THE INDEFINITE THING
THE INDEFINITE THING
“Adrian…it’s me Dr Wells.”
“Dr Wells. I don’t think we have an appointment today.”
“Haven’t you heard?”
“About what? Are you calling from a phone booth? This isn’t your office…”
“Adrian, just listen. I was arrested a couple of days ago. I was supposed to be released yesterday but they’re not letting me out.”
“Shit!” I whispered.
“You need to come to the station.” He sterned his voice. He sounded terrified.
“I’ll be there in a couple of minutes.”
He dropped the call. My head span for a second. Not only was he an illegitimate psychologist, but he took records of my personal discretions, including the death of Benjamin. Including Abel being a witness. He wasn’t supposed to be part of my mess!
“You fucked up.”
I turned to the voice. My heart froze. “Dad?”
He walked to me. I then realized I was seeing his apparition. Usually, the apparitions I see don’t have describable traits. For example, I could tell he was wearing a blood-covered shirt. Assumingly, it was the shirt he died in. However, I couldn’t describe the colour of his shirt. It’s as if I suddenly don’t know colours.
“You’re very ignorant, aren’t you?” He walked around. “You’re avoidant.”
“What? Why are you here?”
“Well you created me. I’m here specifically because of you.”
I tried closing my eyes. Was I praying? Because I had no idea what I was trying to do. Maybe self-therapy?
“That’s not how it works, son.” He snorted. “The person who could help you make me disappear…is in jail. By the way, I’m your father. I’m not some tragedy that happened in your life.”
He walked around the room with a smile. He walked to the typewriter he bought me for my birthday. “I’m glad you’re using this.”
My eyebrows furrowed. “What are you talking about? I haven’t touched this since my birthday.”
“The Indefinite Thing…interesting title.” He nodded with a grin.
I ran to the dressing table, where the typewriter was. My eyes blasted open when I noticed an entire script book next to the typewriter titled ‘The Indefinite Thing’. Was this a sick joke? Did he write me a book?
And what was this? A teenage boy with anxiety…who falls in love with a ‘beautiful’ boy who had an indefinite thing living inside of him? How come I didn’t notice this lying on my dressing table?
I looked at the author’s name…Adrian Spector.
“Did you write…” I turned to him…and he was gone.
I looked at the door. Alejandro was about to knock, but paused when he realized I was talking to myself. “Adrian? Are you well?”
My eyebrows knitted together in deep thought as I walked to him. “Alejandro, did I write this?”
He took the book and in silence, he read the introductory pages. “Excellent plot, Adrian.”
“But Alejandro…who wrote this? Did Dad write this?”
“No no, you wrote this. Right after you received the typewriter as a gift. You told me about it.”
My eyes widened again. “I did?”
“Adrian…are you okay?”
“I have to go.”
“Wait…Adrian…where are you going?”
“Dr Wells has been arrested. I need to see him!”
I grabbed my keys. I was literally sweating. How was this normal? To wake up every day to an emergency? Every day, there had to be something I attend. I couldn’t rest, knowing that The Ghoul was probably having fun fucking my mind. This was all him. Think about it, right before my coma, I was too busy between Bellington, I didn’t have time to write this.
“Do you need me to accompany you?” He was now startled.
“No, no…just…” I unsteadily tried shoving the script in one of my drawers.
The door bell rang downstairs. I instantly jogged to the door, almost smashing my chest against the stairs. I opened and…
“Abel…hey.” I sighed.
His face frowned. “Are you okay?”
“I need to go. You can wait inside the house while…” I then paused, realizing that Alejandro and Abel can’t be alone in the same room. They just…couldn’t!
“While what, Adrian? What’s going on?”
“I will tell you everything when I’m back. I have to go.”
“Do you need me to…”
“I don’t know.”
When I finally got inside the car, I frantically drove off like a maniac to the station. It was a long drive, filled with an escalating panic attack and dizziness. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t think. I had to get to the station.
The station was close to Crane Hills, where Craig and Jason lived with his brother. I sped through their house, holding onto the steering wheel tensely. When I finally got to the station’s gate, my car halted painfully, almost hitting my head. Accidentally, after the ignition switched off, I saw my reflection in the rear-view mirror. I was a mess. The bandanna around my head was dripping wet with sweat. My face was melting.
I quickly took a tissue from the cabby hole and dabbed my face. When I looked inside the cabby hole again, thinking it was just my imagination but apparently, it wasn’t.
A fucking pistol! And I was right at the police station! Fuck! Who put it there? Was it David’s gun!?
I locked the cabby hole and used the tissues I found to dab my face. After seeing that at least my appeal wasn’t so suspicious, I jumped out of the car. I took in a breath and exhaled tensely before convincing myself that I’ll be fine and walked inside the station.
“Hello. Sheriff Brown?” I wasn’t certain, but I heard his name from the scene Sophia died in.
He turned and his eyes narrowed. “May I help you?”
“I’m here to see Dr Wells.” I nodded desperately.
“And how are you related?”
“I’ve been a…client of his for more than five years. Plus, he’s my father’s friend.”
Wow, clearly he didn’t know me. “Right this way.”
He walked ahead as I followed. He led me to the interrogation room. One I’ve been in before.
When Dr Wells saw me, his face glowed. “Adrian!”
