Peer Review by The Dreamer (South Africa)

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By: AbigailSauble

January 26 - 7:08 AM

With a lurch I'm awake. 
My eyes are wide open. 
What woke me? 
My watch is strapped
to the bedstead. 
The numbers blink on 
and off as though I
had forgotten to set it.

The sun isn't shining. 
I bring the watch to my ear.
Tick tick tick. 
Then I see the year.
My heart nearly stops. 
I scramble out of bed
and stare out the window.

Nothing has changed.
The tall tree outside 
my window is still there.
Am I dreaming? 

Why isn't the sun shining? 
Dark clouds cover the sky.
I don't know which direction
the sun is in. 
I try to remember what 
year it was when I went
to sleep. I look over at my
wall calendar.
November 2025 
Right year.

I need to find my sister.
I pass by my dresser 
and glance into the mirror
on my wall. I stare at my
reflection. Is that me? 
I look thirty years older.
Slowly I turn away.

I walk down the hall.
Everything's silent. There's
no noise from downstairs. 
I knock on my sister's door.
"Elsie?" I open the door.
She isn't there. The bed is
nicely made. 

Of course. She's feeding
her rabbit. 
Still panicked, 
I hurry down the carpeted
stairs to the living room.
No one is there. Everything
is extremely neat. Nothing
is out-of-place. 

"Mom? Dad?" I race to
my parent's bedroom. 
The bed is nicely made. 
Everywhere I go in the
house, everything is 
eerily clean. No sweaters
lying around, no pots
on the stove. 

I go to the computer and
turn it on. No browsers
are up. Skype isn't on. 
An update pops up in the corner
of the screen.
Install Millenium++ version 5.0
I ignore it, and get onto the internet.
I type in: 'what day is it?'
In the blink of an eye, an
answer appears.
Saturday, January 26, 2058

I log onto my email.
More updates.
Dozens and dozens of unopened
messages. I click on the
top one. It's a newsletter
from my church. 
Rachael Winstane had her
baby boy last night! 8 lbs
9 oz. Both mom and baby
are healthy. Name coming 

I stare in shock at the screen.
Rachel? Could it be Rachel Pronte?
My best friend? Did she get married?
I search for the church directory.

I quickly scroll down the list
of families. Some familiar, 
others strangers. Winstane. 
I pale. A picture of my best
friend, Rachael Pronte,
standing with a guy I'd never
seen before, and three children. 
Her family.
I look for her husband's 
family picture. 

James and Barbara Winstane
I look at their kids names, 
Michael, Timothy, Erin, 
It's Timothy. Rachel and
Timothy Winstane, with
their four children, 

Devin, Mandy, Hailey, and
another boy. 

I sit back in the chair. 
Slowly processing the sudden

I log onto my Skype account.
Like email, dozens and dozens
of unopened messages. It wants
me to update to the newest version.
I quickly click on Rachael's page.
I've really missed talking with 
you. Hope I see you at church

I look at the date the message
was sent. 
November 14, 2025
My heart sinks. 

I send a message back to
Rachael. My fingers are shaking.
Rachael! I need to talk with you!
How long has it been since you
last saw me? Please reply soon.
Congratulations about the baby!
Love you so much!
- Renee

I've finished replying to
the most-recent emails. I have
a headache from trying to 
figure out what happened to me.
I try calling my mom, but it 
goes to voicemail. 
"Mom! This is Renee. Where
are you? How're you doing?
I love you! Call me back."

I stare at the clean house. 
Nothing's dusty. As if it had
been cleaned yesterday. 
I try to remember the day
before I went to sleep. 
My mind's foggy. I look 
outside. It's raining lightly.
The sky is still dark with 

I check my inbox, there's
several new emails. I see 
one from another friend 
at church. 
Is this a joke? When's your
birthday? What is your 
sister's name? 

My mind goes wild with her
reply. What on earth 
happened to me? 

I've replied to the emails
that I've received in the past
12 minutes asking me if I was
really Renee Johnson. Then I
read this email, and my heart
nearly stops.
I was at your funeral. You 
disappeared, and the police
thought that you drowned in
the river. 
Where have you been?!?


I'm in complete shock. I 
drowned? People went to my
funeral? The room swims 
before my eyes; I close them.
Slowly I type out a reply.
Allison, would you mind coming
to see me? I'm so confused. 
I need to talk to someone. 
I still live at the old house.

- Renee

A red mini-van pulls up the
driveway. The sky has partially
cleared away, revealing the
sun, which causes the world to
sparkle brightly. I run out to 
see Allison. 

"Allison!" I say even before 
she steps out of the car. Her
eyes are worried. 
   "It really is you." She whispers.
We hug. It feels good to see 
someone familiar. Though 
she is a lot older than when
I last remember seeing her. 
A wedding ring adorns her 
left ring-finger. 

We sit on the couch; she holds
my hand. I tell her the events
of the morning. 
   "Wow. How is this possible?"
Allison looks into my eyes. 
"I have absolutely no idea."
Tears press against my eyes. 
"Where's my family?" 

I decided to enter this into the competition. *shrugs* I mean, why not? :P 

Peer Review

The suspense has me eager to know what is really going on.

The character's thoughts tell me more about her pesonality and how panicked she is feeling.

I think that maybe you could do her funeral as a scene. Allison could tell it to her. To give a bit more information on what she was like, how many friends she had and how she died. What do you think?

I think the description was good and I knew where I was. What if you add a bit more description of the rooms? That will reveal herpast life, erhaps?

You wrote a really good suspenseful story. I tore thruogh the peice to get to th end!

Reviewer Comments

Well done!!!