A Shade of Halloween

By RobinTodd All Rights Reserved ©

Mystery / Thriller

Chapter Twenty-Nine

Trina Bayle walked out of her dorm room, and locked the door behind her. Her roommate, Ryan was over at the sick bay, because he was feeling under the weather. The room was pretty lonely and if things hadn’t turned out the way they did, she would have invited Selena Ryder over to keep her company.

The two girls had been cool with each other since they met a few months ago. They weren’t exactly best friends, but they had been there for each other on a number of occasions. Everything inside Trina told her this was one of such occasions. She needed to be there for Selena... if only she knew how.

She had watched the news about Selena on TV and knew something was off. There was no way Selena could have killed her mum. They were way too close, and loved each other dearly. She had paid Selena a number of visits at the sick bay before she was transferred to the psychiatric ward and during those visits, Selena didn’t seem crazy to her.

A number of other things stood out as well. The bodies of the victims the police claimed Selena murdered, all had one thing in common. There was a single slash to the throat. That meant whoever killed them had a pattern... a killing style. If that was the case, then Selena couldn’t have killed them all, because she was isolated in the psychiatric ward when the librarian was killed.

What disturbed Trina the most however, was the demeanor of the Police Chief when he held his press conference on the Selena Ryder case.

His eyes lacked focus. His pupils were dilated, like he was staring at nothing in particular. His words came out like he was reading from a script, even though he wasn’t. He sounded pretty convinced Selena was the murderer which was also off. The police always concluded their investigations before sounding so convinced. Even then, they usually had strong evidence, which was missing in this case.

I have to find a way to prove Selena didn’t do it.” She thought, as she made her away through the hallway.

As she walked past Selena’s room, something caught her eye. The door was slightly open.

She looked at it curiously for a few seconds before walking towards it.

No one else was supposed to be in the room because the school had locked it up after Selena was taken to the sick bay. Besides, she passed by that room everyday on her way to class and it was always locked.

Who could be in there?” She wondered.

At first, she considered the fact that Selena could have come back. She quickly discarded it because there would have been a frenzy if that was the case. It wasn’t like Selena could just walk around. She was on the WANTED list now.

The second thought she had made her heart rate quicken. Perhaps the killer was in there, looking for something. If that was the case, this was her chance to catch him.

She pulled out her cellphone and held it in front of her. Getting her camera ready, she walked silently towards the door. Her plan was to get anything that could serve as evidence - perhaps a picture or even a short video... if she was fast enough.

She pushed the door slowly and slid inside.

There was no one in sight.

Trying not to make any noise, she tip-toed through the short walkway until she got to the main part of the room which had the beds. Surprisingly, it was empty too.

There was no one there.

She shook her head and turned the camera of her cellphone off. She concluded there must have been another reason for the open door. Perhaps the student office wanted to revamp the room after the tragedy.

The sound of the door slamming shut behind her caused Trina to jump. She instinctively turned around in its direction, and was even more startled to see a guy standing there. He moved towards her so fast that he was already in front of her before her brain registered the movement. Her cellphone fell out of her hand as she let out a horrified shriek that barely left her lips.

His left hand covered her mouth, just as his right hand grabbed her, cutting off the sound of her scream and preventing her from moving.

She struggled against his grip but he was way too strong for her to break free. All she could do was blink repeatedly and mumble incoherent words.

He looked straight into her eyes, stopping them from blinking. She felt like an invisible force was pulling her eyelids apart, forcing her eyes to remain open.

“Stop screaming and answer all my questions honestly.” He said, releasing her from his grip.

She stood there terrified, unable to scream for help. She could only hope that someone else had heard the sound of the door slamming shut and would come to her rescue.

The guy walked towards the bed and beckoned for her to follow him. As soon as he turned his back, she made a dash for the door. She had no idea why she couldn’t scream because everything in her wanted to. However, this was not the time to wonder about weird stuff. This was the time to escape... and her escape plan fell like a pack of cards.

By the time she got to the door, the guy was standing in front of it.

“When I ask you to do something, you do it!” He snapped. “You don’t want to see me pissed off.”

Fear crawled under her skin, causing her hands to shake. Her heart drummed loudly against her ribcage as she stared at his face. The guy’s expression was completely different from the way it was before. He looked like he could snap her neck and not bat an eyelid.

“I will not tell you this again.” He said, looking into her eyes in that way that stopped them from blinking.

“Don’t ever try to escape!”

Trina turned away from the door and walked to the bed he had asked her to sit on before. This time, the guy walked behind her. There was no need for that though. She no longer wanted to run away.

He sat on the bed beside her and placed his hand on her back.

“I’m sorry I scared you. I’m not usually like that, so let’s start again.” He said.

It was surprising. She hadn’t expected him to apologize.

Trina looked at him like a scared puppy whose owner was handing it a bowl of milk and dog biscuit. She didn’t want to be there but she had no choice. He wasn’t going to let her leave until she answered all his questions.

“My name is Ryan Soille. What’s yours?” He asked.

“Trina Bayle.” She replied.

Ryan smiled.

“Are you a friend of Selena Ryder?” He asked again.

“Yes.”

“That’s great. Do you know where she is right now?”?

“No, I don’t. She disappeared after...”

“Why were you in her room?” He cut her off.

“The door was open so I thought she was in here at first. When I realized that was most likely not the case, I came in to see who was. I thought I could catch the killer if it was him.”

“Killer?” Ryan asked. “What do you mean?”

“The police think Selena killed her mum and two other people. I know it’s not true because she’ll never do something like that. The real killer is out there and I thought if I could catch him looking for something here, I could prove Selena’s innocence.” She replied.

Ryan got up from the bed and began pacing around the room.

“I don’t think she disappeared. I think he has her.” He finally spoke.

“Who?” Trina asked.

“My brother, Ros.” He replied, rubbing his face with his palms. “I need to find her before he hurts her. Where’s the last place you saw her?”

“Her house.” She replied. “Wait, is your brother the real killer?”

“Most likely.” Ryan replied.

“Oh no!” Trina gasped, clutching her chest. “Why does he want to hurt Selena?”

“It’s a long story. Let’s just say he holds a grudge. I can fill you in on the way but we need to move now. The sooner we find her, the better.” Ryan replied.

Ryan and Trina stepped outside the room and were about to make the turn off the hallway when someone shouted from behind.

“Hey! What were you two doing in there? That room is off limits!” A middle aged, dark haired man in a security uniform yelled, pulling out his cellphone from his pocket.

Ryan was in front of him before either he or Trina could blink.

“Forget you ever saw us.” He said, looking straight into the man’s eyes.

The man simply turned around and walked off, while Trina and Ryan made their way out of the hostel.

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