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An Interesting Idea - Chapter Four


Kimberly Canyon

Jake tried to sleep, but couldn’t. All he could think about was what happened the night Will got hurt. If Justin had been there, why hadn’t he said anything, could he be... no that wasn’t possible, Justin wasn’t capable of killing someone, was he? No, that’s stupid, Justin might act dumb but he’s not that stupid. Besides, whoever did this wouldn’t want me to know, or his parents if he had any.

Wait a minute, Justin was the one who had been so angry this afternoon, he’d been so frantic when Jake asked him how he knew Will got hurt. Justin had told Derek he wouldn’t understand. Which could only mean one thing; Justin was a possible suspect. How could this be?

Will is his friend, why would he want to do that to him? Something else had to have happened, but what?  If this was the same person, maybe the guy had hurt someone else, but who? Was it actually possible that Justin could’ve hurt someone, possibly Derek? That would explain his anger towards Derek, but not towards Will. But then again, this was just his opinion. Jake knew he could be wrong, it might be best to just keep this to himself. Unless he could find some concrete evidence to prove it was Justin who did this.

* * *

Will lay asleep in the hospital. Dr. James said he’d be safe. But if he was so sure then how come Will kept waking up? He could swear he’d heard something, but then again he could just be paranoid. No, there it was again. What is that noise? Suddenly a piece of paper fluttered onto the table beside him. Will took a deep breath and picked it up. He gasped. Who would write him this note? This meant his attacker was still out there. He wasn’t safe, and whoever was doing this knew it.

I will be back, you can count on it, I know who you are, I’m sorry I have to do this but it’s the only way I can keep myself a secret. You probably don’t know who I am. I only wish I could keep it that way, but I can’t. You know who I am Will, and Jake does too. And I can promise you, you’ll be sorry if you turn me in, trust me, I will get revenge.

Will's hopes of ever getting back to sleep were gone. Who would do this? How do they know who I am? Who the heck would I know that would do this? Will couldn’t believe what was happening. He knew that he would get out of the hospital only to end up in the hospital again when this guy found him. Or worse he’d be six feet underground. Suddenly Will found it hard to breath. He tried to remember what had happened the night he had been attacked. He tried hard to remember the man’s face. But all he could clearly remember was his voice. Where had he heard it before? It seemed so familiar, but the face didn’t seem to match the voice. And the voice didn’t seem to quite fit the man who he thought had attacked him. It seemed like it should have been more vulnerable, younger somehow.

Who did he know that sounded like that? Then it hit him; but wait, why would he do that? No, there had to be someone else. Justin wasn’t capable of killing someone was he? No, there had to be someone else.  Besides, Justin was his friend; friends don’t do that to each other, do they?

* * *

Why am I doing this? It’s not right, I shouldn’t have scared him like that, he thought. But it was too late, once he made a promise he kept it. He knows I could be his attacker, but Will wouldn’t believe his friend would do such a thing. But Jake, he could be a problem. Why am I doing this to them? They’re supposed to be like family to me, why am I doing this to them?

Because they deserved to feel the pain he’d felt ever since his friend had taken his own life.  Because he couldn’t tell anyone how he felt; it was better this way. If no one ever found out who he was, before he had ended his own life, no one would care, or want to know who he really was. If only he could pull it off. Then everything would be perfect.

Despite that, he still felt sorry for both of them.  ‘I’m sorry I have to do this to you Will, but it’s the only way,’ he thought sadly, ‘It’s the only way.

* * *

A few days later Will came home. He told Jake about the note he’d found. But Will didn’t say anything about who he thought it might be. Will knew Jake thought Justin just might be capable of doing this.  If he said that’s what he suspected, Jake would think he was right. But what if he wasn’t?

* * *

“Hey, glad you’re back,” Justin said to Will when he entered the barn.

“Thanks.  Hey, can I ask you something?” Will asked cautiously.

