Sixteen

Sixteen; Why is that number so significant? Two little boys, hidden under a bed, waiting patiently, waiting with a fear of what was to come. That night was meant to be special, it was meant to be remembered as a good time, but instead it marked their hearts, with memories of bloody murder, memories of the crimes they witnessed before their very eyes. Those little boys, thought that it was all over, but now at the age of 16, could it all be coming back to haunt them?

"This story is just amazing. You can actually feel their emotions. By the 3rd paragraph I was just ready cry!"

"I love love love love love this story so much already you're such a great writer did I mention I love this story?"


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2. Bloody Footprint

 

Flashes of the scene flooded Harry’s throbbing head as he walked into the school hallway, a light bloody trail followed him as he treaded across the freshly mopped tiles. His trail was a mixture of mud, blood and grass. He hadn’t showered or changed his clothes since the night before, since his boyfriend had dropped him back at his place, to find the flat he shared with his minx of an aunt, crawling with cops, Harry’s heart raced when he left the car, as he shooed Nick away, not wanting him there.

 

He walked ever so carefully across the front lawn, he turned back only once to check if he was alone. He followed the crooked footpath over to his front door. Not even bothering to ask a single soul what had gone wrong, the sight before his eyes made him gag, the familiar smell, the family feel sent millions of shocking bolts through his entire body. Officer Payne tried his hardest to hold him back but this boy was too determined, forensics gasped as he pulled away that sheet, as his tears fell straight down his cheeks, running across Penelope’s cold, still body. He wanted to scream, he wanted to tell the world what he was feeling but he couldn’t. Instead, he fell. He fell right there straight onto his dead aunt, her chest that was once home to his sobbing, where she usually wrapped her gently arms around his delicate frame whispering ‘It will be okay’ over and over until he believed it, where her heart would normally hum, as it beat against her chest, that noise, that comfort was gone.

 

They were going to drag him away, they were going to pull him off the only family member he had left but Harry just needed a moment, he let his tears absorb in her t-shirt one last time. He wanted to forget the fact that he was now alone, no other family members would take him in, he had nowhere to go, and nobody to see. Harry was completely alone, and this time he wasn’t going to stand alone. This was the reason why he walked the school halls that day, the reason why he was headed in the direction of the one person he needed to see. They hadn’t spoken in years, in fact their only interaction since high school had begun was the when Louis accepted his friend request on facebook back in ninth.

 

Louis had made it very clear how he wanted nothing to do with his old friend, he had his reasons, but it didn’t mean it hurt any less. Harry ignored the stares as he kept walking, he was a mess, wearing stained jeans, and his favourite hoodie, the same clothes he had worn the day before, even the stupid grey beanie planted atop of his flattened curls was dirty. You see, after the cops took Penelope away, Harry ran, he ran straight into the shrubbery down the road, he ran around for hours, crying in the rain, digging in the ground searching for answers. None of this made any sense, not the death of his aunt, or the fact that he ran around like a mad man, Harry was certain of one thing though, he knew it was fact.

 

This was no coincidence, the murder was without a doubt connected to the one that took place exactly six years prior, that bastard was back, and Harry wasn’t going to let him win again. He singled in on locker 14B, and went in for the kill. He walked straight up to his old friend, stopping right in front of him, waiting for him to notice, it took a while. He was distracted by the things in his locker, but when he turned back around, his expression changed from an eager smile into a fearful frown. Harry tucked his hands inside of his sleeves, scared of the judgment that would arise if Louis spotted his chewed fingernails, like as if that was the only thing wrong with his appearance. Louis took a second to gather his thoughts, before clearing his throat, and taking the plunge.

 

“Harry, what’s wrong?” He squeaked, slamming his locker with a muffled bang. His eyes softened as he took in Harry’s lack of hygiene.

“Har-harry” He repeated, the pain in his voice rang loud and clear. Harry looked up for the first time, staring into those same blue eyes that stared back at him under that bed, Harry stared at him for a second before the words escaped his lips.

 

“Penelope is dead,” He spoke so softly it was more like a whisper, Louis’ face dropped ever further than it had when he saw him, he licked his lips, scared of what this meant, was Harry thinking the same as him? Did this mean what he thought it did? He was too scared to move, he wanted to grab that boy and envelope him into a never ending hug.

 

 “He’s back,” Those two words left Harry’s lips like a ton of bricks dropped straight onto Louis’ chest. He grabbed Harry’s arm, pulling him in for a well needed hug.

 

“Are you sure?” He whispered, Harry didn’t answer, but Louis felt his head nod, although it was only slight.

 

“Let’s get you cleaned up.” He told Harry, pulling him off in the direction of the gym, they walked in silence, but it was understood between them both that they needed each other, they couldn’t afford to be alone any longer. Louis sat him down on the bench, as he jimmied his gym locker open.

 

“The cops said it’s not connected, but it is Louis. I know it is.” Louis nodded, he completely agreed. “What does this mean though, what can we do?” He asked, he felt stupid, he felt like he was letting him down, he felt as though he couldn’t be that boy who saved his life, he didn’t have the strength anymore, and that’s what scared him the most.

 

“We need the police reports, we need to prove how they are connected. He is going to get caught this time.” Harry was determined to make him pay, that man ruined his life, and he wanted to ruin his in return. Louis handed him a towel, and a pair of his old gym gear, Harry took them willingly, he needed to wash away all remainders of the night before

 

. “Liam, I’ll ask him to get us those files. His dad worked the case remember?” Harry nodded.

 

“He was there last night.” Louis pulled out his phone from his jean pocket, shooting Liam a message to come and meet them.

 

 “You shower, and I’ll sort this out,” Harry was glad that Louis was taking control, he feared that if it was all up to him, he would snap at the wrong moment. He locked himself into the only lockable shower stalls left, football boys weren’t modest, they all showered in the communal shower, but not Harry, he was praising the lockable door  as he slipped his dirty jeans off his skinny legs and neatly folded them on the little bench against the wall.

 

He unzipped his hoodie and hung it from the hook along with the towel Louis had loaned him. Louis was pacing the room, when he heard footsteps, accompanied by the shower being turned on. Liam appeared not long after, with a confused expression on his face. Louis ran to him.

 

 “Li, I know this is a lot to ask, and you are going to want to ask questions, but I can’t answer them. Not yet at least, just know that this is important, and I wouldn’t be asking if it wasn’t life or death.” Liam nodded, taking in all this information and feeling more confused than he had ever been.

 

 “Louis, I have no idea what you are going on about.” He admitted, placing his hands on both sides of Louis’ shoulders.

 

 “I need some police case files.” Louis told him, Liam’s heart sank, he couldn’t, no way. Not only would his dad kill him, but it was also extremely illegal to steal from the evidence files.

 

 “Louis, I can’t!” He started to protest but Louis cut him off.

 

 “Life or death Liam.” He repeated, Liam nodded, he knew how much pain Louis was going with by even mentioning this.

 

 “Which case?” He asked, giving in. Louis was one of his closest friends, he had to at least try and help him out.

 

“The Styles’ murder case both of them.” Louis answered, the shower stopped dripping, and Harry began dressing himself in Louis’ gym pants, and shirt. He slipped his own hoodie over the top and walked out to the two boys.

 

“…and Penelope Styles too.” He added, Louis had forgot to mention that part. Liam looked up at Harry, not knowing what to say, they hadn’t been friends, not ever but he did feel sorry for the poor lad. He lost his parents right in front of his eyes, and now his aunt?

 

“I will have it by tonight.” Liam promised, before leaving the room, Louis gave Harry a small delicate smile, sizing him up and down with his eyes.

 

“Suits you.” 

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