3 A.M.

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Thrillers  |  House: Booksie Classic
Jill is divorced, has a boss from hell and a stalking ex boyfriend. She receives a phone call at 3 A.M. one night. What follows is pure terror.

Submitted: February 17, 2009

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Submitted: February 17, 2009

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3 A.M.
 
The phone rang.
 
Her heart skipped a beat and her eyes froze the moment she opened them. A sudden tiredness gripped her. She had been sleeping for 4 hours now, but she felt the symptoms of an insomniac. She was dreaming but couldn’t remember what she saw. But it was something unpleasant for sure. A bat’s shadow just outside the window vanished when she blinked.
 
“Hello?” Jill answered the fixed phone beside the bed. Surprised, sleepy and frustrated… No one answered and the tones of a disconnected line echoed in her ear. Blank call.
 
She turned on the lights to get rid of the creepy ambience of her room.
 
She got out of her bed sheet, went to the kitchen, grabbed a shot glass and poured herself some vodka. Nice way to celebrate a bitchy day and a blank call at 3 o’clock.
 
‘It must be Ray. That bastard’ Jill logically calculated, pouring another shot. Bottoms up.
 
Ray was her ex boyfriend who blackmailed her after she left him. After the early days Jill had soon found out that he was a drunk, a doper and a convict. He was the person responsible for turning her marriage in a tornado by stalking Jill to her office, calling persistently at nights while Adam and Jill were in bed, and beating him up once in the office lobby. 
 
Their marriage lasted for 2 years and Adam divorced her almost instantly, getting tired of the stalking, the phone calls, and the possibility that his wife is sleeping with a maniac. She lost her alimony suite from a lawyer who was as cheap and dumb. Exactly the rate Jill could afford per hour. But she kept the apartment since it was rented by her. This was her home.
 
The night was cold and for Jill it was bitter as well. She just returned after another day when-work-doesn’t-seem-to-get-over-and-you-get-insulted-for-free. She was having many such days lately and this night she felt she would prefer being in a coma. 
She went off to sleep, still disturbed, wishing the world to change for her when she woke up.
 
The alarm went off and Jill overslept for an hour. Cursing the call in the night and her own self for indulging into senseless drinking, Jill was late to reach the posh office on the other side of town. It was a Thursday. With a hangover, her head was killing her and her adrenaline was rushing due to claustrophobia.
 
She made it to the meeting though, 30 minutes late. It was the day for the board meeting at 11 for which she had to be on time; in a messy state as if she had just done the entire blocks laundries. Jill never wore any make up as well.
 
“I think someone has been partying and having a great time. Glad to know someone’s weekend has started already” Hillary said in a way which would make Sarcasm hurt if it was a person.
 
“I’m sorry Hillary, had a rather restless night cause something kept me up 3 a.m.”, Jill said. There was a burst of laughter first from Hillary and everyone just following suite. Jill made sense of what a statement that meant to a pervert and this place was full of ‘em. She called this on herself. How much I hate me, she hatched.  Hillary loved these moments and Jill gave plenty of them away.
 
Hillary was one of those women who was sexy and got an MBA degree in ‘how-to-use-your-tangible-assets-to-work-you-to-the-top’ and a PhD in ‘how-to-ruin-Jill’s-day’.
 
The meeting was over, Jill just moved out and Daniel was not far away waving his hand as always for their coffee time of the noon. 
 
Jill picked up a coffee for both of them putting on plastic smiles for every known face.
 
“You definitely need a coffee. What’s up with you?” Daniel was concerned.
“I have no clue why Hillary won’t stop hitting me in the eye for mistakes I haven’t done. Its all just because I cant lick her up”, Jill said, rubbing her eyes ‘cause they hurt like someone’s dried all the water out of them.
“Its not really about her Jill, you look pale and she has never disturbed you so much before. Remember the times when we used to laugh it off?” Daniel said picking the coffee’s and pulling a chair for Jill.
“Let some psycho call you at 3 at night and not say a word. Let me see how you will take that.” Jill scolded.
“Damn girl. Who would call you that late? Did anyone speak?” he inquired. “The call was disconnected just when I picked it up. I’m not sure. It must be Ray”, she said.
“The next time you’re troubled at night girl, please call me. I hope you stored my number when you typed and called me on Monday”, he said.
She responded, “You know I hardly use my cell.”
Daniel clenched his fists “The crazy jerk deserves to be dead.”  
 
