Looking For Something?

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

Lovers, in Chains

in Chains

The way home

"You know...today is bright, just like the others but now...it's now a tad bit darker than it was before. I mean, no one will notice the slight changes in the weather or that when night comes it will be a little bit colder but we will."

"What do you mean?"

"When I was younger I had an old dog that had been there with me since I was born. It was a family dog that once belonged to my grandparents but they were getting to old to take proper care of him. Wherever I went he went with me until one day he never woke up. He appeared to be sleeping on the end of my bed and he looked so damn happy I couldn't believe he could be dead but there he was. I went to go get my dad to see if he could get him up. He tried but it didn't take him long to figure out that my sweet old dog was dead. My father said; Son. I knew this day was coming but I never thought it would come this soon. His death may not affect this world that much but I want you to know it will make your life that much sweeter. I was hysterical, I couldn't take that weight on my shoulders and I cried. I cried on and on for several weeks straight but then he said; But I need you to remember that the day is bright like the days that came before and it will never cease to amaze me that this light we go through every day is the reason why you and me are still living. Through every death the day will get a tad darker till the fateful day comes and it's your own time to go but today is not that day. You have a full life to live and there is no reason to quit until that day comes. You need to fight off the darkness until you can fight no longer. The problem is, my love, I like the dark. It’s so calming to the soul that I want to remain in the dark for as long as I continue forward. It's not going to end me nor is it going to get me down and that’s something my father never quite understood and with every death I feel that much better."

My new bride nodded back to me as I repositioned myself in the car and focused on the road. We were heading back from her family cabin where we spent our fateful honeymoon alone together for more than a few weeks. Staying away from civilization for so long has made me so out of touch with life and so over edge that I wasn't sure that I could make it—along with the current situation. I gasped with joy when we left the forest and miles after saw the first street sign for what seemed like an eternity, we were entering city limits and I rejoiced in silence. I couldn't tell my wife what was happening because it would seem I was loosing control and that is something my wife relies on. I am cool. I am collected. I have more control than a one-way wire leading to a nuclear bomb and that was something I took advantage of before a few weeks before. In all reality I was loosing it and the day my wife would find out would be the end of life, as we know it.

Afternoon lunch
When we got back into town it was towards the end of summer. The sun shone through the light blue sky and I stood in awe to see the cityscape around me. There was a large sheet over the side of a skyscraper in the distance going from the top to nearly three fourths of the way down to the base. On it was a troop of soldiers running from right to left into this scene that turned from the woods in a light shade of red to a solid red that was all the way to the left. On the completely red side it read the name of the game, the developer, then a quote from an agency that critiques video games. It read; "The very first game that I can say is close to reality."  I laughed to myself thinking that if video gamers really wanted to see wartime realistically then they should join the army. At least that way they can do something for this country other than sitting in front of a sixty-inch television screen with their chips and soda. I positioned my weight on my other leg still examining the advertisement. I puffed out what left I could get out of my cigarette before I flicked it over the baluster fence that separated me from the street.

"Can you sit down? Really! I wanted to have a nice lunch and you're just zoning out god knows where thinking about god knows what...can we just order something?" I pushed the metal fence hoping that it would topple over onto the sidewalk but it stood firm within the concrete ground. I turned around to face the restaurant and my wife to see her frown turn into a smile. "There you are! What did you want to eat?

"Shrimp." I mumbled.

"Ok...just shrimp?" I looked at her methodically contemplating to say anything more but she spoke again. 

"Because I was hoping you would get something off the two for fifteen menu so I could get some of that halibut I like. Can you do that?" I sat down in front of her lifting up the menu in front of me seeing what else I could eat but the sun reflected off the plastic of the menu. I looked behind me to see the sun and then above me to the umbrella that was not doing its job.

"What's on the menu?" I asked.

