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The Concept of Love, Trust and Friendship
I pull the knife out. Blood drips from it staining my pretty white silk top a deep scarlet red colour. The screams from around drag me out of the vodka haze I am in and into the real for a nanosecond, and the reality hits me. I look down and see her lying there, limp and listless yet still managing to look so perfect. her pale skin, not a blemish to be seen. Her golden red hair, ringlets spread out around her face like sunbeams. Her lips a deep red to match the colour of the blood now seeping from her chest. her matching perfectly manicured nails. And then I see it. The ring. Not any ring, but the little diamond wedding ring. The ring that was meant to be mine and I remember all over again why I hate her.
In the heat of the moment I seem to have turned invisible. Bodies just jostle pat me as though I am not there, franticly trying to get to Delilah. She so loved by everyone that not even the thought of trying to catch her own killer will draw anyone away. A circle of people is quickly forming around her with me left on the outside. I take a step backwards into the shadows of the bar and away from the huddle, almost knocking a glass from the table behind me. The heat of the room suddenly dawns on me and I find it harder and harder to breath with every second that passes. From the middle of the huddle a voice drifts out, panicky and desperate. I know the voice so well. Instantly recognisable!
“She’s not breathing. Somebody call an ambulance! Now! Delilah? Delilah? I’m here for you honey. Please, don’t give up. Its me, Simon. Your future husband.”
The last words he says with a certain enthusiasm. As though he knows I am still here listening in the shadows; wanting to prove even now with Delilah dead that he is in control. He never really loved her. I know that. It was all just a facade to prove something, or maybe anything? To keep people’s opinions of him high. That’s all he cares of. One day they’ll catch on too. See behind those cute lips and twinkly eyes to who he really is.
The door of the bar swings open as a police officer enters. Cool air flows by me, enticing and inviting however also awakening! What on earth am I still doing here?
“What’s going on then?” Everyone turns to obey the officer. “you all just needs to calm down. It’s obvious the killer has got away but my fellow friends at the station will be on that already. Trust me, The criminal will be caught within the hour!”
With each word exiting his lips I realise how right now I need to be gone from the world if possible. As its not, then it least from here.
"Its probably time for everyone to head home now. The bar would’ve been closing soon anyway. I'm afraid the excitement will have to be over for tonight!"
The officer seems to be very straight to the point and unemotional, despite the fact he new Delilah. With Holdenbury being a small town, everyone knows everyone else and their business. Its a different story however for Delilah’s many, many friends, who are all an emotional wreck; tears rolling down their cheeks like rivers. Comforting each other with kind words and reassurance. I almost laugh out loud. That’ll teach them better than to worship someone so blindly again. The true Delilah uncovered! Instead of the loyal trustworthy person they thought they new, they will see the lying, best friend stealing, boyfriend stealer she really is. Well, I hope they will. Maybe though, she will just continue to be perfect forever. The truth remaining buried.
“Alright dears. It will be ok!” The policeman attempts to comfort the girls. “ It will do you good to get home safe to your beds now. Make sure you don’t go alone, and anything suspicious? Report to the station. It should be safe enough. The town is full of officers.”
Great. That’s just what I need now. And with that a pair of new officers enter the bar - one woman and one man this time looking more official. They greet the other officer with straight forward words.
“Ok now. Good. Everyone’s heading home. It will be safer that way. However, details will have to be taken for interviews. At a more sensible hour.” They agree on this and the two men start taking details, ushering the shocked observers home to their beds while the woman is left with the boring job of marking out the area around the body with tape. Black and white striped, the letters POLICE all along it; a new letter in each new stripe.
“ We need to call the ambulance to see how long it will be until they arrive. I mean the body is starting to smell! They don’t seem to care that we’re dealing with a murder scene here, its ridiculous! They should be on guard at all times. Its their job for God’s sake. They can’t moan - it was their choice. I mean they must have read the job description and known about the late night call out aspect!” The woman officer moans as she puts up the last stretch of tape. Obviously she would far rather be at home in bed herself.
I look over to the door to see the last individual being ushered out of the pub. Although the words they say cannot be made out, I know it is the owner as he hands over a set of keys which the taller of the officers carefully places in the depth of his back trouser pocket. The man walks out and the two officers turn and return further into the warmth and dark of the pub, all partiers now on their way safely home to bed. Away from the ‘mad’ murderer that is apparently me!
The taller officer has something to say, “We have some information from one of the men. Simon I think he said his name was. We told him we’d interview him later but he was persistent; he wanted us to know now.”
The female officer looks annoyed and inpatient. “Can you stop dancing around and get to the point; I’ve been working all day for Christ’s sake!”
The man looks offended and slightly embarrassed by the fact that he is being told what to do by a woman. He gathers himself and spits a comment back. “Alright, keep your hat on. What I’m trying to say is he knows the killers name. Its Carla.”
