Claw Marks and Corridors

Felicity saw something she shouldn't have. A dead girl in the bathroom at school. Not just any girl, Robin Cross, the head girl. Since that night all she's had in her head is images of a creature ravaging her body. But Robin was just stabbed excessively, right?

Felicity's life is shattering as she struggles to find the truth and anyone who will believe her. Even the corridors start to not feel safe anymore.

*First Draft*

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Author's note

This is a first draft, meaning that a couple of the chapters are going to be changed/need serious editing at some point! Please bare this in mind.
AA

15. Fourteen

 

I expected laughing or at least a weird facial expression, but instead Ric stood silently against the wall. He said nothing, he did nothing. He just stood there and took it in. I thought perhaps he was in shock but then he turned and looked at me with this unreadable expression on his face.

"It's okay, you can tell me I'm crazy," I said quietly but he shook his head.

"I wasn't thinking that," he replied and he smiled slightly.

I couldn't keep the shock out of my face. "Are you sure?"

He nodded. "I expect you have probable reasoning to suggest that your theory could be true."

"Well, I have some," I replied and I looked down at the floor because I knew a lot of it was just speculation.

"I'd be interested to hear it," Ric said and he still smiled at me. "Although maybe not inside a town hall full of Robin's friends who might not want to hear it."

I had to admit I was a little relieved at his reaction. It had been much better than April's reaction.

I nodded my head. "Yeah, we can go outside," I replied but then looked across the hall. "But first I need to speak to Abi-Rose."

Ric frowned slightly. "Why?"

"She saw Robin's body too," I answered quietly and looked back round at him. "I want to see if she can confirm what I saw."

"What did you see?" Ric asked lowering his voice and leaning closer, this eager look in his eye.

"Claw marks." I tried to distract my head with nicer thoughts before the image flashed in my head again. "Across her face, I think they were claw marks."

"And that's one of the reasons you think it was a monster?" Ric put the two together and he had this frown on his face, like he was thinking hard about it.

I nodded back. "Yeah. I want to know if Abi-Rose saw it too." I paused slightly with a sigh. "Or whether I didn't really see anything at all."

I looked at the floor. What if she didn't see the same thing? What if I did just see her destroyed face and jump to conclusions? What if all of my thinking had been wrong?

Ric's voice found it's way back into my head again. "Well it's always good to not eliminate any possibilities." He paused slightly in which I looked up at him and saw a small reassuring smile appear on his face. "You saw what you saw."

I smiled back slightly and went back to surveying the room, trying to spot Abi-Rose.

"Just be careful about how you ask her," Ric continued.

I nodded. I knew I would have to be. She was very upset and probably very sensitive so I was going to need to approach the topic with caution. I wouldn't exactly like someone to come up to me and start asking questions about a dead best friend. Maybe I shouldn't even ask her at all... But I couldn't stop myself from walking my way across the room towards her.

She'd just got back from the bathroom and was sitting alone on a seat, drinking from a plastic cup. As I approached, I tried to formulate sensible words in my head that wouldn't cause her to start screaming again.

"Hey," I started gently and she jumped. When she looked up at me she frowned, obviously not knowing who I was. "Um, can I talk to you?"

She sniffed deeply but then nodded, gesturing at the seat next to her. "What is it about?"

I gulped slightly and took a few seconds to reply. "Robin."

Her face looked possibly even sadder than it had been before. I contemplated not continuing but I couldn't just walk away now.

"I saw her too, you know," I continued. "In the bathroom."

Abi-Rose grasped the cup harder. "It haunts me every night."

"Me too." I breathed out quickly. "What I saw won't get out of my head."

I saw tears appearing in Abi-Rose's eyes again. It hurt my heart to see it but I knew I had to continue if I wanted to find out more.

"I saw something... I saw something odd," I continued again and my words were coming out slowly and like I was unsure I actually wanted to say them. The look on her face was making my hands shake.

"W-what?" she asked and tears broke from her eyes.

"Claw marks."

Abi-Rose gripped the cup tighter (many of the cups were receiving abuse today) and squished her eyelids closed for a few seconds. "What?"

"I saw claw marks across her face."

More tears came out of her eyes and she looked at me with so much confusion. "W-what are you t-talking about?"

"I..." I tried to speak again but I could see I was upsetting her. I pushed on. "I wondered if you saw that too."

Abi-Rose rammed her eyes shut and her breathes came out quicker and more raspy. I bit my lip anxiously and watched her.

"No, no, no," she mumbled and she was shaking her head furiously, her eyes still shut. It reminded me of when I was trying to get the images out of my head. Was she doing the same?

"Abi-Rose," I said gently and her eyes flew open and she glared at me.

"W-Why would you say that to m-me?" she stammered. "Why would you just try and hurt me more?"

Breathe got stuck in my throat. "I didn't mean to. I-I just I..." I trailed off as she glared at me harder, angry tears now breaking from her eyes.

"You just what?" she snapped. "You just thought you would torture me m-more?" She paused to take a shaky breathe. "Well congratulations, you've now made me think about what I saw all over again. And if you must know, I don't remember seeing claw marks. I couldn't just stand there and examine her. My poor friend was fucking dead on the floor in a pool of her own blood and guts. That's what I saw and I never want to think about ever a-again but I will, over and over!"

I wasn't able to get out a reply before she got to her feet and scurried off, a stream of tears down her face and a heart-broken wail in her wake. I couldn't stand for a few minutes, upset with myself but also annoyed that I hadn't got the sort of response I wanted. She didn't quickly agree with me, that surely meant she didn't see what I saw. Maybe I was wrong...