I sat down instantly. “Dr Wells. How are you holding up?”
“I don’t care about that, Adrian. My family…my children…my wife. They’re not letting me out.” He was seemingly having a panic attack, which gave me a growing anxiety attack as well.
“I won’t let that happen, Dr Wells. I will testify during your trial. You’ve been the best therapist I’ve ever had.”
“No, you need to stay away from this case, Adrian! But I’m asking for one thing…”
“David had friends that can help protect my family. Adrian, I’ve done things in the past…and with David dead and me in jail…I need you to talk to his friends to help protect my family!”
His friends? What did he mean?
I then noticed that we were in an interrogation room, where walls had ears and eyes. My father ran a mafia, that he mentioned. But because he didn’t want me involved, he would let Alejandro and Gabriel handle the job. In fact, if I think about it superficially, it was weird to know that my father owned a strip club (according to his last testament). Maybe that was where he conducted most of his ‘illegal’ businesses.
Maybe that’s what Dr Wells meant.
I realized that I’ve been silent for too long. “I promise, Dr Wells…your family is safe. But…”
“What is it?”
“Something strange happened this morning…” I started tearing.
“Adrian…are you okay?”
“I saw dad today.” I sighed. “I also noticed that for a long time, I was writing a…script. I didn’t even know about it.”
“Adrian…you need to see a psychiatrist.Your condition is worsening.”
“Gee, ya think!?” I yelled.
“I know a psychiatrist in New Heights. Dr Angelo. He also works at a mental institution in Alex.”
“What if he takes me in?”
“That doesn’t matter, Adrian. You won’t be in a jail cell…unlike me.”
“But…I’ll be away from the public. That’s technically being detained!”
“Adrian…you need to get help before it’s too late.”
I received a message from Mason. “We need to leave. I’m still at Crane Hills to leave Alicia with Craig. I’ll be at your doorstep in about twenty minutes.”
“ I have to go. Nate Sells is out there. I’ll get help and therapy when I know he’s behind bars!” I gritted my teeth furiously.
I stood up and left the room. It was as if I could tell it was him, The Ghoul. I could smell it. I don’t know how, but I could tell. If he can escape effortlessly, on his own, from a detention centre, who knows what he was capable of.
Instantly, when I got inside the car, I played some Enya. I felt as if I was going crazy. I could hear an annoying ring in my ears. It was probably a growing headache or admittedly, stress.
I drove with speed as I could hear my own heart, above the loud music, pounding in my ears. I was certainly not alright, but I had to keep it together until I return from Alex. I think then I can fall apart.
“If I had known you had this kind of thinking, I would have involved you in my businesses a long time ago. You’re a bright kid.”
“Will you get the fuck out of my car?!” I yelled at him while looking at his reflection in the rear view mirror while turning down the volume. I mean, I could hear him clearly since his voice was coming from my head, but it was still distracting. Plus, it’s what anyone would do over loud music.
“The car I gifted you?”
“The car my father gifted me. You’re just his apparition.”
He laughed hysterically. “You confuse me. Even as a child, you never cried.”
“Of course you’d know that! You live in my head.” He was really distracting my thoughts!!
“I’m not going anywhere…you know that right?”
“You’re leaving as soon as I find The Ghoul…or whoever killed you.”
“And you still wonder why I’m in your head.” He scoffed.
“SHUT UP! JUST SHUT UP PLEASE!” I yelled abruptly. I realized that I had closed my eyes while driving. When I opened them, I was at Crane Hills and in an instant, two children ran on the zebra-crossing. I could hear their cackles in my head, for some odd reason, as they chased each other.
When I blinked again, I realized that the car wasn’t slowing down, no matter how steady my foot was on the breaks. I began screaming, seeing that the two kids were still running towards the car.
In a blink of an eye, I heard a painful sound hitting my car. The two girls collapsed right when the car halted.
I just froze.
I couldn’t be there.
If they catch me, that I was responsible, I would get arrested.
I looked at my left, where they were heading. They were heading to Crane Park. But mostly, I had a deja vu of that moment. Like I had been in this situation before.
I decided to step out of the car. I was trembling. I peeped behind the car’s door to see the faces.
I could feel my body gasp as I realized who they were. ALICIA, Mason’s younger sister…and KELLY, Craig’s younger sister!
What the fuck have I done!?
If Craig found out, he would kill me! I had to leave them. They were dead anyway.
I looked around. The road was totally empty, except for one car that slowed down to the scene.
I also noticed that Craig’s house wasn’t far from here. If he stepped out, I was in deep shit!
I couldn’t let the person, whoever that was slowing his car down, get to the scene. But they did. It was a woman. I could see from the windscreen. She stopped her ignition and emerged out of the car.
Surprisingly, the street was not at all busy.
When she got out, I immediately recognized the face. I had seen her countless times.
“Adrian. Oh my god!”
“Please. Please don’t tell anyone, Mrs Wells!” You heard that right. She was Dr Well’s wife, probably on her way to see her husband at the station.
“I’m sorry Adrian. But we need to call the police!” She panicked with widened eyes. She fumbled in her purse, trying to find her phone.
“Mrs Wells! I am begging you!” I bewailed.
“The gun. Use it.” I heard Dad’s voice in my head.