The name rings out in my head like a bell. A name I have heard thousands, if not millions of times before but never yet in a sentence like that. What have I done? It sticks in my head, other words rearranging around it to form newspaper headlines similar to the ones I knew would be coming:
‘Carla kills best friend’
‘Drink influences Carla to kill’
The words disgust me. I must be dreaming, this isn‘t me! The noise of an approaching ambulance however reminds me that I am not.
“About bloody time, that’s almost half an hour we’ve been waiting now!” The two men look at the woman impatiently. In return she attempts a fairly convincing innocent face and says plainly, “What? I’m tired.”
“So, we all are. the ambulance crew too. Once they have taken the body away we can all go home. Its not like we’re going to be here all night long.”
She sighs, “I suppose so.”
And with that the door to the bar opens. the officers look around to see in the doorway a man and a woman who, by the look of their bright yellow and green outfits, are here for the body. The two groups walk towards each other and make acquaintances. You can't help getting the feeling that this is the first time they have dealt with a case of murder. Maybe I have a chance yet?
I watch the body being placed delicately on a stretcher and taken away. It is as though I am not there, instead looking down on a snow globe scene. That's how unusual this feels. The police officers follow close behind the body, locking the door behind them.
Silence. The bar is now empty and I suddenly feel the same emptiness inside of me. I look down to see my top now ruined, the blood sickening to look at. It reminds me of a hidden memory from a happier time:
The sun is shining high in the sky; One of those glorious summer days. The type you think impossible when its winter yet thankfully seem to return year after year. We are walking down the high street of the nearest shopping town to Holdenbury, me and Delilah, laughing at our stupidity; gossiping jollily about friends, family and boys. About one boy in particular actually, Simon; In the days when he was still mine! I distinctly remember her words on the matter.
“You’re so lucky Carla! To have such a nice guy and to be so in love. Its amazing! I wish I was you, I really do.” Wishes always come true for princesses don’t they?
Back inside my head I watch the two of us turn to go into our favourite clothing store; browsing the sale rail as we enter. I recall following her upstairs on the escalator, our legs tired from walking under the strain of our purchase filled bags all day long.
“I can’t believe you’re going to be twenty-one so soon! It seems like only yesterday we were leaving high school.” she tells me.
I take a step of of the escalator and wander with her around the upper level of the shop. We walk about for a while, each of us commenting on the garments as we go, just browsing for the fun of it. And then I see it. An ivory white top, almost glowing with uniqueness and beauty.
“Wow,” The word exits my lips without any permission from my brain. Before I know it, we are at the checkout, Delilah insisting she pays for the top, me trying to battle against her.
“Its your birthday, come on! Let me treat you to one little thing. Please? Oh well, I don’t care what you say, I’m paying for it anyway! Ha!”
In the end her persistence wears off and I give in. Inside I’m shining, a warm feeling spreading throughout me like a fire.
For a moment it feels so real, but I can’t help but realise that its not; The damp stench of the pub my proof. It saddens me and I feel a tear trickle down my left cheek, wetting my face similar to the effect of a rain shower. Within seconds I find my feet heading towards the spot were the body had rested only moments before. It isn’t a conscious decision, more the movement of muscles controlled by the discovery of a long lost memory. However, the sudden strength is lost as I approach the spot and my legs cripple before me. I drop to the ground and sob, tears spouting from my eyes uncontrollably.
Time passes. Seconds? Minutes? Hours? Do I care? I don't know; but suddenly I am hearing something, and I am forced into focusing my mind. Is it coming from my head? No, somewhere in the room. It's an upbeat tune and one which I have heard many times before. It suddenly hits me as though I have been whacked on the head with a baseball bat. It was her all time favourite song. A ring tone? Yes! I can't help myself; I have to answer that phone. I frantically rake through two handbags and then start on a third, this time more familiar than the others. I find the mobile, now certain that its hers. The music stops and I, for a slight second, almost feel my heart stop with it ; as though throwing myself of a cliff edge. I am unaware of the exact reason for needing to answer the phone, I guess I just wanted to talk to a familiar voice; some reassurance for my terrible action. Some support for when I turn myself in, for that is what I know I need to do now. Well so much for that. Alone again I am once more.
I pull a chair out from under a nearby table and collapse into it, suddenly feeling an exhaustion from the night's experience. I am numb, no longer able to feel any emotion, yet thoughts still enter and exit my head like a train might pull into a station, stop for a moment and then chug of into the distance again; so far away that it is no longer visible to the naked eye. Should I take matters into my own hands and phone somebody myself? Yes, that is what I will do. I pick the phone up again and punch in the numbers one by one, reciting them inside my head as I go. The numbers will bring me security and care; love and help from my mother. My mother! What am I thinking? How can I expect her to understand? I erase the numbers again, one by one, until I am left with nothing left but the wallpaper screen; a loved up photo of the engaged couple. Pain stabs inside of me. Or maybe its jealousy? I am once again confused, unable to make a decision. How can one make a decision about an irrational thing? Defeated, I shove the phone into the depths of my pocket. Maybe I will find the courage later.