“Yeah, sure, what is it?”

“How did you know I was attacked?”

“I heard Jeff tell my parents.”

“But Jake told me you weren’t at the barn then,” Will replied suspiciously. “I know you’re lying. You can tell me; I won’t tell I swear,”

“You promise?”

“Promise. I know something’s wrong Justin, you don’t have to be a rocket scientist to figure that out.”

“Oh, I guess you’re right.”

“What’s going on?”

“I was there, the night you got hurt, I saw what happened.”

“No wonder Jake thinks you were there that night.”

“Yeah well, did he tell what else he thought?”

“Yes, but I don’t believe him, I know you wouldn’t do that, would you?”

“No, no of course not,” Justin replied nervously.

“Why can’t you look at me?”

“I said I wouldn’t do that, okay?” Justin said, eyeing his friend suspiciously.

“Fine, I believe you, but I can tell something’s been bugging you.”

“That’s what it was.”

“No it wasn’t.”

“Okay, you caught me. There is something else wrong, but you have to promise not to tell anybody.”

“I won’t.”

“My best friend died,” Justin replied, choosing his words carefully. “I guess I’ve been having a rough time because of that.”

“Oh, I’m sorry,” Will said sympathetically, “But why wouldn’t you want your parents to know?”

“I just don’t, okay?” Justin said, “They wouldn’t understand.”

“Is that why you’ve been acting so weird lately?”

“Yes. Now leave me alone, please.”

“Okay, but you can talk to me if you need to.”


“No problem, what are friends for?”

* * *

No, it couldn’t be Justin, he was just too good. ‘No, it’s just not possible,’ Jake thought; they get along so well. Why would he want to wreck that? No, something was definitely wrong, but whatever it was, Jake knew he’d never get it out of Will.

* * *

How could he still want to do this? After all Will had done for him? He said he could talk to me. What made him so sure Will wouldn’t tell someone else. He knew why; he trusted him. How could he possibly want to kill anybody that he trusted so much? Why had he suddenly become so evil? Why had he chosen to become a criminal? One with a not so dark past... It was then he realized it was too late not to hurt someone, because he already had. He could remember it like happened yesterday. Oddly enough it was only a few days before he’d attacked Will. But this time he’d chosen someone he didn’t know very well. He thought it would make it less painful. He was wrong, but didn’t realize it until it was too late. He remembered the look on Mr. Johnson’s face when he saw his son lying there, dead. Then he saw him.

“How could you do this?” he’d asked in anger. “He was my son!”

“I’m sorry,” he’d said, wondering whether he really meant it or not.

“Sorry?” Mr. Johnson asked, “All you have to say is you're sorry?!”

“Yes,” he’d said, his voice shaky.

“You are going to pay; when I’m through with you you’ll wish you had never even thought of doing such an awful thing to somebody,” Mr. Johnson had growled.

‘If only he had just called the police,’ he thought. But he hadn’t. For a moment he thought he was there again, but no it was only the memories. The crystal clear memories made him remember the pain. He’d punched him in the face. He’d struggled to his feet, prepared to fight, only to realize it was useless. He remembered being punched in the stomach, feeling like he was about to black out. He remembered fighting the feeling of fear that was rising in him. Then he’d been kicked in the stomach, over and over again. He didn’t fight back, it didn’t matter, not if you wanted to die. Eventually the pain was too much. He couldn’t breath, let alone make the man stop in his sorrow driven rage.

Suddenly he found himself on the ground. He took off his disguise, even though he
knew Mr. Johnson wouldn’t recognize him. “Please stop,” he had begged, “Don’t hurt me anymore.”

“You killed my son,” Mr. Johnson said. “Why shouldn’t I hurt you! You’re lucky you're still alive!”

He remembered the tears that had come all too soon. He remembered thinking he was such a baby for crying at all. But what was he supposed to do, it hurt too much to do anything else. “I’m sorry, I don’t want to die,” he remembered saying those words in fear. In the end that’s what made him stop. Then he’d heard sirens, and the police took him away in handcuffs.