"Baby, I know you can read—" I reached over between us pushing the salt and peppershakers to the side to take a toothpick out of its dispenser and put it in my mouth. "Besides you already know what's on the menu, we go here enough." I shrugged and put the menu down tilting my head to the left so I could see the traffic to my right. The restaurant sat right on a corner beside an intersection. Several cars stopped in front of the stoplight and idled waiting for the light to turn green. I looked at one driver in particular that looked no older than sixteen. He was driving a real fancy car from some country I couldn't pronounce while he was talking on his cell phone. The black of the car shimmered in the sunlight and as he got closer to the bumper of the car in front of him the sun reflected off the side panel of the car and shined in my face. I put my arm out in front of my eyes and took the toothpick out of my mouth.

"I hope that kid fucking dies," I said while pointing at him with my other arm then placed the toothpick back in my mouth. My wife glared at me and straightened out her back to sit on her prissy stand.

"And what did this boy to you?"

"He made fun of me when I was in grade school" I said snarly. She looked back over to the kid leaning over the table slightly to get a better look then straightened out her position to glare at me even harder.

"He probably is still in grade school!"

"Hence the kid," I mumbled under my breath.

"Then what the hell did he do to you?" I thought for a second hoping that I could come up with something else clever but nothing came to me.

"Because he's a fucking sixteen year old driving a fucking Porsche or some shit! It just rubs me the wrong way that's all." My wife cleared her throat and I turned to her. She motioned her head to her right—my left—so I turned further to see our waiter at the edge of the table, pencil and pad in hand waiting for us to stop arguing. Soon as I looked up to him he turned his head towards me and our eyes locked. Almost immediately he brought out a large smile and straightened his pose to be more professional.

"Are you guys ready? What food can I get for you two young fellows this afternoon?" He asked in a very low voice.

"I want your peppered steak off your two for fifteen menu," I said.

"How would you like your steak cooked sir?"

"Rare," I demanded.

"Ok. And would you like to upgrade your steak to a eight ounce for one dollar?"

"No. I'll use that extra dollar to add a baked potato with sour cream and chives."

"Mmk. How bout the lady?" My wife spoke but I didn't listen. On the white shirt of the waiter I couldn't help but notice that there was some red splotches all over the front. I grinned in delight contemplating what it could have been but it couldn't be anything too serious. I imagined him raising a meat cleaver and slamming it down on a large piece of meat severing the flesh from the bone. Gnawing at it with my teeth. I shrugged it off almost instantly and the waiter had left though I continued to stare where he once was.

"Baby, we need to talk."

"About what?" I asked while continuing to stare into space. She leaned in towards me and whispered to me.

"You know. The thing that we did together."

"We have done a lot of things together and several of them I am too embarrassed to even mention aloud." She blushed. 

"You know what I mean."

"Yes, yes I do. What about it?" I cleared out my throat. 

"What can we possibly talk—?”

"Keep your voice down." My wife looked back and forth behind her making sure that no one was paying attention to us. "The police. They are going to be reported missing and the police are going to and probably already have ask all the neighbors if they know anything including us!"

"I thought we have already been over this."

"Well yes but can we go over it again?" She asked.

"We left for our honeymoon on Friday night. Knowing the Rockwell's and everybody does, people will assume they stayed at home all weekend doing all the illicit things they do, the illicit things they do only known by us. Because of this the police won’t be able to create an exact timeline between Fridays until they found them unless if one of their partners come forth and give them the details and knowing most lawbreaking citizens they won’t. This will give us a proper alibi and will leave us out of the race for most of the investigation unless if someone happened to be up that night and saw us, which I doubt."

"You’re confident about that?"

"Very." I looked at the waiter passing by with food hoping he was giving it to us but he simply walked past us not even giving us a glimpse of curiosity. "I’m hungry, how much longer for our food?"

"Its only been a few minutes, it will still be a while...you're so impatient."

"I'm not impatient I'm just tired and tense and strung out. I need a vacation from our vacation."

"Well you are right about that."

