Trace of Ink
By Zale_Valrez
Date: June 2, 2022
Ch. 5Perfect Crime Gone Wrong

Chapter 4: Perfect Crime Gone Wrong
"In her brassier,” she spoke. While the best friend smiled widely, then harshly unbuttoned one button of her uniform. She defiantly eyed her and Fera bravely mirrored her confidence.
"Go ahead and check it."
The police or maybe the detective stayed silent and watched every student in the room closely. Entrusting everything to his gut that he must trust the student named Fera. He just thought that she won’t make any false story. He could conclude that the girl named April was quite unstable. While Fera was cool and no hint of nervousness or hesitation.
Fera looked straight at her face with a dead expression. While the best friend was smiling confidently. Everyone fell in silence.
"Alright, to end this all. I'll go check it to clear my girlfriend's name." The boyfriend volunteered. Fera looked at him in disgust. But his girlfriend hurriedly stepped back. She was eyeing him with a grim expression. The officers were not dumb not to understand her response.
"What's the matter?" The boyfriend asked in confusion. "Are you hiding something in your bra, April?"
April's eyes started watering again, swiftly turned her toe and ran to the door. The other officer locked it before she could escape. Nick stood up, together with the officer and they held April still. "Go, get it," Nick ordered Fera.
"I am not touching someone's bo*bs." She declared and crossed her arms.
"I can do it." Her boyfriend insensitively spoke so Fera immediately stood and slapped his hand off. Glared at him to back away.
Fera got the syringe, sealed with plastic. Everything was already clear for her, she stood facing the officers asking them to let her go home. The detective didn't want to let everyone go yet but it was already late.
She was walking and enjoying the view, green leaves of strong trees around brought strange comfort to her eyes, a couple of simple houses along the way, and a satisfying landscape of ornamental plants in their front yard. The cute structure of their houses was somewhat log cabin but made of gravel.
On the other hand, Nick was silently following her, not following since they share the same way home but he choose to watch her from afar than walk with her. 
Judging by her manner, Nick already figured out that she was not just Fera. She was way more than she appeared. Her witty logical comprehension was evidence of her intelligence. Her choice of words shows her leaving standard. But he dismissed his thoughts and shrugged them off.
While Fera stared at her apartment, the new home for her new start. ‘This isn’t bad at all.’ She thought, and a small smile crept on her lips. That tiny apartment had built a special place in Fera’s heart. As she open her door, she tossed her bag on her bed and changed her clothes into comfortable nighties after taking a shower. She went to her kitchen and find something to eat.
In her fridge, she found a canned sausage. While reading the direction on how to cook it, she decided to give it a try, since she just need to fry it.
"Good thing I already bought a pan." She figured out how to turn the fire on her stove and placed the pan on it. Poured almost one-fourth of the oil bottle.
And face the canned food, she gladly found the can opener and looked at it for a few seconds. After a long staring, she cracked the puzzle and finally opened it. Triumph smile plastered on her lips and looking at the opened sausage.
"Why so smart, Fera?" She was very proud of herself and went to pour everything into the pan.
But the oil has been boiling hard and she poured everything including the liquid substance the boiled oil had gone crazy and hit her hand then she has accidentally thrown the can.
She ran away and saw the fire going inside the pan. Out of panic, she gets her pitcher of water and splashes at the pan.
As the water collided with boiling oil while it had a fire in it, an explosion followed. Her hand were fast and turned the fire off while she unconsciously let the pitcher slip from her hands and went under the table, she covered her ears. The pitcher broke but Fera seemed didn’t notice it. She bits her lip to avoid screaming.
After a while, she went out and her door flew open. Nick stepped in with a worried face.
"What happened?"
"Don't you know how to knock?" she said instead of answering. Her head flared seeing her neighbor. Not to mention she was embarrassed about what she had done, and she wanted to kick him out of her room badly.
"Don't you know how to lock it?" Well, Nick never knew how to back down. He set aside his curiosity and rebutted her remark.
“Well, then leave and I already figure out how to lock, why don’t we give it a try?”
“I can lock it for you, but explain what happened?” Truly, he already knew what happened. He walked closer to take a full view of her mess.
“Everything is fine, please go.”
"Fine? I heard an explosion."
Someone knocked and they bought turned their head to it. Fera walked to open it but she step on something. "Aw," it was a broken piece of her pitcher.
Nick was about to approach her, but she stopped him. "Make it leave." Pointing to the door, not knowing who it was so she choose to use 'it' pertaining to the one who was knocking.
"Don't move," he said and went to open the door.
