A few days later Jackie sat in her bed, waiting for Sarah. Sarah appeared and smiled her bright, genuine smile at Jackie. She stepped out of the mirror. "Hello, Jackie."
"Hi, Sarah!" Jackie stood up. "You know,m we're almost there, just two more days, and I think we're done!"
"Honest, just a few more days and you're on your way up to Heaven!"
Sarah stared into space. "Oh, how wonderful! Like a dream come true!"
"Well, THIS isn't one Sarah. It's not a dream, you're really going."
"One thing, though, you and your friends need to be together when you're going to say your last set of prayers."
"We do? Why?"
"Well, for the very last set of prayers, you all have to say it all together."
"Oh, you mean each of us say twenty prayers, and we all say them together."
"No, see, when there are only ten prayers to say, and ONLY ten left, you and your friends should all gather here, and say the ten prayers simultaniously."
"Oh, I get it," Jackie said, nodding. Seeing as how she had forgotten to say the twenty prayers that one time, she knew that tomorrow night she should just say ten and her and her friends could say the remaining ten in her room. She sighed, feeling happy and very sad at the exact same time.
"Why do you look so sad, Jackie?" Sarah asked her gentily.
"It's just...nothing, Sarah..it's really nothing."
"Something, I think my friend," Sarah said gentily, coming over to Jackie and gentily siting down next to her. "Will you not tell me what it is that's troubling you?"
Jackie sighed. "It's just that..I'm gonna miss you so much, Sarah. I've really loved talking to you and sharing stories..and when you go to Heaven..I'll never get a chance to even talk to you again."
Sarah covered Jackie's hand gentily. "I will miss you as well..but just remember, when I'm in Heaven, it doesn't mean I will not ever think of you. When I'm up there, I will be able to watch over you and look after you always."
Jackie raised her head. "You promise that?"
"Of course!" Sarah smiled tenderly at her. "Do you think I could ever forget you, or the kindness you and your friends have shown to me? Never! And I never will, honest."
Jackie smiled back at her. "Well..OK. I just wish we could still talk when you're up in Heaven."
"Well, I'll be able to hear you when you pray.and one day...I know you will also join me up in Heaven..and all of your friends as well."
When the fixed day came, Matt and Inez met after school in Jackie's room to say the final prayers. Jackie took a deep breath and stood in front of the mirror, waiting for Sarah to come., She knew she would come, after all, it was the day. She turned and smiled at her friends, they both gave her sympathetic smiles back. They knew full well that it would be hard on all three of them to say goodbye to their friend forever, but they also knew that she had ben loking forward to this day for a long, long time..
About three hundred years to be exact.
Very soon the image in the mirror began to change..and Sarah appeared in it. Jackie smiled. "Hi, Sarah."
"So..you all ready to go?" Matt asked her.
Sarah nodded her head eagerly. "All my life I've been waiting for this moment!"
Jackie slowly stepped back. "OK.." she said, choked up that she was going to be doing this for the last time. "Then..come on out of the mirror."
Sarah smiled and stepped out. She moved over to the bed. "Hello."
"Hi," Inez said, "Well..Sarah..this is it. I..we're really gonna miss you a lot.:
"I shall miss all of you as well," Sarah said. "But remember I can look down and watch over you."
The kids all nodded and smiled at her. They could see just how happy and eager she was, so they all decided to not waste one more second. Matt, Inez, and Jackie all sat down in a circle upon the bed.
"OK," Matt began. "Now, how do we do this..do we al start to pray..or.."
"Hold out your left hands and join them," Sarah instructed. The kids did so. "Now, I believe the proceedure is to al bow your heads and concentrate and say the ten prayers al at once. The kids took and deep breatjh..and at the same time they began to pray. Inez counted to herself each Hail mnary. She couldn't help but notice that their clasped hands were growing warmer and warmer. Suddenly, as they began their tenth one..they felt something like a spinning sensation fill the entire room. Soon a Heavenly chorus began to quietly song. A strange sensation of being lifted up filled all three of them and caused them to hod their hands even tighter. It almost seemed as if they were all flying. Just then, from behind their closed eyelids, they sensed what looked to them like a blinding flash of light, at the same time something like cold pavement ground beneath them.
The kids opened their eyes quickly, to find themselves..outside, near what looked like a gravestone. The three of them stared at the bold inscription carved upon it's cold surface- SARAH PHILLIPS.
"Oh....My...God," Inez whispered. "Guys..what happened?"
"Hey, hey, hey..what are you all doing here?" Came a voice. The three of them looked up to see Bianca coming toward them.
"Hey, Bianca," Inez said, standing up. "Hey, you remember us?"
Bianca looked at them quizically. "A few months ago," she said. "We were on a class trip," Inez said quickly. "You tolkd us about the legend of the ghost girl after we went upstairs by mistake?"
Bianca's face suddenly brightened as she recognized them. "Oh, yes, I remember now. What are you al doing back here, another trip?"
"Kind of," Jackie said, looking at the tombstone. "I don't think we ever saw.."
"Well, when she died, her parents were unsure of where to bury her, because even though she was born in London, they realised too late her heart was in America..in more ways then one. So, they buried her here, in Old South Church, a few blocks from the Gazette."
"What...but..how did we get here?" Matt asked.
"You don't know?" Bianca asked.
"Sarah? Sarah?" Jackie feverishly asked, running around the stone quickly. "Sarah?"
"What are you doing?" Bianca asked. "You know she's dead..why are you calling her? Trying to do a seance?"
"Not really," Mat said. "Haven't you noticed that it's been rather quiet in the Print Shop?"