Thoughts pass through my head once more, this time less clear. More like a washing machine; spinning around, getting muddled with one and other. I feel my eyelids becoming heavy. Too heavy in fact, and before I know it they are closing, transporting me far away to a safe land of slumber.
When I wake, it is because of the bright warmth of a sunrise shining in through the nearest window. I am no longer sitting on the seat, but instead collapsed uncomfortably on the floor underneath. For a second I do a double take; why am I here? I should be underneath my cosy duvet at home, drinking hot milky tea. The memories flood back, like an army marching in to my head. And it hurts; badly. everything seems so different now. How can I have killed my best friend I ask myself. Over jealousy? Because I have to admit to my sober self, that was the main fuel to all this. They were so happy. Why couldn't I be too; happy for them.
Realising I am suddenly desperate for the toilet, I scour the walls for a door that I may - or may not- have seen the previous night. I spot the little lady sign on the opposite side of the room and head towards it. On approaching I push open the door before me. It swings back behind me banging slightly. I turn into the first cubicle on my right, lock the door and sit down. While on the toilet I find myself reading over the graffiti on the back of the door:
'Sammy 4 Fred'
'Tania Luvs James'
'We h8 Debbie'
'Delilah loves Simon for Eva and Eva!!!!! xxxxx'
The words resound in my head like an echo might in a large cave. It hurts so I close my eyes to relieve the pain; Yet in doing so, I find myself reliving a past moment - possibly eight hours or so ago:
I am looking at the same words on the cubicle door, yet feeling a far greater anger towards them. So much anger that I pull the pre-packed knife out of my handbag. “She’ll pay.” I say to myself and laugh, almost out loud yet not quite. I know the knife is guillotine sharp but I still tap the edge to check. A tiny pool of blood appears, as though it were sleeping beauty and the spindle relived. It doesn’t hurt and instead fills me with great anticipation and excitement.
I open my eyes and I am glad to know that I am no longer in that moment, even though the aftermath of it lingers on. I stand up and flush the toilet wishing I could flush the memory, or even the whole situation away too. The lock on the door opens easily and I walk out. I push the hot tap on to rinse my hands but the water is cold. I stare at my reflection in the mirror not really caring for the tap’s temperature. I look old, dishevelled, tired and mostly a mess. A huge contrast to my usual youthful, pristine, fresh appearance. I am shocked, although what does it matter ? Nothing matters now. I feel the urge to smash the mirror into a million tiny pieces smashing the ‘new me’ with it. Killing her. But that would just make me a murderer all over again. Instead I return to the seat I had woken to find myself underneath not all that long ago.
I sit back down unsure of what to do with myself. I want to cry, and I try to. The tears don’t come though. What help is crying? It can’t solve my problems, or magic them away with a magician’s wand. Crying just weakens you, and I definitely don’t need that. A moment of sanity invades my brain, as though I am being instructed by a new ‘new me’.
Shouldn’t you be running? They’ll come for evidence and find you here; they’ll take you away. You know they will.
I don’t care. Shut up! I tell the other me. I deserve it all, everything that is coming my way. I killed her! I don’t deserve my life - they can do as they please with me.
So I wait. And I wait, not really feeling as though I exist. Drifting in and out of reality. And then I hear them; the sound of a car approaching, then pulling up outside, coming to a slow halt, not in any hurry. The officers are obviously unaware of the ‘prize’ they will find waiting for them inside. Two car doors open and slam shut again, almost in perfect synchronization with one and other. The footsteps start on the path, gradually growing louder. The sound of two sets of heavy boots on gravel approaching faster and faster, yet time seems to slow right down. Almost stopping completely. What time is it anyway? I pull the previously stored phone out of my back pocket, glad to have kept it. I do look at the time. 09:24 it reads, however all of a sudden something other has my attention. The flashing envelope picture on the screen. The phone vibrating crazily.
ONE NEW MESSAGE RECIEVED - SENDER ROBERT
The footsteps outside are becoming ever louder, as though they are claps of thunder. I press the enter key, intrigued by ‘Simon’. Who is he? More importantly, Why is he? I guess I just want to know something of Delilah’s new ‘life’. The life I was never able to experience. Too afraid to forgive her
The contents shocks me, beyond imaginable belief.
Hi Huns. C U l8ter, after Simon has gone. Luv U + missin ur cute lips. Robbie xxx
I can hear that the key is now in the lock, the officers attempting to open the door. I instantly remember what I am doing here. I’m waiting to be caught, believing I deserve it. No! I don’t, never in a million years. The text makes me sick, yet also confirms my distorted opinion of Delilah. She deserved it, all of it. Every last ounce of blood and tears was earned. Not only has she betrayed me to be with the one man I have ever truly loved, she has now also betrayed him too; betraying the whole concept of love, trust and friendship. I hate her for that.
The door opens and the policemen walk in. In a few seconds they will see me, load me into their van and drive me away to be ‘punished‘ in whatever way that may be. Do I deserve it? The question will remain unanswered. Did she deserve it. yes. That I am certain of now.