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Chapter 9

Aron looks at the handcuffs in his hand and sighs. He must be accepting his fate now, expecting it to happen when he took the blame.

Chase is sitting beside him in the police van, eager to save his girlfriend’s life and butcher an innocent man. He pats Aron on the back and encourages him. “You must be feeling honoured now. You are doing this to save Sherly’s family.”

Aron chuckles dryly at his statement and shakes his head. “I don’t know what I’m feeling right now. I’m sad, angry and depressed all at once. I’m frustrated and exhausted. I want to end my life and this stinging unrest in my chest. I want to cry and tear my hair out and yell. I don’t know anything, I don’t expect anything. I’m already broken.”

Chase looks at his pitiable condition and then turns away. Aron is calm for a person who is about to die on a wish, for nothing.

Suddenly the van comes to a stop with a jerk. Everyone falls silent and stares at Aron. Officer Musk feels proud and straightens his chest.

“I knew you were the murderer.” He speaks boastfully of his senses. But more than that, he is proud of declaring Claire wrong. “What that girl thinks huh? Always right and bossy. Puny head!” He comments in his mind.

Musk opens the back door and pulls Aron out. He stumbles a bit but regains his balance before falling. But what he sees pierces his heart.

There are several reporters and a huge crowd, angry for Mayra’s demise. “Why did you kill her?” “She was such a dedicated girl.” “An honest reporter has to die like this.” “Are you working for any corrupted minister?” “Do you have connections with the underworld?” These were the questions thrown at him.

People try to rush near him but the police hastily surround him and block their way. With slow steps, Aron proceeds towards his doom. His black hair falls randomly and his skin gets tensed. His throat dries up and breathing becomes uneven.

The trial starts with his arrival in the courtroom. He sees Claire rushing over to him and Jo looking at him with an unreadable expression.

“What are you doing Brown? Are you mad? Don’t fall for the prey. You know how cunning Williams is. Say something!” Claire pleads Aron, shaking his shoulders.

“Claire, go.” He speaks in a monotone and walks away. She stands frozen looking at his figure stepping into the chamber. Helplessness overcomes her anger and she looks at him with pleading eyes. Never in her life has she felt so helpless and weak.

Aron refuses to spare her a glance while Claire refuses to tear her gaze away. With Aron accepting his blame himself, there is nothing Claire could do. She’s just weak and useless as a drowning ant.

With eerie silence and the victory whistle from Musk, the trial finally starts. Chase sits in the first row along with Claire and Jo.

He tries apologising to Claire thinking they have some relationship but she ignores him keeping her full attention on Aron, expecting him to signal her to stop this any moment.

She keeps praying to God when the murderer keeps smiling. Aron is void of everything while Chase feels everything at once: happiness, apologising, guilty, ashamed, satisfied and relieved.

“So, we have gathered here to discuss the death case of Mayra West. The accused is here and he accepts the blame. So all sums up to---“The judge begins.

“Aron Brown, do you accept that you have killed Mayra West?” The public prosecution asks him.

Aron twitches his brows and looks back at Claire. He passes a weak smile to her, narrating the tragedy of his life.

“Yes. Can I die now? Please?” He pleads.

The judge passes him a sympathetic look and the lawyer shakes his head. The lawyer continues to ask questions about his plan and he narrates the events of that night leaving the girl from the story and lying that he actually kills Mayra.

Passing another sympathetic look to Aron, the judge gives his verdict.
“Seeing the popularity of Mayra West and the growing chaos in the city due to her death, the court gives the death penalty to Aron Brown that he will be hung up tomorrow morning by 5.”

“You can’t do this!” Claire yells at Aron but he keeps his head low. Jo puts her hand on Claire’s shoulders when she is ready to spring up at the judge.

“Claire, control yourself,” Chase speaks and Claire sharply turns to him. He gulps the saliva knowing that he attracted his death.

She walks to him like a hunter intimidating her prey. Suddenly, she clutches his arm digging her nails into it and drags him outside. Blood flows from his skin staining her nails but she keeps a wicked smile on her face, feeling no regret.

Claire stops suddenly and inertia forces Chase on the ground when she leaves his arm. He falls hard making a ‘thump’ sound and winces. “Agh!”

Claire stands silently and her silence threatens Chase more than her words. She keeps looking at him, daring him to say anything. Chase gulps down his fear. The verdict has been given, what can she do now except scaring him?

“Look, I understand your concern for Brown but you have to understand my condition. I did it to save Sherly.” He tries to reason out in vain.

Claire was about to take out her gun and do something illegal when a voice from behind stops her.

“Excuse me?” A female voice speaks and Claire turns around knowing the owner of the voice.

Chase looks at her and his face gets paler. “Sherly? What are you doing here?”

Sherly makes a disgusted look at Claire and walks over to Chase who is still on the ground. Instead of helping him stand, she puts her hands on either side of her waist and demands, “To save me? What do you mean and what did you do?”

“Oh, wow! Now the princess doesn’t know what the prince did for her, does she?” Claire taunts in full rage.

“Officer Green? Why are you so out of etiquette? I thought you are the most mannered Officer in the town but looks like I was wrong.” Sherly asks with the unknown disgust.

“Etiquette? What a joke! A killer talking about etiquette.” Claire retorts with equal disgust.

“Killer?! How dare you say that to me! Your friend had killed her, not me.” Sherly reasons out.

“Baby, don’t worry. I figured it out. Aron took your blame. You have nothing to worry about.” Chase informs her to which she makes a confused face.

“What blame? I haven’t killed Mayra!” Sherly yells out of frustration because no one was hearing her.

“What do you mean? I saw you returning with the knife that morning and I know you went to Mayra’s apartment.” Chase reminds her. Now, he is confused too that why Sherly is behaving like that. He knows Sherly has killed Mayra.

Sherly looks at Chase and then Claire. Taking a deep breath she speaks, “Yes, I have gone that day to Mayra’s apartment to kill her. But I didn’t kill her for when I reached there, she was already dead.”

“What!” Both Claire and Chase yell out of shock in unison.

“But I thought-I thou-” Chase stutters when Sherly shrugs.

Claire gulps the saliva and speaks slowly, “If you haven’t killed Mayra, then who did? WHO KILLED MAYRA?”


Author’s Note-


SHERLY dropped the bomb.
But Aron has already got the death sentence.

The countdown has begun...

One night.
One mystery.
One murder.
One murderer.
Many suspects.

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