have to tend to out of control daughter. Leave me alone.”
“But Mrs. Compton, Anna…..”
Lois turned around and faced the woman.
“Don’t you ever tell me how to discipline my daughter,” she warned the puzzled teacher. “You can stick that folder up your ass for all I care.”
The woman turned and walked back to the school, shaking her head in disbelief with every stride. Lois continued toward the Jeep.
“Can I sit up front with you, Mom?” Anna asked as they made their way across the parking lot.
“Your sister is with me and she’s riding up front. That’s her reward for being a better child than you.”
Anna began to cry. “But Mommy…”
Before she could say anything else, Lois slapped her across the mouth.
“I told you not to whine anymore!” she exclaimed.
The poor girl ran to the back door of the Jeep and she quickly jumped in, slamming it behind her. Lois climbed behind the wheel and then she turned her attention to the passenger’s seat.
“Sorry I took so long, Tracy. Your shitty little sister has become such a headache for me,” she said.
“Wait a minute!” Anna screamed, “That’s not fair.”
Lois turned around and held up her hand.
“Do you want it again, Anna?” She growled. “Just be a good girl like Tracy and then I can love you again. Now say hello to your sister, please.”
“I won’t do it,” Anna mumbled.
Lois turned around and slapped her again.
“Your sister is everything I hoped you would become. You’re such a disappointment.”
Another slap found Anna’s face. She began to cry hysterically.
“I really need to tell you something important, Mommy. Please don’t hit me,” she sobbed.
“For God’s sake, what is it you little trouble maker.”
“I don’t have a sister anymore, Mommy. I’m an only child!”
Lois stared into the front passenger’s seat, her face sporting a bewildered frown.
“She’s just jealous of you Tracy,” she said.
“Who are you talking to and why did you stop at my old middle school?” Tracy replied in a sarcastic voice.
“Tracy, don’t play games with me. I’m not in the mood. Your sister is being very unruly and I’m not well prepared to deal with either of you today.”
“I’ve told you a million times that I don’t have a little sister anymore, Momma. I’m an only child.”
“You and Anna are both going to get your asses beat when your father gets home tonight. I can’t take this shit.”
“Daddy’s been dead for years, Momma!” both girls cried out at once.
Lois slammed the Jeep into drive and she drove like a mad woman out of the high school parking lot. The two girls immediately began to chant in monotone harmony.
Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…
“You two are crazy, evil little children,” Lois cried, accelerating to sixty miles per hour in a twenty five zone.
Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…
“SHUT THE FUCK UP!” she screamed.
Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…Daddy’s dead…
Now topping eighty miles per hour, Lois had not only lost control of herself, but of the Jeep as well. Her right tires clipped a curb, causing her to overcorrect the steering wheel. She shot across the road and slammed head first into a giant oak tree. Ten minutes later a paramedic unit arrived, along with the police and a huge crowd of bystanders.
John Babbage, the lead paramedic, looked into the crushed vehicle. What he saw made him want to puke. Blood and body parts were strewn about the front seat and a woman’s decapitated head had been wedged between the shattered windshield and the dashboard.
“Holy fuck that’s horrible,” John said to his partner, Gina Todd, a thirty five year old mother of three.
Gina peeked into driver’s side window. Surprisingly she was unfazed by the carnage. A few seconds later police officer, Brad Baker, joined the paramedics.
“Anyone make it?” he asked.
“No way,” John replied. She was dead on impact. We need to get a tarp over the car.
A funny look appeared on Gina’s face. She let the men talk while she went back to look in the Jeep one more time.
“She was alone then?” Officer Baker asked while writing information down in his notebook.
“Unless someone walked away, which would have been impossible judging by the look of the crash scene.”
Before Officer Baker could reply, Gina butted in.
“Oh my God, guys. I know who this lady is. It’s Lois Compton,” she said.
“Oh shit. What a bizarre ending to such a terrible story.” John responded with a shake of his head.
“Who’s Lois Compton?” Officer Baker asked.
The paramedics were surprised that the policeman didn’t know about Lois Compton. Even though he was relatively new to the force, her case was well known to the local residents. As they covered up the vehicle with a blue tarp, and more officers and rescue workers arrived on the scene, John told him the story.
“Lois Compton was a woman who had it all. She had a millionaire husband, two beautiful daughters, and a big house in Richland Estates. One day, while driving home from a day trip, her husband, Paul, drove off a bridge and their car went under water. Lois and her younger daughter, Anna, were found lying on the river bank, but there was no sign of Paul or the older daughter, Tracy.”
“That’s too bad,” Officer Baker said.
“That’s not all. Those two were later located, still trapped in the car. They had drowned.”
“Now comes the weird part,” Gina interjected.
“Weirder than all of this?” Officer Baker pointed to the mangled Jeep.
“Oh yeah,” John resumed his story. “When the little girl woke up in the hospital she told everyone that her mother had caused the accident. She said that Lois did it on purpose. Although most people chalked Anna’s story up to post traumatic stress, the police did dig a little deeper into the crash.”
“You got me hooked. What did they find?”
