Hi, this is Summer. Sorry it’s been so long since we’ve written. We had some problems with our internet, and then things got really busy for our family, especially Blakeney. Life has been going pretty well for us in the meantime. We’ve settled into our new school, and we’re making new friends. It didn’t take long before we were back into our activities, either.
Here’s what hasn’t happened, though. Marigold hasn’t gone home. In a way, that’s a good thing. No… I shouldn’t even say “in a way.” It’s been wonderful having her here and getting to know her. She gets along really well with all of us, and she fits right in. It seems like she belongs here. Sometimes it’s hard to remember she’s a guest.
And that’s the weird part. We thought she was just coming for a visit, but she’s been here for three months. No explanation, no estimated time of departure, and apparently her parents aren’t concerned.
When she first got here, she didn’t bother about calling home. Finally, the adults insisted she had to give them a phone number so they could talk to her parents; we’re all happy to have her here, but Inna pointed out that we could get in major trouble if we kept her here and her parents didn’t know where she was. Marigold procrastinated as long as she could get away with it, but finally she gave Blakeney a number.
Every time one of the adults tried calling, the phone on the other end would just ring and ring. No one ever picked up, and it never went to voicemail. For a few days, they thought they were just calling at inconvenient times, but as more time went by and there was never an answer, the adults started to get worried again. Marigold just shrugged and said that clearly her folks weren’t stressed about the situation. But obviously, Blakeney, Inna, Maia, and Gia weren’t convinced.
School started. We knew Marigold was supposed to be homeschooled this year, and she said her parents would be fine with her just going to school with me. The grownups just exchanged a look. Homeschooling is one thing – several of the kids in our family are homeschooled – but generally the parents would want to have some input in terms of what their kid was learning. Homeschooling is very different from the kid just going to some random school, know what I mean?
Finally, the adults decided that they just weren’t going to get anything out of Marigold, and they were going to have to get some answers themselves. It was awkward going behind her back, but how else were we ever going to figure out what’s going on?
While the rest of the girls in our family were in school, Blakeney, Inna, Kirsten, and Bree – they had the day off – drove up to Ontario. They figured that if they couldn’t get Marigold’s parents on the phone, they would have to go to the address and talk to them in person. When they got to Toronto, they had no problem finding where Marigold had told us she lived… but there was no house there.
It wasn’t like that time we went to visit Cécile and Marie-Grace, and found the house they’d been living in had just been burned down. This was a vacant lot. There had been nothing standing there for a long time. There were just a few foundation stones overgrown with waist-high weeds. There was no way Marigold and her parents had been living in a house here as of August.
Bree wondered if maybe they were homeless, and they’d been living in the lot but Marigold was too embarrassed to say anything about that part. There was no sign of anyone camping there, either, but we figured maybe they’d already moved on. We asked around, but everyone in the neighbourhood told us that no one had been staying in the vacant lot for years, homeless or otherwise. So that didn’t turn out to be it, either.
After that trip to Ontario, we’re even more confused than we were before. We’re not quite sure what to do. If this were a normal situation, we would have called the police a long time ago and let them sort it out… but as you recall, we aren’t normal. Marigold is one of the fairy folk. She still hasn’t admitted that, but we can tell. Involving the human police isn’t likely to help.
We’re not sure if we should confront Marigold – she’ll probably just make more excuses if we tell her what we found. I’m not sure how to find out more if she won’t tell us. I hate having to be suspicious of my own twin. The truth is, though, I don’t really know her all that well, even though we’re biological sisters.
We’re happy to have her here. As long as she wants to stay, she can. We’re worried about her, though. We need to figure out what’s going on.