How did your parents die?


Abigail Stanbury slowly walked down the hallway. She passed thirteen rooms, each one containing six beds. Mrs Preston opened the door to the fourteenth room and showed her inside.
“Good evening girls. This is little Abigail. She’s six years old and she’s going to be staying here with you.”
She hated that word. Little. Everyone called her that. Poor little Abigail, only alive because she was small enough to fit inside the ice chest while the fire raged around her.
“Everyone say hello Abigail,” prompted Mrs Preston.
“Hello Abigail,” said the girls.
“Abigail, this is your bed,” said Mrs Preston as she placed Abigail’s suitcase on the bottom bunk of the third bunk-bed.
Abigail wandered over and sat on her new bed.
“Goodnight,” said Mrs Preston as she closed the door.
A voice from above cut through the silence, “How did they die?”
A sharp restraint from across the room followed, “Regina! Sorry about that. My name is Christine, above me is Susan. Over to you left is Louise and Rosemary. And above you is Regina. We’ll all introduce ourselves properly in the morning, for now just try and get some sleep.”
Abigail took off her shoes and placed them underneath her bed. She pulled back the blanket and got into bed. Since the fire she hadn’t had a comfy bed to sleep in. Her head floated on air as it came to rest on the pillow. She pulled up the blanket and closed her eyes.
“How did your parents die?” came Regina’s voice from above.
“Murdered.” The papers reported a fire at her parents house, Abigail was the only survivor in a family of six. That was five weeks ago, since then she had slept on cold and hard floors.
“But everyone says your house was burnt to the ground.”
“It was. They were already dead.”
“Who killed them?”
“I did.”

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