“Well, nothing concrete. Paul was the only one in the car who hadn’t been wearing a seatbelt. He died from head trauma. Friends and family said that he’d been a stickler for wearing his, but Lois claimed that he only wore them part time. Another finding had to do with the older daughter, Tracy, who had been sitting in the front seat with her father.”
“Why was the mother in the back?” Officer Baker interrupted.
“I was getting to that. People said that Lois never rode in the backseat because it made her car sick. Lois claims that she had never gotten motion sickness in her life. Anyway, back to Tracy. They found bruises on the girl’s neck. The coroner said they were caused by Lois’ hands.”
“She choked her own daughter?”
“Not according to Lois. She said that she had leaned over and grabbed a hold of Tracy before the car hit the water, hoping to stop her head from smacking forward.”
“Sounds like bullshit,” Officer Baker said.
“But tough to disprove,” Gina added.
John kept on with the story, causing the three public servants to neglect their duties in the process.
“Anyway, the family buried Paul and Tracy and life went on for Lois and Anna. Things weren’t good after that. The little girl told everyone in school that her mother was a murderer. Teacher’s tried to stop it, and poor Anna’s bad dreams eventually drove her to be placed in a mental hospital.”
“Is she still there?”
“Oh no, Anna’s dead, at least we think she is.”
Officer Baker was stunned. “Dead??”
“Anna was released two years ago. Just last year she was kidnapped. A ransom note was found in the girl’s handwriting, requesting five hundred thousand dollars for her safe return. Lois got the money together but no other contact was ever made by the kidnappers.”
“Lois killed her.” Officer Baker insisted.
“That was the conventional thinking in the department. Unfortunately, Lois was already a sympathetic figure around here and there was no solid evidence connecting her to Anna’s disappearance”
“Did they ever find the girl’s body?”
“Nope. But she’s presumed dead.”
“Well, if this woman did kill her family then she got what she deserved,” Officer Baker said, once again motioning to the Jeep.
Anna and Tracy had been standing right next to John, listening to him tell his version of their story. Only they knew the truth about what had really happened a few years earlier.
Lois had been acting odd on the day trip. On the way home she had insisted on sitting in the back seat, behind her husband. She’d also demanded that Tracy take her place up front. As the car approached the Taranack River Bridge that fateful day, Lois undid her seatbelt and then she suddenly leaned forward, reaching over Paul and grabbing hold of the steering wheel. With one hard yank to the right, she sent the car careening into the bridge guardrail. While Paul valiantly struggled to regain control of the vehicle, Lois disengaged his seatbelt. She retreated to the back seat and buckled herself in just as the car went airborne, leaving only her stunned husband unprotected from the watery impact. Her maniacal plan had worked perfectly. Paul’s head was instantly crushed by the hard dashboard.
After the car had sunk to the bottom, Lois and her panicked daughters raced to unbuckle themselves. Anna quickly undid her belt and swam out of an open window. Tracy took slightly longer, but she freed herself a few moments later. That’s when Lois had grabbed a hold of her older daughter’s neck and pinned her to the seat. With the increased struggle to get away, Tracy eventually took a deep breath, sucking in a lung full of river water. Lois, who had just about run out of oxygen by that point, swam to the surface and joined Anna on the river bank.
It had been Lois’ intention to drown them all, but Anna had been too quick to free herself. The deranged mother needed to come up with a new plan of action.
Fortunately for Lois, Anna had done herself in. Her constant nightmares about the accident and the accusations of her mother being a murderer led her to be institutionalized. As far as Lois was concerned, having the girl locked up in a nut house was just as good as her being dead. But the hospital stay came to an unexpected end when Anna stopped having nightmares about the incident. She was released back into her evil mother’s custody.
Lois couldn’t deal with her own child. She waited an entire year before coming up with the kidnapping scheme. Using one of Paul’s unregistered handguns as leverage, she had forced little Anna to write a ransom note. Then she drove her daughter to a remote area and shot her in the head, hoping that buzzards and bears would find the body before any people would. She lucked out, once again emerging in the public eye as a victim of an unspeakable tragedy.
The ghostly sisters held hands as they stared at the mangled Jeep. Lois had only been called to the school that day to pick up a few of deceased Anna’s belongings. The two girls, who had been haunting their mother for months by showing up as lifelike entities, set up their final act of vengeance perfectly. The Principal and his staff had been totally dumbfounded by Lois’ behavior at the school. She appeared to have been delusional that morning, angrily dragging an imaginary child out of the office, slapping at the empty air along the way and screaming something about suspension.
“We can go be with Daddy, now,” Tracy’s spirit said, taking one final look at the mangled Jeep.
“I hope Mommy doesn’t ever bother us again,” Anna replied.
“She’s not going to the same place we are, Anna. She can’t hurt us where she’s headed.”
Officer Baker and the two paramedics felt a cold chill sweep across them as the sister’s spirits departed.
“I just got goose bumps,” Gina said.
“Me too,” Officer Baker added. “I know this isn’t really a proper thing to say, but maybe some kind of justice was served here today.”
“You could be right,” John agreed.