Instinctively, desperate to not got to jail, I grabbed the gun from the cabby hole. I cocked it and when she heard the sound, her eyes widened.
She dropped her phone to the ground. “Please…please…”
Without hesitation, I shot her head. Her dead head hit her bonnet and the rest of her body collapsed on the floor.
I took off the bandanna from my head and used it to wipe one of the kid’s blood from the number plate. With the bandanna in my hand, I ran inside the car and in swift speed, with no car or visible witness at sight, I sped off.
I couldn’t. I couldn’t waste my life in jail after the amount of time my father used to raise the educated, smart kid I was. He would have never allowed that. He would have thought it was weakness and naivety.
When I approached my house, Mason’s car was outside. I realized that the bandanna, filled with blood, was still in my left hand. After switching off the ignition, parked at the street and not my doorway, I took off my sweater that was stained with blood and the bandanna. I used the sweater to wipe off the blood from my left hand and locked them inside the cabby hole. In fact, I intentionally broke the key inside.
I had to tell someone. I had to tell Alejandro.
I called him. “Adrian…where are you?”
“Am I on loudspeaker?”
“...you are not.” He answered precisely.
“I caused an accident. I’m right outside. I killed Alicia and Kelly. Mason is in the house and I’m afraid he will find out.”
He kept silent for a second. “Okay. I’ll take care of it.”
He dropped the call. My hands now trembled.
“Well done. You managed to wipe off evidence, hide it and walk away from the scene without a witness.”
“Shut up! This is your fault!” I looked at him through the rear view mirror. “If you hadn’t distracted me while driving, I wouldn’t have killed anyone. Mrs Wells is dead because of me.”
“You did the right thing, Adrian. You need to go to college one day, have a future.”
“The right thing? Dr Wells’ kids are now motherless! Thanks to you!”
“Well…I’m not real. I’m only in your head.” He shrugged before disappearing in thin air.
I got a text from Abel. “Baby come inside.”
My eyes widened. Did they kill him?
I got out of the car. My legs almost collapsed on themselves. But, of course, I had to put on a face. A face that said I was okay.
When I got to the door, Abel instantly opened for me. I almost screamed! His eyes widened a bit, but he kept a straight face. “Hey baby.”
He gave me a kiss on my forehead.
“You need to take a shower.” He said aloud before whispering. “Run to the bathroom.”
So he wasn’t dead?
I ran inside. My footsteps were loud, so Mason heard me coming and yelled from the kitchen. “Dude, we have to leave.”
“Ten minutes.” I yelled back. “I smell like a dead dog.”
I finally got to the nearest bathroom downstairs. I instantly noticed that I still had traces of blood on my body.
I instantly took off my clothes and jumped inside the shower. For some reason, I started feeling okay. I started relaxing. I started realizing that what I did was wise. Anyone that can escape a real-life situation like that is brave and skilled. Because it’s so easy to tell characters in a movie what to do and what they could have done, but it takes talent to escape a situation in that manner.
If you were in that kind of predicament, you surely would have done the same.
Someone entered and closed the door right after.
“Are you okay?” I heard the door lock.
“What are you…”
He entered in the shower with me…FULLY NAKED. Was he insane? This was no time to have sex. In fact, my clothes were smothered with blood. We need to burn them.
He walked closer and silently embraced his body around mine. He gingerly played with my wet hair and he rubbed his face on my neck. “Are you okay?”
“Yes. I’m okay. What about…”
“Mason’s phone just died. No one will be calling him anytime soon. Alejandro is stalling him in the kitchen.”
“Abel…there’s a blood-smeared bandanna and a sweater in my cabby house.”
“Did anyone see you?”
“Yes. Mrs Wells.”
“Your psychologist’s wife?”
I nodded. “I killed her, Abel. I killed her.”
His embrace tightened. “You’re going to be okay, baby. I promise you.” He nervelessly pushed my hair back. “You can’t come back to this house. They’ll find you and arrest you.”
“I can’t leave, Abel. No one saw me!” I sterned my voice. “I’m going to play it off like the rest of the world. I know nothing about the accident.”
“The time intervals won’t match.”
“The time intervals didn’t match even in the case of the five victims. Believe me, our town’s justice system isn’t strong at all.” I sighed.
He sighed, knowing that convincing me to leave my house in junior grade isn’t going to work. “Alejandro and I spoke,” he said.
He rinsed my hair with the shower water while looking into my eyes.
“Did you fight?” My eyes rolled.
“No. He apologized repeatedly. I told him I’m over it…with the condition that I cut his hand off if he attempts it again.” He smirked.
I grunted. “You threatened him!? You know most of this is my fault, right?”
“Which is why we need to have this conversation right now.” He kissed my jawline, pulling my head to kiss his neck. It wasn’t seductive at all. Just controlling. “…if something like this happens again Adrian, I don’t know what I might do with myself.”
He, abruptly, switched the shower water off. He released a tense sigh in which I couldn’t tell if he was upset or just himself. And that was it. That was the conversation I wanted to have with him that day. And it wasn’t a conversation at all, just him threatening to take his own life if it happens again.
Did he love me that bad?
I got out of the shower and dried my body with a shower towel. I looked at him. He looked back at me. “Don’t worry about your clothes. Go and get dressed.”
