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I wonder if anyone can hear my heart pounding? God, it's so loud. I got in here without anyone seeing me. I would have been caught by now, right? I'm not sure why it's now that I've had enough, but it doesn't matter. I'm here now.
Four minutes. I have four minutes until the bell rings. Four minutes until they don't laugh at me anymore.
Three minutes. My clothes are old. My shoes belonged to both of my brothers before me and I need to keep them as nice as I can for my little brother. Why didn't they just ask me? I could have told them.
Two minutes. Jesus, it's hot in this closet. My hands are sweating and shaking. I should have brought gloves. I can't miss. If I miss they will laugh at me.
One minute. I have to stop breathing so hard. They are going to hear me. Deep breaths. I need to take deep, slow breaths. Now they will listen to me. Now they will say my name without the slightest hint of mockery. This rifle is heavier than I thought. Safety is off. Breathe.
There it is. Not yet. Just a few more seconds. Let the halls fill. Let them fill like they were filled yesterday when you reminded me that I had already worn that shirt on Monday AND Tuesday.
Eeny! There he is. Don't think. Just do it.
Fuck! I forgot to put my ear plugs in. I can't hear. They look like they are screaming. Did I get him?
One more in his direction. I hit someone. I've never seen so much blood. Keep moving.
Meeny! Ha! She's running. She thinks she can run! Where does she think she is going?
Holy shit! That took her head completely off! Nice outfit, bitch.
One more. Where the fuck did everyone go? You can't hide from me! Think. Where is his class? History. No! Biology! He HAD to walk down this hall to get to his class.
Wait. Did that door just close? It's him. It HAS to be him. The door won't save you.
POW! POW! POW! Click.
Run! I have to get back to my closet. I should have put the pistol in my pants. You dumbass! Always being extra careful. My heart is pounding. Keep running. Fuck! How did this hallway get so long?
Cops! Cops are already here! Oh my God! This was NOT in the plan!
Guns. They have guns.
Where did they all come from? I have to die. I'm Moe! It doesn't work if Moe doesn't happen!
My rifle! They don't know it's empty! They will HAVE to shoot me!
Catch a killer. Don't let him go.
I woke up in the hospital. I wasn't sure at first where I was. Before I opened my eyes, the antiseptic smell of the freshly cleaned private room, the rhythmic beeping of machines, and a coldness around my wrists and ankles seeped through my consciousness. I opened my eyes slowly and could make out a large figure sitting in a chair beside me. I followed his gaze, which was directed to the television that hung from the wall near the ceiling of my room.
"... as we try to understand what happened here at Cole County High School. At 10:20 this morning, 14-year-old Jackson Oliver Beckham of Casey, Oregon opened fire in the hallway of the high school behind me, killing eleven students and injuring four more. The names of the deceased and injured have not been released, pending notification to the families of those involved."
I could see the handcuffs attached to my wrists and then to a chain that was attached to the bed I was laying in. I tried to move my legs and the chain produced a loud rattle that drew the attention of the large figure sitting in the chair next to my bed.
He pushed the button to call the nurse and almost instantly, a nurse came in to the room. A doctor followed and in quick order, gave me a clean bill of health.
"Why am I here? Why didn't you just shoot me?"
"My name is Detective John Absheron with the Cole County Homicide Division. Before we say anything else, Jackson, I need to make sure you understand what your rights are. I'm sure you have seen it before on television. It's called the Miranda Warning."
"Yeah. I know what it is."
"I knew you would, but nonetheless, I'm just going to go over each one so that I can answer any questions for you if something doesn't make sense, okay?"
I nodded my approval, what else was I going to do? He was going to talk with little regard to how I felt about it.
"You have the right to remain silent. That means you have the right not say anything to me at all. Do you understand what that means, Jackson?"
"Yes. And stop calling me Jackson. I go by Ollie."
"My grandfather's name was Ollie. Great name. This is all pretty straightforward stuff here, really. We just have to get through it and we can move on. Number two: If you give up that right, now that's referring to the right to remain silent, anything you say can and will be used against you in court. Understand all that, Ja... er... Ollie?"
"You have the right to an attorney and to have that attorney available to you during questioning. Understand?"
"Yeah. I understand."
"Okay, Ollie, the last thing is if you cannot afford to hire an attorney to represent you, one will be provided to you at no cost. Do you understand this, and all the other rights I've just read and explained to you?"
"Yeah, but I'm only 14. Don't you need my parents permission to talk to me?"
"Andrew is at the station speaking with detectives. He's given his permission to speak with you."
Oh my God. They knew. They knew everything. Andrew is my oldest brother. He's 19. He's been raising me and my other two brothers by himself since Mama was taken by cancer and Daddy was taken by his own hand soon after. My aunt took us in, but she left one night and never came home. We've been living in her house and nobody has ever told us to leave, so we stayed. Andrew is a good big brother. We didn't want to be separated, I mean, they are all I have, and he made sure that we weren't. Dallas is 16 and my baby brother, Houston, is 12. We need each other.
"Ollie, keeping in mind all of your rights as I've read them to you, do you want to tell me what happened?"
Tears welled in my eyes. Fuck! I'm such a loser. Stop it! Stop the crying. Get yourself together!
"How many did I get?"
"15. You got 15."
The conversation ended when three large men entered the room. Two were in their mid-50s, both sporting a buzzcut on their heads. The other appeared to be a hundred years past retirement age, with a much too small frame that appeared to have withered in the shade of his massive bald head. All were wearing badges, and one at a time, they introduced themselves and apparently elected the walking dead to speak.
Now it was Detective Absheron's turn to speak.
"Ollie. He likes to be called Ollie."
The old man apologized, thanked Detective Absheron, and started to speak again.
"Ollie, huh? Great name. Ollie was my grandfather's name."
That pissed me off. They were trying to make themselves relatable with lies. I'm so fucking tired of lies.
"Stop it! Stop it right now. I'll tell you everything. You don't have to lie to me."
"Fair enough. The hospital is gathering your papers for release. When they are ready, I'll need you to put this on."
One of the crew cuts unfolded a white paper suit that looked four sizes too big, was see-through and made of paper. It had a hood and a zipper that ran from the crotch to the neck. He put it on my bed, next to my feet, stepped back and crossed his arms.
"We will remove the shackles on the bed and I'll put a chain around your waist. Handcuffs will be applied and secured to the waist chain. Ankle shackles will also be utilized and they, too, will be secured at the waist chain. We will take you out the back. The press is everywhere. One last thing son, you have to wear a bullet proof vest. Reality is people want you dead."
Just as he finished speaking, the door opened and the nurse was there with my discharge papers.
****Stay tuned for part two when Jackson gives his full confession!****