But what if she just hadn't seen her properly. What if she just saw Robin and the blood and just ran quickly? Maybe she hadn't had time to see the claw marks. Or maybe I was just clutching at straws. I reminded myself that I had really only been in that bathroom for about a minute, I hadn't wanted to continue looking at the horror I saw. So, did I have enough time to actually properly see claw marks? Was I just making it up from the beginning?

I tried to cast the thoughts out of my head as I got up and made my way back over to Ric. I didn't want to be wrong, because I felt so sure. I also didn't want to be wrong because for the past few weeks I had been almost obsessed with my ideas and to have to discard them all would make me feel like I was just crazy, like I never had any probable reason to think like that, just that I did.

I'm not crazy, I tried to tell myself. I'm not crazy.

"How did it go?" Ric asked when I reached him again.

I raised my head and I think he could see the answer on my face. He smiled weakly at me and nodded towards the town hall entrance. "Let's go outside." I just nodded and followed him.

We walked for a few minutes till we found a bench on the side of the street. I didn't know how to start but Ric didn't push me, sitting in silence, watching the occasional car pass. I hadn't really fully voiced everything to do with my theories, April hadn't wanted to hear it. 

"I guess," I started suddenly and Ric turned his head more towards me, "It started with when I saw her in the bathroom. The claw marks on her face, just the way she had been killed it seemed... It seemed so horrible, like some kind of animal had done it. I was stuck for days thinking about it and all I saw in my head was some kind of monster." I paused slightly but Ric didn't interrupt, just listened. "So, I went to the school library, looked up in books about monsters, trying to find some kind of solution. The same day I found the Newsletter from 1960 about the attack on Amanda Carrington. That got me thinking about what sort of monster would wait around for 58 years. So I searched through the books, picked out a couple that might fit, but really that's just speculation." I sighed slightly. "I know it's not much but it's just something about it, I just know they're connected. They were both alone at school at the time when they were attacked. What if the monster waited for them to be alone before he attacked them. They were both easy prey. Maybe it's just a coincidence they were both head girls." I paused again and took in a big breath. "I just feel like, I guess.. I just know there's something horrible out there lurking." I looked to the floor. "I can feel it. I feel like I'm being watched by it every single day."

Suddenly, I felt tears in my eyes and I couldn't force myself to say anything else. It was as relieving as it was upsetting to reveal my thoughts. I'd had that all locked up inside me and now it had burst out.

Ric just sat quietly for a few minutes before he spoke up again. "I still don't think you're crazy."

I smiled weakly. "That's good."

"And there's certainly something in what you say. It really does seem like the two are connected," he replied and I couldn't help but smile a little wider. I was glad it wasn't just me that could see that.

"I just want more information," I continued. "I just want something more... something more solid to work with."

Ric nodded back. "Amanda Carrington could be alive... She could remember things."

"That was exactly what I thought!"

Ric smiled. "Great minds think alike."

I smiled back at him and although my dark emotions were running high right now, I was feeling slightly happier that one person knew my theories and they weren't just turning me away. I didn't feel so frantic inside because I had finally voiced my opinions and they had been accepted.

"Thank you," I said suddenly and Ric raised an eyebrow.

"What for?"

"Not just discarding everything I just said," I replied and smiled again.

"I know what it's like to have no one believe you," Ric replied simply and I thought I saw something sad flash across his face. There was more behind his words but I felt like I might be prying too much if I questioned further.

"I only told April," I said, "but her reaction made me feel like no one else would want to listen to me."

"Well, I did." Ric smiled again, his pale face almost stark white in the sunlight. He would definitely seem creepy if I didn't know he was a nice person.

"I just want answers," I continued, spurred on by a need to get my thoughts out. "I want some kind of solution but I feel like no one is just going to hand that to me, so I have to find it out myself. I could just be shutting myself into dead ends and pointless theories but it doesn't seem pointless to me, it seems proactive... like I'm actually doing something to help." I took in a big breath. "Is that such a bad thing?"

Ric shrugged slightly. "I mean some people would say it's the polices job to investigate, that we shouldn't. That it's not our business. But, yes, I get what you mean. Something bad has happened and you want to help. You don't want to feel useless."

I nodded back at him. He did seem to understand me very well. "Exactly. You see, after what I saw, I can't just let this drop. I can't just simply forget about it. I don't want to stop investigating."

"So, we won't," Ric replied firmly and he reached over to squeeze my hand. "We can find answers."

I squeezed his hand back. Maybe it was crazy that we'd only just met but I already trusted him, I already felt hopeful that his words were true. It felt better to not have to continue the investigation on my own, it felt better to know that he wasn't just going to laugh at my theories or tell me I shouldn't be getting myself into something like this. Most of all he didn't think I was crazy, which meant something to me. For days I had questioned whether I was, whether this was all just a big mess up in my head because I was bonkas.

I didn't know why he believed me, I didn't know why he wanted to help me after only knowing me for a short amount of time, but I was so glad he did. There could be actual answers waiting for us to find.

"Fe!"

I almost jumped out of my skin and our silent contemplation was ruined. April was rushing her way down the path towards us, Dalton close behind her. I frowned at her as she reached us and looked at me with a panicked expression on her face.

"Your parents are looking for you," she told me breathlessly and she bit her lip anxiously.

"What is it? Is there something wrong?" I asked quickly and I felt panic start to rise in my throat.

"It's about Kitty," she mumbled out as she was trying to get her breathe back still.

"What about her? What's going on?" I questioned and rose from the bench.

April bit her lip anxiously again and replied, "she's gone missing."

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