A few decades have passed since her death, and the incident is now just a part of yesterday, with nobody bothering anybody about it. It has been forgotten. I now have my little grandchildren playing about in the lawn. Today is my seventieth birthday. However, there is something that bothers me much. We all know it: as we get older, we near our day of death. This is why I'm writing all about this day fifty years ago. People will come to have read this, I know, for this private letter shall be released to the public on the day that I die. Ironic, isn't it? It's my birthday today, but I'm thinking about my death. If anybody shall know of the contents of this before my death day, he will only be the white person.
I had never thought it would come to this. Who would've thought Sacremenn would die this way? I never thought she would either. It was all unexpected.
Six o'clock and five minutes in the evening, that time—that fateful time—the phone in the living room rang and then my younger sister's high-pitched voice echoed throughout the whole house, bearing my name. I rushed towards the phone stand at one corner of our living room and picked up the receiver.
"Yes," I said quite uncertainly, "this is me."
For the few minutes I listened through the phone, my hand on the receiver stiffened and shook. I received news with which I was going to decide yet whether good or bad: Sacremenn had fallen from the Math room's floor. Yes, she was already dead by the time one of our colleagues tried to contact everybody.
During the investigation, we (my colleagues and I) demanded the reason behind the situation.
"Why did she fall?"
"Did she jump from the veranda?"
"If she jumped, why did she?"
This was to no avail. Unfortunately, the police couldn't figure the puzzling questions out, too, and the loss of a friend deepened the mournfulness of the time. Most of us cried, the ones left either gazed off into space and went very silent or paced back and forth trying in vain to look for the answers that their minds required them. Talk about restlessness.
There were five of us present there at the time and we were all quite shocked and affected by her death. It was all too early, I thought. Silence loomed on all of us and it was deafening. We were all thinking. Our thoughts were flying here and there. Though it might have taken different paths, our thoughts all led to one origin—it was of her death.
"Did she jump or did she fall?" breaking the silence, one of us barked in a shaky voice.
"What, you think Sacremenn would be dumb enough to play along the veranda by herself in the evening then she'd accidentally fall? I don't think so!" another one replied.
I agreed to this. Sacremenn was one of the brightest minds of our batch, and such a thing was downright foolish for her to do.
Besides, I knew what happened.
Roughly three months before the incident, Sacremenn's friend went to her place to sleep-over. They had the mid-terms coming. They were supplied with a very nice meal before all the study, but when the study time came, they felt like they didn't want to do it any longer. However, they managed to finish studying before the clock struck one o'clock AM. Sacremenn's friend went to the changing corner to change her clothes for a night gown. When she shuffled around the room to look for her pack of clothes, she stumbled upon a broken silver anklet. It had a label. Her friend was surprised. She never thought she would see it that way.
"So Sac, you still have it, huh?" her friend muttered.
"What?" Sacremenn asked but then she turned her head and saw what her friend was referring to. "Oh, that. Of course, I still have it. You still have yours, right, Fier?"
"Uh, yeah," she managed to reply. She couldn't still believe it was broken. "But it's broken."
"Yeah," Sacremenn answered awkwardly. She knew what her friend was thinking right that moment. "I'll get it fixed somehow. You see, Ellen had played with it. I remember putting it in the jewelry box; I didn't know how Ellen got it."
"Uh-huh," Fier blurted, one eyebrow raised.
"What? You demanded an explanation. I told you. There. Done. Period."
"Well, in any case, I have my anklet unbroken. Jaq even played with it."
"Well, Ellen is a boy and Jaquelin is a girl. Boys are stronger than girls."
"Fine, have it explained that way."
Then there was an uncomfortable silence. Sacremenn bit her lip. Fier was right. It was indeed her fault, yet she couldn't admit it. She had been honest though, Ellen really played with it, but the issue wasn't on that matter. It was on keeping it safe. If one truly valued something, she would do anything to keep it safe.
