Campus Crime
by Prerna Gupta
Two murders occurred last month at a well-known university.
Authorities passed off the crime as an accident…
Until this chat history was leaked:
I think I’m being followed.
I hear a creepy sound behind me.
Where are you?
Walking through the park near campus.
Are you crazy? That park is not safe at night.
It was a shortcut home.
Why’d you leave my party so early? I thought you were staying the night :)
I changed my mind.
Well…you left your keys here.
Shoot. Can you bring them to me?
I can’t leave yet. The party is still going on.
You’ll have to come back and get them ;)
Seriously? You won’t even bring me my keys?
Why don’t you just come back to the party?
My mom was right about you.
I’m confused…did I do something wrong?
Yes.
What?
You really think I’m that dumb?
What are you talking about?
Zack, I found her picture on your phone.
Whose picture?
That girl from your dorm.
What girl?
The girl I caught in your bed Monday morning!
You mean Nadia?
I always knew you had a thing for her.
We’re just friends.
Then why was she sleeping in your bed…IN HER UNDERWEAR?
Lex come on…
Red lace panties.
Really Zack?
Lex listen, please.
Don’t. I know what you’re going to say.
I have no right to care who you’re sleeping with.
We promised each other this wouldn’t get serious.
That’s not what I was going to say.
YOU were the one who didn’t want anything serious.
Look Zack, we need to –
OMG
I heard the sound again.
It’s closer now.
What’s it sound like?
Like leaves crunching beneath heavy feet.
The footsteps…
They’re getting faster!!
Are you near a streetlight?
There are no streetlights in the park!
I heard someone cough.
A deep voice.
There's someone near me Zack.
Can you see who it is?
I can't tell. It’s too dark.
Use your phone light!!
K one sec.
OMG Zack
It’s a man and…
HE'S WEARING A HOODIE
Okay, just stay calm.
Lots of guys on campus wear hoodies.
And follow sorority girls through the park at midnight??
Walk faster.
I’m running.
Are you losing him?
NO
He's running too!!
I'm calling the police.
NO!
I’ve been drinking – I’ll get in trouble.
Did you see his face?
Where are you exactly?
Alexia
HELLO????
This is all my fault.
I should have never let you leave.
I should have told you the truth.
Please be okay.
ten minutes later
Hey.
Oh thank God! Where are you???
I called the cops. They searched the park but couldn't find you.
I’m in the park.
I tripped while running.
Are the cops gone?
Yeah they left because they couldn’t find anyone.
How did you fall?!
I tripped on a root and hit my head.
Did you lose the creepy guy?
No he's still here somewhere.
I can hear him breathing.
GET OUT OF THERE NOW!!!
I can't. I think I broke my leg.
He's looking for me Zack.
I'm coming to get you.
Tell me exactly where you are.
I don’t know. I fell near a big tree.
I'm face down on the ground. I can’t move.
Stay put. I'll be there soon.
Hurry I feel faint.
Hang in there, Lex. Keep talking to me.
He's getting closer.
I hear him.
My head feels funny.
I want to sleep.
Keep texting.
What kind of tree do you see?
What?
The tree near you. What’s it look like? So I can find you.
It’s a big redwood tree.
I'm scared Zack.
He's going to find me.
I'm almost there, Lex.
I'm entering the park.
I can see his feet.
I'm running!!!
This is it Zack.
He's found me
It's over now
I see the tree.
I'm here!!!
Your sweater's on the ground.
Oh god there's blood
Where are you???
What have I done?
I didn't mean it, Lex.
That morning with Nadia.
It wasn't real.
I asked her to be there so you'd see her.
The underwear was her idea.
I wanted you to care.
I wanted you to want something more serious.
Lex are you there??
Why is there so much blood everywhere?
ALEXIA???
Never knew you felt that way.
You’re alive!!
Where are you?
Back in my dorm.
What happened?
Come over, and I’ll tell you everything.
Walking over now.
Hurry.
I’m at the front door!
But all the lights are off.
The door is locked.
Can you let me in?
I’m coming.
Great :) I can’t wait to hold you in my arms.
I’m so thankful you’re okay.
Wait
I still have your keys.
How did you get into your apartment?
Alexia?
What’s that sound?
Zack is offline.
Police Report: Two bodies were found outside a student dormitory.
One was a white male, age 19.
The other was a dark-skinned female, age 18.
Suspected cause of death: strangling.
Suspected weapon: red lace panties.