Ami

The night was just like any other night. I stayed up late doing my office works. All of sudden, the doorknob were shrugged followed by a gentle, slow knock. At 3AM like this, I haven’t been suspecting any other person except my housemate, Ami. I opened the door and as usual, his favourite dark green hoodie were mainly stained with a red, dark-ish and sticky substance which were blood.

My face turned pale at the moment, even though I had seen this before and knew his true colors. He stepped into the house, closing the door behind him and continued to stare back at me.

The 28 years old person in front of me always had the same look. A striking-looking figure with a black coloured hair, always looks tidy although he rarely comb it. He owns a pair of eyes with the same colour of his hair.

He continued making his way into his room after spitting out a sigh seeing me frightened. I could clearly see that his head and fingers were twitching, decorated with the weird grin like any other comebacks. I continued on my work with my mind keeps dwelling on the fact that he had just committed a murder

***

The day was just like any other schooling day at the Dade County High School. I entered my class as usual and making my way to my table. As I sat down, the girl beside me starts a conversation with a normal “Hi” followed by her thoughts on what did my class teacher, Mrs. Monnahan said yesterday which was the news of a new student will be joining our class today. Having the only empty table in the class beside me, I can’t wait to have a new friend.

Mrs. Monnahan entered our class followed by a kid behind her. After the good morning greeting to her ended, she announced with a mature voice; “Class, today we are receiving a new student”. She turned her head towards the kid and voiced; “Amirul, please introduce yourself to the class”. He nodded followed by a low, deep voice; “Good morning everyone, my name is Amirul Jonathan. I just moved here and… I am hoping that we all can be friends”. Mrs. Monnahan then ordered him to take the place beside me. He was lucky to sit next to the window.

The bell rang loudly marks the beginning of recess. Amirul were indeed a self-shelling person. He is the kind of kid that stays quiet for the whole lesson. He replies with a single word every time anyone asks him something. He walks alone to the canteen, avoiding any attention. Everyone could see he walked slowly and forces himself to get lunch.

At the end of the school, I decided to start a conversation with him. At first, I am baffled that he is nowhere to be found around the school yard. Later on, I noticed him coming out of the main door walking alone. “This one surely likes to be alone…” I thought to myself. I joined him as we both were heading the same route home. I approached him and offered him my hand, waiting for a handshake. He pulls out his right hand out of his grey hoodie pocket and slowly shook my hand. “Harold. Harold Witherman”. I replied trying to be friendly as possible. I then voiced, “Hey Amirul I wond-” my voice suddenly stopped as he mouthed, “You can just call me Ami.” Since that day, I am the only one who always talks with him

Few weeks later, everyone in the school gave Ami the title “lone wolf” as he always prefer to be alone. But to me, he is just a normal kid who appears to talk only when asked. Everyday he attends the school wearing the same attire, a grey hoodie and a pair of black pants but sometimes dark brown. I also get the chance to see him drawing sometimes. His notebook was filled with amazing landscape drawings. “Wow! You could become an artist!” I said with an amazement looking at his arts. He used no more than a pencil and a small rectengular eraser. “It’s nothing,” Ami replied with his usual deep-toned voice.

Just after he left for a toilet break, I continued to flip through his notebook until a section full of educational notes. I am about to close the book when I accidentally flipped to the last page of the book. The discovery shocked me out. The few last pages were filled with drawings of bloody knives. Each looked very realistic. The 8th page from the last one were an unfinished drawing of an eerie-looking teenager holding a bloody knife grinning creepily. I closed the book and shoved it back into his backpack. The few last drawings really bothers me throughout the next lessons. I kept thinking what is the meaning of those drawings?

Ami holds the top place in the class when it comes to exams. Sometimes he reached the first position in the class. The fact that he didn’t pay attention that much to the teacher but still succeeds really amazed me. “Just as what I thought. You got the best grade again. How did you do that?” I asked. “I dunno,” he replied. “It’s just luck I guess.”

Time flies by and so does our age. It has been years since I met Ami. He applied for the same college as I do. He did well in his studies way better than me. One day, we had a group project that had to be done in just few weeks. I teamed with Ami since he is the only person I knew better in studies and my best friend since highschool (although we doesn’t socialize much). I went to his house in the morning and knocked the polished oak wooden door. I waited for about 4 minutes for an answer before started to give up. As I am about to head towards back to my home, the door creaked open. To my surprise, I suspected one of Ami’s parents to come and greet me but instead, Ami himself opened the door. With a lousy and tired face, he mouthed, “Harold?” followed by my response of my intentions to do the group work with him. He invited me in and the house itself shocked me.

That’s were my first time in Ami’s house. The living room were very simple, a TV on an old-looking table, a single-seated sofa opposite of it and a small wooden table that had a box of pizza on top of it. The living room were quite small, so the lack of furnitures were enough to fill it. The house itself looked so small from the inside. It only contains a bedroom, a bathroom and an empty corner between them which Ami put a small kitchen cabinet with a small kitchen stove beside it. I looked at him and said, “All of this years you live in here?” The figure in front of me just nodded before making his way into the bedroom, scarfed a towel around his neck and went to the bathroom take a bath.