"Well...uh." Bianca said, "I..uh.did notice that..and I did wonder why."
"Because she's been with us," Jackie explained. "She's been with bus..and we've been helping her get to Heaven by saying prayers for her every night! Now..we're saying the last few prayers..we've somehow ended up here..but we can't see her!":
Bianca gave them al looks. "And..you al expect me to believe this? Look..I admit it's not everyday your tour place is haunted..but.."
"It's true!" Matt said.
"Where's Sarah? Please don't tel me she already went to Heaven!" Jackie said with tears pouring down her face.
"Maybe she did," Inez said quietly. "We DID finish the prayers.."
"But..she just disappeared..just left..I didn't even get a chance to say goodbye!!" Jackie dropped to her knes and started to sob quietly. Mat and Inez, both looking teary, went to her and held her tightly. Just then a familiar soft voice filled the air.
"Oh, Jackie .please don't cry..don't cry for me," slowly the three kids looked up as a familiar figure came out from behind the tombstone. But she looked very different. Instead of a transparent blue form, she was now in ful color! For the first time they could see her bright red hair and pure white skin with bright green eyes. They could still see through her, but there was a bright light surrounding her and twinkles, like little stars, were blinking from her dress, which was now bright white, and surrounding her. But the thing that really made her light up was the huge smile that graced her.
"Sarah?" Jackie asked, standing up. "Sarah? I..Is that you?"
Sarah looked down at herself. "Yes," she smiled and approached them. The children came forward with happiness and joy. "You did it..you said all the prayers..my soul is finally free!" Bianca stared with complete shock as Sarah moved closer to the children and knelt beside Jackie, putting her hand on her cheek. "You and your friends freed me, Jackie. Thank you."
Before any of them could answer a unfamiliar voice then came through the night. "Sarah? Sarah?" They all turned to see where it had come from. A young, blond haired, handsome man emerged from behind the trees. He was dressed all in white, and was transparent..like Sarah! He was very tall and thin. He had bright blue eyes and his yellow hair was pulled back in a ponytail. He quickly turned around and his face brightened at the sight of Sarah. Sarah turned around eagerly.
"It's James!" she cried happily. She leaned over and whispered to Jackie, "I shall always be with you." She kissed her on the cheek and brushed her hand against Jackie's. Jackie felt something hard and cold touch her palm and she closed her hand over it out of habit, but she didn't even look down. Sarah moved over and kissed Matt on the top of his head. She then kissed Inez on the top of hers. She stood up eagerly.
"Sarah?" James asked her, almost as if he couldn't believe he was finally seeing her.
"I'm here..oh James, I'm here!" she ran over to her love and threw her arms around his neck. He wraped his arms around her and spun her around happily. Setting her down, he kissed her tenderly in her lips. The kiss grew and deepened as the reunited lovers tightened their grip upon one another. Even Matt, who usually balked at kissing, couldn't help but watch this scene in front of him. Finally the lovers broke away and stared happily at one another.
"Sarah, I've ben waiting for you for so long..what took thee so long?" James asked.
"I'm sorry, James. I had to wait about three hundred years for a few very good friends of mine to pray 10,000 prayers.." she started to explain. Just then an enormous golden gate appeared right in front of James and Sarah. The gates slowly opened as a Heavenly beam shone down. The kids couldn't see beyond it..but from the look on Sarah's face, they knew exactly what she was seeing. James smiled lovingly upon her.
"Unlike anything you've ever seen, isn't it?" He smiled and wrapped his arms around her., She leaned lovingly against him as the both began to walk into the gate. Bianca genuflected and made the sign of the cross.
"Sarah!" Jackie cried out tearfully. "Will we ever see you again?"
Sarah and James both turned around and walked toward the kids. "Look up into the sky tonight," Sarah told them. "You will know I'm watching over you."
James smiled and knelt down in front of the kids. "Thank you all for Sarah."
Jackie smiled. "You're welcome."
"T....take care of her," Matt whispered tearfully.
"I promise," James said. He stood up and scooped up Sarah in his arms. "I love you," he whispered.
"I love you, to," she answered before she kissed him again. "I always have." Together they walked slowly into the Golden Gate, stopping only once to wave goodbye to their friends.. Slowly the Gate closed shut and disappeared.
Inez stood up and ran over to where the gate was, waving frantically. "Goodbye, Sarah!" she called out tearfully. "Goodbye, Sarah!"
"Have a good trip, Sarah," Matt said.
"I hope you found what you're looking for, Sarah," Jackie said. The others turned to look at her. "Oh, sorry, didn't mean to get so loud," she sniffled. "She was my friend."
"I'm so glad she had one," Bianca said happily, finally getting her voice and standing up. "Come on..let's get you all home. Only then did Jackie think to open her hand and look at what Sarah had put in there..it was her locket. Her smal, tiny golden locket. Jackie swallowed, remembering all Sarah had said about it..and now..it was hers!
Later that night, Jackie walked up the stairs to her room and looked out at the sky, like Sarah had told her to. There, against the pitch black sky, was a single bright, shining star! The star seemed to be waving at her happily..and she knew it was Sarah. She waved back with tears in her eyes and slowly drew the locket from her pocket. She slowly put it on and stared in the mirror..for just one second seeing Sarah reflecting back at her, smiling and waving. Jackie waved back and watched her disappear. Her mother came into the room with the laundry.
"Hi, Sweetie. Just came to put the clothes away." She stared at her gift. "Where did you get that pretty little locket?"
"That's a gift from a very dear friend of mine," she explained, touching it. When her mother left Jackie stared out at Sarah's star in the sky. "Thank you for being a friend, Sarah." she said happily.