you ever dreamed about something that you know plays some sort of significance
in the world? I’m not talking about superhero precognitive powers and saving
the world in your spare time, but more like a fine detail that you can’t really
shake the thought of but don’t really pay much attention to.
It was just two words. More precisely, a name.
It was the first thought that occurred when my eyes opened from the strange dream. Normally, I don’t recollect on my dreams but this one seemed quite vivid and somewhat stored inside my mind. It was myself in an emerald field, the bustles of grass rolling in the wind towards me and a child. We were playing; both smiling, laughing and lively. Happy. I hadn’t seen myself associated with that emotion for what seemed like an eternity. It felt unknown and yet somehow fake. It was a dream after all. My brain began to think deeper about the dream, and it was then that the setting changed. The child had now disappeared and I was stood in a pure, snow white room, which was deserted. Just like my life I thought. My eyes tried to look around but just as they started to examine the room, my entire visual field was plastered with the name 'Kyla Stevens' as if someone had tattooed the name across my retina. It then shifted back to the meadow scenery, and the child was back, attempting to chase me as I pretended to slowly run away from him…
Stop tormenting yourself Nia, was my first thought as I began to regain immersion back into my dull life. My hands began to rub my eyes as if it would help remove the remains of the dream. As I began to wake fully, my hands immediately reached across my bed towards a small bedside drawer, pulled the first drawer open and grabbed a small bottle of tablets as if it was natural instinct. Normally, two would be taken to combat my depression however there was only one left so I swallowed it and made a mental note to visit the pharmacy later on in the afternoon. From then on, it was a normal morning routine for me: showering, making a cup of strong coffee, and proceeding to watch some TV. Life couldn’t be any better.
Sarcasm was a well-defined word in my dictionary. Finding myself at the end of my coffee, the laptop was turned on and several of my bookmarked sites were opened: AVON and eBay – believe it or not. Buying cheap junk and selling it for slightly less cheap junk was enough to pay for my run-down flat on the wrong side of town. My eyes gazed around the room to observe the undersized and old fashioned kitchen, the antiquated television, the torn dilapidated couch I was sitting on. It was a stark contrast to the lifestyle I had been living six months earlier. As day began to turn into afternoon, my day didn’t get any more exciting. After surfing the web and getting bored of morning television, my attention turned to browsing job listings.
Retail Assistant, Optical Advisor, Receptionist. They all seemed so bland and not really what I was up for. Never mind the fact that with my current state, no legitimate company or business would hire me.
It’s tough. My eyes closed, and I began to think about it all. It’s a shambles. I have nothing. It’s entirely a waste of a life. I’m not even happy anymore. A tear drop rolled out of the side of my eye, down the side of my face and onto the floor, followed by another. Many a tear had been shed in this flat; some in anger, some in frustration, most in sadness.
The door knocked with quick, successive thumps as my recovery from my emotions finished and upon opening it, let out a smirk as Demi burst into the room, with bags in hand.
“Demi, what’s up?” I asked while grabbing her bags and placing them in the corner of the living room. As I did so, she moved and fell onto the sofa, in an eccentric manner, as if to exclaim how exhausted she was.
“Can’t I visit a friend’s house without a reason other than to relax?” She replied as she began to kick off her shoes and began to flick through the channels of the television.
“Well, it’s good you came. This is probably the last time you’ll see this place if I don’t get a job. So you’ve gotta help me”, was my reply as my hands began to shuffle inside her bags. Upon retrieving and opening a can of crisps, my mouth was crunching away.
“Listen here Nia.” She started as she beckoned for the crisps and began to eat. “You were one of the best detectives, male or female, this country has had. And you’re afraid? You had a depression and mental anxiety disorder. The key word there being ‘had’.”
The inspirational motivation would have worked a lot better if her mouth wasn’t full of crisps.
“It’s different now,” I tried to reply but she was having none of it.
“It’s really not! You were able to solve cases as a detective. That’s pretty awesome.”
“I guess it is.” Demi had been a close friend to me the past few years and without her help, I honestly don’t know how I would have coped. She was the first one to console me after I lost my job and since then, her loyalty and kindness has been unfounded. Even though at times she has been a nightmare. Slightly. As the words came out of my mouth, I went over to her and hugged her as tight as I can, which made her smile. After disengaging the hug, she reminded me of something which had left my memory.
“You can get any job now, since your medication is working right?"
Damn. The time had reached around 11:30am and my medication was of essential use to me every six hours. As my coat was slipped on and my handbag was flung over my shoulder, I reminded Demi of where I was going and quickly set off to the local pharmacy.
