Echoes | Teen Ink


February 26, 2018
By smartie BRONZE, Seoul, Other
smartie BRONZE, Seoul, Other
1 article 0 photos 0 comments

Ever since I was born, I was different. As a child, friends of mine played with dolls, but I dug up small animals that have been killed by its predator. My parents were puzzled at first, so I told them that I could listen to dead bodies. At first, they did not believe me but soon began to support me, after they saw me continually finding dead rabbits and squirrels in our backyard. My aunt had the same ability. It was how my parents were able to adapt to this crazy idea. My dad, the chief of the police, and mom told me that I was special; they tried to convince me by telling that my aunt was just like me.
I have an ability to “hear” dead bodies that have been murdered. I can also hear the murderers. The sound is audible for 100 meters. Each deceased dead and the murderer have a connection; they have their distinct resonance that echoes from their hearts, which only fades over long periods of time. The same resonance exist in the deceased and the murderer.
When I was 7, my neighbor, Sofia, accidentally killed her cat while driving down her driveway. She then carried an echo herself, the sound of a clock ticking, only audible for me. Her cat also resonated the same sound. When Sofia buried the cat in her backyard, the ticking sound was forever heard from my house. Over time, the ticking faded and now the sound was barely audible, both from Sofia herself and the cat.
Today was Abi’s birthday, and I got ready for her birthday party. My mom drove me to Lake Tahoe, where the party was at.
My mom smiled and said, “Have fun!” when I smiled back at her.
“Bella! We were just waiting for you!” they exclaimed as I got out of car. The sky today was beautiful; it was sea of deep turquoise color and there was not a single spot of white.
After we ate cake and blew out the candles, we each got life jackets to put on and I got on the water ski while my friends got on the boat.
After several tries, I was able to stand up on the ski, and the boat fastly zipped through the water. The cool breeze ran through my hair as splashes of water landed on my face. I felt so free and reckless as I held tightly onto the rope in front of me. I finally lost my balance on the board and I fell in the water. As I was coming up, I heard the distinct sound of bells; it was resonating from deep, bottom of the water. When I went back up, I did not hear any sounds except my friends yelling,
“Bella! Are you okay?”
I answered with a mutter, “Yea.”
And then it hit me. I realized that it was an echo resonating from the deceased. Scared, I swam to the boat.
“Call the police!” I yelled while my friends had confused expressions on their faces. When they just stared back at me I repeated, this time louder as if they did not hear it.
“Bella, what’s wrong with you? Why should we call the police?” they asked curiously and I answered, “There’s something dead at the bottom of the lake.”
Stunned, Abi called the police with her voice faltering. We went back to the shore and waited for the police to come. My friends asked what was going on, but I lied as they did not know about my supernatural ability.
After minutes, my dad arrived, with his team of police officers, asking series of questions.
“Bella? What’s going on? Are you hurt?” my dad asked with a pained expression. I answered, “I’m okay, dad. I just found something dead at the bottom of the lake.”

*  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *  *

The next day, my dad came back from work, informing me that the dead body at the bottom of the lake was a girl named Olivia Jones. She was a sophomore at my school; a year younger than me. My dad told me that her body had a wound cutting from her stomach to her back. I could just imagine her dead body sinking in the never-ending unknown waters. Although I was not close to her, the fact that I found someone that I knew at the bottom of the lake made me sick to the stomach.
“Bella, come with me to fill out a form at the police station--you were the first one to find Olivia,” my dad said concerningly, “Take your time and we’ll go.”
“Okay, let's go,” I sighed.
We both arrived at the police station and my dad first lead me to a room. When I was sitting down on a chair, I heard the uncanny, familiar sound, the soft sound of bells.
“Dad? Where is Olivia?” I asked.
“Um, she was sent to the investigation team. Why do you ask?”
“I just heard the sound of bells. The same sound I heard from Olivia’s body.”
“Bella, are you kidding me? The person that murdered Olivia is in this building?”
I nodded silently, staring into my dad’s eyes fearfully.
“Bella, you have to come with me to identify who the murderer is. I can’t find him myself,” he told me.
“Okay, but only until we find him; it’s too dangerous,” I said.
“I have to keep everyone safe, remember? I'm the chief of the police, there’s no running for me. I’ll come home as soon as possible okay, Bells?” he assured me as we walked out the door.
We turned the corner and reached the front door, the chimes of bells echoed so increasingly loud that I could barely tolerate it. One cop walked past us and the noise grew screeching loud until he was out of our reach.
“Dad, it’s him,” I whispered.
“Stay here,” he told me as he walked by.
The cop was wearing a black cap pushed all the way down. Something about him was frightening and he gave off a dark aura to me. My dad went to the cop and talked with him. He then came back to me. He was doubtful that he was the murderer, but I was sure that it was him.
“He’s one of my people. His name is Jonah Allen and came here a year ago. Even if he is the murderer, we can’t prove that in the court and put him in prison,” my dad reminded me.
“We would have to find another way to lawfully prove that he killed Olivia,” I said, while the crease on my forehead got deeper.
My dad nodded solemnly, “Let’s do it slowly, so he doesn’t notice that we are looking for him.”
The next three days passed with my dad, the PI, and I investigating Jonah Allen. We were not able to have much success in finding background information about him, which made this situation more suspicious.
Frustrated, I decided to go for a run, shoving the earphones in my ears. After five minutes of running, I stopped and put my hands on my knees, panting heavily. While I was about to drink some water, I heard it; the uncanny sound of bells, so out of place.
It was the sound! The sound of bells was from Jonah Allen! Why was he near me?
Slowly, I opened my water bottle, pretending to be out of breath. As I turned around, inch by inch, to run back to my house, he was there--Jonah Allen. Sickeningly, the sound of bells resonated overbearingly in my head. Although he completely covered his body with black paint, I was able to recognize him.
“Hello Bella, we meet again,” Jonah Allen smirked with a demonic expression, making two dark, prominent creases on his cheeks.
“Who are you?” I asked, my eyes twitching nervously.
“Don’t you know? I know you; you’re the chief’s daughter,” he answered back.
I thought, How did he know this?
“If you and your father thought that I was stupid enough to be oblivious, you are wrong.”
“I don't know what you’re talking about.”
“You heard me. I know all about your plans to throw me in prison. When you guys were talking a few days ago, my phone was in that room, recording all of your conversation. I know everything that you know about me, which is why I must kill both you and your father,” he threatened.
A lump came to my throat and my hair stood on end, while a shiver raced down my spine. As I typed in 9-1-1 on my phone, I attempted to call out a wimpy “help”, muffled by his hands when he shoved his rough black hands to my face.
“Say bye to the world,” Jonah Allen said, and I closed my eyes.
I heard the undoubtable sound of a gunshot and the bullet tore through space. The air shattered and silence fell upon us in its wake.

The author's comments:

My name is Yewon Chu, and I am a sophomore from Seoul International School in South Korea. My story is about Bella, who is a junior that lives in California. She grew up having a supernatural ability that enables her to detect dead animals, including humans, that have been killed by someone. The same sound connects with the killer and she is also able to listen to the sounds producing off the culprit. By listening to the sound that the dead body and killer produce, Bella is able to find dead animals and bodies and also the killer. She finds a dead body when celebrating her friend’s birthday, and finds out that the dead girl is someone that she knows. Her main goal is to find the culprit that killed her, and it is a long, dangerous journey for her. She now has to rely on her instinctive ability, to find the murderer and put him in prison. 

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