Things to do in Freehold

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Chapter Sixty-three:

Jacob Mackenzie (Late morning of September 13, 1994)

“Can I look now?” I asked Adeline, who had been covering my eyes for a about a quarter of the way to our secret destination.

“Not yet, just a little bit further,” she replied, continuing to lead me to the mysterious place. “And now.”

Adeline removed her hands from my face and I could see that it was a house that she’d been hiding from me. From what I could see, it was two stories, had a wrap-around porch with a cushioned bench near the door, and four windows in front. I then noticed a “for sale” sign out, on the edge of the lawn. Its red paint looked as if it was starting to fade a bit.

“I don’t get it. What is this place?” I inquired, looking over at Adeline.

“My old house,” she answered, flashing me a broken smile. “It’s been empty for months now. No one’s bothered to buy it yet. I guess they don’t like the idea of living in the house where a serial killer committed suicide.”

“Those pussies,” I joked, attempting to make her feel better.

“Yeah,” she chuckled. “Anyway, I still have a key if you wanna come in.”

“I’d love nothing more.”

Entering the home, I saw that porch bench was not the only piece of furniture left behind. There was even a couple of family photos still hanging on the wall. It was as though the real estate knew they weren’t going to be able to sell it. So why bother? Although, it wasn’t dusty at all. In fact, it was rather clean for being abandon for so long.

“So how often do you come here exactly?” I questioned, following Adeline into the living room.

“As often as I can,” she responded, kicking her shoes off and laying out on the sofa. “It’s a good place to be when trying to escape the rest of the world. You what I mean?”

I nodded, then lifted her legs up so I could sit next to her. After doing so, I laid them back down, on top of my lap. “Hey, so I have something to ask you and it’s totally okay if you don’t want to answer, but—”

“Yes, I am a natural redhead.”

“What? No,” I laughed.

“It’s okay, you’re not the first guy to ask me that. Many are curious.”

“Oh my God, that’s so not the question,” I said, rubbing one of my eyebrows.

“Then what is it?” She sat up, hands on her knees.

I took a deep breath. “Why did Walter Ricci drive you home that night?”

Adeline bowed her head. “Well, believe it or not, Priscilla and I used to be best friends.”

“Really?” I felt both of my eyebrows raise.

“Yeah, that was until she stabbed me in the back. You see, one day, a couple years back, she brought some weed to school for us to smoke under the bleachers.”

“Priscilla did? I always thought she was too much of a priss to be doing any sort of drugs.”

“No one’s that one-dimensional, Jake. Anyways, long-story short, we get caught and I explain to both the police and the principal that it was her weed. She denies all of it and tries to actually convince them that coerced her into smoking it. They had no proof of whose it was initially, though, so we both ended up taking the same suspension.

“Wow,” I uttered. I would’ve never taken Priscilla to be that kind of evil. I guess you really can’t judge a book by its cover.

“Yeah, I’m just glad I didn’t get arrested for it.”

“So you still talk to her parents, even after all of that?”

“Just her dad. We used to screw around every now and again,” she explained, reaching in her bag for a packet of cigarettes.

“I’m sorry, what?” Did I just hear that correctly?

“Yeah, well, that was until I found out he preferred little boys,” she continued, putting a cigarette up to her mouth, as if it were nothing. “Although, he would never admit to that. Instead, he would repress those feelings until they turned into anger, then take it out on his male students.”

“Wait, hold on a second. I can’t believe what I’m hearing right now.”

“No, really, just ask that Moretti kid. He was always Walter’s favorite.”

“No, not that, I mean—”

Suddenly, there was a sound of braking glass coming from the dining room in the back. We both became extremely quiet as we watched from the couch for something, such as an animal of sorts, to come crawling out. However, nothing did.

“Hello?” Adeline called out, getting up from the sofa and making small strides towards the kitchen. “Is anyone there?”

