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Truth or Dare
The girl sat in the room silent and motionless as if she was a statue. Her brown hair covered her face. The detective was nervous being in the room with this person, someone who was known to harm herself and others. He sat down in the chair across from her wincing because of the bright light overhead. He waited for the girl to move, to look up and notice his presence, but she seemed to be oblivious.
“Lila?” He said her name hoping for a reply, but she continued to sit there completely still.
“I’m here to ask you a-.” He stopped when she looked up. Her hair fell back revealing her face. Her eyes were empty; hollow. What she had gone through clearly changed her. She was haunted.
“Lila,” He repeated her name watching as she stared into space. “Do you mind if I ask you some questions?” She began to look directly at him then. It made the hair on the back of his neck stand on end. His body itched all over.
“Yes.” She answered in a dead voice, no emotion in it what so ever, just like her eyes. Then she let her head fall back down, her hair once again covering her face. The detective held back a sigh of relief, feeling his body relax the very second her eyes left his.
“Well,” he said transitioning into business mode. “As you may already know the murder case involving you and some friends has opened back up. We have found some evidence that may lead to the killer.”
“What evidence?” He had to strain to hear her, but he could see her knuckles turn white as she gripped the table in front of her. That told him right away that she was upset about the topic at hand.
“There have been other murders in the general area of Whitman Park; where your friends were murdered. It’s been a while, but the bodies found have resembled the same markings that were found on your friends.” There was no reply only a tightening of fingers on the table.
“I need you to refresh your memory of that night. I need your side of the story,” Still no reply. “I know this is hard for you, but if you want this monster to be locked up you need to speak.” The detective began to take papers out of his briefcase when she still did not reply. As he did this he noticed how cozy it was in here with cushioned chairs, coffee tables, and TV’s. It looked almost like your average living room except for the tile floor, sterile smell, and nurses stationed all around. As comfortable as they tried to make it in here, you could still tell that it was a psychiatric hospital.
“I have some statements from witnesses of the murder.” He paused seeing if she would comment, but still, nothing.
“All of them said that they witnessed a man about six foot run up to your group, shoot your friends, and then leave.” He paused again, but still her body remained motionless.
“I‘ll read all of the statements for you. Maybe it will help you to remember.” He told her this not waiting for a reply because he knew he wouldn’t get one. So he went on to recount that whole night in words that were spoken nearly two years ago.
Lila sat there her head down listening to the detective. She wished he would stop, she wished he would go away; disappear. She couldn’t take this. She didn’t want to remember what had happened that night. The cruel slaying of the people she loved most in the world; it was too much.
They had all been walking home from the movies. Lila pulled her hair into a ponytail as she walked beside her boyfriend; his arm was slung around her shoulders. Just behind them were her best friend Kelley and her boyfriend Josh. They had decided to take a shortcut through the park and as they walked down the winding path wind blew, rustling the leaves on the trees. Behind her she heard Kelley and Josh arguing about who the best character in the movie was.
“Lila,” Kelley said coming up beside her. “Who do you think was the best character?” She answered immediately; no hesitation.
“What,” Kelley said eyes wide. “How could you like the murderer, he killed everyone.”
“Exactly, he should have. I mean if people are that stupid to go into a haunted house then they deserve to be killed.”
“Uh-huh.” Kelley looked at her like she was crazy. Josh came up then pushing Kelley.
“I told you that the murderer was the best.”
“No he’s not.” She said to him. They were about to start up a fresh new argument when Michael cut in.
“Hey why don’t you two shut up and walk, we’re almost to Lila’s house.” They fell silent knowing that if they didn’t do as they were told Michael would surely beat them to a pulp.
Lila had decided to walk to the movies since her house was only five minutes away. There was no use in wasting gas for that short of a distance. Suddenly Lila heard rustling and footsteps.
“Did you hear that?” She asked Michael.
“Hear what?” He asked smiling down at her.
