Julie Davis is a young single intern at St.
Hospital in Austin, Texas.
Julie was surprised when she learned
inherited her Grand parents home. She was
even more surprised when she found out she
was not alone. When she finds her Great
Grand Mothers journal, she discovers her
Great Grand Mother was not who she
thought she was. She uncovers lots of
buried secrets from the past and is
mistaken for someone else. She soon
learns her life and home are in danger, and
in the most unusual place. She meets David
O’Donnell who is a paranormal investigator.
Julie falls hard for him only to discover he
may be married. Not only her life is in
danger, but now her heart is too. She must
decide what is more important, saving her
home or saving her heart.
Cara Dennis/ Books by this author
The lightning flashed twice very quickly and a loud clap of
thunder followed. Julie jolted from her restless sleep. She
looked at her alarm clock. 2:55a.m.
“Damn. I need to get some sleep.”
The lightning flashed again, this time the thunder didn’t
clap as soon.
“Thank God, it sounds like it’s moving away.
Maybe I can get some sleep.” Julie said out loud to herself.
She laid down and adjusted her pillows and
closed her eyes. As hard as she tried, she couldn’t fall back
to sleep. She flung back the covers and got out of bed. She
fumbled around in the dark, waiting for a flash of lightening so
she could find her slippers. She went towards the bedroom door
and as she was reaching towards the doorknob, the lightning
flashed quickly three times. She jumped and muffled a scream.
“Damn it! I knew that was going to happen.”
She walked down the hallway towards the kitchen.
Her house was on old Victorian Queen Anne
style house. It was built in the 1800’s. It had belonged to Julie’s
grandparents. The house had two stories with a steep roof. It had
bay windows in front and a wraparound porch. On the left
side of the house was a round tower. Her grandparents had passed
away almost six years ago and had left the home to Julie.
She still couldn’t figure out why the house was left to her.
It had been almost four months since she had moved into the
house . It sat on three acres that were heavily wooded.
It had a greenhouse out back and a rock fountain that was
She was single and had no children. She was thirty two years
old and had put herself through medical school. One too
many bad relationships and no real personal time to spend
with someone had kept Julie from ever being married.
She often said to herself she didn’t need this “big old house”
but she couldn’t make herself put it on the market and sell it.
The house had been in her family for so long.
So, she decided to take the house and move in. It was the
right thing to do.
The kitchen had been remodeled by her Grandparents
before they had passed away . Julie had a dishwasher
installed and a new stainless steel sink put in.
“I hate washing dishes by hand and I want a modern
sink in this place.” she had told her Mom.
“Julie, I didn’t have an automatic dishwasher for the first
twenty years of my marriage. It’s not the end of the world.”
“I know, Mom. I had to wash all those dishes and I refuse
to wash them now.” she smiled and gave her Mom a kiss on the
The ceiling was ten feet from the floor and was made of
wood and was painted a pale off-white.
The cabinets were wooden and had been painted so many
times over the years that Julie didn’t know what the original
She had promised herself she would strip them down to the
original wood and redo them when she had time.
The walls were wooden and instead of paint, they had red
flowered wall paper plastered all over them.
She was going to redo those as well. The floors were all wooden
throughout the house, and would remain just as they were.
She had a small round oak table and two chairs she used as a
dining table. The counter tops were white tile. They had always
been that way for as long as she could remember.
Her grandfather had also installed a ceiling fan several years
before he passed away, just above the oak table.
As Julie walked into the kitchen, the lightning flashed again.
This time she was expecting it. She walked to the refrigerator and
took out a pitcher of tea. “Just what I need at three a.m. when I
can’t sleep.” She poured a glass anyway. Just as she was
about to sit down, she thought she saw something from the corner
of her eye. She glanced towards the object, but there was nothing
there. “Great, now I’m seeing things.”
She finished her tea and headed back towards bed. But before she
went to her room, she went into the study and checked the
front door. It was locked, just like she remembered doing
before she went to bed. She turned to go back to bed and the
room turned extremely cold. So cold that Julie had goose bumps
on her skin.
“Now where did that come from?” she asked herself.
“Old houses must be cold year round.” she told herself.
Julie made her way back to her bedroom and returned to bed.
She looked at the clock as she was covering up with her white
feather comforter. It read 3:35 a.m. Thankfully, few minutes
passed before she fell back to sleep.
