The ceiling is a great thing. You can stare at it when you’re mad, sad, confused, and it somehow always gives you an answer.
Mine, though, seems to be having problems. I’ve been staring at it all night and I’ve come up with squat. I don’t know how to sort my feelings right now.
My Dad told me that our family lawyer called to say the FBI wants to question me tomorrow after school. They’re acting like I have something to do with any of this.
Bo and I had a relationship, we had something and I’m pretty sure she wouldn’t lie to me about something like that. And the fact that I’ve always hung out with her and she’s never mentioned anything weird or suspicious drives me crazy.
She’s not one to cause harm to a fucking fly let alone 27 people. I sigh exasperatedly and tuck my hands behind my head. A knock sounds at my bedroom door and I don’t even acknowledge it.
I hear the door quietly creek open and my mother’s voice fill the quiet room, “Luke, honey, how are you holding up?”
My hands are starting to feel numb under the weight of my head but I ignore it. She sits down on the edge of my bed and fiddles with my comforter.
“Lukas, I know you’re hurt but you need to talk to me. I can’t help you if you don’t let me,” My eyes stay trained on the ceiling, not even bothering to take a glance at my mom.
“I’m fine,” I say coldly in an attempt to dismiss her. She doesn’t budge though, just sits there and stares at me as I stare at the wall above me.
“She did seem like such a sweet girl, I wonder what went wrong in her life that caused her to do all those awful things,” I breathe out through my nose, a common thing I used to do to let my mom know I’m over the conversation, “Alright, I’m going to finish up dinner and it should be done in half an hour,” She gets up off the bed and lingers in my room for an extra few seconds before shutting the door behind her.
I sigh again and take my now numb hands out from under my head. I shake them and in a couple seconds the feeling comes back. My shoes sit in the corner of my room and I slip them onto my feet. I turn the stereo on and press the plus button until it was loud enough to drown out any noise my parents are making.
My bedroom window slides open with ease and I hop out. I don’t want to stay home anymore if all my parents are gonna talk about is how much of a horrible person Bo is. There’s no way she did this and I’m gonna prove it.
I text Adrian to meet me at Gilmore Park. Stephanie’s parents donated the park to the town so as a result of that it was named after her family. My phone buzzes as I reach the park.
I’m already here, I’ve been kicking it with Mason.
I guess the both of them can help me out. I find Adrian’s truck in the parking lot and I pull the backseat open to see Adrian and Mason in the front seat.
“What did you want to meet me here for?” He asks, looking back at me. I see the stress clear in his face and I sigh.
“I need help proving Bo isn’t a murderous drug dealer,” Adrian rolls his eyes and turns back around.
“I’m not helping you. If the FBI is saying she did it then she most likely did it. Their intel isn’t fake.”
“There’s just no way she did any of that and if she did then how come she didn’t murder us? I crashed at her house, we hung out with her alone, that’s many opportunities for a serial killer to attack us.”
“I don’t think he’s understanding,” Mason says to Adrian before turning around in his seat, “Bo murdered twenty-eight people. The FBI raided our school and is going to interview everyone who’s ever hung out with her for more than 20 minutes. This is serious and you meddling in their shit is just stupid.”
“Well if you don’t want to help me then I’m doing it by myself. I know she didn’t do it and I’m gonna prove it to you and everyone else in this country.” I pop open the door and get out of the truck.
As I start to walk away, Adrian rolls down the window and begins to yell at me.
“Hey! If you truly believe Bo didn’t do it then I’ll help you but you have to tell me you one hundred percent believe she didn’t do it. Not even one bit of you has doubts,” I stop dead in my tracks and stare at a tree that’s across the park.
Do I fully believe Bo didn’t do this? Or am I forcing myself to think this because I’m too scared to admit the truth to myself?
A few seconds pass in silence and I take a deep breath, turn around, and say, “I, one hundred percent believe Bo didn’t do this,” Adrian’s head hangs out the window and he has a big goofy smile on his face.
“Are we really about to break the law to prove that a girl you like is innocent?” Mason asks me, sticking half his body through the sun-roof.
“You’re gonna help too?”
“If I’m already in this deep then why should I ditch you guys and plus where else are you gonna get an expert hacker?” My eyes widen and I nearly slapped my forehead. I can’t believe I forgot Mason was a major tech savvy.
“I heard about the time you got expelled for hacking into your school’s system and changing your grades.”
“That was the sixth grade, Lukas, trust me, I’ve improved,” He sits down in the passenger seat again and I get back into the truck. Adrian starts it up and the engine practically roars to life.
“What do you want to do first? Hack the FBI database? Grill some drug pushers on the street? Hit the library to dig up everything we can about Bo or Gianna or whatever?”
“We need to make a few stops first,” I say, buckling myself in as we drive down the street.