"Of course I am," I responded. We sat in silence for a few minutes looking around the environment that surrounded us. I looked down to the table poking my finger through the decorative holes that were no bigger than my pinky. My wife looked at me as if she was going to say something but she looked away seconds after to look at me again. I motioned to her to speak up and she began struggling on what to say.

"I...I am...I am going to see a therapist and I think you should join me." I looked at her confused wondering what it could be about but of course it was the most obvious reason.

"So...what are you going to tell this therapist?" I asked.

"I don't know. Maybe say I hit an animal or something with our car or say I saw a death in the newspaper and it bothered me."

"A death in the newspaper?"

"Yeah, like saying there was a article about a murder and it bothered me." 

"Why can't you talk to me about it, at least with me you don't have to lie and give us away."

"I know I just...I don't think that you will understand."

"I won't understand? That's all I have done for you! I did this because you didn't think it was right from the start and now you're getting cold feet?"

"My hearts not made out of stone, I don't think you will understand my reasoning, that’s all." I looked at her angrily and I couldn't help but think that I was the weaker one out of the both of us. I never could accept a death to affect me and how I worked but she is so in tune with her emotions I may just be a newborn child. I may have not done this before but I think about it a lot while she has not. She was in no way prepared for the emotional toll that would be placed on her. Maybe she wasn't ready no matter how confident she looked. I love this woman, how could I not hold her when she feels out of place like an outcast? She is one in a million and I am her husband.

"Ok but let's wait a while, at least a month or two just to be sure." Just then the waiter walked along our table and sat our respective plates in front of us.

"Is there anything else I can get you two?"

"Horseradish...steak sauce...a refill." I said in an annoyed tone.

"Sorry sir. Do you need a refill too miss?"

"No. No I'm fine," she said waving the waiter off with one hand while reaching for a fork with the other. I picked up a fork as well along with a knife and started cutting through the steak. In the center it was a deep dark red and juicy I smiled to see that it was cooked exactly as I wanted it. I looked over to my wife to see if she was content and she had already eaten half of the fish in front of her. I continued to cut my steak till the waiter came back with everything I wanted then I dug in. First I dipped my steak in the steak sauce then I dipped it in the horseradish then took the toothpick out of my mouth. The steak sauce always comes first so it can soak in the sauce enhancing the flavor. I took several bites out of my steak then looked back to my wife.

"By the rate you're going through your meal I can guess that this has been something you have wanted to have for a while now."

"Mmhmm." She said while putting more food into her mouth.

"I don't know. For some reason I just love it when I get a bloody steak. The blood tastes great.”

"Actually—" Then clearing out her throat. "Most of the blood is drained out of the animal right after they butcher it. There's actually little to no blood at all."

"Oh?" I raised my eyebrows in disbelief. "Then what is it then?"

"Its mostly water because red meats are mostly comprised of that stuff but the red tint that is in the water, also what makes the meat red, is called myoglobin."

"What’s that?"

"It's a form of protein that stores oxygen in red blood cells for muscles...I think. More myoglobin the redder the meat."

"So this red stuff is protein and water?"

"Yes." I began to push the plate away from me to the center of the table tipping over the salt, pepper and toothpick holder making a complete mess on the table.

"If I wanted to eat healthy I'd eat a carrot."

Police at my front door

Today I was working from home. I wanted to spend some time with my wife today and if I stayed out at the office I knew I would get home late due to the overflowing paperwork I received while we were on our honeymoon. I would get back to it when I had the drive to do it and everyone at the office understands; I just need some time alone. It was even difficult to get adjusted with technology. Several updates came out for my phone and computer it was as if I had to relearn everything about them all over again. With the new update through my computer I had to update the drivers on my printer, scanner, and my fax machine so when I hook them up to my computer I wouldn't get a screen that says it doesn't know what the hell it was doing.

As I was shifting through several liability papers I heard a knock on the door. Both my wife and me were busy so neither of us attempted to walk towards the door. I rolled my chair to another area of my large desk to print out more papers when another knock came to the door. If it was someone trying to sell something to us I am sure they would leave a flier on the doorknob and walk away but whoever this was, was persistent. Another knock on the door but this time it sounded more like a pound.

