He took us on a tour of every room in the house. I was beginning to get excited. The house was really kind of neat. There were so many rooms and so many closets. And my room was huge and had its own bathroom and an old-fashioned window seat there I could sit at the window and look down at the street.
I wished Josh had come inside with us. If he could see how great the house was inside, I knew he’d start to cheer up.
We must have been inside for at least half an hour. I didn’t really keep track of the time. I think all three of us were feeling cheered up.
“Wait – I want to take one more look at my room,” I told them excitedly. I started up the stairs, taking them two at a time. “I’ll be down in a second.”
I reached the second-floor landing and hurried down the narrow hallway and into my new room. “Wow!” I said aloud, and the word echoed faintly against the empty walls.
It was so big. And I loved the bay window with the window seat. I walked over to it and peered out. Through the trees, I could see our car in the driveway and, beyond it, a house that looked a lot like ours across the street.
I’m going to put my bed against that wall across from the window, I thought happily. And my desk can go over there. I’ll have room for a computer now!
I took one more look at my closet, a long, walk-in closet with a light in the ceiling, and wide shelves against the back wall.
I was heading to the door, thinking about which of my posters I wanted to bring with me, when I saw the boy.
He stood in the doorway for just a second. And then he turned and disappeared down the hall.
“Josh?” I cried. “Hey – come back!”
With a shock, I realized it wasn’t Josh.
For one thing, the boy had blond hair.
“Hey!” I called and ran to the hallway, stopped just outside my bedroom door, looking both ways. “Who’s here?”
But the long hall was empty. All of the doors were closed.
Mom and Dad were calling from downstairs. I took one last look down the dark corridor, then hurried to rejoin them.