The ride back to her house was always one she enjoyed. Even though there were very few cars on the highway at this time of day, she always preferred to take the longer scenic route. The winding roads and beautiful foliage mixed with the purple, pink and orange hues the sky had created put her mind at ease. She turned the volume of her music up and sang along to Rihanna's "Same Ol' Mistakes" on repeat as she drove at a steady, comfortable speed.
Fifteen minutes later, she arrived home and pulled into the driveway. As if on cue, she received a call from her mom.
"Yes, I made it home safe, ma." She already knew what her mom was going to ask. Ever since she graduated and moved all the way across the country, she received at least three calls a day asking her about her schedule, if she had eaten and her weekend plans. Sometimes the constant inquiries could be annoying, but she knew the calls served more of a purpose in putting her mom's mind at ease knowing she was safe. Even though they had their differences when she was growing up, her mom was now like her best friend and she knew she would always be there for her, no matter what.
"Okay my love, just checking." Besides her mom's voice, she could hear the loud drilling going on in the background. "Damn this noise...I swear I should have never started this remodeling. I can't even go back to sleep." She laughed, for someone who supposedly couldn't stand the drilling and banging noises, this was her mom's 3rd home renovation this year.
She giggled into the phone as she got out of the car and walked towards the front door "Mom, you could just leave the guest room the way it is. Honestly, you never have people over often anyway. You could be relaxing right now...sound asleep...no loud noises...no headaches over trying to figure out which color scheme to choose--" she opened the door and froze. Looking down the hallway, she could see that the door to her basement was cracked open. Small pools of blood led out of the door and towards the living room.
"Mom, I'll call you back. Love you!" She hung up without waiting for her mom to respond and put her purse on the wall hooks next to the door. She closed the door behind her and stood still for a while, hoping maybe she could hear movement. The house fell dead silent for a few seconds, then she heard a muffled gurgling sound. She pulled her pocket knife out of her bra and slowly made her way towards the basement. Slightly swinging the door open, she could see that the blood was all over the basement stairs. Just as she was about to head down the stairs to investigate, the gurgling noise happened again, but this time she could tell it was coming from the living room. She stood up straight and shut the door in front of her.
When she turned around, she saw a man lying on his side, bleeding, breathing heavily and doing his best to silence his own crying next to the glass coffee table. When he saw her, he attempted to let out a scream. Blood was pouring from his mouth and he was trying to get out words that she couldn't understand. She cautiously walked towards him then stopped and stood at his feet. She closed her eyes and took a deep breath then threw her knife on the couch and walked around the pool of blood he had created next to him.
"How did you manage to get yourself up here, huh?" She sat down on the couch and laughed.