****Scene 1: Michael’s POV********************************
I had searched my grandfather’s computer and I had stumbled upon some shocking information. I was searching my grandfather’s computer so that I could find communications between him and whoever tried to shoot him. That’s when I discovered a digitalized copy of a love letter from a Joe (presumably Eric’s father) to a woman named Meredith Rose. I didn’t know who the woman was and I didn’t even know if the baby she was talking about was even still in Harmony or far away. I didn’t even know if the baby was alive or not.
If the baby was alive and the mysterious Meredith Rose was telling the truth there would be a lot of lives changed. How could I tell Eric that his father had possibly shot my grandfather to cover up an affair he was having? How could I tell Eric he had a brother or sister somewhere? If or when Eric found out he would be more than a little pissed at his father.
I called Eric a couple times, but he didn’t answer so I left him a voicemail. In the voicemail I didn’t tell him about what I had found out; all I said was that I had something very important to tell him. He still didn’t answer after thirty minutes, so I decided to go over to his house. Eric and I were actually supposed to meet up at his house after school so this wasn’t anything out of the ordinary. Before I left I printed out the love letter so that I could show it to Eric.
Before I went to Eric’s house I took a detour to the park. I just needed to clear my head for a little while. I just didn’t know what to do, I didn’t know how to tell Eric all of the things that I was sure his father had done. I didn’t have any proof that he had shot my grandfather. But I did know that Joe Smith had been having an affair at some point and had an illegitimate child somewhere. That had to be what my grandfather was holding over him, which caused him to shoot him the night of my engagement party.
While I was clearing my head in the park I happened to run into Jake. He looked as if he just ran a mile, he was all sweaty. At first he didn’t even notice me, because he was so involved in his running. I called out his name and he turned around, looked at me, and smiled.
“Hey Mike” he smiled. “What are you doing out here so late?”
“Just trying to clear my head.”
“Rough day at school or was it a rough day at the office?” Jake chuckled.
“No” I laughed. “Chandler basically runs itself. This is about something totally different. I just came out here to clear my head, so that I could see things more clearly.”
“What about?” he asked. “Dude I would like to think that we are friends. I remember a time when we were best friends.”
“Jake of course were friends….You know we are best friends.” I exclaimed. “We’ve been friends forever. Nothing will ever change that. I just don’t want to involve you in all of this mess.”
“Michael what are you talking about?” he asked. “I don’t care what it is dude, were friends…….just tell me and maybe I can help.” He looked at me with the same expression he had when he kissed me the second time all those weeks ago. He didn’t kiss me this time however, he must have gotten over me and accepted the fact that I was with Eric. The last thing I needed was Eric kicking his ass, or vice versa over me.
“It’s about the trial…….” I paused. “Well I think I may have found out who really shot my grandfather.”
“Really? Who do you think it was?” he asked all stunned and wide eyed.
“You can’t tell anyone.” I said. “But I think it was Eric’s father……Joe Smith.”
Jake’s mouth dropped. “Really?” I shook my head yes.
“But how do you know he did this?” Jake asked.
“Because I found this letter written to him from some woman named Meredith Rose who he was having an affair with.” I said as I pulled out the letter from my coat pocket for him to see. “But that’s not all….I found out that this Meredith Rose was pregnant when she wrote the letter.”
“Wow that’s crazy.” Jake cried. “So Eric has a half-sibling. I wonder where they are?” he chuckled
“Jake I don’t even know where this child is or even if the child survived.”
“Yeah I know dude. It would be cool if we could find out.” He replied. “So where are you headed now?”
“Over to Eric’s house.”
“While that attempted murderer is in the house?” he asked.
“Jake” I protested. “We don’t even know if Eric’s father is the one who shot my grandfather. All this letter proves is that Joe Smith had an affair, however long ago that was.
“Mike please don’t go over there. “ Jake pressed. “Now that you suspect that Eric’s father is behind this whole thing I don’t think it’s a good idea for you to be around that guy. He’s strange.”
“Jake I’ll be fine.” I said as I ignored his warnings. “I’m just going to wait for Eric and then tell him what I know.”
