Clothes, furniture and bedding littered the floor like rubbish. I carefully stepped over a broken chair that lay before me. One leg was broken off. I could see it I a corner, half covered by a pair of boxers.
“Oh my God” I whispered as I looked over at the room I once shared with the man I loved. The black bedding was shredded as if a rabid dog attacked it. It was spread all around the room, on the floor, on the bed, closet, some of was even in the en suite, the door wide open. It was the same for the clothes.
Underwear, mine and his, lay atop and around the drawers, some were still folded inside, while others were falling out of the sides. Tops, shorts, jeans and dresses were strung about the room.
The desk that sat on one side of the room looked like it had been ripped apart. The drawers lay open, the contents scattered around the desk. Long scratch marks marred the desk, some blood splatter here and there.
Tears sprung as I laid my eyes on the bed I once shared many nights, many lustful nights with Daniel. The sheets were ripped apart, pillows ripped open so the feathers were strew across the bed and floor. I sat down on the edge of the bed, breathing slowly, in and out.
The room brought back many memories of Daniel I didn’t want, when I first moved in and Daniel had shouted at me for dropping pizza on his white rug. We argued for hours before finally having making up and watching Star Wars which resulted in us spending the whole weekend having a marathon.
Also when me and Daniel got back from a date to the seaside. A carnival was set up, here for the next two weeks, and we took enjoyment in being one of the very few on the last day, all the other carnival goers had their fill of cotton candy and rollercoaster’s. We were high on sugar, came in and watched a horror film. The blood and gore on the screen didn’t bother me as I took advantage of Daniels hot moist lips. It soon turned into a hot, long make out session before we continued on the bed. In the morning there were no regrets, only love.
Once I calmed my self down and collected myself together I stood up and started my search. I scanned the whole room, cleaning what I could while I did. At one point I went down stairs and brought up some bin bags and a hoover. I placed the clothes (most of Daniel, I noticed were missing) back in the wardrobe and drawer. I hovered the floor, washing away any stains that I could see. When I came across blood I gagged knowing that it could be Daniels.
I was looking under the bed, pulling a box from under it when my wrist grazed over something sharp. I pulled back in reflex from the pain, gasping. I looked at my wrist, a small trial of blood trailed down my arm as I held my wrist up to my face, sucking at the small cut, trying to sooth the pain.
I looked back under the bed again; my eyes gazed over a sharp object, glinting when a small patch of sunlight hit it. I reached for it, careful not to cut my self again. I pulled it out from under the bed and shone it in the light that filtered through the tattered curtains.
In my hand I held a knife. It was of the ones from the kitchen. It had a black hilt and long sharp, silver knife. I wondered, why was it under the bed? I placed the knife on the floor and reached back under the bed for more clues. I felt my fingers touch something flaky and drew my hand back. Red flecks of dried blood covered my fingers.
“Darren!” I called, distressed. A few seconds later he came barreling through the door, “what?” I held my fingers up to him. He took a few strides till he was stood in front of me. He knelt down next to me, taking a few flecks of blood in his palm.
“I’ll send this to a DNA testing place. Send some of Daniels DNA samples, see if they match up” Darren said. Part of me hoped that this blood wasn’t Daniels. Part of me wished he did hurt himself. “If this is his blood it could help us understand Daniels metal state then and now. It would most likely be he hurt himself or someone tried to kill him” Darren continued.
“But were will we get Daniels DNA?” I asked confused. Daniel had benn gone a year, we don’t know were he is or what he’s doing right now so it’s not like we can just go up to him and stick a needle in his arm.
“Find his hairbrush or comb. Doctors will be able to get DNA from that” Darren replied. Oh, I thought, simpler than I thought. I looked around Daniels room before, stepping on the harsh prickles of a hairbrush. Pain jerked through my foot and I bent down to pick the brush up, ignoring the constant throbbing in my foot. I wandered back to Darren and handed him the brush. While I was looking Darren had left and gone to the kitchen to get some plastic re-sealable bags. In one was the dried blood flakes and he placd the hairs I handed him in the other.
“I’ll send these as soon as possible Emily. Good find, keep looking. If you need any help I’m sure Kyle or Crystal would be glad to help. Just give them a shout.” And with that Darren left the room, bags in hand. I felt I was fine on my own for now, no need to drag Kyle and Crystal up here to help me look.
I picked up the knife and went to the kitchen, washed it and returned it to the knife block on the counter.
