Sparrow Lane


I wait outside the office, watching all the other patients walk by. One of them, a boy, stares at me. He's in group with me, but I've forgotten his name.

"Good luck," he murmurs as he passes.

I nod, not sure what else to say, when the door opens and a woman steps out. She's blonde and tall, with green eyes and dimples.

"Max?" she looks down at me, and smiles. "I'm Lydia Stanford, the facility's psychiatrist. Would you like to come in?"

I stand and walk into her office, where I sit in one of the chairs across from her desk. She takes a seat and pulls out a folder from her bottom drawer.

"Wyatt tells me you're not sleeping well," she says. "Are you still having nightmares?"

I blink at her, wondering how she knows that since this is our first meeting. Then I realize that she needs to know about her patients before she meets with them. She needs to know the root of the sessions.

"Sometimes," I say. "I don't really want to talk, if it's all the same to you."

Stanford nods and consults her notes. "You went through something terrible. You lost someone you cared about."

"Care," I say. "You said cared. Past tense. I still care, even though he's gone."

"What about your friend Elena?"

"We don't talk. She blames me for what happened."

"But it's not your fault."

"It was my idea to go there," I tell her. "I'd heard the legend, I knew what happened there. That people died." I drop my head into my hands. "Why didn't it just kill me?" I whisper.