“Dude I’m telling you this as I friend.” He said. “I always thought there was something wrong with Eric’s father. But this never crossed my mind.”
“Jake I’ll be fine.” I smiled. “Just relax dude.”
“You better or I’ll kick your ass.” He chuckled as he gave me a little nudge in the side. “See you later dude.”
“See you Jake.”
After the conversation with Jake I walked to Eric’s house. Usually when Eric and I hung out, his parents were not home. Sometimes they were, but it was usually just his mom. This time the door was answered by his Dad. Eric’s father welcomed me into the house; I was very surprised.
I sat down on the couch, taking my coat off just as he began to talk about something. I just couldn’t get over the fact that he might have shot my grandfather.
****Scene 2: Eric’s POV***********************************
My mouth had gotten me into trouble, yet again. Here I was on a weeknight sitting in detention, when I should have been with my boyfriend. Somethings never change...... Mrs. Duncan had decided that instead of going home to have dinner with her husband and children (God only know why her husband manages to survive life with her) she would personally fill in for the teacher usually assigned to monitor students in detention. Just my luck I would be spending two fucking hours with that women; it was bad enough I had to see her every day but now after school too.
Mrs. Duncan is the kind of teacher who makes you question why she’s even in the teaching profession; she doesn’t even like high schoolers. I would use myself as an example, but she hates me for obvious reasons; so I won't. Michael had her last year and she didn’t like him and he’s the nicest guy in the world so the lady has to be insane. I think Mrs. Duncan gets her kicks out of crushing the dreams of students everywhere. Mrs. Duncan was perhaps the strictest teacher in all of Harmony High. It didn’t help that she hated me with a passion. To make a long story short I did nothing to earn Mrs. Duncan’s endearment, on the contrary I was a complete asshole every class. A complete and unashamed asshole to her.
I came in and sat down; the classroom had about five other students. I guess they had all gotten their extra early because not even Mrs. Duncan was there yet. While we waited for her to arrive, myself and the other students in detention passed the time by dicking around or playing on our phones. When Mrs. Duncan finally arrived twenty to thirty minutes had passed. She wanted me to arrive on time, but she was half hour late. I don’t know what she was thinking, but if she thought for a minute that I was staying longer than the amount I had been assigned she was dead wrong.
Mrs. Duncan laid some papers she had been grading on the desk and looked up at me while I was on my phone. I didn’t see her when she first looked up, but I had some strange feeling that someone was watching me, so I looked up. That’s when I saw what she was doing…she was staring at me. I held eye contact with her, a sign of my defiance. “Mr. Smith.” She said. “Put the phone away.”
“Umm” I mumbled as I looked around the room and saw that every single student in the room had a phone out and was using it for very un-school related activities. But if you consider Pornhub and Victoria’s Secret Lingerie catalog school related go right ahead. “Excuse me but I’m not the only with a Phone. Everyone else has phones out as well.” I scoffed as I finished surveying the room.
“Put the phone away now!” she sneered. I don’t know why she was acting like this, maybe she had something stuck up her ass. If that was the case, she certainly didn’t know that’s a great feeling; well for me at least.
“Fine” I yelled. I did as she ordered, not because I was submitting to her; but because I was missing my boyfriend and if I pissed this woman off any more it would be hours until I saw him again. I wasn’t about to give this woman the satisfaction of giving me another detention so I sat there in silence.
Sitting there in silence I had a whole lot of time to think about a lot of things. I thought about a lot of things, including the upcoming trial, the fact that Michael and I would soon have a child to look after when we were barely out of our teenage years. I didn’t know if I was ready to be a father, I was still a kid myself; but I did know that I wanted to be in Michael’s life and that I wanted to help raise the kid. God knows if Michael’s grandfather survived he wouldn’t let her near the kid.
There was one thing that kept repeating in my head over and over again. It was something my father had said to me a few weeks ago. His words were “Things have a funny way of working out.” The conversation had occurred after I had come home from school I noticed that he was in his tool shed. When I knocked on the shed and he opened the door, it appeared that he had been doing some spring cleaning.
