She had been seven years old for seven days when Aunt Katja woke her at the darkest part of the night. Since Janni slept between Magda and Elka, Aunt Katja had to be quiet, but not too quiet because all her short life Janni had never slept very deeply. Magda and Elka snored softly and didnt hear a hint of sound; let along sense a presence close by. Janni had wondered why that was. She supposed it was just one more difference between her and her sisters, along with the auburn hair, winter grey eyes and smattering of freckles that set her apart from their black haired, pale skinned beauty.
Aunt Katja whispered, Janni, awaken soft as a lazy fly in the corner of an attic window on a hot July afternoon. (If youve never heard a fly buzz that softly, you havent been in an attic on a hot July afternoon. Nothing can stir for very long or very loudly on days such as that.)
Janni hadnt been sleeping much lately. The stars seemed to have done all they could to k