I wonder why they made this a bedroom, and the bigger room in the corner into the bathroom. After a little thought, still standing in the doorway of the closet room, Maddy concluded. Perhaps it had something to do with the water pipes. The bathroom up here is right over the bathroom and sink downstairs. Though, of course, Maddy knew little to nothing about plumbing, except that sometimes it leaked. Sometimes, it got clogged. It only made sense that shorter distances to cross with the pipes would be easier to put in, and easier to fix when something went wrong. Still, Maddy did not want to sleep in the closet with a window, so she turned to explore the next room.

It turned out to be quite a big one, especially after looking at the closet room. Even bigger than Maddy’s parents’ old bedroom, though not quite so big as the two empty rooms downstairs. It felt like someone had deliberately stolen all the missing space from next door to add to this one.

Even though there were uncovered windows on two walls, that late in the day, the room was still quite dark. Instead of sliding doors, the closet in this room had a door in the far, right corner, with hinges and a knob, implying a space big enough to walk into. Like most of the doors in the house, it hung ajar, if only slightly. Through that crack, Maddy could see only a darkness that seemed so much darker than mere shadow. As she stood just inside the room watching, the feeling grew upon her, that something in that darkness watched her back, and was the closet door swinging wider, if ever so slowly?

Maddy did not wait to find out. She closed that bedroom door firmly behind her, and went to investigate the last bedroom hoping, I hope that this will be like in Goldilocks; the first room is too small, the second room is too scary, and the third one is Just Right, even if Goldilocks was pretty naughty to just walk into that house, steal their food, break their furniture, and then settle in for a nap in someone else’s bed. Of course, Momma says that hospitality means different things in different places and times like those people who thought smiling was bad, or eating people was ok, so it might have been ok and expected behavior from a guest where she grew up. Fairy tales are weird.

 The last bedroom took up the fourth corner of the house on that floor. While it was smaller than ‘bogey room’ as she mentally dubbed the last room, it stretched a far greater distance between wall and wall than the closet with a window, maybe even bigger than her parents’ old room. An ordinary closet with doors folded back stood in the wall between the last room and the bogey room, and the last tenant must have been someone small. The bar for hanging clothes ran across the middle of the space, rather than up nearer the top, like most closets, at a height easy for Maddy to reach, with two rows of square shelves above it, and one long shelf above that. Near floor level, another long, shallow shelf ran, that must be for shoes, and tucked in one corner, in a slot obviously made for it, a sturdy set of folding steps sat. It looked light enough for her to move about herself, and tall enough to reach even the very top shelf.

Even without looking at the other rooms, however, Maddy would have chosen that room for her own. That last bedroom had the window seat. It filled the corner of the bedroom in that corner of the house with an arc of windows over a bright green padded seat that just called out to be sat upon. For the first time, Maddy took more than a couple steps into one of the rooms.

She curled up on the seat and leaned one shoulder against the glass. Looking out from her perch, Maddy thought, The trees are not so scary from up here, on the other side of the glass.

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