"Can you get that honey?" I yelled.

"You get it I have my hands tied at the moment!" I lowered my head back to my table trying to look for a certain cover form and then the doorbell rang followed by a "its the police". I pushed all my papers aside in a shock and stood slowly while looking at the door. My wife exited the kitchen, flour covering her hands, to look at me in disbelief and shock.

"Go wash your hands," I said to my wife while walking towards the door, "it should be okay, they just want to ask us some questions." I stood in front of the door looking through the peephole to see an officer a few steps back on our porch talking through his radio. Even though I figured he knew we were home I still wondered what would happen if I didn't answer the door, would he just walk away and come another day or would he be calling in backup? I didn't want to make it seem that we were hiding from them so answering the door is what would be best for us but the questions that he would have in store for us is something I never really thought about until now. I unlocked the door and the officer turned around as I opened the door slowly. A screen door was between us giving me some space, but I knew he would want to come inside.

"You're a hard man to get a hold of, we have been trying to reach you for a few weeks," the officer said.

"You have? My wife and I have been on our—"

"Honeymoon, yes I was told. There are a few detectives on their way to ask you a few questions."

"Questions? About what? I haven't done anything wrong have I officer?"

"No no, you're not in trouble. I'll let the detectives explain when they get here." My wife walked up behind me and held my hand out of fear of what could happen but I was confident that nothing serious would happen. My wife, the officer and I talked about our honeymoon while we waited for the detectives to arrive. This eased my wife a little but she still had a death grip on my hand. The officer never asked to come inside though, probably because he was more patrolling around the neighborhood looking for any neighbors they hadn't interviewed yet.

It was only a quick moment until the detectives arrived in their car. The police officer walked away when he heard car doors shut and returned to his police cruiser to patrol the neighborhood. One detective—the one who was driving the car—looked rather old while the other one was quite young. Both of them were clean shaven and had the same style of haircut but the older one had a prominent tan—could have been another race too—while the young one was definitely white.

"Hello. I am Detective Benson and this is Detective Cruise" while pointing to the younger one. "We need to ask you a few questions. It is very important that we talk to you before this day is over." I looked over to my wife and she shrugged nonchalantly as if she didn't know what was going on.

"Sure, come on in." I unlocked the screen door and invited them inside. I pulled out my chair from behind my desk and sat it by the rocking chair while I sat with my wife in the love seat. After we were done situating ourselves Benson and Cruise pulled out some notepads and pencils to write down what I would assume to be valuable information even though we would be lying though our teeth.

"We are here to talk about your missing neighbors, the Rockwell's."

"What happened?" My wife asked.

"Well that's what we are trying to find out," Detective Cruise claimed, "no one heard from them during the weekend. From what I understand that's normal," we both nodded "and Mr. Rockwell called in sick to his workplace on Monday. That's all we can really figure out." I looked towards my wife and her eyes widened as she looked back at me. How could he have called in sick if he was within our trunk during that time? I know Mr. And Mrs. Rockwell didn't have their cell phones on them and even if they did they would not even be able to talk.

"Do you know if he sounded sick? Was it his voice?" I asked.

"His boss said when he heard the message it was hard for him to understand him and we have listened to it ourselves but his boss is confident that it was him," Detective Benson cleared out his throat to add to what Cruise was saying.

"Now I know this may seem like a dumb question but where were you doing on the fifth of August."

"We were at my family’s cabin a little past the wilderness area to our south. We left the Friday night before," my wife said.

"Was there anyone else with you besides your husband?" I thought of the bodies of the Rockwell's that kept us company.

"No. It was only the two of us, that's kind of the point of a honeymoon isn't it? To get away from it all?" My wife said stubbornly.

"I guess that's true," both detectives started writing in their notepads and Detective Cruise lifted up his head while Detective Benson continued writing.

"How close were you to the Rockwell's?"