When we were ready to start the work, I tried to start a talk with him about his life.

“Where are your parents? How could they let you live in this kind of home?”

“Died. Car accident,” he replied with a single, deep-toned voice

“What? When?”

“A month before I met you.”

From that moment, I started to felt pity for him. He later on told me that all of this years, he just rented the house with the money he earned hard by himself. None of his relatives ever took care of him since his parents died. He also mentioned that all of his parents’ possessions were greedily taken by his grandparents. That is the main reason he moved by himself from Texas besides escaping his abusive uncle that ‘took care’ of him. When the work is finally done, I reached into my pocket and took out a 50 dollar note before handed it to him. He resisted several times telling me that he could take care of himself. Just after I left, a question struck my mind suddenly asking, “What were his job then?” wildly dwells in my mind before I shrugged it off.

After the incident, I always treated him well and kind knowing that he is a poor orphan. But he always denies my help on the same reason; “I’m fine, Harold.” Years passed and we still stayed in contact. Most of my other friends amazes our friendship that lasts since high school. We both graduated together and I started to apply for a university far way from our hometown. Ami on the other hand, didn’t want to study more and started to look forward for having a real job, unlike his old life. We both shared a same rented house which was a little bit bigger than Ami’s old home. He followed me to live in Washington since he doesn’t have any bigger ambition.

That was when I realized who he actually was

On the 2nd week we lived there, I stayed home because I had no classes that day while Ami were working at a nearby 7Eleven store. I went into his room to use the computer when I noticed something under his bed. With nothing more better to do, I grabbed the mysterious plastic bag and slide it out. It was a strange black-coloured, medium-sized plastic bag with a strip of zip across the bag. I slowly pulled the zip and a foul stench swerves out from the bag. The items stuffed inside is enough to urge my throat to puke. The bag was filled with human body parts. My hands were trembling and shaking from the sight. The inner part of the bag is covered in blood. Unable to hold the puke longer, I ran to the bathroom and just let it all went out of my throat.

I sat on the bed and stared the bag for a moment before zipped it and shoved it back under the bed. Just when I left the room, Ami stands right next to the door looking at a kitchen knife that he held. He rammed my body with his right shoulder making me fell to the floor, punched my jaw hard and gently slits his knife at my throat, creating a small wound at my neck. At that time, I froze frightened and terrified by what had just happened. Knife still at my neck, Ami mouthed his usual voice, like nothing happened, “What did you see?”

“I… I…”

“Speak it out”

“T-the bag…”

“Looks like you’ve seen enough with your eyes. This is your end.”

“No, no, no! Please, Amirul, please!”

He moved the knife to my left leg, before thrusting it deep through my flesh and penetrated it through. I can hear the knife hits the floor with a ‘clang’ and the cold piece of metal in my leg followed by a geiser of blood gushing out. I can feel the warm streams of blood on my skin. My mouth was being cupped by  Ami’s hand and the pain is unbearable. Streams of tears formed on my cheeks and I knew this is how my life is going to end.

I am waiting for the second stab, or a black void that marks the end of my life but to my surprise, nothing happened. I could feel Ami’s hands were moved away from my mouth and his knees that had been pushing my back being lifted off. He voiced, “Oh…” before went into his room. He left me laying on the floor, in an agonizing pain. He came back with a black box and sat on the floor next to my leg. I could feel the knife pulled out slowly out of my leg. He then injected something in my leg. I felt a very small piece of metal piercing in and out of my skin, but without the pain. After half an hour passed, he pressed 2 pieces of iodinized cotton on both openings caused by the knife before wrapped a clothing of bandage around my leg.

He ordered me to sit instead of just laying on the floor. The bandaging on my leg were nicely done, with a stuttered voice, I said, “Wha… what-” followed by his answer, “There’s no thrill in killing you, the knife penetrates easily.” He stood up and continued to stare straight into my eyes emotionlessly. His hoodie is now stained with my blood. “Since killing you had no fun, I’ll spare you then. Besides, I would like to have someone to share my story with… any questions?” That was the longest quote he ever said.

That was the incident that changed my perspective on him. He actually stitched my leg that evening. After that day, I learned that Ami only killed someone for the thrill. He stated that he loves to hear screams and fight struggles before murdered his victims. The one that got cut and stuffed in the bag were a burglar that tries to break into our house. He never brought home his victims. The reason he spared me was because I didn’t fight or screamed unlike his other victims. During his teenagerhood, this is how he makes money. A week later, he removed the bandage and warned me; “As long as you keep your mouth shut, you’ll be fine. I’ve been doing this for years…”

***

Now it has been a year since that day, mainly every night he’ll come back home covered in blood. I could just stared him in fear when he passes me at the living room. Everytime he got back home after murdering someone, his head and fingers twitching, he grins creepily, and tilted his head a little while staring at me before entering his room, especially when he wears a pair of rectangular glasses now. Meanwhile at other times, he is just an emotionless quiet man…