The Alice Interviews, Pt. 3
“What were they like before all of this, Alice?”
“Happy, innocent, light of heart and mind.”
“Bree always made believe with her dolls. Imitating what she wanted me and my husband, Alister to enjoy. For a time I lived vicariously through her make-believe land of dolls.”
“Why did you have to live that way?”
“He was never home. And when he was, his sweetness with Bree and Cali was infectious. With me, different.”
“He was a depressed man. Two sides showed every time he was here.”
“Yes, his way with the children kept me entranced in his ability to beat depression.”
“Depressed from what?”
“Only he knew, Dmitri. Only he knew. He wouldn’t open up to me. He was hiding.”
“Something dark. Something sinister.”
“He always gave a love to me that he wanted, never asking what I wanted.”
“Does that make a man evil?”
“I guess not. But something felt empty about him. That scared me.”
“So why did Cali revere him so much? Don’t children read adults best?”
“Do you mean see through adult intentions?”
“I suppose, I mean that, yes.”
“You’d think. But Cali desired something beyond himself.”
“And what was wrong with that?”
“Nothing. Cali was beyond his years, a seeking soul always striving for a clear path. Never quite finding it. I didn’t know how to lead him.”
“And Alister gave direction. Didn’t he?”
“Yes, I’m a failure. I’m a HORRIBLE MOTHER!!
Alice cradled her face in personal torment, crying again.
The echo of Alice’s emotional horror filled the space for a few moments.
“Did Alister threaten you by hiding something potentially dangerous?
“YES, Dmitri, YES!”
Alice’s eyes began to swell while tears streamed down her face.
“If he acted better and as a role model for your children, why did you fear him? I don’t quite understand this, Alice. I have heard that what he did was a form of love.”
“Love? What? How? Can’t you see I’m falling apart recalling all of this?”
Dmitri paused, pressing a finger to his lips.
Alice cleared her tears again, speaking through her emotional tirade.
“Cali constantly took on Alister’s best qualities. A spitting image! Bree took on his pleasing, giving nature in everything she did, including loving Cali, me, or anyone!”
“Alice, why are you so upset?”
“They weren’t his biological children, Dmitri! They weren’t his! They were with me most of the time. ME! Where was my impact on them? Nowhere. Just nowhere to be seen on their beautiful little faces.”
Dmitri smiled again, behind his hands, veiling his mouth,“Why does this upset you so much?”
“Dmitri, my children changed in that cellar ~ while I hung there, with my legs laced around my husband’s hanging dead body! I had to survive…to save them!”
“From what Alice?”
“That woman imposter possibly, and whatever made my children change their behavior!”
“I can tell you who changed them, Alice.”
“What did you say, Dmitri?”
A moment chilled between them.
“What DID you JUST say, Dmitri?”
Bill D. Bistak, Author, Producer of Bestshorthorrorstories.com & Founder of Friedrich Imagines, Ltd. a media production company