“What are you doing?” I gently tugged on her arm before she could get any further away.

“I’m just going to go check it out,” she chuckled, prying my hand off. She then flashed her pocket knife. “I have protection.”

“We have no idea what’s back there, though, or who, for that matter.”

“Don’t be chicken.”

Fuck, this girl is going to get me killed. I then got up, myself, and began following Adeline into the kitchen. Halfway through, we heard another noise coming from the dining room. This time, it was a loud bang.

“Hello?” Adeline called out again, stepping closer to the sound. I grabbed her arm as a way of holding her back. She shrugged me off, though, then continued on when no one answered. Entering the dining room, she looked around, then turned back to me. “I don’t see anyone.”

Before I could respond, someone, dressed in a black cloak and a plague doctor’s mask, came up beside Adeline and stabbed her in the stomach. She instantly dropped to her knees, then fall to the ground.

“Addie!” I cried out, running over to her, not even thinking of who of was behind me. Blood oozed out of Adeline’s mouth as she hyperventilated, covering her wound. Grabbing her face, I could see that she was slowly drifting away, closing her eyes every other minute. “Addie, stay with me. Addie?”

“And dead,” I heard a familiar male voice say as I felt a plastic knife slide across my throat. I turned around as the person in the cloak was taking their mask off and saw that it was Chris. “You really need to work on your survival skills, man. You never go after the girl once she’s already been killed.”

“Chris? Why would you—”

Suddenly, I could hear Adeline giggling behind me. I looked back and could see that she was starting to sit upright. She then raised a hand to her mouth and licked the blood off of one her fingers. “Corn syrup,” she smirked.

“Fuck you; that’s not funny,” I uttered, only making the two of them laugh more.

“Oh no! Did you guys already do it?” Jessie whined as she and Ozzy came rushing in. They both were wearing the same costume Chris was.

“Took you long enough,” Chris scoffed.

“I was busy adjusting this one’s mask for his fat head,” Jessie replied, pointing over at Ozzy, to which Ozzy began cursing her out in Spanish.

While they were having it out, Adeline nudged my arm. “C’mon, let’s go wash that fake blood off of you,” she told me, offering me her hand as she stood up. “We’ll be right back.”

Adeline grabbed her bag from the living room as we both headed upstairs to the bathroom. The house didn’t have any running water, due to being inhabited, so we had to make do with her half-empty water to wash the blood off.

“That was really fucked up back there, you know?” I commented as she poured the water onto my hands, over the sink. “I thought for sure I lost you for a moment.”

“Aw, would you have missed me?” she mocked.

“I might have.”

“Well, don’t worry; I’m not going anywhere anytime soon,” she promised. “By the way, did you call me Addie back there?”

“I suppose I did,” I answered, wiping my hands on my jeans to dry them. “Why?”

“No reason. It’s that no one’s called me that since my dad died, that’s all.”

“I’m sorry; I didn’t mean to—”

“Oh, no, it’s fine,” she looked down at the floor. “It was nice to hear it again.”

I combed her hair over her ear with my fingers and leaned in to kiss her forehead. We then hugged and I could feel her crying into my shoulder.

“I should really change out of this shirt,” she exclaimed, pulling away. “I think the blood is already starting to dry.”

I watched as she went over to her backpack and pulled out a plain red t-shirt from the second front pocket. “Hey, Adeline,” I uttered as she began to strip her other shirt away.

“Yeah?” she looked back at me, shortly before throwing on the red one.

“Nevermind.”

“What is it?” she smiled, walking over towards me.

I stared deeply into her eyes and sighed. Say it, already, you idiot. Say it! “I, um,—”

“Oh, no,” she said under her breath. I guess she already knew what I was about to say. “Well, that’s gonna make this a lot more awkward.”

“Make what more awkward?” Before I knew it, she had stuck me in the neck with a syringe, filled with an unknown liquid. Everything slowly began to fade to black.

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