"We weren't that close, in fact no one was really close to them, they really kept to themselves especially on the weekend. We always see these shady people lingering around their house but they’re always welcomed by the Rockwell's" my wife said. "We always invited them to the neighborhood barbeques—which another is coming up in a few weeks—but they would only attend a few of them and when they did it would always seem that something was wrong."

"Would you say they were doing anything illegal?"

"I think so," I said. The two detectives wrote down in their little notepads again.

"When was the last time you saw them?" I thought about telling them truth about how we saw them on the Friday night before we left, just to cover our bases in case if someone saw us there but what was the likelihood of someone seeing our cars way past midnight.

"Sometime a few weeks ago. I'm not exactly sure when. Do you remember honey?" I asked my wife.

"We'll I visited his wife someday Tuesday afternoon three weeks ago just to tell her about the upcoming barbeque but she seemed uninterested and lethargic about the whole thing. Couldn't say why that was but their house was a mess. She tried to make it so I wouldn't see anything but I got a glimpse."

"Strange," one of the detectives said.

"How so?" I asked.

"Well, their house was spotless when we got there," said the other detective. I was intrigued because when we left the place drugs in several shapes and forms were in nearly every corner of the house. Either that or drug paraphernalia. Of course we took the cash but maybe that wasn't the best of ideas. Someone was there between us leaving the house and the police searching the building and I could only fear that it was someone looking for the Rockwell's. "How about either of the two's health? We're they sick or troubled last time you saw them?"

"Like I said before," my wife said, "Mrs. Rockwell was rather lethargic last time I had seen her and obviously they were not well because the house looked like a mess but I guess she got better by the weekend because, like you said, the house was rather clean." Both of the detectives wrote down in their respective notepads again and one circled something and underlined it a few times looking at the motions of his hand and wrist.

"Is there anything else we could help you with?" The detectives stood up from their seats and began to walk towards the front door.

"No. We obtained most of the information about them from their family and other neighbors."

"No friends?" I asked.

"Judging by what you and others have told us it seems like they weren't in the business for friends," said one detective.

"You two have a fine rest of the day," said the other closing the door behind him. My wife turned to me and gave me a rather threatening look seconds after the door closed.

"What the fuck!" She yelled.

"What? What did I do?"

"Obviously someone knew they were gone when we left their house and covered up their tracks to make them seem like an average couple!" She yelled again.

"Who are you proposing did this then?"

"A gang, their family, the Kazmir's and their fucking mafia!"

"Well what did you expect? They sell and recreationally take drugs. You have to know someone higher on the totem pole in order to get the drugs." I said.

"What if they come after us? They are going to come looking for their money!"

"Calm down! We left their merchandise. Yes we took several thousand but we left several million worth of product, they aren't going to throw a fit about that."

"But we killed two of their members...apostles...."


"Yeah! What the fuck about that huh? I told you that we should had killed further away from where we live."

"Okay it might not seem like a good idea now but who is to expect that? Their normal neighbors, who expects that,"

"The police! Nine out of ten times someone is killed it’s by someone the victim knows personally. You just became a part of an obvious statistic!" 

"Trust me I know what I am doing I have done this before." I thrashed around in my head imagining me throwing furniture around and eventually hitting my wife but I took a deep breath and elaborated further within my head. There is no way they could figure us we were gone and someone covered for them on Monday, which takes us out of the timeline. There is no way that they could point their fat little fingers at us as long as we didn't do something stupid.


"So have you heard of the Rockwell's yet? I hear the police is proclaiming them dead," said Thomas McKinley from down the road.

"Why do you say that?" I asked.

"Blood. Blood was found underneath one of the sofas and it’s a positive match to Mrs. Rockwell. She was probably bludgeoned to death with something big and hard."

"Uh huh," I said while looking down at the newspaper on the picnic table. "And where did you hear about that?" He took the newspaper from underneath my gaze and turned to the third page.