I nodded. He was becoming cold for some reason. I went upstairs in dangerous speed. After moisturizing, an idea came up in my head. I had plenty of sweaters. Plenty of black sweaters that looked almost as the one in my cabby hole.
I tried to imitate the sweater, but decided to wear blue jeans in case I could be identified by someone.
I walked downstairs smelling like a billion dollar salary. In fact, I felt fresh and alleviated. Maybe it was just the visit to the station that made me anxious. Maybe I just needed a shower and assurance.
“Hey man.” I grinned at Mason.
“Someone’s in a good mood.” Mason shook his head, not sure if cheerfully or sarcastically.
“Shower sex does the trick, man.” I giggled. Alejandro was on his laptop, a distance from Mason.
“They say you…left in a rush. Why?”
I stopped a negative thought in split seconds. “Well…my psychologist, Dr Wells, got arrested. I had to visit to see if he was okay.”
“And…was he? And why would a psychologist be arrested?”
“No, but…he has hope that everything will go well. And apparently, he was a fake psychologist.”
Alejandro gave me a subtle look.
“Haha…what!?” He, Mason, exclaimed. “And you were being assessed by an illegitimate psychologist? Wait…wasn’t he the same guy who’s been helping you since elementary?”
“Sure.” Now that I heard it out loud, it was quite embarrassing. And it was cool since I could play along and act embarrassed.
He couldn’t stop laughing. I guess we don’t hear it every day that a psychologist is arrested because he has a fake Honors in Psychology.
“Okay, we need to go.” Mason stood up.
“May you please explain the motive of this sudden vacation in Alex once more? I still do not think it is safe. It is still lockdown.” Alejandro interjected with a bored tone.
“That’s what I’m saying!” Abel entered the kitchen. “Nate Sells or The Ghoul is possibly out there waiting for this opportunity.”
“Okay…this is not a vacation” Mason giggled. “But I can promise that we will be fine.”
“How? How can you promise?” Abel snarled.
“Because God is with me.” He, Mason, grinned.
“God doesn’t protect fools.” He spoke through his teeth, making him inaudible to others.
“Baby…” I walked to him. I planted a kiss on his forehead. “I’ll be okay.”
He sighed. His jaws were still twitching.
“Oh wait…my phone.” Mason pounced and grabbed his phone from the charger.
The fucking charger!
Who gave him a fucking charger!?
Why not say they don’t have one around the house!?
But then again, what is a house without chargers?
Everyone was subtly looking at him.
“Please switch it off. The Ghoul might track us with that.” I showed him my phone, which was off, while trying to the best of my ability to sound casual.
“Ah! Smart.” He smiled. He switched it off instantly. “I also forget how antisocial you can be.”
I opinionated so much on that in my mind, but a debate would have consumed time. We needed to leave before he realized that his sister was dead.
I released a subtle sigh. We, Mason and I, got out of the house. I threw my car keys at Abel, giving him a subtle look he understood. But his mind was far away. He was really against whatever mission Mason and I were embarking on.
I got inside the car, at the back, in case I risked eye-contact with him. Mason excitedly got inside the car. Abel and Alejandro got inside the house. Mason’s fake grin died out in a second.
“Of course he wouldn’t want us to go on this ‘trip’.” Mason growled.
My eyes widened. “Who?”
The Kid Is Not My Son
“Mr Wells…” Detective Lucy stood behind the bars of his cell.
“I said I’m not hungry, detective!” Dr Wells aggressively yelled.
“Doctor, this is about your wife.”
His eyes widened. He slowly walked to Detective Lucy in anticipation for the worst. After all, only he knew the danger his family was faced with, hence he asked protection from one of the most unreliable persons…Adrian Spector.
“Your wife was found and pronounced dead at Crane Avenue a few minutes ago. She was shot, presumably on her way to visit you. Alicia, who’s the younger sister of one of Adrian’s friends, Mason, and Kelly, Craig’s sister were also found dead at the scene.”
He showed a face of disbelief. After realizing that there was no way around it, the fact that his wife was no more, he did a soft weep. It was as if, temporarily, he had lost his mind. It felt like a nightmare.
When he finally thought of his children, his eyes widened. “My kids!”
“Don’t worry, Mr Wells. We’ve sent a vehicle to take both your kids and bring them to the station as soon as possible.” She wiped a tear as well. Sandra, her dead daughter, popped at the top of her mind.
When Dr Wells saw this, his cries slowed. He was confused. The empathy perplexed him. “Are you crying?”
She walked even nearer to him. “…I had a daughter. Sandra. She died of suicide. Without a single word, a goodbye, I found her hung on my living room chandelier. I can never forget what that school did to her.”
Dr Wells was completely silent.
“Which is why I need your help, Mr Wells. I need you to think who could be responsible for all of this. Potentially. I know you know something. Anything that can help save other mothers, other husbands, from sharing a similar tragedy.” She begged.
“And if I tell you who it might be, will you let me go?”
“Well, technically, you were never registered as a psychologist and you would have needed to further your studies before even getting a license. Mr Spector would be at fault for coercing you, but he is no more. But you would be at debt if you do not tell us who is responsible for all of this…and you would be imprisoned.”
