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Blood, Fingerprint, and I
By Taehee K.
age: 17

The stench of blood overwhelmed us as the door creaked open. Darkness drew us in. The luminol spray bottle shook in my hand.

“We have a stain,” Jon said.

I walked towards my partner, hesitated, and sprayed the stain. The spot glowed neon blue, then disappeared as quickly as it had appeared.

“Too bright and swift to be blood, probably just bleach.” I ruled out blood and moved to another stain just a foot away. With the first spray, a shockwave stunned me as I stood up thinking aloud: “Blood, dull but steady neon blue glow. It’s definitely blood.”

The lights turned on and there I was, back in my chemistry lab with my lab partner staring.

“You’re way too into this – it’s just cobalt II nitrate,” Jon snickered as I was still bewildered by the neon blue glow.

No, there was no smell, no creaking door. But the exhilarating forensic science was there, enticing me long after the lab was over, lingering like the ever-glowing luminol.From that day on, chemistry was no longer a class to pass. I didn’t just learn forensic science, I absorbed it.

My studies began with presumptive blood tests; soon serial number recovery, metal identification, fingerprint identification. Everything I saw, I wanted to iodine fume. Not because there was a fingerprint, but because I could feel the sublimation of iodine. The ability to see the invisible provided all the possibilities in life I once saw as incomprehensible. The science I once despised for its over-complicated definitions of natural causes and effects now opened the door to a new world where nature could be reversed or exposed.

Forensics has offered me a new window to the world. I now not only see what is, but also what was and is invisible. The power to unveil and reconstruct nature fills my veins and fuels my desire for explanation. It’s not just the knowledge that enthralls me; it’s the future and the possibilities ready to be realized.

Because with a bottle of luminol and some iodine crystals, I am drawn back into the dark room, the room with a stench of blood, a mysterious fingerprint, the room filled with answers to be revealed.

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