Entry for the Gemstone Contest
Posted July 31st, 2013 by graceterry
in A place that I like to call anywhere and everywhere
July 31st, 2013
A/N: This isn't exactly mystery...... whatevs. Enjoy!
Jazmine Darrell is gone.
It was during the school talent show that I first noticed she was gone. I was watching Jake Towers tell lame jokes when I noticed Jazzy was gone.
I got to my feet and looked around for her. I was worried that something had happened to her. She had been right next to me!
“Marshall Branfield, you sit down!” the teacher hissed at me.
I rubbed my sweaty palms against my jean legs. Where had she gone? More importantly, what happened to her? Jazzy loved the talent show! Why would she leave?
About three days later, I noticed she wasn’t in school. I biked over to her house. I tapped on the door, but no one answered.
I bit my lip. Mrs. Darrell didn’t go to an office-she did computer programming at home-so she should be home. Plus, she was a single mom with an only child. And, if Jazzy was sick, Mrs. Darrell must be home. I texted Jazzy for the hundredth time. Where is she? I wondered.
The next day, Jake Towers asked me if I had heard from Jazzy. He had a super-ginormous crush on her. The same went for Mr. Towers (meaning he liked Mrs. Darrell). “No,” I said. “She’s still missing. I haven’t heard from her.”
“Good!” Jerry Kyle, in the corner of the classroom, scowled. He hated me and he hated Jazzy. Probably because his mom and Jazzy’s mom were business rivals. “I hate her! I wish you would disappear, too, Marshall.”
I was fuming, but I tried not to let people notice. I turned back to Jake, and said, “You know the weird thing? I went to Jazzy’s house, and nobody was there. Not even Mrs. Darrell.”
“What?” Jake gaped. “Marshall, stay away from there! It could be dangerous! She could have been murdered and the murder’s still there!”
I shivered at the thought of my best friend, murdered.
“Don’t go out there, Marshall. I’m warning you,” Jake said.
I nodded, but inside, I was plotting to go out there. I spun my pencil between my fingers, and made plans.
At about 11:30 that night, I sat on my bed, doing my homework and eating pretzels, Jazzy’s favorite snack. Then my phone buzzed. I took it out and looked at it.
It was a text, but the strange thing was that none of my contact were listed as who it was from.
A number wasn’t listed, either.
I looked at the message. It was very eerie. It only said, Jazzy’s in danger. I need your help. Meet me in front of her house.
It was creepy, that’s for sure, but I couldn’t deny the offer. After all, it was my sweet friend, Jazzy! I needed to rescue her.
I climbed out the window and down the side of the house. As I did, I got to thinking. Who would kidnap Jazzy? (As assumed what happened to her.) Then I had it.
Jerry Kyle! And his mom. They would ransom her off to Mrs. Darrell, in exchange for her quitting her job! It was the truth, I was sure of it.
When I reached Jazzy’s house, at first all I saw was Mrs. Darrell’s car parked in front of the house. No one else was in sight.
I looked around some more, until I felt a cold chill. It prickled, running up my spine. I shook with fear and turned around.
Mrs. Darrell sat in the car. She was dressed in several baggy sweaters. Under that I could faintly see the bottom of a practical pantsuit.
“Mrs. Darrell!” I called with triumph. “It’s me, Marshall!”
She turned to look at me. Her eyes were hidden behind sunglasses, and she didn’t say a word to me. She simply motioned for me to get in the car.
Shivering, I climbed in. After all, this was Jazzy’s mother. I trusted her.
“Where’s Jazzy, Mrs. Darrell?” I asked. “Who’s holding her? Is it Jerry and Mrs. Kyle?”
She didn’t say a word, just started driving. In fact, she stayed silent the whole drive.
When we stopped, I saw we were in front of an abandoned hotel. “So this is where Mrs. Kyle is keeping Jazzy!” I demanded.
Mrs. Darrell, again, didn’t say a word. She took my hand and led me towards the door. I shuddered, trying to be discreet about it. Her hand was eerily cold to the touch. As we entered the dark hotel, my fingers accidentally brushed against her wrist. I immediately pulled them away, because I thought I’d felt something strange. Or rather, what I hadn’t felt.
A pulse. I must have been out of it, because I thought Mrs. Darrell didn’t have a freaking pulse.
Then I yanked my hand away because I saw something foul.
A dark-haired woman was lying on the floor limply. Blood poured from her chest from a bullet wound. It was recent, barely an hour old. Vomit rose in my throat. Then I got a closer look at the body.
My blood ran cold.
It looked exactly like Mrs. Darrell.
But Mrs. Darrell was right behind me! I turned to look for her, but she was gone.
She had disappeared.
In horror, I knelt by the woman’s body. Her pantsuit looked an awful lot like Mrs. Darrell’s. And her eyes were open, dead and lifeless.
The pieces of the puzzle were starting to fit.