Dr Wells contemplated deeply. His wife was dead. He surely didn’t want the same for his children. He knew exactly who was responsible for this. He recalls having this conversation with Dr Holland. He remembers how he blackmailed Dr Holland in desperation to understand Adrian’s mental state and most importantly, to protect his family from David Spector. But then, he also remembered how powerless Adrian was without his father.
“No. I don’t know anything.” Dr Wells said.
Detective Lucy sighed once, shaking her head. “Isn’t it logic by now that the same person who killed your wife could be after your children too? What do you have to lose by…”
“I’ll tell you.” He said abruptly.
This shocked Detective Lucy, but she played it off with a charming smile. She rested her two fingers under her chin. “Alright! Let’s start with the five victims from Clever Cats High.”
I feared a lot of things as a child. Spiders, pain, being held by disgusting old men…but mostly, even as old as I am now…
I was still afraid of mentally ill people. Don’t get me wrong, I knew that somehow, I also belonged in an asylum, but the environment was an effortless scare to me. The heart-wrenching bewails, the sharp silver needles, the rebellious movements, the ticks, the drooling, the straight jackets…it was enough to induce me to a dark, petrified state of mind. I don’t know why, but the thought of being tied up to a straight jacket amongst other ‘psychopaths’ was something I would look forward to do last on my bucket list.
And that’s where Mason drove us. After convincing others, that is, Jason, Elijah and William, that we should leave our cellular devices behind, we drove a long drive to Alex. Fortunately, Craig had to keep Alicia and Kelly, so he couldn’t come with. That’s when we got to this asylum, St Magdeline’s ‘Mental Institution’, an isolated asylum a few drives away from town.
“This is insanely huge!” William exclaimed.
It was. And it was, by far, the cleanest, most decent place I had ever been to. It was nothing compared to the gore I had in mind.
“This is where she lives. Poor woman. I can’t imagine how tormented she must be!” Mason grunted.
I looked at him. He still insisted on giving me little to less intricacies about why we were there in the first place. However, I now knew this was grounded to Abel. Why did he have to fake a smile around him?
After emerging from the car, I suddenly felt strange. Mason threw the keys to his car and because I was the clumsy person I was, they hit my face.
“Wow. You and I need to start playing basketball.” Mason giggled.
I didn’t respond but put the keys in my pocket. I don’t know why he thought it’d be a good idea that I drive back to Belvyn.
I started feeling paranoid. It was as if I was at a grave site, but able to sense the presence of the dead. Realistically, I would assume it was the environment. After all, Dr Wells himself thought I belonged there. After Mason spoke to the receptionist, a fair blonde, instructed that we wait at the lobby…where most sick people waited to be admitted.
And I get it. We were probably visiting someone who had answers to whoever The Ghoul is and hopefully, how my father died. I just had to keep myself calm.
It’s just sick people.
“Are you okay? Adrian!” Jason whispered.
“Are you good? You seem distant.”
Just above his shoulder, through the wide, eerie passage that seemingly lead to the wards, I saw him.
I saw Niall again. I couldn’t believe it.
He was coming out from one of the wards, attired in a straight jacket.
When he passed by the lobby, disappearing to another room too invisible from where I was sitting, Sophia, Sam, Cain, Ben, Aubrey, Jerrod, Josh, Calvin, Jasper, Benjamin and everyone else I’ve seen die, including Riley from Bellington, came out from their individual wards and strangely, they all assembled at the lobby…right in front of us.
I looked at Jason. He was still looking at me, seeing that I was two seconds away from a full-blown anxiety attack.
“Adrian. Talk to me. Do you need to get out of here?” William held my hand.
I looked around. Everyone in the lobby was looking at me in awe and worry. I looked like a psychopath who hadn’t taken his meds.
“I need to go to the powder room. I’ll be right back.” I whispered.
Why was I suddenly whispering…in a room where everyone was talking normally? Every move felt suspicious and noticeable. How was I to explain that the reason for my anxiety attack was because I was suddenly seeing every person I’ve witnessed die without sounding as if I was one of the patients?
How was I to explain that I was seeing apparitions that instant?
No, I had to go to the powder room to rinse my face!
I instantly ran into the passage, then remembering that I had no idea where the toilets were.
And it was as if I had lost sight. The light in the middle of the passage flickered. I felt dizzy and woozy, but I had to make it to the powder room.
After searching for a while, almost giving up, I found the restrooms. I instantly rinsed my face at the basin. My hands quivered in excess fear of the unknown. Why did I fear asylums this much?
It’s not like I was actually crazy. Ha-ha!
That would be ridiculous.
I looked at my reflection in the mirror infront of me. This time, the reflection didn’t grin at me or do what I wasn’t doing. It’d be the mirror that is crazy, not me.
I laughed at myself, realizing that it was just paranoia and I was to make it out of there soon.
I shook my head once before getting out of the powder room. I walked back to the lobby. People weren’t look at me like I was demented anymore, only Jason who had noticed my strange behaviour.
“Feeling better?” Jason smiled warmly.
I sighed with a smile. “Yeah. I think so.”
“Tell me you had nothing to do with this, Jeremiah!” Mrs Simone yelled.
They were upstairs. Mr Simone, Jeremiah’s father, was silent with disappointment.
“What does a car accident have to do with me!?” Jeremiah yelled.