"Mama Tes!" She heard Nick greet who it was. She froze hearing her nosy landlady’s name.
"Oh! Hello, Nick. What are you doing in there?" She heard the signature lively voice of her landlady.
"We were trying to finish a group project." Nick quickly came up with an alibi.
"Is everything alright? I heard a loud crash of glass and a faint explosion."
"We're trying to remix those domestic sounds, but no problem we'll tune down the volume." Fera was silently listening to their conversation and trying to move away from the broken pieces of glass.
"Are you sure? Have you guys eaten? Let me in and I'll cook for your dinner while you're doing your project." The landlady kindly offered, while trying to look at what was inside.
"We already did, and we're only finalizing our work. Sooner or later we'll finally nail this.”
"Okay." The landlady doubt it but she had no choice. He closed the door and went to Fera. Her foot was full of blood.
“Thank you for the great help, now you can go and I’ll fix everything up.” She spoke but her words fall on deaf ears. He walked towards her and she confusedly eyed him.
She squealed when he suddenly lifted her. “Put me down!” He placed her on the table and checked her foot.
The glass stuck in her foot and fera was just acting that she was fine but it was hurting bad. “DON’T!”
She cried out when he was about to pull it out. “We need to pull it out.”
“I know, I can do it. Can you now leave?” He acted like he heard nothing. As much he wanted to leave, he can’t just let a helpless woman alone wounded, her stubborn head won’t save her. He stared at Fera and Fera stared back. After a long staring, he let out a heavy sigh.
He walked out without a word. “Finally!” she exclaimed. The only problem was how to get down from the table without breaking a bone. She slowly slid down and step her other foot, ‘Why do I have to be this small?’ she mentally ranted.
She bravely jumped off since she can’t reach the floor. Unfortunately, she accidentally stepped on her wounded foot.”Aw!” She fell straight to the floor and hit her butt on the floor.
Her door went open again, her neighbor looked at her saying like he was right all along. “I can see that you're fine.” Sarcasm was already part of his saliva and that will surely linger on every word he speaks.
“Will it’s your fault, if you hadn’t put me on the table-” he grabbed her and lift her again causing her to yelp in surprise. Placed her on the table, he brought his first aid kit with him and tend her wound.
“What was that?” He pointed to her painting, as Fera turned her head to see it, he immediately pulled the glass out.
He spoke nothing and continued mending her wounds. She honestly got touched by his gentleness and help, no matter how she drove him away. After putting on some bandages, she didn’t know what to do. It seems awkward to say thank you, especially Fera since she was prideful. She found it awkward to say thank you sincerely.
He carried her again and place her on the chair facing the table. She wants to object but she can’t find the right word. She instead looked away and refuse to have any eye contact with him. She finds it rude to asked leave after what he did.
She thought that he’ll finally leave and even prepared a speech of appreciation and gratefulness. But he walked towards the stove, and she felt like sinking in her seat. Her face was burning down to her spine including the back of her ears.
He bent over to pick up the can. ‘Stupid sausage,’ she mentally cursed.
“You don’t know how to cook, do you?” He asked her. ‘Does he need to ask an obvious question? If I tell him, I can. Will he believe me?’ she thought.
“You tell me,” she instead answered.
“You don’t,” he shamelessly concluded. Not minding what might Fera feel about it, since he thought she was insensitive enough to mind his remark. And true enough, she had no problem with it. She just rolled her eyes in response.
“You boiled the oil too much, ‘cause you must be having a hard time opening this can.” He showed her the hole she did, which was done. “Even though it was easy-open can.” And showed the other end then showed her how to do it. ‘Silly me,’ she grunted silently.
She choose not to speak any since it was wholly true.
“Since it was boiling hard. And you poured the sausage in, some oil splattered on your hand. That explains the red dot on your skin. But your pan had some trace of fire, I presume, you poured the liquid too, that’s why, fire climb in the pan, in addition of massive level of fire,” he spoke. ‘Does he need to explain how stupid I was?’
“You were panicking, and thought of killing the fire instantly was to splash it with water from your pitcher but it instead explodes. And almost burned the apartment. If something happens like this again, you should just cover it and fire will subside, with dump clothe or something.” She crossed her arms, she doesn’t want to talk about it anymore.
“And your deduction, will change something?” she asked since pride runs in her blood and also an attempt of saving herself from embarrassment. Nick was about to answer her but Fera’s stomach whined. Her face fell and her cheek turned red as a tomato, and she almost slapped her forehead. She looked away not knowing what to do. While Nick witnessed the ultimate stupid moment of Fera’s entire life. And cruel enough to laugh as hard as he can.

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