There was a trash can at one side of the room. When I glanced at it, it looked like he was throwing away some old music CD’s. But I didn’t have much time to verify if he was not, because he closed the door behind him and we stepped out into the lawn and we started talking. This was the same week that Michael and I had become distant, and before Kayla had faked a hospital emergency to get us back together.
My father and I actually had a conversation; father to son. It was the first time we had spoken in depth without my mother forcing us to talk. I wasn’t about to give my hopes up however, thinking he would be the father I wanted him to be. We talked about a lot of different things and soon we got stuck on the topic of Michael. I think he noticed that I was a little depressed so he asked me why I looked so bent out of shape. That’s when I told him about how Michael was trying to keep his distance from me, so that I could repair my relationship with my father. That’s when he said “Things have a funny way of working out. Son just give it time.” I gave it time and now my relationship with Michael is stronger than ever.
I couldn’t place it but my father was acting a bit strange. I just didn’t know why. Actually he had been acting strange for the last few weeks now….a lot strange.
****Scene 3: Eric’s POV*****************************************
I felt my phone vibrate from inside my pocket. I saw that I had a few missed calls and a voicemail from Mike. I asked Mrs. Duncan if I could go to the bathroom. She didn’t want to let me go so I was forced to feign like I was about to piss myself. Jumping around with my hand clutching my crotch, the whole nine yards. She finally relented, not wanting me to piss on the floor. As soon as she gave the ok, I bolted out of the room.
Once I was outside the detention room, I started walking, returning to a normal pace. If I play my cards right I might be able to get out of this hell hole sooner, rather them later. I walked into the nearest restroom and checked the voicemail, Michael left for me. It was a rather cryptic message. In the message he only said that he needed to speak to me and that it was very important. I could tell by his voice that something wasn’t right and that his message was an urgent one. I had to get to him fast. Something was wrong, I knew it.
I was just about to turn and exit the bathroom when I got another call. The person calling me wasn’t Michael, it was instead Jake……Jake McCarthy. I was surprised Jake was calling me, because I had never given him my number and we weren’t exactly friends. We were only cordial because of Michael; I had no idea why he would be calling me so late at night.
Nevertheless I answered the call. “Hello Jake.” I said uneasy. “I didn’t know you had my number.”
“Yeah Kayla gave it to Me.” Jake said over the phone. “But that’s not what’s important right now. We have a problem. It’s very serious and I think you should know right away.”
“What is it?” I said
“I promised him I wouldn’t say anything but something doesn’t feel right.” He said over the phone. “He wouldn’t let me go with him, but I know you can go and make sure everything is alright.”
“Who did you promise? Who didn’t let you go with him?” I asked. I didn’t know what Jake was talking about, he was going on and on. But deep down part of me knew that there was only one person who we mutually cared for that much to put aside our animosity.
“It was Michael.” He told me over the phone. “He found out who really shot his grandfather.”
“Really who was it?”
“Eric you’re not going to believe this but it was your father.” When he said this I nearly dropped the phone. I was completely shocked. I was unable to speak. He called my name over the phone a couple times. “Eric are you still?”
“Yes I’m still here.” I replied, finally able to find my voice. I was shaking, I just couldn’t believe my father would do something like that. “Are you sure?”
“Yes I’m sure.“ he responded. “He told me himself, and he has proof too. I saw it with my own two eyes.”
“What kind of proof?”
“I think it would be best if I let Michael tell you himself.” Jake replied. “I’ve already said too much, when I promised him that I wouldn’t say anything.”
“Jake you did the right thing contacting me.” I said. “But why the urgency?”
“Because he’s going over to your house right now.” He said over the phone. “Knowing what I now know I don’t feel right with him being over there. Where are you right now?”
“I’m at the school right now.” I answered. “I have detention, don’t you remember I said it at lunch?”
“Oh yeah.” He said. “I remember now. Just go over there now! I can’t go he told me not to go......but you can go over there; you live there. Please hurry I have a bad feeling.”
