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Willow Did It!

Her mother bought the most beautiful gift she could find for her favorite, only, daughter for a very special day. The occasion seemed an appropriate one indeed, although Mrs. Rhodes didn’t need a reason to spoil her daughter. Mr. Rhodes did not condone the spoiling of his daughter, but it made his wife happy to do so. He really couldn’t fight the matter knowing that this would be the last chance his wife got to spoil a child of her own.

The little girl—with dark golden hair like her mother’s, and chocolate eyes like her father—smiled with excitement and glee. November 12, 2005 was the day that Mackenzie Rhodes turned 8 years old; it was her special day, and she loved the attention. Mrs. Rhodes found her daughter outside playing with her salt and pepper colored kitten in the warm glow of the autumn sun. The kitten stared with her bright green eyes while she purred and meowed quietly in the woman’s direction, but the little girl didn’t seem to notice. Mrs. Rhodes snuck behind Mackenzie and covered her eyes quickly with the palms of her hands. Mackenzie squeaked in surprise while grabbing her mother’s wrists. “I have a surprise for you, Darling!”

They raced up the stairs and fled into Mackenzie’s pale pink bedroom with her kitten, Jazz, bouncing after them. Her mother flopped down on her white canopy bed beside a box wrapped in dark pink paper with a perfectly tied white silk bow. Both faces lit up with excitement as the youngest tore through the pretty decorations to reveal something wonderful—something magical!

The little girl’s hair fell in soft curls around her shoulders as she hugged the cinnamon colored bear tightly to her chest. Her new teddy bear wore a made of pale pink silk and lace trimmings, and a black ribbon necklace with a circular golden charm. Mrs. Rhodes’s dimples became more evident with each passing moment. Mackenzie spun with the bear full of joy. “Come, what shall we name her?”

Mackenzie ran her fingers over the charm as she spelled out the letters engraved in the metal. “W-I-L-L-O-W. I want to name her Willow.” She hugged the bear tightly again. She bragged about her new bear to all of her friends at her birthday party. Willow sat next to her as the happy clown made balloon animals, all her aunts and uncles kissed her cheeks, and as she opened the rest of her presents—none of which compared to the appeal of Willow.

Once the celebration ended, Mrs. Rhodes tucked Mackenzie and Willow into their white canopy bed. She kissed her daughter good night before Mackenzie insisted that she kiss Willow too, and she did. She turned out her light, and left her daughter to rest after all the excitement.

As soon as the door shut, Mackenzie heard an unfamiliar high pitched voice. “You are my best friend!”

Excitement burst through Mackenzie as she realized. “I’m so glad you’re mine, Willow.”

“Mac?” Willow whispered as her eyes shimmered in the dark room. Mackenzie pulled her close. “I’m afraid!”

“Afraid of what?” Mackenzie questioned prepared to do whatever it took to make sure her special toy was safe.

“That monster tried to hurt me at your perfect party.”

Mackenzie gasped, “What monster?”

Willow seemed to shake as the glimmer in her eyes faded. “That little,” she said before she lowered her voice, “gray, hissing, fury thing with big, scary green eyes!” She made a sniffling noise. “I think someone call it Jazz?”

“Jazz wouldn’t hurt you!” Mackenzie gasped. “She’s just a kitten.”

“It almost bit me,” Willow pouted.


“You wouldn’t let it hurt me, would you?” Willow’s voice was low and dangerous. “I want you to get rid of it for me.”

“How can I do that?” Mackenzie turned on her side, propping her head on her arm as she watched Willow seemingly quiver.

“I know where your mom keeps the sharp knives.”

“I don’t understand?”

“You have to protect me, Mac!” Willow stated. Her head turned toward Mackenzie until she was looking directly into the little girl’s chocolate eyes. “You have to kill the cat!”

Mackenzie slipped out of her bed with Willow in tow. She crept down the rickety old stairs being careful not to make too much noise, and she climbed over the child safety fence shutting the kitchen off from the rest of the house—meant more for keeping Jazz in rather than keeping Mackenzie out. Willow gave her whispered instructions to the locked drawer by the oven. Mrs. Rhodes always told Mackenzie she was too young to use the bigger, sharper knives and the drawer stayed locked. But Willow knew how to open the special latch. Willow helped pick the biggest knife, and she came up with the perfect plan to use herself as bait.

Mackenzie left her new bear lying in the middle of the kitchen floor. Jazz, the kitten, slowly but surely came creeping out of his bed. He hissed menacingly at Willow who cried out with fear. “Help me, Mac!”

Mackenzie took the knife and raised it above her head. She was about to plunge the knife into Jazz’s back when suddenly the knife disappeared from her hands. “What on Earth are you doing?” Mrs. Rhodes shouted. Jazz felt the blunt force of Mackenzie’s fist before screeching in pain while fleeing to the safety of her bed. Tears flowed down the little girl’s face as she grabbed her precious bear and rocked herself gently on the floor. “Explain yourself, young lady!”

“Willow told me to!” Mackenzie cried. “Jazz hurt her, and she said I had to protect her!”

“Tell me the truth, Mackenzie!”

“But Mama, Willow told me to!”

Mrs. Rhodes took Mackenzie by the arm and hauled her back to bed while Mr. Rhodes gently lifted Jazz’s bed pillow with Jazz’s pouting atop it. He locked Jazz in the master bathroom while Mrs. Rhodes scolded her favorite, only, daughter. She tucked the little girl into her bed before kissing Mackenzie and Willow good night for the second time.

“They want me to suffer,” Willow pouted. “Mac, why are they protecting that monster?”

“Go to sleep, Willow!” Mackenzie sobbed softly. “I don’t want to help you hurt anyone.” She cried herself to sleep while pushing her new toy as far away as it would go.
♠ ♠ ♠
I fixed the first meeting of Jazz the kitten for you guys. ~Lulie Belle