I sat in the lobby surrounded by my classmates and many of the other girls whose faces I didn’t recognize. I was shaking and someone threw a blanket around me. I stared at the floor intensely so that my stare could probably crack the tiles. The police escorted her out in handcuffs; I only know this because I recognized her shoes. I couldn’t look at her, her smiling face and piercing eyes. She could have done to me what she did to her or maybe I was next. Once she was out people around me moved to make room for the police officer. She had bent down to my eye level, her eyes were comforting. She placed her hand on mine and squeezed it.
“I know what you saw was
terrible but I… I mean we need you to come to the station”
All I could do was shake my
head, the words dead in my throat.
“If it is alright with you
I would like to accompany her until her parents arrive. She is already in
shock. As the caretaker of this hostel building I need to make sure she is
safe” that was Hannah. She’s just a little older than us but she’s warm.
“Yes that would be best in
this situation” this time it was a man who answered. He had a deeper voice and
his posture was more masculine than the female cop.
Hannah put her arm around
my shoulder and the female police officer led us to the car. As we left I got
to see a glimpse of her, she was looking at me with that smiling face.
From the hostel they took us straight to the station. Police escorted her out
first and then led us to the waiting room.
I didn’t look up the entire
time we waited; Hannah would speak to me from time to time but her voice always
felt like it was coming from a distance. By the time I was taken in for
questioning I had stopped shaking, things seemed to make sense and my mind started
to piece together what had actually happened.
“Hi Cecelia, How are you
holding up?...” the same female police officer said “…so this is Officer David,
he and I would like to ask you a few questions. But if you like to wait till
your parents arrive we will understand.”
I raised my head enough for
them to see my red swollen eyes. “It’s alright I… I can answer your questions'
' those were my first words in the last couple of hours.
“You can stop us whenever
you feel like. You are not forced to answer any questions that make you
uncomfortable. Start from the beginning, how you met Nora Banks and what lead
to tonight’s events”
“It started about two
months ago, that’s when I met Nora….”
(Continue in a Flashback)
Nora had transferred to my
boarding school but we still had a week before school would actually start. My
family was contacted by the school board. They wanted to know if we could house
a new transfer for a week because they needed to prepare the hostels for our
arrival by the end of the week. My parents had no objects and Nora arrived at
our house that night. Nora stayed in the room across from mine and since we
were the same age friendship just seemed inevitable. For the next couple of
days we did everything together, we talked about our secrets, our future and we
were looking forward to school. We went for drives, to malls, to the beach and
everywhere. Nora was like part of our family, she just fit
The day we were to leave
mom cooked her special cake, one for me and one for Nora. Daniel, my brother,
brought our suitcases down and placed them in front of the door. I spent the
last few hours with my parents but Nora stayed in her room. That’s what we all
thought but when I went to get her she was sitting on the floor in my room just
staring into nothing.
“Nora!! Come on we need to
leave” I didn’t think much of it and called her out. For the first time I saw
her hollow eyes and that smile when she turned. But that was just for a few
nanoseconds and then life was back in her eyes.
We came to school an hour
before the actual arrival time and at the reception Hannah handed us our room
keys. We were in different rooms, it didn’t matter to me much but Nora looked
heartbroken. I consoled her and told her everything would be fine. I only
thought she was sad because I was her only friend. I went to my assigned room
but Nora remained at the reception.
“I’ll head over to my room
in a bit. CeCe you go ahead.” After that Hannah and Nora talked for a bit.
(End of Flashback)
“What did Hannah and Nora
talk about?” Officer David interpreted.
“I don’t know but
afterwards Nora told me she convinced Hannah and the rooms were switched. But
I’m not sure about the details” I had finally loosen up a bit to the officers.
Nora and I shared the
room with Ara. Ara and I have been roommates the previous year and with Nora
there I just left that everything this year would be great. Ara and Nora got
along together pretty well, more than half of their classes were the same.