After the conversation ended I went back to the classroom to get my stuff. Once I got my backpack I left the room as quickly as I had reentered it. Nothing was going to stop me from getting to Michael; and I do mean nothing. I had one thing on my mind and that was the fact that Michael was alone in my house with my father. Not even Mrs. Duncan’s protests and shouts for me to return to my seat would keep me from my task. “What are you doing? You have not been dismissed.“ She said as she watched me pack up and leave.
“Get back here! Or that’s another detention!” she yelled out at me from the doorway
I looked back at her and saw that her face was blood red. She continued to yell but I ignored her. I was out of the school soon after. Not long after that I was in my car driving out of the school parking lot. I think on my way to my house, I must have ran at least two red lights. I had that car in the wind; it was going so fast I could have been on the next fast and the furious. I didn’t care about my own safety, I just needed to make sure that he was alright. I held on to the hope, that Jake and Michael were wrong and my father hadn’t shot Victor.
I just had to get there, before anything happened that I couldn’t prevent. I racing against time, because I didn’t know if Michael was already at my house, on the way or what. All I knew is that I needed to get there as soon as possible
****Scene 4: `Michael’s POV****************************
Once I had sat down on the sofa I was suddenly filled with the need to go to the bathroom. I went to the bathroom and when I was done I returned to the living room. I was truly shocked to see when I reentered the Smith family living room. I wasn’t surprised at Eric’s father, I was surprised at what he was doing.... He was reading the letter that only moments later had been in my coat pocket before I had sat down. Maybe I had fallen out of my pocket on the way into the house or maybe he saw it hanging out of my coat pocket and was curious about what it was.
“You know you really should keep things in your pocket more secure.” He chuckled. It was a light hearty laugh, but one that was full of wickedness.
Whatever the case was, he knew exactly what the contents of the letter was. He had no doubt read it many years ago and now he was reading it again; this time around he was no less displeased. Especially since I now knew his secret.
“Ah yes…It’s been almost eighteen years since I last read this letter.” He smiled. “Why do you have this? Where did you find this?
“My grandfather had a copy of the letter on his personal computer.” I replied. “I know you shot him. I know it.”
“Shut up! Shut up!” He yelled, as he pulled out a gun I’m guessing that was his weapon of choice when he wasn’t smothering people with pillows like coward. “How could you do this?” I yelled.
“Why?” he asked in confusion. “Why?” he repeated. “Because your grandfather wouldn’t keep his mouth shut. He kept holding that affair over my head. Once he found out he blackmailed me into selling my family’s farm to him.”
“That farm was in my family’s name for almost hundred years….Now it’s in the hands of FUCKING CHANDLERS!” he screamed, pointing the gun right at me,
“Everything would have been fine if you would have just left well enough alone. Your grandfather would have died with some from me, that girl would have went to prison, and you could have lived. But you just couldn’t keep your nose out of things……you just kept digging so now you have to die.”
“You were going to frame an INNOCENT WOMAN!” I cried. “For something you did. That is terrible. How do you live with yourself?” I asked in awe at his lack of emotion.
“Your son and I love each other.” I said. “If you kill me Eric will hate you forever!”
“That doesn’t really matter but you will not live to tell anyone.” He sneered. “Not a single soul will ever know. My secret will die with you….and tomorrow I’ll finish what I started and your grandfather will die too.”
“Your plan is flawed Mr. Smith.” I retorted. “I told someone what you did…. And if anything happens to me he’ll know it was because you.”
“For their sake they better keep their mouth shut.” He yelled back.
“Really? You are willing to kill three people to cover up a secret affair that happened so many years ago.” I cried. “There’s nobody in this town named Meredith Rose, without her to validate this letter people might not even believe it.”
“They won’t believe it, because they will never see it.” He said, holding the gun menacingly at me as if to scare me. I didn’t budge.
“Meredith Rose was her birth name. It was our pet name for her, but when she married him her name had since been changed to Alice Bennett. That is before she became a McCarthy.”
“Oh my GOD!!” I screamed in utter disbelief. “Alice McCarthy. “You had an affair with Alice McCarthy?!” I cried. Who would have thought the saintly Mrs. McCarthy would have had an affair with a married man. She was almost as saintly as my grandmother, Katherine.
“How could you lie to your wife, to Eric, and to your family for all of these years?” I cried.