“What do these letters have to do with you!?” Mrs Simone threw the letters in his face. He then remembered that he still had Adrian’s letter copies for the recipient party. “This boy is wanted for murder and you entertain his insanity by throwing him a party behind our backs!?” She spat.
“He’s what!?” His eyes widened.
“He killed Dr Wells’ wife…with a gun! He killed Mr Gates and Ms Fernandez’s children this morning in a hit-and-run incident!”
He looked into his parents’ eyes in complete shock. He ran to his phone in extreme panic. “Why hasn’t Mason called me!? Craig!?”
“Because you’re here smoking crack!” Mrs Simone roared. “Tell me you did not know about this! I’m begging you to!”
“I’m very disappointed in you, son!” His father shook his head, finally having something to say.
Jeremiah stood up to him. Literally. “You’ve always been, Dad! Everything that I did was never good enough for you. I had to be you to be enough! And what? Just because Adrian’s a psychopath, it means I helped him?!”
The door bell rang downstairs.
Both his parents shook their heads. His mother was beyond angry. His father, like always, had nothing to say. Just like how he only looked at his son with disappointment just now with no reprimand in return.
When his parents left, he instantly hid the bag of cocaine he had in his room. He ran to the restrooms, flushing every bag.
He, afterwards, ran downstairs to the visitor.
His eyes widened as soon as he realized who it was.
“Jeremiah Simone!” Detective Lucy, who had a warrant in front of Jeremiah’s parents’ faces, stepped inside the house.
It was as if a knot had formed in his throat. He could only stare and anticipate.
Detective Lucy shed a smile before announcing. “You are under arrest for the murder of Calvin Teller, Jasper Rowe, Aubrey White, Jerrod Stewart and Josh Thyme. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you say or do will be used against you in the court of law….”
Jeremiah began crying. “I’m sorry, mom!”
“You may request a lawyer. The state will provide you with one if you can’t afford one. Detective James…arrest him!”
Detective James wrapped handcuffs around his wrist.
“No no! There’s no way! My son is not responsible for this! Tell them, dammit!” His mother bewailed.
“We’ll be right behind you, son!” His father added.
“I did it, Mom.” Jeremiah looked at his mother in the eye.
She froze. His father froze as well.
“Mrs Simone…you are under arrest as well for political corruption and forgery.”
“WHAT!?” Mrs Simone screamed.
Mr Simone recoiled from her. He had utter shock in his eyes. “You did WHAT!?”
And that was the last he saw of his wife and child. The memory of terror in his eyes as they didn’t know who his son and wife were anymore. And that was the last memory they had of their husband and father…shoved at the back of a police wagon.
And Mrs Simone had been running for mayor as well. Who knew if she was even capable of murder to get what she wanted? Who knows what really happened that night of the party in Bellington other than Adrian’s eyes themselves before the accident took place?
After shutting the door, Detective James returned to the passenger’s side of the car. “The biggest jackpot would be finding The Ghoul.” He said, trying to ignore the gruesome cry from Mr Simone in the background.
“Oh no! I know who The Ghoul is. We just need to catch his friend first!” She grinned.
“My name is Eve Johnson. As you can tell from my last name, I am Niall’s relative. Specifically his mother.”
My eyes widened. For some reason, I wasn’t upset at all. I was just surprised she wasn’t. I saw the same expression from Jason, Elijah and William.
“I was abducted right after Niall’s death. Because I was a reckless mother after my divorce with Charles, I would go various places and no one would know where I was. I’m assuming that’s what the world thought. I was abducted by a sadistic man. He didn’t know who I was that much, but seemingly knew who Niall was too well.
I assumed my boy was in trouble again. He was always known for causing trouble. But this time, this man seemed…psychopathic. He stated that he had no intentions to kill me…but he had a fascination with a bunch of letters…”
I looked at Dr Holland with widened eyes.
Eve Johnson’s flashback:
She, after multiple failed attempts of screaming in a dark room where no one knew where she was, started crying for mercy. She had terror in her eyes, her heart beating vigorously against her chest, assuming the worst in her head: that she was, indeed, going to die.
It felt like days, she presumed, since she had been into this dark room. She couldn’t even see her hand pass by her face. She had attempted searching herself for any device that could help her escape, with none to her virtue.
So when she realized that she was completely defenseless, all she could do was cry.
But that particular day, she heard steps coming towards the room. Instead, she was terrified. She knew it was the same man that kidnapped her from her very own home in the middle of a bath.
The door swung open and a beam of light entered the room which stung her eyes. The light flick, which was at the centre of the room, made a sound as the bright light illuminated the room. Her visions blurred, but managed to see the face of the young man. He had baggy pants and a mustache with slightly curly hair.
He had equipment with him, but they were in a tool box.
When he finally paid attention to her, he smiled. Now she became extremely terrified.
“Please! Don’t do this. I have a son…”
“Yes I know. One died a few months ago. One was taken away from you after the divorce by Charles Greene, your ex-husband.”
She paused with eyes filled with terror. “What do you want?”
“No no, don’t be afraid momma.” He neared to her and caressed her hair. “I promise I won’t hurt you.”
“Then why am I here?” Her voice sterned.