“I thought I heard something.” She tilted her head as if she would be able to hear better. Michael just shrugged his shoulders. Then there was a loud noise like a firework going off. All of them looked around and that’s when they saw a man. He stood there looking at them with the most evil smile plastered on his face. In his right hand he held a gun. When he began to lift it up Michael pushed her to the ground and another explosion sounded. She was helpless as she watched Michael fall to the ground, blood soaking his shirt. Two more times that gun was shot killing Kelley and Josh. All she could do was sit there in shock just staring until she heard the shrill sound of police sirens. They asked her questions trying to figure out what had happened, but she had answered none of them.
A couple days later she was omitted to Mclean psychiatric hospital. She was now delusional and it was no longer safe to be by herself or around others.
“It’s not true.” She whispered.
“Excuse me?” The detective said surprised to hear her talk.
“It’s not true. None of it is.” She looked up as she said this.
“Of course it’s true we have witnesses plus pictures from the park.” He furrowed his eyebrows, completely confused. What was she talking about?
“That never happened. That is not what happened.” She leaned forward in her chair both hands flat on either side of the table. Her voice shook with the emotion she felt.
“I find that hard to believe.” The detective said, looking at her as if she was about to attack him, leaning away in his chair.
“I swear,” She said, sobbing. “That story is not true. He made those pictures. He planted that in their heads. He planted that story in my head, but I remember what really happened.” She ended in a whisper, beginning to lean back in her chair.
“What do you mean he planted it in your head?”
“He could do things like that. Make you believe something that didn’t really happen. Do things to people that you didn’t think was possible.” She began to get a dreamlike quality to her face, as if she was remembering. The detective shifted in his chair, uncomfortable with what she was suggesting.
“Will you explain to me what you think happened?” The detective asked watching her. She looked up at the question, her eyes moving back and forth rapidly as if searching his face.
“I don’t think it happened. I know it happened.” She said firmly looking at him, daring him to challenge her.
“Will you tell me what really happened then?” He asked waiting for her to reply. She looked at him for a good three minutes and then finally spoke.
“Yes I’ll tell you, but I doubt that you will believe me.”
“Fine.” She said, beginning to tell the whole story of what really happened that night, of what happened to change her entire personality; her entire life.
All of them were walking home from the movies (that part stayed the same). They argued about who was the better character in the movie until Michael told them all to shut up and that’s when she heard the rustling. Instead of a big explosion though they all turned to see a man standing there at the side of the path and then a van speed up behind him. They yelled at him, trying to tell him to get out of the way before he got ran over, but he didn’t move. Eventually Michael ran up to him and pushed him out of the way right when the van came to a skidding stop where the man had been standing.
Lila just wanted to get out of the park and get home. The man made her uneasy and the whole time she was hoping that the van would run him over.
“Are you all right?” Lila heard Michael asking the man. The man didn’t reply only turned toward the van and gave some kind of signal. Two men emerged from the vehicle then, making their way for Kelley and Josh. Both of them put up a struggle while Lila began screaming for help. Michael started for the two men, but before he got there they leapt onto Kelley and Josh. Blood sprayed everywhere and all you could hear was their screams. The screams soon turned into gurgling as the men seemed to drink their blood. Lila felt like she was about to fall over. All she could think was what kind of sick human beings did this to someone. Michael was by her side then pulling at her, trying to get her to run.
“Come on Lila.” He screamed at her, pulling harder on her arm.
“But what about Kelley and Josh?” She sobbed looking from their now bloodied bodies where all three men now hovered above them making gruesome slurping sounds.
“We’ll get help Lila, we just need to get out of here now.” She nodded her head agreeing and soon she was running as fast as she could.
She looked behind her after about ten minutes when they were almost out of the park. She had thought that they had lost the men and so did Michael as they began to slow down, catching their breath, but the minute she turned around they were right there; close behind. She whipped her head around looking at Michael.
“What are we going to do?” She asked looking at him as he reached in his pocket for his cell phone (it didn’t work).
