Gone Astray: Chapter 7 – Victim


The cops who had entered James’ house still haven’t come back out. Every time they go there to interrogate him, they usually come out after approximately twenty minutes. Staring out the window in my room, I wonder why they haven’t come out yet. Are they so desperate that they need to press James for more information? The thought of it sinks my mood, and makes me a little restless. If the cops hit a dead end, then when will they find Keisha? I step back from the window and shake my head, clearing my thoughts. The cops are gonna find my sister, and whoever that kidnapper is, they’re gonna make him pay. Before I retire to my bed, I take one last look at Uncle James’ house. I look at the window, behind which I’d seen Keisha in my hallucination, all bloody and horrified. I can’t stop myself from looking, that vision was too powerful. When I was in the house before, I couldn’t even look inside the room. I stare, but just see a neat window, curtains blocking what’s behind it. My sister didn’t pop out from the room either. I sigh as I take my eyes off it, and let them wander around the wall facing me. As I look at the wall as a whole, something strikes me as slightly odd.

Every other window of his house is opaque with dust. But the bedroom’s is crystal clear. But in my vision, Keisha’s blood was smeared along with the dust on the window – I remember it like as if it happened yesterday. Maybe he decided to keep at least his bedroom clean? As I ponder upon the oddity a little more, my mind drifts over to the last thing I’d seen while leaving James’ house – his coat stand. In thought, I rap the window sill with my fingers. Something about it is so… familiar. It’s frustrating that I can’t put my finger on it. I hear my phone vibrate on my desk. I pull myself from my window and settle on my bed as I reach out for my phone. As I switch it on, the brightness from it seems to dim out my surroundings, bringing my attention solely to the screen. The notification I have gotten is from Uncle James. He isn’t the type to send messages. Slightly unsettled, I open the message. At first, I’m confused, but then as I understand what it could imply, I almost drop my phone as I shake uncontrollably.

im keisha. Even though it’s just two words, it’s too much to take in. Why did James send this message? Is he testing me or something? Did he think it was a funny prank? My vision blurs as I stare blankly at my phone screen. It’s not funny! The pain in my heart is unbearable. In a blind rage, I slam my left arm on the bed’s frame, and gasp in agony as the pain from my previous injury shoots up my arm. Suddenly, I hear it twice. It rings loud and clear in the space of my room. Even though I’d never heard one in real life before, it’s unmistakable. Those were gunshots. I forget the pain and look outside my window. Uncles James is exiting, carrying something I can’t see, in both his arms. He’s donned the coat and hat that was by his door. Something clicks in my head almost instantaneously. Looking at the clothes on a person, I remember where I’d seen them before. That height… build… walk… the kidnapper!

I don’t think anymore. I rush out of my room and run for James. I’ve got a lot of questions and I’m not gonna let him go without answering them. As I run outside my house, I find him getting into the driver’s seat of his car. I run as fast as I can and I pound my way across the pavement right outside his door. I bang the pane and scream at him to open the door. I press my forehead onto the glass and cup my hands around my eyes to remove the reflections of the surroundings. As I do, I can’t help but look at the backseat. There’s… someone there. I think it’s a little girl. Her body is covered in bruises and cuts, and her face is bloody and damaged beyond recognition. But I don’t need a face to tell who it is. I feel my body go limp. I feel like puking, like I’d just gotten off a roller coaster. In my stupor, I don’t see what whams into me all of a sudden. I lie on the floor, paralysed and unbelieving. Keisha… I hear a gunshot. A searing pain usurps my chest, and I feel my senses disappear one by one.


I can’t waste any time. I’ve killed two cops, and this little brat had sent a text to her brother. Knowing Jacob, he wouldn’t give up on a single possibility of finding out the location of his dear sister. What a damn pain. I have to leave, now. If Jacob enters my house now, or these cops’ little buddies start wondering where their friends are, it would be a slight hassle. I hear Keisha whimper in the tub and irritably smack her square on the forehead with the butt of my gun. She falls silent. Stupid girl, I wouldn’t be in this situation if it wasn’t for her. Maybe I should just get rid of her, right here and now. I hover the barrel of my gun over her head for a few moments, and decide against it as I take my finger off the trigger. There’s a lot more she could give me, or rather, there’s more I could take from her. And she also needs to make up for this atrocity! I hear the receiver of the cop – who’s dead by my feet – cackle to life and hear the voice of someone on the other end of the channel. No better time than now to get the hell outta here. I tuck the gun into my pants, pick Keisha up from the tub and step over the dead cop to exit the bathroom.

I hurriedly limp to my main door and throw Keisha to the floor to wear my jacket and hat. The pain in my thigh tests my tolerance. I can’t help but feel more and more vexed with every passing second. I pick her off the floor again and race out of my house to my car, swearing at Keisha all the way through. I chuck her into the backseat and slam the door shut. The door rebounds open. I look inside and find Keisha’s hand loosely sticking out the door, and this adds on to my existing anxiety. Just wait till we’re outta here. I’ll show you, I think as I swing her probably broken arm back inside and close the door – properly this time. Mumbling to myself in anger, I make for the driver’s seat. I get in, lock the door and then jump to a sudden banging noise. Looking outside my window, I see Jacob banging away at my door, screaming unintelligibly while shaking up the whole car. Oh… my… God! I’ve had it! My building tension just explodes into a fit of rage. Jacob suddenly falls quiet with a horrified look, but I don’t freaking care. I wham the door open onto him, pull out my gun and shoot his chest after he collapses to the floor. Good bloody riddance.

I close the door again and start the engine. I really need to get as far away from here as possible, and fast. I slam the throttle, and aimlessly drive forward. It’s only been a couple of metres when something whacks my head from the back, forcefully. In a daze, I lose control and ram the car hard into a tree. The airbag pops out of the steering wheel and prevents my body from being thrown over the dashboard. I’m still for a few seconds, and shudder when a branch falls onto the windshield, filling the already broken glass with more web-like cracks.

I turn around to the backseat. Keisha has tumbled to the car’s floor. I see her eyes are open, flooding with tears and shining in fury. Did she just kick me? That hard? Man, this girl always surprises me. Screw this. I point my gun at her, but stop as I look around. People from the neighbouring houses start to come out to the previous commotion. If I don’t do something now, I’m done for. I struggle out of the car and make a run for it, ignoring the neighbours calls. Well, this whole plan didn’t work out well at all. Things had gone way smoother in my mind. I stop in my tracks and look back at the car. Keisha! I’d forgotten to blast that midget’s head open! No way I can do it now. My steps stagger as I continue running, pain radiating from the wound in my thigh. Ugh… Now I gotta find another victim to play with.


Tejas Harirajan

Jack of a few trades, master of some. Loves League of Legends, beatboxing, basketball, Frisbee and writing stories.

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