Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath

The white steam rose up around Kimmy. Her dark eyes glowed in the misty light.

“I wanted to get rid of you forever,” she said coldly, speaking in a low, husky voice.

Corky backed up against the closed bathroom door. “Kimmy—what? What are you saying? You’re frightening me.”

Kimmy’s normally pink cheeks flushed scarlet. “I’m not Kimmy,” she announced in the strange, husky voice.

“Kimmy, listen—” Corky started. Her ribs ached. Pain throbbed down her arm. “I’m so tired. I—”

“You didn’t cooperate,” Kimmy said, taking a step toward Corky. “You were supposed to die—like Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath your sister.”

“Now, wait!” Corky cried. “Kimmy—”

“I’m not Kimmy!” she snarled, then let out a roar that blew away all the steam. “I am what you fear most!”

“No!” Corky tried to shriek, raising her good hand to fend off the menacing figure before her.

The puzzle is solved, she realized, feeling paralyzed by dread, unable to move, to call for help, to take her eyes off the advancing girl.

The puzzle is solved.

The evil spirit is revealed.

It’s been inside Kimmy.

“Where is Kimmy?” Corky demanded, finding her voice. “What have you Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath done with Kimmy? Did you kill her?”

At first the creature didn’t respond. Her dark eyes reddened, then glowed like fire. Her hair—Kimmy’s black hair—rose up around her head, flew up like dark flames.

The low, raspy voice declared, “I have been in Kimmy ever since that night. That night in the cemetery. The night you thought you sent me back to my grave!”

Corky stared in silent horror into the creature’s eyes, glowing like coals on a fire, at the dark hair flying wildly around its face.

“You thought you were defeating Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath me,” the evil spirit continued. “You should have known better. Ronnie was there too. And Debra was there. And Kimmy, lucky Kimmy.”

“You moved from Jennifer’s body to Kimmy’s,” Corky whispered, slumping weakly back against the door.

Kimmy’s eyes grew even brighter, so bright Corky had to look away. “Why?” Corky asked. “Why are you doing this? Why did you kill Chip and Jon? Why are you trying to kill me?”

“Kimmy’s enemies became my enemies,” the voice rasped. “I paid Chip back for dumping Kimmy and for liking you. Jon was following me everywhere. He Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath was coming too close to the truth. I knew that when I saw him with Sarah Beth.” She paused. Her dark eyes narrowed icily. “He’s gone now.”

“But why kill me?” Corky cried in a shrill, frightened voice she didn’t recognize.

“I have to pay you back for that night in the cemetery. You tried to destroy me. Now you must be destroyed.”

“No!” Corky cried. She reached for the doorknob.

But the door wouldn’t budge.

“Time for your bath,” the husky voice said. “So nice of you to draw a hot, steamy tub. Now, Corky dear, you Chapter 22 Corky’s Bath can die like your sister.”

With startling strength, Kimmy grabbed Corky by the hair, jerked her toward the tub, and started to force her head down into the hot water.

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