Rock music was blaring from the clock radio next to
Julie’s bed. She rolled over and hit the snooze button. It was
6:30 a.m. Nine minutes later the voice of a screaming rock
singer came through loud and clear on the radio. This time,
Julie got out of bed.
She found her slippers and headed towards the bathroom.
The bedroom did not have a bathroom. She
had to go down the hall towards the dining room.
She started bath water in the old porcelain claw-footed bathtub.
She liked the tub. She thought it had character. When she took off
her slippers, she noticed that the floor wasn’t the least bit cool.
“That’s weird. It was freezing cold earlier this morning.”
she mumbled to herself.
She began to undress so she could take a bath. She turned
the hot water knob first to let it run. It usually took a couple
of minutes to get the water heated. Then she adjusted the cold
water. She put her hand under the running water to check
the temperature. Then she climbed into the bath.
After washing her shortly cropped hair, Julie laid back in the tub
to relax. She heard footsteps upstairs. At least she thought she
“Hello?” she yelled.
“Mom, is that you?”
Her parents were the only other people who had a set of keys to
“Mom?” This time she yelled louder. No answer.
Julie hurried up and threw her bathrobe on. She couldn’t
figure out why her Mom would be upstairs.
Julie used the upstairs mainly for storage and her Mother always
called before she came over.
She walked upstairs, she couldn’t hear anyone.
“Mom, is that you?”
“Dad?” no answer.
The upstairs had thee bedrooms and a bathroom at the end of the
hallway. The rooms were very large and still were furnished with
her grandparents’ furniture.
Each room had a big four post bed and old Victorian style
The walls in each bedroom were painted a different color. The
middle bedroom was bright yellow, and was referred to as the
‘yellow’ room. The ceiling had yellow and gold specks with gold
trim where the wall and ceiling came together. The fireplace was
in the middle of the room. The windows were rather large, with
thick gold plush curtains pooling to the floor.
Beside each bed, on the wall, was a buzzer.
Her Grandfather had told her they were used by sick people who
were bedridden. They would buzz downstairs to the kitchen to let
the maid know they were awake.
Julie noticed the middle bedroom door was ajar. She walked
towards the door. She pushed it open all the way and went
“Hello?” she asked. No reply.
There was no one inside. Everything was in place, just the
way Julie had left it.
“That’s weird. Oh well, I need to get to work.”
she said to herself.
She went back downstairs to her bedroom. opened her closet
and put on a pair of medical scrubs. She was in her seventh month
of a one year internship at St. Mary’s Hospital in Austin. When
she finished her internship she was planning to practice as an M.D.
at the hospital.
She found a pair of socks and put on her clogs. Grabbed her
purse, checked the mirror one last time. Her brown hair was cut
short and all she had to do to style it was run her fingers through it.
She was light complected, no blemishes. Her Mother always had
told her that her skin was perfect. Her eyes were big and hazel
She turned to look at her rear in the mirror.
“Could use some reducing.” said Julie.
She stood on the scale to check her weight, just as she did
every Monday morning. It read 135. She checked her watch for
the time. It was 7:00 a.m. She had to be at the hospital by
8:00 a.m. It was at least a forty minute drive. She took a quick
look around checking to make sure the back door was locked.
She then went out the front door, flipped the porch light on, locked
the door and got into her red BMW convertible.
She loved the drive into the city, it was relaxing. She was glad
she decided to move into the home her grandparents had given her.
The property needed a lot of work. It had been vacant for
nearly six years. She needed to hire someone to clear the brush
near the back of the property line and to do some work on the
greenhouse and the dilapidated rock fountain that was in the
She arrived at the hospital, pulled into the doctor’s parking
lot and found her spot. The parking attendant greeted her with
“Good morning, Dr. Davis.”
“Good morning, Charles.” Julie answered.
“How are you doing the glorious morning?” Charles
“Just fine, why are you so cheerful this early?” Julie asked
with a smile.
“My wife just told me that she was pregnant this
morning!” smiled Charles.
“Oh my gosh! That’s so wonderful! Congratulations!”
Julie said as she gave him a quick hug.
Julie went into the hospital and worked a full day. She didn’t
get off work until almost 9:00 p.m. She had called her parents
and asked to stop by on the way home.
They lived in Austin and only a few blocks from the hospital.