It all made some sort of sense. Mrs. Darrell hadn’t been dead for more than an hour. I hadn’t been with Mrs. Darrell for more than an hour. Mrs. Darrell had wore the sweaters to cover up the blood, the sunglasses to cover up her eyes, she hadn’t been able to talk...
I backed away from the body. It was too much to take in.
“Going somewhere?” said a very familiar voice.
I turned to see Jake. He and his musclebound father were standing there. Jake had a length of rope in his hands.
“Marshall, Marshall, Marshall,” Jake said slyly. “I told you not to snoop around Jazmine’s house. Why didn’t you listen?”
It was them! Not the Kyles, but the Towers. Mrs. Darrell had probably resisted Mr. Tower’s advances, the reason she was murdered. They probably have Jazzy held captive right now... or worse.
“Jake, tie him up and take him downstairs,” Mr. Towers ordered. “And let’s hope he doesn’t resist as much as Mrs. Darrell did.”
I gulped. I tried to run, to get help, but Jake, captain of the wrestling team, was too strong for me. He tackled me and soon had my hands bound behind my back roughly with rope. He silenced my screams with a bandanna. Then I was dragged roughly down the stairs.
I woke up next to a small figure, about my size. She had long dark hair and big brown eyes. She was bound and gagged as I was. It was wearing a silver tank top and jeans with a hole in the right knee.
It was wearing what Jazzy had been wearing the day she disappeared.
It was Jazzy, in fact, and her eyes met mine with terror. She was begging me to get her out of here.
The only trouble was, I didn’t know how.
Would Mrs. Darrell’s ghost help us? I hoped so. I really did,
In the boring state I was in, I was trying to figure out the supernatural. How had Mrs. Darrell appeared to me such a short time after she died? And why had she led me right to her body?
The thing I was wondering most was this: I had heard ghosts sometimes lingered because they had something to atone for, that they hadn’t done when they were alive. In every single ghost story I had read, the ghosts had been around for at least a couple years. Sometimes they were around for hundreds. I marveled at the fact that Mrs. Darrell had appeared so soon. She had gone to me first to get my help with Jazzy. That must be the thing she needed to do to rest in peace.
Well, I was going to help her. I wanted to get Jazzy free, too.
I wiggled my wrists in their ropes. They were slightly loose-just slightly. Then I remembered something. Jake and I were in Boy Scouts together! He tied terrible knots that could easily be undone...I pressed my fingers against the knot and got to work.In a few minutes, the ropes crumplled at my feet.
I pulled the gag off and knelt beside Jazzy. “Are you okay?” I whispered.
She nodded. Her eyes pleaded for me to let her go.
I pulled the gag loose. She gasped for breath. “They... they killed my mother,” she whispered.
“I know, Jazzy. I saw her ghost. She brought me here,” I said. I untied her, and helped me to her feet. “Let’s go.”
We crept to the door, and started to open it, but it opened on it’s own. Jake stepped through the doorway, holding a gun. “I anticipated your escape,” he growled. “So you just won’t escape.”
He pressed the gun against Jazzy’s skull.
“Jake, why did you do this?” she pleaded.
“Because of the Darrell’s rejections of my family,” Jake said, pressing the gun harder against her skull. “You’ve never cared. This is my way of revenge.”
I couldn’t stop what happened next. He curled his finger around the trigger, and started to pull...
Then he fell to the ground, unconscious.
Jerry Kyle stood behind him, a baseball bat in hand.
“Jerry?” I whispered, startled.
“Come on, Marshall!” he hissed and he started to run down the hall.
I took Jazzy’s hand and pulled her down the hall. We caught up to Jerry and soon passed him. We could see something at the end of the hall: Mrs. Darrell.
“Mom!” Jazzy cried out.
Then the terrifying sound of a gunshot echoed down the hall.
I gasped and we ran even faster.
Unfortunately, we didn’t reach the end of the hall before Jake tackled Jazzy. She screamed, and pushed at him. I started towards her, but Mr. Tower’s muscle-bound arms held me back.
“Now’s the time for revenge!” Jake laughed.
But then, suddenly, Jerry appeared behind Jake and stepped in front of him. Mrs. Darrell appeared, too. Jake’s eyes went wide, and he gasped for breath. The killer grip was released on me, and I saw Jake fainting. I assumed Mr. Towers had fainted, too.
My jaw had dropped. In one incredible sweep, Jake and Mr. Towers had been knocked out. Jazzy and I were safe.
Mrs. Darrell kissed Jazzy’s forehead. Tears glinted in their eyes.
I turned to Jerry, not wanting to interrupt their goodbye. “Thanks for saving our life,” I said.
He didn’t say a word. Instead, he shrugged, and pulled his shirt collar down slightly.
A bullet hole was in his throat.
I gasped. Jerry quickly scratched out words in the dirt: I never really hated you guys.
Then he disappeared. His purpose was over.
Then Mrs. Darrell followed. She disappeared, after hugging Jazzy one more time.
They left us alone in the dark.
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