The tattered, faded photograph of Fred Krueger fluttered to the ground as the girl who had been kneeling on the dusty attic floor slammed the small pink and purple notebook shut.
Sharon Andrews, a fourteen year old slip of a redhead, had spent the past fifteen minutes flipping feverishly from page to page of the diary, reading Andie O'Neill's story from beginning to end in abject horror.
It had started out as curiosity.
After all, it's human nature to be curious about a crumpled shoebox hidden underneath an attic floorboard.
It's human nature to open the box and sift through the items within.
It's human nature to pick up the small, glitter covered book inside and start reading.
And while it began as simple curiosity, it blossomed into more.
The goose pimples that had risen up on her arms beneath her shirt had nothing to do with the draft in the attic and everything to do with the chilling tale she'd just finished reading.
Sharon shook herself out of her thoughts and turned towards the source of the voice.
Her mother was calling her from downstairs.
"Come on, Sharon! We're leaving."
The young girl quickly restored the shoebox's contents and stuffed it back under the floorboard where it belonged.
"Coming!" She called, shifting the floorboard back into place where it had been before, careful to make certain that it was still slightly out of place so that the next person who came to look at the Elm Street house would trip over it the way she had and find the diary.
After all, it was what Andie had wanted. After reading her ordeal, Sharon felt that she owed the girl she'd never laid eyes on at least that much.
Sharon cautiously descended from the attic, brushed herself off so that no one could tell she'd spent the past little while knee deep in dust, and then made her way downstairs to where her mother was chatting with the realtor.
"Well, we're not absolutely sure about where we want to move just yet, so we're doing a lot of-" Mrs. Andrews turned to look at her daughter, who had plastered on a smile for Miss Smith's benefit, "Oh! Sharon, there you are."
"Have a nice look around?" the bubbly blonde in the bright green blazer asked cheerfully.
"Uh...yeah," Sharon answered, trying to match the blonde's pep and passing with effort, "Nice roomy bedrooms."
Sharon barely heard her mother as she completed the pleasantries with Miss Smith, she was too distracted with thoughts of what had happened to Andie.
Had she survived? Did they lock her up again? Did she move out of Springwood?
Sharon didn't want to think about it. She couldn't bring herself to think about it. Andie wasn't all that much older than she was when all of it had happened to her and it just hit too close to home.
Before Sharon knew it, she and her mother were making their way down the front porch, down the walk and finally to the street where her mother's green Honda was waiting.
She piled inside it and felt marginally more secure when she slipped under her seatbelt and shut the door.
The car started up and began pulling away, Sharon's mother thinking her own thoughts for a few minutes before she spoke.
"What did you think of it?" Mrs. Andrews asked, glancing at her teenage daughter, who was staring out of the passenger side window at the waving form of the cheery realtor who was standing in front of 1428 Elm, pretending that nothing was wrong with the house she was trying to sell.
"I didn't like it," Sharon said, a shiver passing through her shoulders that she couldn't control, "I don't like Springwood at all...especially not Elm street."
Sharon didn't hear her mother as she spoke about the fact that there were too many drawbacks to moving to Springwood anyway and it was better to move to Cincinnati or some other larger city. There was a part of her that understood that what her mother was saying meant she didn't have to move into the horrible Elm Street house, but there was a bigger part that just wanted to cry for the girl who had lived there before.
Knowing full well that the diary she had just finished reading was a good ten years old and that the author's fate was sealed long ago, Sharon touched the window, breath fogging up the glass and whispered to the girl who would never hear her, "Good luck, Andie."
As the little green Honda rolled out of sight, the smiling realtor Miss Smith let her mask of cheer slip out of place.
They weren't going to buy. She could tell. The daughter didn't really like the place...it was plain to see.
Miss Smith sighed heavily and walked back up towards the house to lock it up. She'd had been trying to sell the place for close to ten years and had been completely unsuccessful. She would go through the motions, show the house, let the kids go check out the place on their own so that she could speak with their parents...
All successful realty 101 tactics...all meant to sell a house in seconds flat.
For some reason, after every grand tour, the prospective buyer's children would ultimately dislike it for some reason that had cropped up out of the blue and couldn't be explained.
It wasn't that Miss Smith was a bad realtor...she was very good at her job.
Instead, it was the fact that almost every teenager who was allowed to poke around the place wound up in the attic, tripping over that exact same floorboard, reading that exact same diary, and then replaced everything the way it had been when they found it so that the next one to come up there after them would see what they had seen.
It was a quiet ritual and none of the teenagers who had completed it could tell you why they did it, other than the fact they felt they owed Andie. They owed it to her to make sure that others found her story and understood what moving into this house entailed.
It was a silent agreement between them; Andie's diary had shown that the adults of Springwood couldn't be trusted. It was up to the children to preserve the diary and protect those that came into the house after them.
Andie left more of a legacy than she would ever know
A/N: I know, I know…but I couldn't stop myself from giving it a proper ending. Andie's fate is still a mystery, but the fate of the house on 1428 Elm isn't. It's got a semi-happy ending.
Apparently, I can't leave things totally unhappy.
And now I've ended this on an uneven chapter number…that's going to bother me x.x