When she arrived, her Dad met her at the front door. Her
parents were in their late sixties and both retired. Her Mother,
whose name was Lydia, was a retired elementary school teacher.
She was a small slender woman. Her hair was a beautiful rich
brown, with strands of glistening gray throughout. She kept
it all one length and it brushed her shoulders. Her eyes were
a pale blue. Julie had always thought she had inherited her skin
tone from her Mother. She was indeed a beautiful woman.
Her Dad, whose name was John, was a retired homicide detective
for the city of Austin. He was tall, six foot and four inches.
He was a big man as well. In his police days, he worked out
regularly to stay in shape. He continued to do so after he
retired. He was still in good shape for his age. His hair
was kept clipped short and was all gray. He walked
with a slight limp, due to an injury from the police force.
“Hello, sweetheart.” said John.
“How was your day? Have you eaten anything all day long?”
“I haven’t had anything to eat since lunch, I’m starved!”
“Well come on inside, I think your Mom saved you a plate.
She made a roast and all the sides. I think she may have saved you
a slice of cheesecake too.”
“That sounds delicious, Dad.”
Julie went inside her parents two bedroom modest home. The
house smelled delicious! She loved her Mom’s cooking.
grown up here and always liked the neighborhood.
She had lived just down the road until she moved into the house
her grandparents had left her.
“Mom, you weren’t at my house this morning
around seven or so were you?”
“Heavens no! I was still in my night clothes drinking
my coffee at seven. Why dear?”
“I thought I heard someone walking around upstairs.”
“Julie, it’s an old house and no one has lived there for
years. It probably was a rat or something.” said Lydia.
“It must have been a huge rat then!” laughed Julie.
“Mom, Dad, how long had Grandma and Grandpa lived
in that house?”
“I grew up in that house.” said John.
“I know my parents were there for years before
I was born. I’m pretty sure that my grandparents had lived
there before my parents.”
“Wow, so it’s always been in our family.” said Julie.
“Yes, it has.”
They visited for a while longer, and Julie looked at the time.
“Ok, well I’m going to head home. I’ve got a lot to do.
I still haven’t unpacked everything since I moved in. Oh, Dad,
you wouldn’t happen to know of a handy man would you?”
“Not right off hand. Why?”
“I’ve got a lot of weeds and brush I want cleared and I
want to fix up that old greenhouse and have that old rock fountain
“I’ll make a few calls and see what I can come up with.”
Julie kissed her parents goodbye. She drove back home and
parked her car in the garage. It was dark and muggy.
She could hear crickets chirping and frogs croaking in the
distance. She walked towards the house and noticed
the porch light was out.
“I thought I left that light on.” she said to herself.
She found the door key using the moonlight. Slipped the key into
the lock and unlocked the door.
Even though it was summer the house remained cool. Almost
too cool. Julie was chilled. She went to her room and changed
into a pair of sweat pants and a long sleeved shirt. She wanted to
unpack some more of her things before she went to bed tonight.
She went into the other downstairs bedroom. It was much
smaller than the one Julie used. It did not have any furniture in it.
Julie had moved it all into her room. It was perfect to store all of
unpacked boxes in. She started opening boxes and taking items
out. She came across a set of dishes her Grandmother had given
her years ago.
“I’ll take these to the kitchen and run them
through the dishwasher.”
When she got to the kitchen, she noticed one of the pantry doors
“I didn’t leave that open, did I?” she asked herself puzzled.
She walked over and closed the door. She loaded all the dishes
into the dishwasher and turned it on.
“Now, I can sort through the other boxes and take them
The staircase was narrow and dark. She had to go up about
fifteen steps and go up another flight of about ten steps.
When she was about half way up the second set of stairs,
she could see the top of the door to the middle bedroom and
it was open.
“I know I closed that door this morning.”
She took the boxes into the room and sat them on the floor. She
opened a box and took out some sets of sheets and blankets. She
stored them inside the dresser. One of the other boxes had some
old clothes Julie never wore anymore. She decided to hang them
in the closet. She opened the closet door and took out some
hangers that were on the rack. She started hanging the clothes.
She opened another box and found some hats she wore when she
worked in the yard.
She reached to put them on the closet shelf, above the clothes rack.
She noticed a small wooden box. She took it down and opened it.
There was nothing inside the box except two brass skeleton keys.
“I wonder what these go to.”