Within the Cabin Walls
By Chadd Hennig
A hesitant look creeps onto her face after being told to share her alibi. I repeat my demand.
“Louisa, it’s your turn. Todd did it so now you have to.”
“Yeah, okay. Um...”
“You aren’t hiding anything, are you?” questions Lexi.
“Of course not. Sorry, I’m still a bit shaken. Here it is. After we arrived at the cabin, I was terribly encumbered as well as starved. So immediately, I flung my backpack on the couch and went to the kitchen to see if there were any snacks. As expected, I found nothing in the cupboards or fridge.”
“I love essays,” Lexi mutters.
“Excuse me?” Louisa interjects.
“How dumb are you, Louisa? It’s a joke. A joke using a metaphor. I’m comparing your endless flow of unnecessary details to that of a long, poorly written essay.”
“Like any of us were supposed to get that.”
“You’re right, I shouldn’t have overestimated your intelligence like that. I’ll keep that in mind.”
I notice that Todd’s face starts to show signs of aggravation, and can almost guess what he’s about to say.
“Lexi, can you shut up? And Louisa, unfortunately, she has a point. Please keep it simple.”
“I thought you all would have appreciated the details,” Louisa replies.
“JUST CONTINUE, OKAY?” I finally let out.
“Rawr!” Squeals Lexi in a ridiculous hyena-like tone.
“Fine. So after finding no food in the kitchen, I asked Todd for a protein bar, to which he said yes.”
“Yes, I did,” Todd says.
“I sat on the couch—opposite to where Todd and Lexi were—and went on my phone while I ate the protein bar. That’s when I discovered that this trash place has no WiFi.”
“Don’t remind me.”
“The absolute terror!”
“I took a nap there for at least half an hour. And when I woke up, I unpacked in what is now my and Lexi’s room.”
“What did you unpack?” Lexi snaps.
“Probably the knife that killed Garret,” I add in what I thought was a subtle way. Each face in the room goes pale; shocked by something I couldn’t seem to identify.
“Cody, we never found the murder weapon,” Todd says cautiously. Shoot.“That’s not what I meant!” They’ll never believe me.
“Is there even any point in me continuing?” Louisa asks as she edges away from me bit by bit.
“I was just trying to be funny.” I try. Silence. “Clearly it didn’t work...” Still nothing.
“Hey, let’s give him a break. This is a stressful situation for all of us, and it’s natural to say things that we don’t necessarily mean,” says Todd. He’s right. Where is the murder weapon? It will show up eventually, and the identity of the killer along with it.
“You’re right. Sorry, Cody. I’ll keep going.” Louisa replies apologetically. “As I was saying, I went to unpack. There wasn’t much; I only brought clothes, toiletries, and a blanket. The latter of which I’m thankful to have remembered.”
“It is awfully cold here, isn’t it?” adds Todd. “There’s not much heat circulating through the vents at all.” The remark resulted in an uncomfortable look appearing on Lexi’s face.
“Yeah, it’s like they’re completely empty; I don’t even know if air is in them,” says Louisa, as Lexi’s discomfort continues to get worse. Her eyes catch mine and she forces herself to settle down. No one else seems to notice this, which leads me to believe that it was probably nothing.
“Thanks for sharing, Louisa,” I say, turning to look at the snow as it drifts effortlessly. I watch as it collects layer by layer with each second that goes by, encasing the cabin even further.
“Cody?” I turn to locate who the voice belongs to.
“It’s your turn.,” she says with a smile too big for her face. Great. Thanks, Lexi.
To be continued...
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