Chapter 7


Who Knows Kyle?




Jeremy and I stood there, in the middle of this long hallway of Springfield General, staring at each other. I suppose he was also trying to figure out one of many reasons why Kyle had been in Kel's car.



While I thought, how did they know each other? Was it just a coincidence?

When Jeremy touched my arm, I looked at him again. His lips were curved into a soft smile.


"Let's go, bro. Weíll talk about it later. Kelly's probably wondering where we went?"


I had a lot to think about, but I didn't know where to start.


* * *


As we turned the corner, I saw Dad speaking to a guy. Dad looked tense. I heard the tail of their conversation, and figured out this guy was a cop, too, and Dad was thanking him.


"Dad, what's going on?"


"Detective Connors said they think someone hit Kelly's car."


"I heard that. I was there with Kel."


"Yes, apparently Blake thought if someone wanted to kill both your brother and the other kid, your brother might still be in danger if their attacker returns. I was speaking to the cops to get some protection for Kel until they find the criminal."


I looked at Dad dumbfounded. I never thought of that. And Dad didn't look good at all. I could see the lines around his eyes hardening, his eyebrows creased together. I heard Jeremy speaking.


"Why would anyone want to kill Kelly?"


"I don't know, Jeremy. It might be the other kid who they wanted to kill. Maybe Kelly got caught in the middle?"


I felt my stomach rolling. I needed air.


"I'll be going back to the office soon. I have to talk to Thomas to investigate Kelly's car for insurance. Heíll be able to let me know if he found anything unusual."


We both nodded.


"Jeremy, Todd, please stay with Kelly until the cops arrive. Blake is also staying here. Detective Johnson said the cops will be here in a few minutes."


We both nodded again and Dad hugged both of us before slipping into Kel's room.


* * *


I saw myself standing at the foot of a dark mountain. I touched a rock to steady myself. Cool winds blew around me as if nature wants to push me back. My instincts told me to look back and then I looked down. I could see the valley down there where Iíd stood just a minute ago. I stood on top of the dark mountain.


A faint sound of a muffled cry jerked my body as I looked straight ahead.


"I told you, what you think about yourself is not really you! It's just a phase, an emotion you are going through. You must understand!"


The boy, surrounded by dark clouds of the mountain, still cried, his head in between his knees and hands bracing his torso.


For some reason, I yelled at the boy, with no comprehensible of what I was yelling about. My face crunched in disgust.


Suddenly I felt peace. I calmed down. I spoke very slowly. My own words sinking in my mind.


"One day you will understand what I'm saying is right. Now you should think and stop hanging out with Kyle."


"Kyle would never hurt me."


"He will. He's not someone you want to be with. Heís trash! Useless! And he will use you. Don't go to him, or I will have to tell everyone."


"Youíll never do that. You care about me!"


"I do care about you and so Iíll do what I have to do. Kyle is no good. He never will be."


I turned to climb down the mountain and heard the boy, screaming repeatedly at me to leave them alone.


Startled by the intense screams, I jerked back only to find myself falling and then I felt someone hit me hard on my head. My head spinning and mind not working, I saw a body fly out of my car as I drifted into the darkness.


I jerked up and looked around me, frightened about where I might be. I never wanted to be in the dark again. I looked around and sighed in relief. Today's my first day at home, in my own bedroom. The doctor allowed Mom to bring me home on condition that Iíll go for a check-up after two days. Mom had made me my favorite chicken soup. Iíd gone to bed after inhaling a full bowl and must have instantly dozed off. I guess I was tired, or it must be all the painkillers I was swallowing.


I tried to think about my weird dream. What did it mean, anyway? Was someone I knew well actually friends with Kyle? How did I know about it? Where did I find Kyle?


Frustrated, I wanted to check my emails and favorite links to get some clue of my lost six months but the need to use the washroom seemed more important.


I was walking back to my room when I noticed light coming from Todd's room. Maybe talking to him would refresh my mind.


Knocking lightly on his door, I remembered all the times Iíve walked into his room without knocking, pissing the hell out of him! Iíd just laugh at his expense. This time, when I didn't hear anything, I just walked in. Hell, why knock now?


Todd was lying on his bed, an arm covering his eyes and the other on the bed, lightly holding the discman. No wonder he didn't hear me. Probably listening to a song I hate the most! I sat heavily on his bed and shook his shoulder, startling him from his peace.




"Hey. How are you feeling?" Todd smiled talking off his headphones.


"Are you upset?"


"No! Why would I be?"


"Your face looks puffy. And so are your eyes. Theyíre red, too."


"Oh, it's allergies."


Allergies? Todd never had allergies.


"Since when? I don't remember you having any allergy."


"Oh, it's a recent case."






Todd looked down, he seemed too busy trying to find a hole in his hands. I know he just lied to me. Iíve always caught him when heís lied to me. Even Mom could never catch him like I did, like I do.


"It's okay, bro. Now, move a little!" I didn't want to bug him now. Maybe he will tell me later.


Todd and I used to share a room when we were little. He was a pest, but I took care of him. It always bothered me when he was upset for any reason. I used to ask him if he was upset and next thing he always did was to climb on my bed, lay next to me and download all his problems. From wee little Jeremy losing one of his Lego blocks, and now they couldn't build the fire station, to how he hated his high school Physics teacher because he was just an asshole. Even when we got our own rooms, this never changed.


"Toad, I think someone I know knew Kyle."


* * *


My whole day had been really bad. I couldn't concentrate in a single class. Mr. McBride, the asshole, told me if I wasn't too distracted by my brother's accident, he wouldíve given me 2 hours detention for not completing his stupid homework and not paying attention in his class. He caught me sketching a mole. Luckily, he caught me right before I was going to write MCBRIDE with an arrow pointing the mole.


Jeremy stayed near me all day. Even said he will count every single tooth of Jones and his gang if they ever bothered me. Apparently, no one knew, yet, that a fag was killed while sitting in my brotherís car. When they did, I knew theyíll be asking if my brother was a fag.


When I came home from school mom told me Kel's home. I went to check and saw him sleeping. I never felt such relief in my life knowing my brother was going to be okay. Now, seeing him sleeping there peacefully made me realize how close Iíd come to losing him.


I remembered Kyle. Why did he have to leave this way? It hurt so much. I couldn't stop the tears. We were finally starting to be happy. Finally hoping for a future. We were so close to resolving our problems. So close to getting him out of all the bad things he was involved in. So close to telling everyone that we loved each other. And now, my only brother being questioned, my love's gone, and some killer is running free, I didn't know what to do. I didn't want to hurt my brother anymore. I couldn't tell him now about me and Kyle. But I couldn't get it either how he knew Kyle.


I didn't hear him when Kelly walked in. He caught me off guard but glad I managed to say I had allergies.


Kelly and I lay on my bed staring at the ceiling. I didn't know what he was thinking but I remembered the last time we lay like that, Kel had been trying to make me understand how my love for a boy was absurd. I couldnít forget how he reacted that time.


As I remembered, Kel spoke. My body stiffened as I wondered what was he about to say...





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