Disaster averted. The medication had been prescribed and placed in my handbag, as my journey home commenced. After visiting the pharmacy, lunchtime was due. Normally, it would be made of whatever remains roamed my fridge and cupboards, however, after the emotional roller coaster from feeling frustrated in the morning to some sort of happiness with what Demi had said, meant that I had gone to get the both of us some lunch from a massive supermarket. This consisted of two basic portions of frozen lasagne.
Exotic. With shopping bags in hand, and rain pouring down in true British fashion, my legs walked as briskly as possible to the flat.
“Guess what I got?” I asked as the key turned.
“Your medication, stupid. Go take some.” She laughed as I realised she was on my laptop.
“No, not that. Lasagne. I know how you like it so much,” was my reply as I removed the drenched coat and placed the bags on the counter.
The lasagnas were put in the oven. A glass of water was poured. Two tablets were taken out of the newly packaged bottle. As I walked towards the living room, one hand holding the glass of water and the other holding two tablets, my eyes shifted towards the screen which Demi was intently watching. As soon as I saw it, everything escalated.
The glass dropped with a frightening shriek and smashed to hundreds of pieces. My face turned to one of grim horror and disbelief. Demi turned instantly to me, surprised. My head was full of a million thoughts all clamoring over one another to be heard. My eyes followed the headline that was attached to the Breaking News disclaimer.
‘Student Kyla Stevens found stabbed. Boyfriend Danny Reese held in custody. Family and friends mourn outside school.’
This couldn’t be real. It had to be a coincidence. I didn’t know what to think anymore.
“Nia, you okay? Did you know her?” Demi scrambled to get me sat down and when she looked at me, I realised her face was startled and extremely frazzled.
“N..no….not really”. The words came out slow and disjointed as if they caused pain. As the both of us sat down and began to listen intently to the news broadcast, more detailed information was followed by a news broadcaster.
She was stabbed in her home, while she was alone. Only one wound. Front door showed signs of forced entry. Her boyfriend had been arrested on suspicion and was placed in custody. My inner detective was coming out. I was quick to realise that the police force obviously knew some details that they were not going to release to the public. The boyfriend. They must have some sort of incriminating evidence to have been able to arrest him. As my mind wandered off, my friend’s presence had been forgotten about entirely and upon realisation, she said, “She was one of my students…” I had been incredibly stupid and self-centred all this time. I looked over to Demi who was trying to keep a straight face to mask her distress. Demi had been working as an English teacher at Nott County School for a year. Without realising that she may have known Kyla, my hands went around her to give a warm hug.
“She was a really nice girl that hung around the wrong crowd…” Demi solemnly said as she began to get up and start to put on her coat. “I’m going to get home, I’m sure I’ll be getting calls from everyone and I’ve got stuff…” The end of her sentence trailed off as she began to contemplate what was truly happening.
“If you need anyone to talk to, just ring me up. I can walk you down if you want?” I grabbed her bags and handed them over as she made her way to the door.
“Thanks, its fine. I need some time just to get to grips with everything.” Her tone indicated that there was no convincing her. As the door opened and we exchanged hugs and byes, my mind turned back to the dream.
Maybe it was a message. A chance to get back into the field. It was now mid-afternoon and the news was still going over Kyla’s death. There was still one thing that was bugging me in my mind.
Danny Reese. I need to find the connection between him and Kyla’s murder so my laptop was turned on, a pen and pieces of paper were laid out and a cup of coffee was made. My skills were going to be put to the test, even though they were significantly rusty.
It had reached late evening. Many hours had passed. I had dug up as much information on the murder case as possible. The internet was a vast expanse of knowledge and even without the precincts help, some nuggets of information had popped into my foray. This was what I had managed to find.
Kyla Stevens: Sixteen Years Old, Student, Foster Parents, No Siblings, Danny Reece = Boyfriend. Danny wasn’t doing great academically and had been previously involved with the police.
According to the news, Kyla and Danny had gotten into a huge argument in the street outside her house the day before the incident. This must have been the motif that the police arrested him for. Danny had previously been cautioned by the police for petty theft. The funeral was being held in a week.
After that I was lost. There wasn’t much else I could really do. Kyla was dead. Danny had been arrested. My sleuthing skills apparently seem to have deteriorated. The message in my dream must have been there for some use. I just have to find out: why I have been given this name and what to do with it.
My mind raced to what I was forgetting. Medication. Already running to my bag, I yanked the tablet bottle and dropped out three which I flung into my mouth as if my life depended on it. And it probably did. Proceeding to get a glass of water, and lying down on my sofa, my eyes began to feel drowsy and with each successive blink, they remained closed for a longer period of time. Before I knew it, I was asleep and dreaming