Thirty-Two: Another Late Night Excursion †

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A note was shoved under my door earlier.

It was from Scott, actually. It entailed that he thinks we shouldn't have another "hot chocolate date" anytime soon. I was fine with that. I didn't think we could amount to anything, anyway.

Then, tonight came around.

I thought tonight was going to be as good as any night to watch Jason go through town again on his late night expedition. Candidly, I wasn't even sure he was going to go out tonight. To me it could be random, or it could he planned but in advance so it would still alter every week or something. But tonight was a guess, but I anticipated him going out.

Waiting in the threshold to the food court, I heard feet scurrying down the steps, the reverberation resounding through the corridor. I stood up and concealed myself behind the wall. I poked my head out once the sounds went past me; surely enough, it was Jason.

I commenced my stalking, creeping out behind him. He was already halfway down the road when I made it out of the mini car park out of out the grounds. I had to merely trot to keep up with him. Why was he so fast? Was he in a hurry? I quizzed myself.

How should I know the answer to my dim-witted question?

Rolling my eyes at my own inanity, I picked up my pace a little as Jason turned a corner. I followed quickly after. Soon enough, we were in town again and he was weaving through all the little alleyways. It was disorientating enough going through them in the dark. It freaked me out a little not knowing what hides itself in the dimness. It wasn't that I was afraid of the dark; it's what in the dark that I can't say which is what I'm fearful of.

We had already been scurrying around for ten minutes and we were still submerging into alleyways and emanating out of them. I was growing fatigued, craving the sleep I deserved after a long day. I'm sure anyone wanted sleep when it was the dead of night, too. Why they even kept the college unlocked at night was beyond me. Didn't they apprehend that criminals and sociopaths were out there?

Ultimately, we came to the concluding street. I stayed behind the wall and just watched Jason go to the forsaken warehouse. I thought I might as well wait and see what happens. So that's exactly what I did: I waited. Two hours, precisely, is what I waited.

Finally, I could hear voices from the warehouse. I concealed myself in the darkness and began dashing out of the alley. I turned left where Jason would turn right and back to the college. I hid close to the wall, hoping the darkness would mask me.

Jason's footsteps grew progressively louder and louder. He materialized out from the alley and turned right without a moment's hesitation. In his hands were pictures – A4 size pictures. I followed – well, mainly stalked – him back to the college, hoping to get even the slightest glimpse at the pictures in his hands. Instead, he ran straight up to his room, keeping the pictures close to his side.

I ran back into my room, almost falling to the floor in the procedure. Johanna sat bolt upright, eyes wide, pulling the duvet up to cover her body. She was wearing pyjamas, I could see from where the duvet fell down by her shoulders.

"It's... just me," I panted, wheezing obnoxiously loud and turning on the lights.

Johanna mumbled, "Why aren't you in bed? It's half two in the morning." She flopped back down to the bed.

"Followed... Jason."

Now she sat bolt upright again. "What happened? Anything new?" she asked quickly.

I staggered to my bed, previously being doubled-over and clutching my knees for dear life. I sat down on the bed and attempted to catch my breath still. When I was back to my normal, typical breathing, I finally replied. By this point, Johanna's eyes were closed but she was still sitting up.

"He had pictures when he came out two hours later," I declared, "but I couldn't see the pictures."

"What on earth could he be doing in there?"

"The possibility of a strip club is out of question now," I articulated amusingly.

Johanna shot me a glance inbetween her speculating everything. She didn't seem too amused by it. She turned back to face opposite her and thought for a moment. Why did she think so much? Why doesn't she say things on impulse or act on impulse? Or maybe that was a good thing, I mused. Maybe I wouldn't have gotten on with her at first if she wasn't a thinking-type of girl.

"Maybe he's searching for people. Maybe he wanted pictures developed. Maybe..." she ran out of suggestions so soon.

"Maybe he leads a double life," I added, "like what a criminal would do."

"I doubt he's a criminal, Tiegan. If he was a criminal, background checks would have said something before they let him enrol here." She was adamantly stern.

I shrugged. "It's always a possibility. Criminals have techno-wiz people who can change things on database. What if that happened? What if his name isn't really Jason McCann but instead something like Simon Hills?"

"Now you're being absurd. Go to sleep, Tiegan."

I opened my mouth to say something but decided against it. Instead, I gathered up my pyjamas and ambled into the bathroom silently. I changed and got ready for bed before dumping my clothes in a hamper on the floor. I need to take them to a dry cleaner or something. Providentially, there was one in town.

I switched off the lights and got into bed, crawling under the duvet. Something wasn't right with Jason, and now it was authenticated. He was hiding something from everyone – including Lea. How much did he tell Lea? He never told her about the modelling pictures, so what else is he concealing?

We all had our fair share of secrets, but that doesn't mean you hide them from your girlfriend. She's meant to be trustful of you and she's meant to be forgiving. She'd help you through your secrets and tells you it gets better – depending on what the secret was. You don't just hide everything.

Unless your relationship wasn't real, I pondered. And for Jason and Lea, it wasn't. Jason didn't feel like he was in a proper relationship. Instead, he hid everything from her and let her think that he loves her. He doesn't, I know he doesn't. There's something in her eyes when she looks at him that he doesn't possess.

Mustering all my thoughts to calm down, I closed my eyes and endeavoured to get to sleep.

Author's Note:

No strip club lol. What do you guys think the pictures were for? More modelling? ;) Comment your theories! I would love to hear what you guys have to say.

Thank you :) x

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