Eadon’s week had seeped into a winter weekend. Bags hung low and dark underneath her eyes; she hadn’t slept since the incident. She was too afraid of seeing his face again; of the bottle’s crash ringing in her ears; of the blood that leaked from his head to paint the sidewalk. No. She couldn’t do it over again. Instead, she pumped her body with caffeine and found ways to keep herself occupied when the sun sunk into the night. Usually, she’d go to the beach, finding the aroma to be so therapeutic that she would lose her way from reality.
Surprisingly, Eadon’s mother hadn’t noticed the change in her demeanor. Eadon assumed it was because she was busy with her job, which was fine by her. The less her mom knew, the better for both of them. The point of moving was to start their lives over again, to move away from what had happened in their old town- but Eadon already screwed everything up.
Curled up in one of the living room’s more comfortable chairs, Eadon mindlessly watched cartoons until her mom came home.
“I have some exciting news! Did you see, someone on our hall is hosting a murder mystery party, and I signed you up.”
“Do what now?”
“Come on, Eadon. It could be fun. Besides, at least someone here wants to create a sense of community, that’s more than we can say about our old apartment complex. Maybe you’ll make friends.”
Eadon drew in a slow sigh. She’s trying. Do it for her, she thought. “Sure. I’ll go.”
At exactly 11:11 that night, an invitation slipped under the door.
Curious, Eadon picked it up and tore open the envelope’s seal. The invitation read:
Hello. We are excited that you are coming to dinner with us. Hopefully, you will make it through the night. This is a black tie affair, please dress accordingly. Take care to prepare your character roles. Your life may depend on it.
Place: 7th Floor storage room
Eadon rolled her eyes. She could already tell this was either going to be lame or uncomfortably weird.
The next night, Eadon wore a black velvet, spaghetti strapped dress and had her lavender hair curled, walked down to the end of her hall to knock on the storage room’s door. She was greeted by familiar and unfamiliar faces of Winthrop residences and they exchanged pleasantries and what their role was.
The game was much more fun than Eadon had originally thought. Everyone had assumed their character and it ran smoothly.Over an hour into the game, the lights went out. Someone screamed as others let out surprised gasps. When the lights came back on everyone’s eyes gravitated to the body lying on the floor next to the girl who, in the game, was murdered. Eadon heard a woman’s voice say, “that’s the ring master’s side kick from the circus!” Bewildered the guests looked around at each other, unable to make anything of this. “Well. Someone check to see if he’s alright. Ask why he’s here.” A man walked up to the side kick, but froze when he touched him. He then moved his hand to feel the lying man’s pulse. “He’s dead.”