“That doesn’t matter now.” He snapped. “It’s time for you to say goodbye.” He said, while aiming the gun directly at my chest.
“But wait?” I said putting my hands up. “What about the child? What happened to the child?” I cried.
“After all the digging you did you still don’t get it. Do you?” he said smugly. “He isn’t a child anymore. He’s been living here under everyone’s nose for the last eighteen years.”
“OH MY GOD!” I gasped. “JAKE? JAKE is you’re……..s-son?” I cried. “He can’t be your son?”
“He can be, because he is.” He said. “You have said enough it’s time for you to go. I have three bullets in here and I’ll only need one for you. I’m a fantastic shot.”
“Please don’t do this.” I said placing my hands upwards to shield off the bullet he would release from his gun.
He shot the first bullet, but I moved and it barely missed me. He was not happy at this outcome so he shot again and that bullet too missed me. He was furious at my fantastic dodging. “HOLD STILL OR ELSE I”LL MAKE IT HURT FAR WORSE!” he snapped.
“No I’m not going to hold still so you can kill me!” I yelled back at him in defiance. I heard the door open and it slammed hard soon after.
“NO FATHER!” A familiar voice yelled. It was Eric…..Thank God. “Put down the gun dad, you don’t need to do this.”
“Yes I do.” Eric’s father said with very little emotion. “He has to die, he knows too much.”
“Knows what?” Eric yelled.
“What he did….and what he’s be doing for years.” I answered for him. “Eric he has been lying to you for years!!!”
“SHUT UP! SHUT UP! SHUT UP!” Eric’s father yelled again and again. “Goodbye FAG!” he screamed in disgust. aiming the gun directly at me. He pulled the trigger and within seconds I heard the cracking sound of the gun. The ugly sound of the gun sliced through the air and all I could do was look down.
****Scene 5: Kayla’s POV********************************************
My mother had told me that the trial of Haley Macy for the attempted murder of Victor Chandler was this very day. Michael and the rest of the guys had tried to discover who the real culprit of the crime was; even I had tried to help despite the fact that there was no love lost between Haley and myself. We had tried and failed to discover the true culprit and now the jury was now deliberating on whether Haley was guilty of the crime she had been accused of.
I watched a little bit of the trial on the television after I got home from school. The new District Attorney Christine Barrett certainly did a great job in ensuring what would no doubt be a speedy conviction. A far less qualified attorney would have done equal well, because the evidence was so stacked against her very few people could confidently say that she was not guilty. The gun that had been used had her fingerprints on it, and she had been seen leaving the room where the shooting had occurred.
I was certain Michael was not watching the trial. He hated stuff like that, especially when he knew the person in the defendant’s seat was innocent. I didn’t care much if Haley did go to jail, we were never friends. Throw Charlotte in the cell next to her and it would have been a Christmas miracle. I did care about Michael; he would need me. He would surely blame himself for her being sent to jail. But if you ask me it was her own damn fault for showing up to a private party uninvited. Maybe she wouldn’t have gotten framed; if she was in fact being framed as she claimed
After school I invited Kevin over to my house. His mother coincidently was Haley Macy’s defense attorney. She put up a valiant fight, but it was futile with such overwhelming evidence against her client. It was no use Harmony’s law enforcement was planning to throw the book at her.
But enough of Haley’s trial. When I invited Kevin over my mother wasn’t home and neither was my father. He suggested we Netflix and chill, but I made it clear that we weren’t going all the way. We watched some movie about some short little dwarf people who had some magic ring. I don’t remember the name. I didn’t really watch the movie we were kissing and making out. I might be a virgin but that doesn’t mean I’m a nun.
My mother came home and went up to her room….but she soon came running out she was loading her gun up. When she came back into the living room, Kevin and I jumped apart. He was trying to feel me up. His hands were so soft.
“Hey Mom what’s wrong?” I said
“A call just came in….” she said out of breath. “There were shots fired at the Smith residence on 152 Magnolia. I already sent some men over there and I’m going over there now.
“Wait WHAT?!” I screamed. “That’s Eric’s house! What happened?”