Behind the Curtain of Lies: Chapter Nine

Haeley Gibbs

“Where are we going?” I whisper-shouted. He led me farther into the woods without saying a word. Finally, after twenty minutes, he stopped and sat down. Of course, we were still holding hands, so I fell down with him. He got comfortable on the mossy earth. He wasn’t threatening me, so he might be safe, for now. “I have some explaining to do.” was all he said. I nodded, crossed my arms, and stretched my leg out to get comfortable. “Jessie is behind all of this. She forced me to say I was the murderer just so you would believe her.”

He continued, “That gun wasn’t meant for you, but you pulled me down and it went off. She took it from her father to give to me.” My eyes were as big as saucers. “Then who killed those children!?” He sighed. “She wakes up early in the morning, murders them, then blames it on me.” Jessie has always been a good actor. Maybe she really is behind all of this. “She killed Benny before y’all woke up, then killed the other little girl after dragging her out of the orphanage right down the road.” I fell back and blankly stared at the clouds.

I couldn’t speak. My best friend was a murderer. She didn’t even trust me, so she forced it upon someone else! “The cops aren’t looking for you though. Why is that?” He shrugged. “I’m the next Harry Houdini, remember?” I barely managed a giggle. A bush makes a sound only two feet away from Alec. I shush him and look closely. I see nothing until it moves once more. Jessie jumps out and tackles Alec to the ground. “Jessie get off of him!” He pushes her away and quickly stands up. “You act like a savage, you idiot!”

She rolled onto her back and stood up. “How much did you hear?” She swatted at my question. “How could you trust this boy? He killed Benny!” I gasp. She didn’t hear everything. “Maybe because I know the truth.” She balled her fists, and without hesitation, swung a punch at my face. I dodged it, almost falling onto my back. I winced at the pain shooting up my leg. Alec keeps her in a headlock, trying to get a grip. They look like two preschoolers fighting. I walked over to her and yanked her by the collar. Alec let go, letting me take charge.

“I thought you were my best friend! You’re a horrible friend, and a traitor!” Her eyes swelled up, and she started bawling. I scowled, gritting my teeth. “I’m so sorry, Millie! I don’t know why I listened to him!” I glanced at Alec. He’s as confused as I am. “What do you mean ‘him’?” I asked. I let go of her shirt and she sat down. We do the same. “My father told me to kill people so I could become a detective like him.” I think about it. “I didn’t know he was drunk, though.” I squeezed her arm. “I’ll bring you to my house, and we’ll call the cops.” She shakes her head. “I don’t want to go to jail.” I try to smile but can’t. “It’s not for you silly, it’s for your dad.” She gives me a bear hug. “Let’s go then!” Alec leads the way back to my house.