After the attack, everyone is on edge. The headmistress made an announcement saying that all classes are to proceed as usual. The boy, Ethan Slater, who is in my year, was the one who'd been attacked, and that he is alive, but in a comatose state. The attacker had not been found. Everyone was requested to return to their dorms until dinner.
"I wonder what she saw that made her act like that?" Cora says while we sit in our dorm, gesturing to Victoria who had returned from the clinic and is now lying on her bed, staring blankly at the ceiling.
"She'll be back to herself in no time." I reply, sitting on the edge of my bed, my head doing it's usual circle around fifty million different questions.
"Unlike Ethan." Cora mumbles. "I can't believe he was attacked. I mean, I know him! I have classes with him!"
"What I want to know is who attacked him and why? Not to mention, how did they manage to put him in a Coma?" I recite a few of the questions that spin in my head.
"There's many ways, magical and non-magical." Sophia points out from the bed next to Cora.
I sigh and fall backwards onto my mattress, now staring at the ceiling like Victoria is. Questions swim around in my mind, and it is all but impossible to get rid of them until I have answers. The only way to figure out what had really happened would be to go back in time, and as far as I knew that wasn't possible. My best chance is to return to the scene of the crime itself.
"I'll be back." I tell Cora and Sophia as I jump up from my bed.
"Where are you going?" Cora demands as I open the door.
"To investigate." I call back, shutting the door behind me.
The corridor is empty as I make my way down it. I freeze at the end and peer around the corner and down the staircase, but it is also deserted. I quickly make my way to the fourth floor, stopping to look down each corridor. I have no clue what I am doing, or what I am looking for. My search for answers have driven me to the scene of the crime. Even if there is nothing to find, no evidence, I have to at least try.
The library is vacant like everywhere else, the only sounds are my footsteps echoing in the silence. I stare at the floor where Ethan was found, hoping the longer I look the more evidence will appear out of thin air. There is nothing, nothing but the stone floor. I walk past the front tables, a strange scent lingering in the air. It doesn't smell of old books and dust like the library had smelled all the other times I had visited. It is a strong, sweet smell. I ignore it, thinking maybe someone had just strayed perfume not to long ago.
The thought that someone was here not long before me makes me cautious. I silently make my way deep into the library where Victoria had seen the attacker run. I check every row of shelves, seeing nothing but books. I stop to consider that maybe they jumped out the window, but when I catch a glimpse of the drop off, I realize it is impossible. The only way the attacker could have escaped was if they had vanished into thin air, there one second and gone the next. My hope of finding evidence is beginning to fade the longer my search is taking, and I begin to come to the conclusion that there is nothing to find.
I am close to turning back when I see a black piece of fabric that'd caught on a nail sticking out of the side of one of the book shelves. I pull it off, astonished at first, that I have actually found something. But how is a piece of cloth suppose to help me find someone? I sigh and turn around in defeat. Maybe I could turn it into the teachers, but then wouldn't I get in trouble for breaking the rules? I start off away from the books and head to the doors of the library, still staring at the cloth, when I suddenly run into something.
I freeze in fear as I turn my gaze away from the fabric and meet Tommy's gray eyes.
"We really need to stop running into each other like this." He says, leaving me searching my mind for a response.
There is only one thing I can find.
"What are you doing here?"
"I could ask you the same thing." He replies.
"You're avoiding the question." I point out.
"So are you."
"I am investigating." I admit.
"So am I."
"How do I know that you're not the attacker, here to cover your tracks?" I question, Levi's accusation coming to mind.
"Says the girl who has a piece of cloth that could possibly be the attackers, or yours."
"Please? Does it look like I could attack someone?" I wonder.
He shrugged his shoulders. "You can't judge a book by it's cover."
"You're avoiding the questions again." I accuse.
"You mean 'How do I know you're not the attacker, here to cover your tracks?'" He repeats, teasing. His next statement is forbidding. "You don't"
I take a wary step away from him. I don't really believe he is the attacker, but you never know what someone is capable of. And like he said, you can't judge a book by its cover.
"I can tell you one thing," He goes on. "If I were the attacker, then you wouldn't still be gawking at me."
I quickly look away.
"I should probably leave before my friends start to worry." I say, walking past him.
"You mean the people who think I'm the attacker." He corrects, making me stop halfway to the door. "I know what Levi thinks of me. But don't forget that this assailant could be anyone. If we jump to conclusions, then the real enemy could get away."
I turn to face him, confused by his words.
"Exactly what are you saying?"
"How well do you know your friends?" He inquires.
I stare at him in disbelief. Is he actually suggesting that one of my friends was behind this? Hypocrite.
"I know them well enough to trust them." I reply, my voice coming out more harsh than I mean for it to.
I turn away and start toward the door once again, his voice calling after me.
"You're not the only one who wants answers, Isabella. We could work together." He suggest.
I pause, but I don't turn around. I stare blankly at the doors in front of me, considering his offer.
"And how are we supposed to find whoever this is with nothing, but a piece of cloth?" I argue, gripping the black cloth in my hand.
When he hesitates, I look over my shoulder at him. He stands by the first row of book shelves, looking unsure of what he is about to say. He says it anyways, with more confidence than either of us has.
"We wait for the next attack."
I shake my head, unable to believe his reply and I turn to leave. We can't just sit around and wait until some innocent student is next. It could be anyone, and what if they never wake up? What if next time isn't just an attack, what if it's a murder? There is no way to find whoever this is without more evidence, but there has to be another way. I push the doors open with great force, angry that more evidence means someone else in the same shape as Ethan.
"You know I'm right!" He calls after me as I turn the corner and disappear from sight.
YOU ARE READING
(Book One of the Elemental Series)Bella has only known a terrible life living with her Aunt and Uncle. She longs for an escape and to discover the truth about what happened to her parents. Her dream comes true when she is accepted to a school that w...