Chapter twenty-seven

The next morning, Norman and I sat at the kitchen table. He had stayed the night considering the rain was pouring last night.

"I can't believe I was off with the names. I was almost positive there was something there. But your hunch was spot on," Norman said as he ate a spoonful of cereal.

I looked at him as I sipped on some tea. After last night, I felt better, but still a little jittery. "Sometimes coincidences happen."

"I know that, Wes. I was just hoping for once I was right."

"Well, in a way you were. The names were important just not what we thought. We both assumed the killer was going after a person with the same first and last initials, but it wasn't like what we assumed. It was deeper."

"You got a point. I just hope we can figure out why and how to stop all this. Maybe it will bring justice to those we lost and help them find peace. Do you think Maxwell will help?"

"Maybe he could provide us with a clue," I said. "We need something to help us figure this out."

After breakfast, Norman and I decided to split up. It was my decision. I told him to go talk to Maxwell. I figured it would be better for him while I went to go check out my cousin's house. More importantly, to check out Angela's room. She had to be tied up in this somehow.

I headed for my cousin's house which was just a normal house. I had Carter's number but decided to drop by unannounced. I didn't see his car in the driveway nor did I see Angela. I didn't even know if she had a car. Honestly, I didn't care whether she did or didn't. I just didn't want her to be there.

I only had an hour before I had to work, but luckily I called Melinda ahead of time to let her know I would be late. Surprisingly, she wasn't angry and told me to come in when I could.

When I got out of the car and made my way to the front door, I knocked. No one answered. I tried the front door. Locked. Perfect.

After a quick look around, I closed my eyes and reached for my magic, and willed it to unlock the door. Hearing the click, I smiled and then walked inside. Closing the door behind me, I locked it.

Looking around, I saw the house was a mess. Like a fight or argument had broken out. There was a broken lamp on the floor in the living room and pillows thrown everywhere. What on earth happened here?

I headed down the hallway and looked for Angela's room which I found by the pink and purple butterflies on the door. Trying the golden doorknob, but it was of course locked too. I tapped into my magic and tried to unlock the door, but I was met with a weird barrier. Now how was I supposed to get in?

"What are you doing here, Weston?"

Startled out of my skin, I nearly jumped. Turning around panicked, I found my cousin in front of me. He was in a black overcoat and dressed in a nice-looking suit. It looked like he had just come from a funeral.

Shaking myself out of my thoughts, I looked at him startled. "I, uh..."

Carter crossed his arms. "Did you break in? No, that isn't like you. Dammit, Weston, you used that same magic your grandmother and you mentioned, didn't you? Are you here to snoop around?"

I held my hands up. "I did use magic, yes. But it's not what you think. I do have a good reason. I swear it."

"You better have a damn good reason."

"I do. I should have told you this before, but the day you found me nearly passed out, it was because of of Angela."


I nodded. "Yes, she snuck inside my car and tried to hit on me."

"Wait. I thought she was with Hayden Lakewood? He is all she talks about. I didn't understand it considering she still occasionally makes remarks towards me. The whole thing is bizarre."

"Believe me, I know. It confused me to. And I needed to..."

"Is this about Hayden? Are you jealous?"

I was taken aback. But then nodded. "In a way, yes. I am. But I also really want to protect Hayden. If she is hitting on you and trying with me, I don't want his heart broken."

Carter rubbed the back of his head. "All right. Fine. I'll let you into her room on one condition. You only, and I mean only, find out if she is hurting Hayden. I don't trust Angela at all, but she does have the right to her privacy."

I nodded. "Promise."

Carter unlocked the door with a key he pulled out of his wallet. Once he opened the door, a smoke of purple blew passed me.

"Did you see that?" I asked.

"See what?" he asked as he opened the door wider. "What in the actual hell?"

"What?" I asked, looking inside. Instead of a nice room with a bed, dresser, and all others essentials for a bedroom. It was instead painted all black and only a futon. Glancing around, I saw a purple smoke coming from the closet. "Do you see that?"

"See what?"

"The purple smoke."

"Purple smoke? I think you might be hallucinating there, cousin."

I rolled my eyes and walked over to the closet. Opening the folding doors, I gasped. Purple smoke was swirling about. After waving my hand and clearing it, I saw a shrine. Literally. There were candles and pictures of all the victims all crossed out in black. There was even a photo of Jessica with a sticky note that read: KNEW TOO MUCH!

Carter came over. "What in the holy..."

"Don't say it!"

Carter shrugged. "I was going to say in the holy ghost of almighty."

"Sure you were. It looks like a shrine." I took out my phone.

"What are you doing?"

"Taking a picture. What does it look like I'm doing? The police need to see this."

"And they would probably arrest you. Think about it? You are their number one suspect after all. They'll question how you got the picture. I'll take the photo." He took out his phone and snapped a photo of the shrine and the rest of the room. "I can't believe she would do this."

I looked over at him as I felt hurt and betrayal radiating from him. "Carter, man, I wish I had been wrong. I'm sorry."

Carter shook his head. "You have nothing to apologize for. I knew Angela was... I don't know... Manipulative. But to kill people. That is on a whole nother level. Why would she do this?"

I shook my head. "I'm not sure. But I doubt it's good."

Carter nodded. "You might be right." He then knelt. "What's this?"

"What's what?" I asked as I knelt beside him. I watched as he picked up something.

"It looks like a note." As he was looking over it, I felt the confusion in his emotions spike. "Here you make sense of it."

The second I took it from him, I prepared myself to be invaded my voices and emotions. But I wasn't. Honestly, I was glad about that. Instead, I glaced down at the note. "Wait. This... This is Hayden's handwriting."

"Are you sure?"

"Positive," I said before reading the note out loud.

"This poem is for you,

Roses are red, violets are blue,

Oranges are orange just like the sunrise,

Under the moon,

Buds the prettiest blossoms

Lilacs, lavender, and even lilies,

Enjoy your day, with laughter and smiles."

"Not the greatest poem in the world."

I smirked. "It's not. That's why I know this note if for me."


"Hayden and I made up this secret message game we found once on the internet. It was a way for us to tell each other what was going on with each other or tell special things only we would know." I took out my phone and went to the notepad. "Take the first letter of each row." I typed. T.R.O.U.B.L.E. And then turned it to my cousin. "Hayden is in trouble."

"Okay, but anyone could know that secret message. It's not unique."

"True, but trust me. I know Hayden. This is for me. He wants me to know he is in trouble. I can't explain it, Carter."

"If you say it is, then I trust you. Just think you both need better poems. Those sound terrible."

I laughed. "That's how I know it is Hayden. He and I can't rhyme worth a penny." I stuffed the note into my pocket. "We should go before Angela gets back. When she does, ask her about Hayden and then text me, okay? And text that picture to Norman instead of the police."

"Are you crazy? If she is killing people, the police need to know."

I sighed. "I know that. But if she has a hold of Hayden, I want him safe. And if the police get involved, she may end up killing him. Give me a few hours to try and find him and get some answers myself."

"Fine, but you owe me."


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