That was the night he’d spent in jail, a night he’d never forget. The night he had done something he thought he’d never do. The night he had killed another person, one that was barely older then he was if not younger. He remembered trying to comprehend what he’d done, only to realize it was too late. He had killed someone out of rage, and now they would never come back. All because of his stupid anger, and his pain. Now he was faced with a similar situation.

Only this time, he wouldn’t get caught, he wouldn’t get trapped again. This time he was determined to end his own life, rather then go through a living hell.

* * *

“Hey Derek, can I ask you something?” Jake asked one day when they were taking a break.

“Sure, what do you want to know?” Derek asked, somewhat sarcastically.

“When did Justin come home the night Will got hurt?” Jake asked cautiously.

“I’m not sure; I know he definitely didn’t come home the same night he left.”

“I guess he came home in the morning then?”

“Yes, what are you getting at?” Derek asked, suddenly suspicious.

“I just have a theory about who hurt Will, that’s all,” Jake replied quickly, “But I can’t tell you who I think it is.”

“Why not?”

“If I told you, you wouldn’t believe me.”

“Try me.”

“Well, I think that Justin was definitely there when Will got attacked.”

“What does that have to do with anything?” Derek asked, “Are you saying Justin would know who it was?”

“Yes, sort of,” Jake said, pausing; he thought he’d heard someone pull into the driveway.

“What do you mean, sort of?” Derek asked.  He didn’t like where this seemed to be going.

“Um, I guess I’m not sure, it’s just my opinion,” Jake replied nervously.

“Why are you acting like I’m going to attack you or something?” Derek asked, “You don’t honestly think I’d try to hurt you, do you?”

“I don’t know, I guess not,” Jake said with a nervous laugh.

“Then tell me who you think it is,” Derek said seriously. Suddenly Justin walked into the office.

“Hey, what are you two up to?”

“Jake thinks he knows who attacked Will,” Derek said. “But he won’t tell me who he thinks it is.”

“Maybe it’s better that way,” Justin said with a slight smile.

“What’s that supposed to mean?”

“Whoever attacked Will probably doesn’t want anyone to know who he is, and if someone said anything or even guessed at who the person was, they might go after the person they suspect.”

“You don’t think whoever it was would want to kill Jake, do you?” Derek asked Justin worriedly.

“I don’t know, maybe,” Justin replied absent-mindedly. “Maybe that’s why he won’t tell you, that’s all.”

“Oh, I guess I never thought of it that way,” Derek said thoughtfully.

“Well, I can’t hang around here all day,” Justin said quickly, “I have work to do.”

“Yeah, sure,” Derek said, “I guess we ought to stop wasting our time too.”

“I agree,” Jake said, secretly glad he didn’t have to tell Derek he suspected Justin - at least not yet.

“Is it okay if I talk to Jake real quick before I get started?” Justin asked Derek.

“Yeah, sure, no problem,” Derek replied, “I’ll be cleaning stalls if you need me.”

“What else would you be doing?” Jake asked with a laugh.

“Hey you never know, I could get captured by aliens for all I know,” Derek replied jokingly.

“Dad, leave,” Justin replied irritably. “Besides, I haven’t seen any little green men around lately.”

“Okay, I’m going,” Derek said with a smile and walked out of the office, closing the door behind him. The instant Derek left Justin’s easygoing demeanor left just as quickly as it had come. If anything he seemed worried about something, at least that’s what Jake thought.

“Are you okay?” Jake asked Justin, “You seem kind of stressed.”

“Well, to tell you the truth, no,” Justin replied. “Why were you guys talking about what happened to Will?”

“I just want to make sure whoever is doing this gets what they deserve,” Jake replied somewhat angrily. “Don’t you?”

“Uh, yeah I guess,” Justin said nervously. “I just hope it doesn’t turn out to be someone you know.”