“I don’t know.” He said grabbing her hand and starting to run again. They didn’t get very far. Soon both of them were being dragged down by hand wrapped around their ankles. It was painful as she felt her skin being torn on the rough cement. Then she was out cold; only seeing blackness.
Lila woke up to a stinging pain that started at her wrists and lead all the way down, through her arms, and ended at her shoulders. As she became more aware of her surroundings she realized that she was hanging from a wall. She looked up to see her wrists bound with metal links. The more she came awake the more she could feel the pain and it was excruciating. Hot tears flowed down her cheeks stinging cuts that were now there from the fall in the park. She looked around trying to see if Michael was with her. He was, and in much worse shape.
“Michael.” She whispered. He didn’t respond only continued to lie across a table, chained to it and barely breathing.
The place where they were being kept was a cave. You could see stalagmites and stalactites everywhere. If you really listened you could even hear the steady dripping of water and the cries of bats. It was eerie down here away from everyone. It was like they were locked away from the world. Only Michael and her, and the more she listened to the noises around her and watched as Michael struggled to breath the more she wanted to get out of this place.
She began to yank at the chains keeping her arms against the wall and her body suspended in the air. The more she yanked the more it hurt, but she was determined to get out of this rusted metal, get Michael, and run as fast as she could away from here. She had been pulling on the chains for at least ten minutes now and blood soaked her arms because of the metal digging in. After at least five more minutes the chains finally pulled free of the rock wall. She fell to the ground painfully with a thud, but quickly got to her feet. Limping over to where Michael lay she began to shake him gently.
“Michael,” She whispered, shaking him a little more forcefully. “Michael.” He responded with a grunt his eyes scrunching up like he was trying to block the glare of the sun.
“Come on,” She said, still whispering. “We need to get out of here.”
“Lila,” He rasped, barely able to talk. “Are you all right?”
“I’m fine, just come on okay. We need to get out of here.” First she began to pull at his chains. They were as rusted as the others so they were easy to break, but it still took a good couple of minutes. She attempted to lift him, but he was too heavy. After a little bit of struggle though he managed to sit up and swing his feet over the table, which now that she was closer resembled an operating table. Lila didn’t even want to think about what was going to happen to Michael on that table if they had stayed any longer. She helped him to stand up and supported him as both of them began to limp their way through the corridors of the cave. Lila jumped at any little sound, thinking that it was the men from earlier, but each time it turned out to be a bat or a bug.
Soon she started to feel the cool breeze of air welcoming her to safety. She knew they were almost out. The farther they walked the more she felt this air and a couple minutes later they were free, gazing up at the stars in the sky. She managed to flag down a car when they reached a highway nearby. She told them what had happened (leaving out a few key parts that would be sure to scare them away) and got Michael situated in the car and then got in herself. The people drove them to the hospital where Michael was treated, but died soon after because of a hemorrhage in his brain. She was devastated and didn’t know what to do, so she just locked herself away trying to escape everything and of course it led her to the place where she was now sitting with the detective.
Lila looked up at him, her hands trembling from the story that she had to relive. He stared at her, his eyes wide and immediately she knew that he hadn’t believed her. Who would? A story about vampire like humans eating her friends and then keeping her boyfriend and her chained up in a cave. It seemed impossible, but it wasn’t. It all happened.
“Well,” The detective said, finally speaking. “That seems, horrible.” It had taken him a while to search for the word.
“You don’t believe me.” She said, hoping that he would answer the question the way she wanted him to, but no, he answered it the way she had expected.
“I’m sorry, but I just can’t believe that. I have all the people here that witnessed your friends being shot, not eaten. It does explain the animal looking bites that were on the victims’ bodies, but it is just too far-fetched. I’m sorry.” Lila just shook her head and watched as he began to gather his papers and briefcase to leave.
“It was true,” She said, crying. “It was.” She was now yelling, standing up and flipping her chair over in the process. Nurses started rushing toward her as she continued to scream at the top of her lungs that the story was true. That everything had happened just the way she had explained to him, but the detective continued to walk out of the building his head down until he could no longer hear her screams that seemed to shake the walls.