They say there is no better friend than a sister, and that there is no better sister than you. But how many of those have had their sister tried to kill them on numerous occasions?
My older sister, Kathy, and I are 3 years apart. From a young age I’ve looked up to her, wanting to be just like her. I disregarded all the bad things she did to me, making an excuse that she was doing it out of love, or trying to teach me a lesson. Even at a young age I knew that was a fucked up way of thinking.
When I was 5 years old, she was 8 years old. School had just let out, and we were enjoying the scorching midday heat from the sun during the summertime. Luckily, my family house had a pool and we were trained swimmers from a very young age. With that being said, my mom would often times leave us alone in the pool so that she could go make lunch, or catch up with a neighbor.
I remember I had done something that morning to upset Kathy. She had gotten a jewelry and bead making set for her birthday and she was over the moon obsessed with it. I had ventured into her room, spilling the contents and tangling the bracelets in progress. At 5 years old, it was simply a case of “I want to play with it too”, not “I’m doing this on purpose”.
When Kathy found out, she was furious. I will never forget the look in her eyes; her green eyes bore into mine, it was as if I could feel the rage in them. Usually when she got like this, she would hit me on the arm, or pull my hair – I was expecting both, but this time she just continued to stare before finally speaking, “It’s okay, Sasha.” But it wasn’t okay – we both knew that.
So there we were, a couple of hours later, splashing around in the pool – Kathy was laughing and showing me the flips she could do in the water. I told her I wanted to learn, and she scoffed at me.
“You have water wings on, you can’t do that flips properly.”
“I can too!” My stubborn 5 year-old self said, trying to make a point, but just ending up floating face first on my stomach.
I began to cry, soon enough I was throwing a full-blown tantrum. My mother rushed outside, coffee mug in hand, a worried look on her face.
“What’s going on?! Is everything okay?!”
Kathy smiled, “Yes Mommy. Sasha is crying because she can’t do flips like me in the water because of her water wings.”
My mother gave me a pity smile and crouched over to the pool, comforting me.
“Sasha honey, when Daddy gets home he can teach you to do those flips without your water wings, but Mommy’s got a very important meeting to prepare for so she doesn’t have time.”
I frowned. Mommy never had time for us since her new job promotion. “Don’t worry Mommy, I’ll take care of her!” Kathy chirped up, beaming from ear to ear.
At that moment, I wanted to get out of the pool – I didn’t want to be alone with Kathy, I knew that tone of voice she used. She used that tone of voice when she would play ‘doctor’ with me, putting a pillow over my face in the middle of the night and when I was blue in the face, she would remove it and pretend that I was in a coma and she was the appointed doctor to ‘help fix’ me.
I watched as my mother walked back into the house, my stomach sinking. Kathy swam up behind me like a snake.
“Daddy won’t be home until late, I’ll teach you now. “ She grabbed my arm pulling off one of the water wings. It wasn’t one of those hard tugs she usually did, where it left my arm black and blue – it was somewhat of a gentle tug, but that didn’t make me any less comfortable with her.
“No Kathy – I want Daddy to teach me,” I said, my voice quivering.
“Don’t be such a baby Sasha, float on your back. You know how to do that!”
I did as I was told. She took off the other water wing, and then she put her arm underneath the small of my back. For that split second, I trusted my sister; I was no longer scared of her. I remember looking up at the sun and closing my eyes, pretending we were in the ocean, dolphins swimming around us; I smiled.
From inside of the house, we could hear the clock on the wall chiming. Every hour it would have a different chime. By now, it was 1 o’clock.
“Time for a nap Sasha,” Kathy whispered before her hand pushed my head underwater. I began thrashing with my arms and legs, water going up my nose, in my mouth and into my lungs. I began to panic; Kathy kept pushing my head down further and further. I tried kicking her underwater, but my short legs couldn’t reach her, each time I missed. I hoped this would pass – that this was just like the pillow thing, but the way she kept pushing my head further down, I knew in my gut she was going to kill me.
My chest began to hurt, it was as if it was tearing and burning at the same time. I began to panic even more, Kathy’s hand pushing me further down. Eventually, I could start to feel the burning sensation go away, a calmness taking over.
After what felt like eternity, someone had pulled me out of the water, performing CPR. I could hear Kathy yelling at my mother, but the words were not registering in my brain. When I had finally come to, I was wrapped around my mother’s arms, comforted by her. I watched as Kathy brought over a towel, and attempted to wrap me in it. I squirmed away from her, pushing my small body deeper into my mother’s, using her arms as a shield.
“Sasha – what are you doing? Kathy saved your life! You took off your water wings when she was doing flips in the water and water went up your nose and mouth, she helped you!”
I couldn’t believe it – Kathy deliberately did this, and my mother thinks she’s the Virgin Mary all of a sudden?
That night I remember I was in bed, when I heard my door open. I closed my eyes shut, pretending to fall asleep. Someone whispered in the darkness, “Sasha?” It was Kathy.
I squeezed my eyes shut even tighter I didn’t dare to move. I was waiting for her to come beside my bed, but I could not hear her footsteps.
“Sasha, if Mommy wasn’t home you’d be dead,” she whispered, before closing the door.
I didn’t need to open my eyes to know that she was smiling when she told me that.
A couple years went by, Kathy did things that put me on the brink of death. She didn’t grow out of it and stop, and I never told my parents. To them, Kathy was the older big sister, and I was the baby sister who looked up to her and would learn from her.
After high school graduation, Kathy had gone to ASU. I had spent a lot of time at home, slowly becoming a recluse. Last week I was in Kathy’s room, looking for an extra USB stick. While rummaging around, I had found her notebooks from when she was young, and I began flipping through it. I was expecting to find entries on her having crushes on boys at school, or stories from the parties she would go to. Instead, there were pages upon pages with my name on it and how she was going to kill me and get away with it.
Each notebook began to get more morbid, explaining how many serial killers killed their victims and got away with it temporarily. I shut the notebooks – I knew she hated me, but I didn’t know she wanted to kill me.
I had put everything back in its place; opening the drawer to pull out a USB from the many she had lying around. Going back into my room, I plugged the USB into my laptop. Files on top of files popped up, all with different titles named after notorious serial killers.
I opened one of the files, a full-blown presentation. Kathy was a graphic design student; this was a mix of a comic book and a power point presentation full of notes and diagrams. I scanned it for my name, instead I found someone else’s name: Brian. She had outlined how she was going to kill him, and get away with it. It was dated 2015.
The Brian file didn’t have a last name, but I did a quick Google search: “Brian student dead ASU”. I found an article; his cause of death was accidental – he was drunk and hit his head on concrete, bleeding out. No suspects, no arrests, and the witnesses were all drunk to give a proper statement.
I went back to her room and grabbed all the USB’s, looking through each file until I finally found mine. She had planned for my death to be this summer, when we would be home alone.
My phone dinged: a text from Kathy. I froze; I could feel the color draining from my face as I opened up the message.
“BOOKED MY FLIGHT. SEE U SOON. SUMMER BREAK BITCH!!”
My stomach turned. It was as if she knew I was in her room and I had found out everything. I don’t know what I’m going to do when she gets home for Summer Break.