41 | Jordan

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EASTON

MONDAY

9:47 AM

14 HOURS, 33 MINUTES UNTIL DEADLINE

Jordan felt incredibly strange about being at school that day.

Monday came without warning, and with it came all of the normal aspects of her world. Landon kissed her good morning when she walked into the school. Kate ran up to her and Mary to ask about their weekends and brag about how many parties she had managed to attend on just one Saturday night. The football players all flirted with the three girls as they walked by, ignoring how uncomfortable it made Michael to see his twin sister touching his friends' biceps.

The only difference between this Monday and all the previous ones was the fact that Parker Nottingham was nowhere to be found.

Mary clearly noticed this as well but didn't say a word, instead focusing on just how much Brett Kipsey could bench press as he explained all his weekend gym exploits.

It was bizarre for Jordan to remember that the football game that had ended with Michael Hadden unconscious on the field had happened just three days ago.

So much had happened in between that Friday night football game and this Monday morning that Jordan occasionally thought she might have dreamt the entire thing.

In all honesty, Jordan was confused. She didn't know if she was supposed to adhere to the deadline given to her on Saturday night. She didn't know if she was still expected to kill her best friend's twin brother. She didn't know what was going on, and yet there she was, standing in the hallway on Monday morning with Mary and Kate as if nothing had gone even remotely wrong.

She could feel the panic rushing through her at every moment of that Monday, but she didn't know what she was supposed to do about it. There was nothing for her to do: no one for her to talk to, no one for her to confide in. The police were in on whatever the stalker had going on, Barlow had made that perfectly clear. She couldn't go to the cops, she couldn't go to school authorities...Jordan Conrad, for the first time in her life, felt completely and utterly helpless.

The only thing she had to go on was the face of the stalker. She knew what he looked like. But she didn't have a name, and address...nothing to identify him with in her unfortunate absence of facial recognition software.

So she didn't do anything about it.

School came and went on that Monday, ending with Jordan and Mary finding the other three at the end of the day.

"Come to my place." Jordan said quietly as Lindsey and Roland looked rightfully surprised at being talked to in a public place by the popular three, "I don't want any of us to be alone when...when the deadline hits."

Everyone nodded in unison and trekked out to their individual cars to head towards the Conrad residence. No one wanted to be alone that night. Midnight would come quickly, and with it the deadline for Jordan to have either killed Michael or be set to get killed herself.

***

EASTON

MONDAY

11:47 PM

13 MINUTES UNTIL DEADLINE

"Stop shaking." Jordan ordered Roland from beside her. The boy was shivering as if he were sitting in a pile of snow and not on the couch in a well-off home.

"I can't." He snapped back, "Sorry if I'm a little worried about us all being murdered in—" he checked his watch, "—twelve and a half minutes."

"Let's think about something else." Mary offered, standing up from the loveseat across from Jordan, "Parker hasn't contacted me once since Friday, so I think we can safely assume my picture-perfect relationship is over."

"Picture-perfect relationship?" Michael repeated, raising his eyebrows, "Mar, you cheated on the guy with Jordan's brother for like two years."

"Can we not bring that up?" Jordan asked, rolling her eyes. "I'm still not over it."

"Yeah whatever." Mary shrugged, "It was picture perfect in everyone else's eyes."

"Honestly, I'm waiting for Parker to call you." Jordan leaned back in her seat, cocking her head to the side and smirking, "I want to be there when he rips you to shreds."

"Jordan—"

"Both of you just shut up." Lindsey interrupted, "We have much bigger things to deal with than Mary cheating on her boyfriend who we all know was also cheating on her. Big picture, guys."

"We're trying to not think about the big-picture stuff right now, Lindsey." Jordan replied, "Or did you forget since for some odd reason you're not affected by this at all?"

"Not affected by this at all? The entire murder of our siblings could be put on me."

"At least you'd be alive for it to be blamed on you."

"Ah yes, what a life—behind bars."

Their bickering was interrupted by the giant grandfather clock in the Conrad's living room chiming to signal that it was officially midnight.

Time was up.

The clock rang twelve times and the teens sat in silence, no one willing to speak about what they were thinking. No one wanted to know if they were all about to die.

"Well, maybe that was it." Mary spoke slowly as the last chime sounded with no movement from anyone, "Maybe—"

A knock sounded on the Conrad's front door and all five teens collectively screamed. They all exchanged glances before Jordan stood up, bracing herself for whatever was about to happen.

"I'll get the door."

She walked over to the front door, trying not to think about what was waiting on the other side. Jordan put her hand on the door knob and twisted slowly before flinging the door open in an effort to get it all over with.

"Hey, Jord." Erin Green smirked from the doorstep, "Time's up."


A/N: And that's the end of Killer Instinct! Ya'll know I can't resist ending on a cliffhanger. I haven't decided yet if the sequel is gonna be a sequel, a prequel, or a combination of both. Let me know your preference!

Also, keep an eye out for Theories of Insanity coming to Wattpad and Radish soon, and for Forbidden (Three's Company book one) being published in PRINT soon!

Thoughts on the final chapter?

-Katherine

-Katherine

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