Chapter 11:

Back to the Present (part 1)


Hashimoto Daisuke

10 years ago, I accidentally committed a murder, hid a body, and practically got away with it, and now I’m a professor at London’s most prestigious Universities in Oxford, what are the odds of that? I mean how many people can say ‘Hey I’ve accidentally murdered my former best friend and classmate and now I’m a professor at Oxford University.’

Soon after the funeral we graduated and decided it would be best to sever ties with each other, meaning I had to leave my two best friends as well as my girlfriend, it was difficult, tears running down the faces of both girls, the look of disbelief I got from Kazuki as I picked up my luggage and loaded it into the cab, a few hugs, a kiss, and waves goodbye later I was off so I could catch my flight to the UK.

It’s been so long and I always think about contacting them again, but then again, I don’t want to risk anything. Ever since that day, I have had a habit of always looking over my shoulder. I try not to let my past affect my present but then again, I can’t help it, sometimes I feel as if someone’s keeping an eye on me, I think someone’s watching my every move. If they are I think they know…

Anyways, back to what I was saying before, here I am, in London, I’m the youngest professor here and what can I say I’ve always been a bit of an overachiever. I wouldn’t say coming here was the right move or it was a dream come true London’s quite overrated, the only reason why I accepted a job here was because… well… the pay was good and I got the highest test score in the class.

I do like working here don’t get me wrong, and the classes are fine, all the students are hard workers but some of them do look down on others, those are the students who didn’t just get here because of their hard work and dedication towards their studies but because of Daddy’s contacts. The majority of these students are rich either the kids of politicians or businessmen, the others are here due to scholarships.

Being the youngest here means that other professors do look down at me, especially the head of the department, but I’ve made my place, especially in front of the students who are my main priority, I don’t give a shit about anyone else. My life consists of two things; work and home. I don’t go out, I don’t have any friends, and life is different to how it used to be.

I would be lying if I said I don’t miss my friends. I would be lying if I said I didn’t miss Emi. I would do anything to hear her voice, to hold her in my arms, to kiss her again. I would do anything to hang out with Kaz and Reiko again, I missed the four of us hanging out, laughing, talking about nothing and everything. I wonder what happened to them.

I wonder if any of them moved on. Sometimes I get scared that Emi’s moved on, I haven’t but I wouldn’t blame her if she has, it’s been 10 years since we last saw each other, since we spoke, so I guess it wouldn’t be fair to her if I wish she didn’t move on, I guess I can’t hope that she’ll be waiting for me, but a part of me does.

Sometimes I get so frustrated I cannot help but scream, I have a room made especially for breakdowns in the basement of my house, I’ve set up an entire gym there, punching bag, treadmill, weights, the works. It helps sometimes, but other times I just need to cry, if past me saw present me, he would most likely die from laughter.

I’ve never felt so alone, home feels so far away. Wherever my friends were that’s where home was. As much as I’ve grown used to my job, my surroundings and London itself, ‘There’s no place like home.’

But that was before something changed a few weeks ago, as usual, I walked to work, travel cup in hand filled with black coffee. I’ve been living off caffeine and little food for 10 years to the point I’ve grown custom to living without food for several days.

Anyways, I was on my way to the lecture hall, I like to get there at least an hour early to gather my thoughts when my phone pinged, that was unusual because whenever my family contact me always Facetime me when I’m home as they know my schedule, I never got any texts or calls during the day.

When I looked at my phone screen my heartbeat increased and not only because of my daily caffeine intake, but because of the message that popped up, I think I must’ve dropped my coffee without realising, there was a small, wet patch on my knee and coffee was dripping from my fingers, I had to remove my glasses, wipe the frame with the hem of my jumper, and put them back on to re-read the message.

‘I know what you did 10 years ago'

‘Remember that one eventful Winter afternoon, back in 2011?’

‘I am coming for you'

Did someone see us?

Did we drop something?

What went wrong?

What are we going to do?

These questions have been flooding my mind for weeks, and there is nothing I can do about it, because he knows who I am.

He knows where I live.

He knows everything about me, about all of us.

Now we’re all being Hunted.

Before I could react in any other way another message popped up, but this time from another number.

‘In two weeks, go back to Matsukawa you’ll get your answers'