By Akin Onadeko
2 hours,15 minutes before the jocks’ fight.
The room was dimly lit and filled with cigarette smoke. Cigarette butts and empty vodka bottles were strewn about carelessly around the room. The occupants of the room were either high as a kite or smoking like a chimney. One got up from his bed and began to walk haphazardly, almost stumbling on a box left on the floor. This was one of the jock boys’ rooms. It was stuffy and smelt of booze. Scott, one of the jock boys leaned against a pillow and lit a cigarette. He drew heavily on the cigar and asked a figure seated on a bed across from him; “Hey man, what exactly have you got planned tonight?”. “Just wait, you would get to see it”, replied the figure. Exhaling sharply, he asked the figure another question, “So what exactly do you have in mind to set the ball rolling?”. Gawking at the bulb fixed to the ceiling, the figure replied,”I don’t know yet. I haven’t made up my mind yet”. “Man, you’ve gotta,you’ve gotta start something”, Scott said to him. With a fazed expression on his face, the figure got up slowly from the bed and walked towards the door.
April 16, 2015.
The McGriffin hostel had been in an uproar for the past five minutes. It was clear from the way people were chanting and running amok that a fight had broken out among the jock boys. “I have to see this fight, the noise is deafening”, Craig said, walking out of the room. After a minute elapsed, Max and Lance also left the room, leaving Ryan all alone in the room. “Supporters’ league”, he muttered before returning to his novel.
A noise jolted Ryan from his reading. It was coming from his phone. A message had just come in. “I’ll check that later”, he said to himself before returning to his novel. The hostel was still noisy. He could still hear shouts and cries within the hostel. Suddenly, the door swung open and Craig walked in. “Hey,you’re back early”, Ryan called to him. “Maybe you didn’t have the nerve after all to watch the fight”, he continued. Craig shot him a look of pure reproach and walked to his corner of the room. “So tell me Craig, was there so much blood on the floor?”, asked Ryan,snickering under his breath. “I don’t know, Ryan, why don’t you go and witness the fight and come back and tell me ? Oh, I forgot, you’re reading a book”, replied Craig angrily. “Oh, don’t get so touchy, Craig, it’s not a crime or a thing to be ashamed of if you’re scared”, continued Ryan. This time, he accompanied it with a laugh. At this point, Craig was boiling. Ryan pissed him off, in fact all his roommates pissed him off. Max and Lance with their video games and raucous arguments about who was better at scoring goals. Ryan always did his best to get under his skin with his wise cracking talks. “Keep it together, keep it together”, Craig muttered under his breath. What Craig’s roommates didn’t know was that he suffered from severe multiple personality disorder. He had a distorted look to reality and he held onto it just by a sliver of a thread. His roommates had always overlooked it as mood swings and he had always done his best to conceal it from his roommates. “Hey, Craig, don’t be a scared baby”, Ryan called out to him. This time, Craig didn’t answer. He reached underneath his bed and pulled out a box. His mind was slipping away, he was rapidly letting go of reality. His alter ego was beginning to possess him, to take control and it was a truly malevolent personality. A personality that could kill. Ryan continued to babble on as Craig scrummaged about in his box. Soon, his hands found it and his fingers tightened around its sharp edge. “Craig, you’re not answering me”, continued Ryan. “You know fighting is not a thing everyone likes, right?”, asked Ryan as he dropped the novel he was reading on his chest. Having put on gloves, Craig crossed the room in two quick strides to where Ryan laid and in a bloody rage, he plunged the knife into Ryan’s throat. Ryan’s eyes widened in shock but he wasn’t given the luxury to fully express it as a clearly deranged Craig removed the knife from his throat and began to stab Ryan’s face with it. Soon, the drawn curtains near Ryan’s bed had fresh blood on it. Ryan’s grip on Craig’s hand loosened as blood flowed freely from the stab wounds and cuts Craig made. As if that wasn’t enough, Craig slashed the throat of Ryan for good measure. “Now, I guess you would shut the hell up”, he said. Taking the night lamp placed on Ryan’s table, he repeatedly used it to bash in Ryan’s face. Ryan’s nose soon caved in as the night lamp continued to send trauma force into his face. Done with stabbing the already dead Ryan, Craig looked at the face of his dead roommate. “Oh, those chubby cheeks that love to laugh”, he cried out and with the pen knife, he cut off a part of Ryan’s cheek. With his shoulders heaving heavily and his body drenched in sweat, Craig began to return back to normalcy. His maniacal episode was rapidly dying down. “Oh, what have I done?”, he asked himself, looking aghast at the mutilated corpse of Ryan. He looked at his blood stained hands and almost retched. The gloves were already squishy with blood. Throwing them off, he rushed to the door, opened it slightly and peeked outside a little. The hallway was deserted with people gathered at the extreme, still watching the fight. He shut the door and locked it immediately. He pulled his phone from his short pockets and dialled a number. Soon, the recipient at the other end of the line picked up, asking “Hello, who’s speaking?”. “Hello, it’s Craig. I need your help urgently, can you come up to my room immediately?”, he asked. “Okay, I’ll be there in two minutes”, the receiver answered and ended the call. Visibly shaking, Craig returned the phone back to his pocket and opened his closet.
