“I was under for how long?”
After being dragged off the bottom of the pool Leigh Ann took Penny home. After asking a couple of questions and ride home, Penny realized she wouldn’t get any information from her mother until they were alone. She waited until they were inside and sitting in the dining room before asking her question.
Leigh looked at her daughter with great concern for nearly ten seconds before answering. “You were under for three minutes before I jumped in and pulled you out.”
“Three minutes?” Penny had trouble accepting that. From her point of view, it didn’t seem as if she’d been under that long. “I’ve never held my breath that long before.”
Her mother reached over and patted her on the hand. “That’s because you’ve never been in the water before.”
“What do you mean by that?” Penny had never heard such a statement before. It wasn’t something her mother would normally say.
Leigh shook her head. “I don’t mean anything, honey.” She patted her daughter’s hand again. “Why don’t you take a bath and get cleaned up while I start supper?”
The rest of this night went well. Penny and her mother ate dinner and watch some Netflix for Penny headed off the bed. She found it a little strange that her mother wanted to come and tuck her in, as she hadn’t done this in several years. As Penny looked up at her mother’s face she sensed something was wrong, though she didn’t know what.
The only thing she knew for certain was that her mother was looking at her far differently than she had ever before.
Penny had a dream. In it she was standing on a beach looking out over the ocean. It was nighttime and the moon was almost full. Over the crashing of the waves she thought she could hear singing along with someone—it sounded like girls—calling her name she walked down the beach until she was standing on the edge of the surf. She let the sound of the waves crash over her as the water kept coming up the beach and nibbling at her toes.
More she stared out over the dark ocean the more she wanted to throw off her pajamas and dive in. She didn’t know why she felt this way, but the urge to take this action was strong. So strong, in fact, that she slid her pajama bottoms off and stood there in just her panties and tank top. She stared up at the moon as she took a step forward into the surf—
“Penny, wake up.”
Her eyes flew open as she realized she was not in bed, but standing up somewhere outside. That somewhere happened to be the edge of her neighbor’s swimming pool. Just as in her dream she had taken off her pajama bottoms and was clad only in her panties and tank top—and just like in the dream she was getting ready to step into the pool.
Penny took a couple of deep, panicky breaths and looked up at her mother. “Mama? Mama, what’s going on?”
“You were sleepwalking, honey.” Lee handed her daughter her pajama bottoms. “Put these on and let’s go home.”
Penny did as instructed and let her mother lead to her home, all the while thinking that there was far more to this than just a simple case of sleepwalking…