"Here." I gazed at the article reading how an investigation was being conducted and sighed with excitement after I read the section saying that there were no current leads. I looked around for my wife to show her the article and I saw her talking to Thomas' wife and a neighbor to us, Roxanne. I waved at them to come over and my wife and Roxanne walked my way while Thomas' wife went to go talk with someone else. 

"What's her deal?" I asked while pointing at Thomas' wife. 

"Oh, Suzie? She and her husband are apparently fighting and she didn't want to go mingle with him." My wife said in a loud whisper. 

"Am not!" Thomas yelled while leaning forward to look at my wife. "You tell that bitch that—" 

"I don't want to hear it Thomas," my wife said. "If it’s something you need to go talk to your wife about then talk to your wife." 

"I'll tell her..." Thomas started to mumble under his breath as he walked away. 

"So what did you want to talk to me about babe?" My wife asked. 

"Yeah. There is this article in the paper saying that the Rockwell's were murdered and there's no leads on who did it." I said in a surprised tone. "I can only think that whoever did it is still in our neighborhood. Why aren't police patrolling this neighborhood anymore."

"I doubt anyone is that stupid to kill someone they live next to," Roxanne said as my wife gave a glare in my direction. 

"You're probably right. So where's the food?"

"John is still cooking everything, he says they are about done but that was a few minutes ago," Roxanne said. 

"I'll go ask him." I got up from the bench I was on, picked up my drink and started to head towards John, which was by the grill on his patio. "Good turnout eh John?" 

"Yea. I think I counted forty three people." John was a big guy who was covered with hair other than his head. He had a ball cap on to hide it from neighbors who had recently moved here. He was once in the military but now I think he just does some accounting for the police department. 

"Forty three people? That's a lot of meat!"

"Yeah but I came prepared. It seems like it’s a better turn out each time we have one."

"Well you do make the best burgers in town, what's your secret?" I asked. 

"You really want to know?"

"Yeah, tell me."

"You know the burgers?" He whispered. 

"Yeah, you say it's a secret recipe," I said in a quieter whisper. 

"They aren't beef."

"Oh really? Then what is it?"

"Can you keep a secret?"

"Yeah, sure man. Tell me."

"It's human meat. I'm really a serial killer cannibal." I held my breath trying to process what he had just said and my jaw began to drop.

"Well...human is good I really like it."

"You do? Because I've been worrying that someone is going to notice."

"No one is going to notice." Just then John's wife walked up to us. 

"What are you two whispering about," she said in a whisper as well. 

"I was just telling him that we are serial killer cannibals and that we have been serving everyone human this whole time," John said. 

"Oh? Did you tell him about how we role play while we are killing?" She added. 

"I was just getting to that," John said. 

"So when we go out when we do our thing John dresses up like a woman, with a wig and everything." John busted out laughing and his wife followed, as I was a little bit disappointed to hear that my wife and me were alone. I smiled and laughed along with them but I felt nothing. "John, we have more guests at the front door."

"Oh? And who might they be?" He asked. 

"The two detectives you invited," she responded. 

"Well let them in!" His wife left to come seconds later with detective Cruise and detective Benson. John put down his spatula and greeted the two detectives with a firm handshake. "Burgers are almost done, you're welcome to help yourselves.

"Oh no John, we’re here on business," said Cruise. "We had a few more questions to a few people and we will be on our way." Cruise looked at me. "Is your wife here today?"

"Yeah." I pointed to her across the yard. "She's over there."

"Thanks." Detective Cruise walked across the lawn and pulled her aside while Benson pulled another neighbor aside both with writing pads in hand. I sat on a chair on the patio beside John and stared at her as she glanced over at me appearing to be worried. I started to fume with disgust and wondered if I should make myself a part of the conversation but it would only make the situation more suspicious. Detective Cruise put his hand on her back and turned her so both of their backs were facing me. I wanted to do something so I looked up to John from where I was sitting and watched him as he put the last of the burgers and hotdogs on a series of plates.

"So what are the detectives doing here John?" I asked. 