Simon leapt the stairs two at a time. He had spotted no one on his way and no one had spotted him back. He darted into a corner as he heard voices approaching him. The voices seemed excited as they relayed information of the fight happening below to one another. He waited while the voices receded into the distance, then he walked briskly to Room 42 and gave two sharp raps on the door. “Who is it?”, a voice from within the room whispered. “It’s me, Simon”, Simon whispered back. “Okay, don’t touch the door handle”, the voice answered and quickly opened the door for Simon to come in. He stepped into the room and his eyes immediately went to Ryan’s dead body. “Oh dude, you’re in one hell of a mess.”, he said to Craig. “Do you have to tell me?”, Craig shot back. “Look, here in this bag is anything that can tie me to this murder. The vest and short I was wearing when I killed him, the pen knife and gloves, the towel I used to clean blood off myself and anything else which can implicate me are all in this bag”, Craig said to Simon. “Okay, but won’t your roommates notice your change of clothes?”, asked Simon. “Fortunately for me, the short is a pair and I have numerous vests, so I’ve worn another vest”, answered Craig. “Okay, anything else?”, asked Simon. “No, I’ve cleaned up my fingerprints and the night lamp I bludgeoned him with lest people notice its absence.”, answered Craig. “Okay, that would be all.”, Simon said. “Simon, thank you for doing this. I will be forever grateful”, Craig said to Simon. “Come on, dude, you provided me and my guys the location of the second year students who beat up my friends. That’s enough help to me. With the way we left them, it would be a cold day in hell before they mess with a jock boy again. This bag would be burnt to ashes”, said Simon. “Thank you”, Craig reiterated. Simon grabbed the bag and left the room quickly. Craig locked the door quickly and checked the room again to notice if anything was amiss or if anything might give him away. Three minutes later, he opened the door slightly, checked the hallway for any incoming person. It seemed the fight was a tense one as no one was back yet. He turned the lights off and closed the door behind him. He paused for a while, feeling his other personality slip away. Twenty five seconds later, he went to watch the fight.
“Ryan, Ryan”, Craig wailed out. “Somebody help, call the police”, he screamed further. Soon, boys were rushing into his room to see what was going on. Max and Lance soon entered the room and they both stepped back in horror. A hall keeper rushed in and quickly cringed at the sight of Ryan’s dead body. Soon, the room was filled with onlookers. The hall keeper brought out his phone and dialled a number, “Hello, I am Mr Montgomery from McGriffin hostel. I want to report a murder….”.
April 17, 2015.
8 hours,11 minutes after Ryan’s discovery.
The police sirens cast a sickly glow on the hostel. Boys were huddled together talking in hushed whispers about the horrible murder of Ryan Stewart. Craig stood at a distance, staring into space. His voice was cracked from all the crying and his eyes were bloodshot. He, Max and Lance had been found innocent by the police. Nothing tied them to the murder. They were all seen witnessing the fight. “Excuse me, Craig”, an officer spoke as he gently tapped Craig on the shoulder. “Yes, officer.”, Craig answered. “We’re ready to leave but we would get to the bottom of this murder.”, the officer said to Craig. Craig nodded his head. “If there’s anything new you or your roommates find, please do not hesitate to contact us”, he told Craig. “Okay, officer, replied Craig. “Please, ensure to take things easy. I know how you feel, you were the one to find your friend murdered. I know what that can cause, so you and your other roommates should take things gently. I’m sorry for your loss once again.”, said the officer to Craig. Craig stood there for a while. He knew the police wouldn’t be able to track down the killer, all forms of evidence would have been ashes by now. Looking sideways to check if anyone was staring at him, he retrieved a folded paper and a pen from his pocket. He unfolded the paper and used the pen to cross out something written on the paper. Written on the paper were the names: Max, Lance and Ryan. The name Ryan was crossed out. He folded the paper and returned it with the pen back to his pocket. With an evil smile creeping up his face, he continued to stare into space.
April 16, 2015.
2 hours, 13 minutes before the jocks’ fight.
“Man, you’ve gotta, you’ve gotta start something “, Scott said to the figure as the figure got up from a bed and walked to the door. “Yeah, you’ve got to have something you wanna do.”, asked another jock boy called Theo. The figure stood still at the door for a while, staring at the both of them. “I think the both of you should have a hell of a fight.”,Craig finally said as he walked out the door.
Fb:Akinwande Toby Onadeko