Twelve Hours

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5:00 AM

“Let’s say that we do track down this person and attack this person,” Duke started standing up beside Mickey. “How?”

“I say we don’t,” Elias interjected. “Things are bad enough as it is.”

Jordan nodded. “Agreed. We should wait it out.”

“No,” Riley disagreed. “We should focus on getting out of here.”

“How?” Mickey asked. “We’ve tried every door, we even tried breaking glass.”

“We haven’t tried breaking the glass on an upper floor,” Jackson pointed out. “If we can find a rope or something like that we can lower ourselves down.”

“We’ve checked everywhere and even if we get outside there’s a blizzard so nowhere to go,” Veronica started. ”but, I don’t wanna go looking for my death either. So I say we keep moving and do our best not to make ourselves bigger targets.”

“So currently the ideas are: keep moving, stay put, try to get out, or go on a suicide mission,” Cristiana summarized.

“And we’re each on a different page...” Veronica sighed.

“No more splitting up,” Riley said forcefully. “That’s only made things worse from the start. We all do something or none of us do. One person here is in on this after all.”

No one responded at first all were busy eyeing each other warily.

“I have another idea actually,” Jackson put in. “First we find things to defend ourselves and then we stay put in a safer spot.”

“Not a bad idea...” Mickey mused. “We could head to the kitchen and see if we can find knives or something.”

“We can set traps around us!” Elias put in. “The art room is full of stuff we could use to make them.”

“That would work,” Jordan nodded. “But where should we go?”

“A room that has access to the fire escape,” Mickey suggested. “We can work on breaking the window and if it comes down to it we can take that way down.”

“The Spanish room on the third floor would work,” Cristiana said. “It’s closer to the front of the school and it has a fire escape.”

“Spanish room it is then,” Jordan shrugged. “Let’s go get that stuff.”

First the group headed down to cafeteria. They walked hurriedly yet trying to be as quiet as possible worried about who might hear them. In the cafeteria they gathered the rest of the stuff they had bought before heading into the kitchen. Drawers and cabinets were emptied as the students found makeshift weapons. Knives, forks, and couple frying pans.

The next stop was the art room where cans of pain and spools of string where taken. Finally they headed for the third floor Spanish room.

“I still don’t wanna believe it,” Veronica whispered primarily to herself. “That someone here could do something so horrific...” Cristiana squeezed her hand comfortingly.

“Anyone could,” Jackson said quietly. “There is darkness in every heart and yet the darkness in every heart is different. Manifesting itself as sadness, pain, violence, anger, misery or a combo of these. Not knowing what is inside each person all anyone can ever do to help their own personal safety is to hope that the darkness in others doesn’t show too much.”

“Damn. Who said that?” Riley asked him.

Jackson raised an eyebrow confused. “Said what?”

“That quote.”

“Uh- me and my mind?”

“Oh... Wow... Really?”

“That was pretty deep,” Elias put in.

“Thanks?” Jackson asked uncertainly.

“That didn’t help me feel any better...” Veronica mumbled.

Jackson blushed slightly in the dark. “Sorry.”

When they neared the Spanish room Elias took the top of a can of paint and spread it on the floor behind them. Meanwhile Cristiana and Mickey got string and pulled it tightly on either side of the hall before tying it around ankle height. A few more similar traps were set up as well. One caused a locker to open and paint cans to fall out when a string was pulled.

When they were done the couldn’t help but smile at their handiwork.

“This might be the wrong moment to mention this but I need to use a restroom,” One student said the rest of the group.

There was a groan. “You couldn’t have gone before we set up the traps?”

“Hey be nice!” Another student put in. “I...have to go too...”

There was a sigh. “The teacher’s bathroom is around a corner. Will you two be fine?”

“I got my weapon,” one said raising their frying pan.

“Same,” said the other holding their knife.

“I guess the rest of us can work on the window then.”

“We’ll be fine. We set the traps meaning we know where they are.”

The others had no choice but to let the two go off on their own. One hurried the the bathroom while the other stood outside keeping watch while holding their frying pan at the ready. When they heard the toilet flush silently they pulled a knife out their back pocket. They stared at the knife for a moment planning this moment perfectly. This had to go right. Uprise was watching after all.

When the door to the bathroom opened the killer quickly brought the knife down stabbing it into the other person’s throat.

With a gargling sound their hand flew to their neck as they fell to the ground. They couldn’t tell or scream only watch as the killer took the knife and ran it across their own torso biting their lip to keep from shouting. The killer then slid down the wall. They dropped the knife next to their leg and with one hand grabbed the frying pan. The killer closed their eyes trying to slow their breathing. The killer couldn’t help but glance at the victim.

The killer could almost see the slow rising and falling if victim’s chest despite the fact that they were no longer breathing.

The victim’s eyes were open wide despite the fact they weren’t seeing anything.

Blood kept pouring down through the victim’s fingers creating a read puddle around their head despite the fact that their heart was no longer beating.

And despite all this the killer smiled before letting it slip off their face and closing their eyes once more.

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