“That’s the problem,” Jake said with a sigh, “I think it is someone I know.”

“Really?” Justin said, trying to act surprised. “Who?”

“I can’t really say who per se, but I think I’m getting closer.”

“Oh, well good luck.”

“Thanks. Hey, did you want to talk to me about something?”

“Huh?” Justin said in surprise, “Oh, no forget it. I’m fine, really.”

“If you say so.”

“Trust me, I’m fine,” Justin replied quickly. “I'm not going to do anything stupid.”

“Like what?”

“I’m not going to go kill myself over it, I don’t know.”

“That’s putting it in rather extreme terms, don’t you think?”

“I guess, but really, I’m fine.”

“Okay, you seem pretty convinced, besides I really ought to get back to work before Mark yells at me again.”

“Good idea,” Justin said, “See you later.”

“Sure,” Jake replied as he headed out the door.

Justin breathed a sigh of relief as Jake left. ‘That was close,’ he thought, ‘I’m going to be in so much trouble when they find out I know what really happened.’ Secretly, Justin hoped Jake didn’t suspect him. What would Derek say? Besides, just because he’d been acting weird didn’t mean he was the one who hurt Will, did it? No, of course not. But Justin knew that although he’d escaped having to face the truth now, that sooner or later it would catch up to him. And when it did, there would be no turning back. And everyone he knew would never believe him, ‘That is if they ever get the chance to ask me,’ Justin thought quickly.

* * *

Tonight was the night, the night he would finally get rid of that stupid kid. ‘Finally, I’ll be able to relax,’ he thought as he stood in front of the house. He ignored the part of him that said he shouldn’t kill his friend, what difference would it make? Will didn’t understand what he was going through. He never would.

‘Only I know what really happened,’ he thought. ‘And even if they figure out who I am, it will be too late, because I’ll be gone by then,’ he knew this time he wouldn’t make any mistakes. He wouldn’t leave until he was sure Will was dead. He wouldn’t be careless and he wouldn’t leave any evidence for anyone, especially for the police to find.

No, he would commit the perfect crime. He would be cold and ruthless, devoid of any emotions, he wouldn’t let his emotions get in the way. Now was the perfect time to strike, even if he risked the danger of Will’s dad coming after him. It didn’t matter, after this was all over he’d be dead, one way or another. He knew where he kept his gun, and he had remembered to load it. He knew all it took was one pull of the trigger. Then he would be dead. He wouldn’t have to deal with this pain anymore. Or his obsessive guilt about Joey’s death.

Once he pulled that trigger, no one would suspect him, they would just shake their heads and say it was tragic. His parents might feel guilty, but he didn’t care, let them feel guilty. His friends would never suspect him either. They would say, “He would never kill someone, he’d never hurt anybody like that, no, not him.” But they were wrong. All of them would probably be completely surprised to find that he was capable of hurting someone, he was capable of killing someone.

He smiled as he thought of the sheer thrill of what he was going to do. If anyone was able to figure out who he was, they would say, “How could this happen, I never would have thought he was capable of doing this.” But he was.

Little did he know that things wouldn’t go exactly as he’d planned. If only he’d known that this time Jake would come home, and try to kill him. If only he’d known that he wouldn’t be able to keep up this lie he’d been living. But he didn’t know, and so he went ahead with his plan, not knowing what lay ahead.

* * *

“Stop it,” Will told himself. “You’re just being paranoid.” But despite trying to convince himself he was just paranoid, Will had this nagging feeling that he was wrong. Suddenly he heard footsteps. Without even looking for the source of the sound Will knew who it was. He knew that the person who had attacked him twice had returned to finish the job. He held his breath, not daring to move a muscle.

But it was too late, the man had already seen him.

“Hello again,” he said to Will in an almost jovial tone. “Hope you had a good life, because tonight it’s going to end.”

Chapter Five

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