He took out a script from the tool box. “Well…I once had a true love. His name was Cain and your son, Niall, along with Gabriel specifically, your ex-stepson, killed him. We met at a party. He hated me when he first saw me. It was Julie Anilkumar’s house party, a pathetic escapism to her that she tried to prove to herself that she wasn’t just a shy girl. She wanted a life, so she became the life of the party. She embarrassed herself when she successfully seduced Sophia’s boyfriend, Matthew.
What was special about Sophia was that she was Adrian’s friend, the boy your son raped earlier this year along with other boys. He didn’t lay charges. Some believed it was because he wanted to come for the victims himself, one by one.” He read through the script.
“Why am I involved in this? Who are you?”
“Sssh! I’m getting there, mother!” He hissed with his eyes still on the script. “But then, he didn’t kill them. Instead, one of his friends did…at Lake Smith. Jeremiah Simone. I would know because I was there. With Cain. And when I saw Adrian Spector for the first time, I was mesmerized. He was perfect. I suddenly understood why his friends would go a mile to protect him.
But then I heard Gabriel and Jeremiah…planning to blame it on him. Adrian seemed to have a fragile mind, because he instantly believed he was responsible somehow. Then I learned that Niall, your son, was a manipulative monster, just like Gabriel and Jeremiah. Manipulated Mia into staying in a relationship with him for stature. He manipulated his very own friend, Calvin, who he raped at the freshman party held by Gabriel years ago. Elijah too, but they all kept quiet. When Daniel, a noble friend of Adrian’s, found Niall buying guns with Gabriel in Bellington, he was shot dead in his apartment.
Because everyone thought Niall was responsible for Daniel’s death because the only evidence they could find was a boy with blond hair, I thought it was right that he, Niall, dies. But they lied to Adrian again. It was Jake who killed Niall. I know because Mia told me herself. But this time, they all agreed to lie and put it on Adrian. He believed it too. They couldn’t kill Gabriel because then he wouldn’t believe it until his very own ‘daddy’ told him.
But…by then, after finding out that they had all tried to pin it on Adrian, I was mad. Even more furious to find out that they had convinced Adrian that Niall killed Sam, Ben and Cain…but it was that bastard Gabriel. The three boys had concrete evidence of every crime the two were involved in, including evidence that they were rapists, manipulators and child molesters. So Gabriel ‘took care of them’ and Craig dumped the bodies at New Heights. That’s when I found my baby, Cain…dead.” He then paused to weep.
Eve was beyond traumatized. She was convinced he was insane. None of the things he said about the people she knew made sense. In fact, she didn’t even begin to try making sense out of it. It sounded to her as if he had a brainsick fantasy about the characters.
He continued. “And then, I found out about you. How you gave birth to twins. How Niall wasn’t responsible for Daniel’s death, but Nate Sells, his forgotten twin. I don’t know why yet, but it seems as if he wanted to draw attention to Adrian’s friends. This is where you come in…”
She shifted backwards. She could have done anything, fight…flight…but she chose to freeze. The terror behind it was the fear of the unknown. What weapon the psychopath had on him, what motive did he have abducting her?
“Please! Whatever you need! Just…please don’t hurt me!” She bewailed. “I don’t know who you are, but…”
“Oh my goodness!” He exclaimed, which startled her. “My name is Abel. It’s so unfortunate I couldn’t find an Adam…well, you decided to be married to a Charles…” His eyes rolled.
“You’re insane!” She roared.
“Oh no no, ‘insane’ is just a stigma. Anyway, I want a first impression when I meet Adrian. And I know this sounds ridiculous, but I’mma need your hair.”
“...what?” She stopped weeping.
“I mean, like…” He drew his scalp with his finger to illustrate. “…all of it.”
She instantly realized what this meant. She immediately screamed, recoiling to the far end of the room.
His eyes rolled casually. “Oh calm down, drama queen! All I need is a good first impression. It’s not going to be painful, I swear. I’ll just cut your scalp off, unconscious of course, and I’ll sew it back as soon as I get a replacement. I’m already looking for brunettes and blondes for substitution. Its totally safe, I promise.”
“You’re a sicko! You’re a psychopath!” She bewailed.
“Okay, that’s enough. Now you’re just being rude. I need to make sure Adrian likes me when I ‘transfer’ to Clever Cats. How so when I don’t have the hair of the first mother on Earth?” He sighed.
He marched towards her as her screams became louder. He took out what seemed to be a scraper or a shaving blade from his back pocket, already stained with dry blood and tightened it in his grip.
“Just stay still!”
I looked at her with petrified eyes. I was weeping with her. “How did you survive?”
She wiped her endless river of tears. “I fought. I fought while he tried peeling my scalp off.”
She took off her scarf.
“Jesus!” I didn’t intend to exclaim, but wow!
The top of her head was completely scraped off. It was naked, ugly skin on most parts of her head. It was as if her head had caught fire and an infection. It was horrible to look at. Moreover, it was nauseating!
She put her headscarf back on, seeing that I was seconds away from vomiting, and continued. “When I cut only a small portion of his finger, he recoiled. I guess it was his stupid obsession with beauty and perfection. I was presumably in Alex, somewhere distant…maybe Nestlebay? I was drugged and couldn’t really remember the environment.”
Nestlebay was a small suburb a few miles from Alex. It was considered to be a farm suburb.
“When they came back for him…” She wept again. “…he was gone. They looked for an Abel, but couldn’t find him and couldn’t find the place I described.”