Then about a week later
Nora’s things went missing, it started with a few pens. That’s when I noticed
how observant Nora was about everything. She knew where everything exactly was,
her things mine and Ara’s. The situation escalated even more when more than
pens started to disappear, Nora blamed Ara and on Sunday of the second week
they had a major fight.
On that Sunday Ara
and I were in the room we shared and were talking and working on our assignment
when Nora entered. We could see she was angry, her face was red from furry and
as soon as she entered she started to throw her things here and there.
“Nora!!! What happened? Why
are you angry?” I said, trying to go near her.
“What’s wrong!!!? Like you
don’t know CeCe. She…” Nora pointed at Ara “…is a backstabber”
“What the hell are you
talking about?” Ara came to her own defense.
“You presented my research
paper as your own in front of Dr. Simon and made it look like I plagiarized
your work. How dare you” Nora jumped at Ara and tried to strangle her. I tried
to pull Nora off Ara but she was too strong for me. Some of our neighboring
girls had come to help and we were able to pull Nora off Ara. I held my
grip on Nora as she shouted at Ara over and over again.
“You’re a cheater,
backstabber and a thief. Let me go!!!! How dare you take advantage of me”
Nora shouted over and over again. Hannah had to drag her away to the nurse’s
office to have her sedated. After Nora was dragged away Ara broke down into a
sob, she confessed she might have taken a few pens but that was unintentional
but she never copied her research paper. From then on Nora and Arab barely
talked and Nora started to spend her time alone. This went on until last week,
I tried to spend as much time with as possible but she had changed.
“What do you mean she
changed?” Officer David asked.
“She would stay alone,
never talk to anyone. She never smiled and I constantly saw her hollow eyes
like she was void of any feelings or emotions. There were times when she would
not return to the room. I would ask Ara if she saw Nora in class but she always
said Nora was MIA'' I explained.
“Did you see her hanging
with people who… hmmm… might be bad influences?”
“No, she was mostly alone”
“Ok, let’s skip to what
I nodded and then continued.
Today was the first time I
saw Nora sleeping in her bed when I woke up. I knew Ara didn’t have a morning
class today which meant neither did Nora. I was getting late so I left while
they were sleeping. I made sure Hannah knew and that she would call me if
anything happened. The day went by uneventfully and Hannah didn’t call either.
So I thought either Ara or Nora left before the other woke up.
I didn’t return to my room
until 8 after dinner. When I got to the room, it was dark and quiet. I turned
on the lights and saw Nora sitting on the floor staring outside the window. I
called out to her but she didn’t respond. I called her out again but no
response, that’s when I moved to face her. She sat cross legged and she had a
knife in her hand.
She looked up at me with
her hollow eyes and said “How could you leave me for her? She took you away
from me. YOU WERE MINE!!!!”. She ran towards me trying to attack me with the
“Nora clam down!!! I don’t
know what you’re talking about” I was on the ground and Nora towered over me.
“Yes you do. From day one
Ara tried to keep us apart. But don’t worry I took care of her. LOOK.” I looked
at where Nora was pointing and saw Ara’s lifeless eyes staring at me. Blood was
seeping through her neck. I looked from Ara’s lifeless eyes to Nora’s sinister
grin and I could feel my throat hurt and my ears couldn’t hear anything but a
“I’m not sure how I ended
up in the lobby after that” the female police officer handed me a tissue; I
didn’t realize I was crying.
Officer David was about to
say something when someone knocked on the door and then my parents entered. Mom
held me in her arms like I was a baby and the police officers left us alone.
Once alone I explained to mom and dad what had happened and they were
speechless when I finished.
Over the next couple of
weeks more evidence was found against Nora and she was finally sent to prison
for 50 years. I switched schools to stay close to my family and eventually I
got over the events of Nora and Ara.
(10 years after the
I was seated at the bar in
a fancy restaurant and I waited for my colleagues. A waiter brought me my
favorite drink with a card.
“A woman ordered it for you
and left this card,” he said.
“Ahhh…thank you” I said and
took the card from his hand.
I opened the card and there
was a picture of Ara, Nora and I and Ara was crossed out. There was only one
question on the card “Do you remember me?”