“Emily-Oh! You found the missing knife” Maria, my mother, walked through the kitchen door. I turned to her, a small smile placed on my lips. I didn’t know if it was fake or real, it felt somewhere in between. After not being with her for a year I wanted to see here spend as much time with her but at times like thins, when you don’t know whether or not your crazed ex-fiancée has stabbed himself or been attacked, you need to be alone. You get me?
“Where did you find it? We looked every-”
“Daniels room,” interrupted my mother, “under the bed. There was…um…there was some blood around the blade. Darren is sending it with some of Daniels hair samples to see it the DNA matched up.”
“Oh. Well what else have you found?” my mom asked.
“Nothing so far. I’m going to finish up in there before talking to everyone about what has happened with Daniel that they know of since I’ve…been gone,” I said, “will you send Crystal to the living room?”
“Of course dear. Good luck. Bye” my mom left the room with a swift hug and kiss and a smile.
I returned to Daniels room completing the last bit of cleaning. I brought up a tub of warm soapy water and a sponge and started to wipe away as much of the blood as I could see under the bed. Once I was sure most, if not all, of it was gone I went to the en suite and emptied the now red water in the sink. By the amount of effort and time it took me to clean the blood I would have guessed a lot of blood was lost.
I cleaned the remaining rubbish on the floor, packed the pictures of Daniel and me away into a box and stored it in the closet, away from sight and remade the bed with different a different sheet, duvet and pillow. Instead of dark, black they were a smoldering grey.
With the last things packed away and sorted out, I left the room. I hadn’t found anything else that could qualify as ‘evidence’ so I called it a day and left to do my other business.
I wandered into the living room to find Kyle and Crystal at playing X-Box. It was nice to know that even though there used to be dead best friend was back they could still have time for the X-Box.
“Well you didn’t ask for our help or ask for us to join you” Kyle said as he presses buttons on his remote causing the immediate death of Crystals character.
“Did I just say that out loud?” I asked.
“Yep” they both replied. Kyle switched of his remote and the X-Box, causing Crystal to throw a pillow at him, “I can go and come back later when your done talking to Crystal if you want. Your mom told me, before you ask” Kyle asked.
“No it’s ok; it will be quicker and easier with both of you anyway,” I sat down on the couch opposite theirs, “so I’ll start simple. When was the last time you’d seen Daniel, full detail please.”
Crystal answered first, “Well I was giving the bridesmaids their flowers, the lilies we picked out at the shop remember?” I nodded, “anyway, I heard some shouting from above me, I couldn’t make out what was being said and then suddenly it stopped. I told the girls I would be back in a minute. I rushed up there a fast as I could. I saw your brother…he was” Crystal sniffled, covering her mouth with her hand, it pained me to see my best friend so hurt by my death, “he was knelt over your body. He was crying. He never cries, and that’s when I realized something was wrong. You were dead.” Crystal burst into tears, Kyle holding her to his chest, whispering soothing words into her ear. I grabbed her hand from across the small table in between out couches.
“You don’t have to go on” I told her. She shook her head, “yes, I do.” She pulled gently away from Kyle, wiping the tears that fell down her face with the back of her hand. “Darren told me to go get your parents, “ she continued, her voice sounded strong but wavered at places, “ so I ran down stairs to the hotel lobby were all the guest and family were waiting. I told you mom quickly about the situation and she, your father, Kyle’s parents and Daniels were following me back upstairs in no time. We all gathered in the room to see Darren still hunched over your body. Your mom took his outside after some resistance from his part. Then Kyle’s dad started to go crazy, said he could small Daniel all over the places. That there was no doubt that it was him. Daniels parents argued with them first but then realized that it was true. They said they could also smell their sons scent all over your body and the room.”
“Do you remember any little things, something that they might not have noticed at the time?” I asked.
“Well…um…yes! I remember, the um, the window that overlooked the parking lot in Daniels room where we found you, it was open, like wide open. Hotel windows don’t open but this one looked wide enough to fit a person through.” Crystal said.
“Thanks Crystal. Kyle?” I turned to him.
“Pretty much the same story. I was with your brother in the lobby when he said he was gonna check on you. Five minutes later Crystal came down, talked to your parents and they all left. After a while I got suspicious and went to find everyone. I followed there scents to Daniels room where I found everyone…and you know the rest.”
‘Thanks Kyle” I said and started to get up before my mom came throught the door.
“Ems, there are some people who want to say hello to you. You don’t mind do you if you are done here?” my mom asked.
“No not at all” I said sitting back down. My mom turned back to the doorway and whispered gently as if calling a baby over, “it’s ok, you can come in.”
A couple walked in the room, hand in hand.
Annie and Mike Ryder.