I stood up, struggling to breathe but attempting in every way to digest the story and logically, it didn’t make any sense. I remember holding the gun against Niall’s forehead. I remember Niall not denying being Daniel’s killer. I remembered what I remembered, and it was all different from what Eve had just told me.
“No no! There must be a mistake. The Abel I know can’t be the person you’re talking about. He’s not a psychopath!” I yelled.
Dr Holland wore his glasses again. “Adrian…the man you dated was hired by Detective Lucy after the Blue Sun incident to check whether or not you were responsible for his attack. In which, it only turns out that Abel attempted attacking him, not you. The fake Abel.”
“The Abel you know threatened Mrs Jolie to accept her at the school. The Abel you know is Channing Myers, a twenty-three-year-old man. The Abel you knew…was the one driving the car at Crane Avenue and you were the one who responded to his call.”
“How did you…”
Jason handed me his phone. I then saw it…I couldn’t believe it. It was a clip of Abel and I at Crane Avenue. I was at the passenger’s seat, doing absolutely nothing after Abel, who jumped out of the car from the driver’s seat. I, in the video, was just staring at him. Like I was under hypnosis. Then Mrs Wells’ car came to the scene and she was shot dead…BY ABEL! He then walked back to me in the car and unwrapped my bandanna and used it to wipe the blood. In seconds, he got inside the car and swiftly drove off.
After seeing the video, I was more terrified than relieved. How long was I being hypnotized? How long do I step out of my body for someone to fully control my body without me knowing?
I mean, Dr Wells tried it and it worked, but I didn’t expect him, or anyone else, to be able to mind-fuck me!
“But…” I sighed, still choosing my words. “I remember killing Niall. I remember being full of rage. I remember Gabriel tied on a chair next to him!”
Dr Holland grimaced. “Adrian, Mia Lin has come forth to the institution to admit that she was a witness to Jacob Stonewall, or ‘Jake’, being Niall’s murderer. She also admitted to witnessing Craig being coerced to hide bodies in New Heights, where one of the bodies, Cain’s, disappeared.”
“Wait, but…doctor…what is this? Why do I remember everything different from what actually happened?”
“Hmm…there’s no actual diagnosis other than Multiple Personalities Disorder. But that would mean that two or more personas live inside of your brain to protect you from trauma. But, because the only symptom is dissociation from that disorder, the closest diagnosis would be Fantasy Prone Personality, which is only a trait and an estimation based from what I’ve seen so far. But you also have personality disorders which makes it more complicated such as Borderline Personality and Anxiety.”
“What is that? Fantasy Prone whatever?”
“Basically, it’s when a person is stuck in a fantastical state of mind, making it difficult to distinguish between reality and fantasy. Symptoms may include amnesia, distortion, dissociation, maladaptive daydreaming and susceptibility to hypnosis. That would explain how certain triggers such as guns, violence, or even something as simple as a ringtone or text would trigger another personality or make you vulnerable to command. Your mind finds it hard to decipher between what’s actual and what’s not.”
“Okay. But…why would Mia, Elijah, Jason and Mason came forth about this now? Why wouldn’t they tell me that I’m being hypnotized? Why didn’t Craig tell me anything?” I looked at my friends. “In fact, Mason…”
He looked at me. His eyes were watery. “Yeah.”
“Your sister…I’m so sorry!” I covered my mouth in shame.
I stood up to hug him. He silently embraced me. He still did this all for me. He made sure I get help before he could process his very emotions. It was intensely supportive and strong of him to do such! “How is any of this happening?” I whispered, but loud enough for people in the room to hear.
“It’s a very rare condition. It’s just very unfortunate that the people who surrounded you took advantage of you.” Dr Holland added.
“They did? Because I remember Alejandro and David doing their best to…”
Dr Holland shook his head. “Your father…abandoned you because he thought the police would attract attention to his mafia, which I assume you already know about? Alejandro used hallucinogenics in your diet, but as coerced by your father, to distort you.”
“Bro, I hate what they did to you.” Jason added. “To the point where we couldn’t really visit you anymore. Then I realized the reason why they hooked you up with that fake psychologist was because your father didn’t want you to get an actual doctor to diagnose you. But they didn’t know that Dr Holland knew that Dr Wells was a fake psychologist!”
“So…who did I kill?”
“No one.” Everyone in the room sang.
“But, Dr Holland…” Eve interjected. “ I think we are losing our point. This Abel person, or Channing Myers, wanted to prove Adrian innocent. That Nate Sells, Gabriel Greene, Jeremiah Simone, Jacob Stonewall and Niall Johnson were the real villains here. And amongst them, we still have no idea who this Ghoul who texts people actually is.”
I shot up in realization. “Abel said he scalps people. He also happens to be religious, which is something I speculated. What if he’s The Ghoul!?”
“No no…I don’t think so.” Elijah, who usually never contributes in conversation, interjected. “I think these are two different people. It can’t be Nate Sells because he was imprisoned the entire time.”
Eve looked at him. “What are you saying? That it’s two different people?”
“And one is possibly masking the other. I think they may be working together. Or one is…inspired by the other? Sort of like an alliance?” Elijah stood up, deep in thought.
“Alejandro?” Words blasted out of my mouth.
Everyone looked at me in utter shock.