The night ended with a cold and brief 'Goodnight' from Sacremenn. Still, Fier laid down eyes open. She couldn't sleep. She was deeply hurt. She gave that anklet to her friend yet it wasn't given much value. It only meant one thing to Fier.
It seemed to Fier that Sacremenn didn't think much of their friendship which lasted from third grade to second Year College. It was during this time she found out how little Sacremenn thought of it. For Fier, however, this friendship of theirs remained the optimal thing that inspired her to continue entering college—this relationship was everything to her. It meant everything to her from head to toe.
After that night, they still acted like nothing happened. Fier decided she couldn't do otherwise. Still, it was all too painful. This, Fier couldn't take, couldn't tolerate. She somehow devised a plan that would erase Sacremenn from the world in return for ignoring the friendship that she and Fier had had.
The plan was simple.
A week before the Sacremenn's death, as they were walking together, Fier told her that her own anklet was missing. Sacremenn was horrified. Now both of them couldn't wear their anklets.
"I'll look for it," she told Fier.
"What? That small thing? Sac, that'll be impossible, you'll just exhaust yourself. Don't."
"No," Sacremenn whispered barely above her breath.
"What do you mean 'no'? Don't tell me you're really going to look for it."
"I will look for it, Fier."
Fier stopped dead in her tracks, "I won't allow you."
"Stop me if you can, then, but I doubt if you can even catch me."
Then she walked ahead of Fier towards their next subject. Fier remained in her spot for a minute, not moving. Then the bell from the high school building rang. She shook her head softly and muttered softly to herself, one corner of her lips tilted upward.
Many of Sacremenn's classmates in her Math class were interrogated during the investigation. Putting it all together, I can only conjure her behavior before she died as the next.
Sacremenn was indeed looking for Fier's lost anklet. I knew that she really wanted to find it, because she wanted that when she could finally find it, she could give it back to Fier and have her own anklet repaired. Then she could at last patch things up with her best friend. I knew that the last time she saw Fier wear it was two days before Fier told her she lost it.
Seven days had passed yet she wasn't able to find it. In the middle of her Math class, she sighed. She wasn't listening to anything her professor talked about. Her thoughts were somewhere else, and she couldn't stop asking herself as to where she could possibly find it. She was so lost in thought that she didn't even notice that their professor already dismissed them. When she came to, she panicked; she was all alone in the classroom. Then she was reminded that Fier was expecting a call from her. Today was a special day to her friend.
There were no people who saw her after that. The next paragraph is how she most likely died, and I write this with confidence because I know the truth.
She managed to stock everything into her bag (along with a few curses) before exiting the room. When she did, a glimmer from the trees caught her attention. She slowed her pace in walking and then went near the corridor's edge. She tried to focus her vision on the sparkling thing among the trees. When she did, her heart leapt and her body froze. It was the unbroken anklet—Fier's anklet.
She didn't know why she didn't get anything long she could hold on to reach the anklet—I, myself, wonder about that. Perhaps it was a spur of the moment adrenaline rush. She might've tried to reach out to it, her fingers shaking, but it was simply far—I knew that myself. She might've climbed the ledge and knelt on it just to reach the anklet. Then, when she was about to reach it, she lost balance. Her knees slid from the ledge, and she fell from the fourth floor of the building.
How did I know all of this, anyway? True, I wasn't there. Yet I was there after she died before anybody else could discover more than her death.
Three hours had passed since I came back to check on her death. I was still shocked. I went into the river that ran through the campus and sighed. I would still be part of the interrogations (why not?) and that I should be acting pretty much soon. Staring off into the river, I fished for the pouch in my pocket and opened it. I shook it upside-down to drop its content into my palm.
Better get rid of this now, I thought. Or I'll be in serious trouble.
Then the silver anklet with its tiny chains smoothly snaked into my palm, a piece of fishing string still remained attached to it. I pulled it apart, breaking it. It had to be. The label of the anklet remained in my palm. In it was inscribed:
Best Friends Forever…
You might be asking who I am. As I am writing this, I am Fier Halleyworth.