Daniel was the only person lately who cared about her existence. He made her laugh; he was concerned and sometimes used to help her pick up groceries on the way home. They were nice friends, and they both didn’t have many others. Daniel had a girl friend, who married someone else for money.
 
Jill picked up the newspaper getting warmed up for work, trying to ignore the thought of the call.
She read a column in the paper. Title was: MURDER AT HOSWELL AVENUE AT 2 A.M. UNDER INVESTIGATION. BLOOD AND BODY PARTS FOUND ALL OVER APARTMENT.
The paper would burn if Jill had looked too long at that photograph of the person whose body parts they were talking about. She was taken aback when she recollected what she just read. It couldn’t be Ray who had called her last night.
 
She gulped the coffee, “Well, I guess I should be back, or else I will be vaporized by Hillary’s laser stare, with free commentary of course.”
“That was quick! Well, I’ll see you around. And I would prefer to see a saner normal look tomorrow” Daniel while finishing his coffee
Daniel was back in the room, the door of which had a post saying ‘Authorized personnel only’. Daniel worked in the IT department, and was those kinds of geeky guys who had a knack for hacking and he swore by the Matrix.
 
After the day was over, Daniel and Jill shared a cab back home, as they always did. They usually discussed the pleasantries, the un pleasantries, who is dog and who is bitch in office and how the day brought about a certain tiredness in their young bones. Jill knew Daniel since a year now since he fixed her laptop in five minutes, what Bill Gate’s team could not do in a month.
 
But she was uncomfortable with him today. Her mind was repeating what she heard from him before she read that horror in black and white. They were silent while Daniel was rambling about his computer games and did not stop consoling her that everything will be alright.
 
Crossing the street, Jill shivered at the thought of getting into her apartment, especially since last night and the ghastly thought of Daniel having killed Ray. ‘He knew all about Ray, so maybe he must have…no…can’t be. You’re drinking and watching too many movies nowadays woman, and you’re sick of looking at yourself in the mirror. You’re losing it…’, she deliberated. 
 
Jill was alone and divorced. She quite often said to Daniel that she was tired of being the cook, the janitor and the caretaker of her small dingy apartment.
 
She changed, cooked TV dinner and watched a repeat of the Desperate Housewives, trying to get her mind off Ray. The horror of someone dismantling body parts was enough to disturb even the tough hearted ass holes. But she somehow pondered that she wouldn’t have to bother about Ray anymore.
 
She was reading, hoping that her life would sometime become better, wept a little, and soon she was dreaming. She dreamt a different dream today. That she was happy, she was content and rejoicing looking at the parts of Ray scattered around his apartment while playing soccer. Using his head.
 
The telephone rang. Jill was breathing heavily as she got up in a fright. Yet again. 3 AM.
“Who the hell is this?” There was no time to be courteous. No answer, just a disconnected tone. 
 
Jill did not sleep that night. Too much was happening at once. 
 
She was on time in the office the next morning. She saw Natalie plodding in the reception area amongst her team members, and had a look like she had just returned from an alien abduction.
 
“Hey, hold on Nat.” she clutched her hand, “Where you off to? And why is everyone in the lobby?” she interrupted expecting speedy answers.
 
With her face red and tears on the cheeks, she stuttered “Hillary is d -- dead.She was brutally stabbed in her apartment last night. The housekeeper informed the station in the morning. The cops say her tongue was probably first cut, and then her lips were sealed with hard adhesive so she couldn’t scream. I am trying to reach her parents…”
 
“…but where is her husband?” Jill asked interrupting her.
 
“I don’t know, I guess he is on his way by flight from Miami.”
 
Jill didn’t know what to do next. She grabbed the cell phone in her bag to call Daniel who was not seen around. She felt giddy. She couldn’t find his number in the address book. She then recollected and buttoned her way to the call logs to find Daniel’s number which was dialed the last time she used the cell to call. She read the call log.
 
She passed out. Head first, on the hard marble floor. 
 
The display read:
 
Dialed numbers
 
  1. Home
Friday 2/13/2009 2:59 AM
 
  1. Home
Thursday 2/12/2009 2:59 AM
 
  1. 0447748999666
Monday 2/9/2009 5:30 PM
 
 
 
 


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