"Well I work with them. My office is next to theirs at the police station. That and everyone already knows them because they are assigned to the case on the Rockwell's disappearance."

"Do you think it was a wise idea to do that? Obviously they are using the invitation to ask us more questions."

"Yeah, I wasn't expecting that. They said they wouldn't be here for long and most of the time they get their work done rather quickly."

"I hope so because they are really stressing out my wife."

"Oh? And why's that? Wait...her father was a police officer right?"

"Right. In another city though. He was killed on duty and seeing the police gives her horrible flashbacks now."

"She sees a therapist for it?" John's wife budded in.

"She did," I responded.

"Why stop?" She asked again. "She obviously isn't over it."

"Well honey," John interrupted. "Not everybody gets over traumatic experiences."

"I guess you're right." She walked away when a neighbor of hers waved to her that just entered through the gate fence. 

"So how are you?" He asked while leaning against the grill.

"Stressed. The Rockwell's lived really close to us and it’s just a scary thing to think about."

'I hear you. I don't think my wife fully understands what’s going on."

"Maybe she's just trying not to think about it," I considered.

"No. She doesn't understand what’s going on. Honestly she really isn't that bright." He placed his hands over his eyes. "What the fuck am I doing?"

"John you have kids and a home, you can't just leave if that’s what your thinking."

"I'm not. I'm not going to leave I am way too out of shape and settled down to do anything in the bachelors game. Women want young bucks that are aggressive but passionate. Attractive but smart. I am some of those traits but not all of them and that’s what I need to stay in the game. I just sometimes consider what would have happened if I we cut things off when we were young, where I would be you know?"

"What do you think you would be doing?" I asked.

"I think I would still be in the military, that’s if I never met another girl. What I did I was good at and people hated me for leaving."

"You’re an accountant?"

"I guess you could say that. Anyway it’s a boring job for most people and strangely enough I am really good at it. I like math." I gave him a look of disgust. "Hey! You practically do the same thing!"

"No I don't. I deal more with the people than the money and--" Thomas McKinley started yelling at his wife pushing her down on the ground.

"You stupid fucking bitch! If I had my way you would be dead! You hear me? Dead!" The two detectives wrapped things up with the people they were talking to and pulled him aside to give him counsel for his actions. He started yelling again and took a swing at the younger detective and the older one pulled his arm behind his back and put some handcuffs on both of his wrists. As they walked past John and I one of the detectives were reading his Miranda Rights while the other was apologizing to John about the disturbance. My wife hurried to be at my side and got really close to whisper in my ear.

"Babe I'm scared. The detective was telling me that they are now suspecting a couple rather than a single person. They found a fingerprint."


I looked out the door from inside my office to take a glance out the window to see my wife pulling into the driveway. I smiled in relief excited that she was finally home on this beautiful day but her welcome would seem unappreciative. I got up from my desk stacking the last few papers left on my desk and put them carefully in a small basket labeled "Organize". I left the room to open the door to see my wife carrying several plastic grocery bags filled with last minute food and dressings for our meal tonight. She gave me the bags that were currently in her hands and went back to her car to most likely grab some more. I went into the kitchen behind me and placed the bags on the counter to head back to the front door. She passed me carrying the last of the bags in so I closed the front door and followed her back into the kitchen. She slowly took out all the items out of their bags then sat down for a second letting out a rather big sigh.

"Did you put in the turkey?" She asked.

"Yup," I responded.

"Did you make the pasta salad?"

"Yup," I responded again.

"Are the potatoes ready to boil?"

"Yup," I said a third time.

"Did you—"

"Yup! My work is done, the house is cleaned, I called my family, and I even got you a present."

"Good," she sighed again, "wait you got me a present?"

"Yup, I put it downstairs for when you got home."

"What is it?"

"You will have to wait and see."

"Until when?" She asked me with a cute innocent look into my eyes.

"Whenever you want really."

"Can I see now?"

"I guess, if you really have to." I said in a cute way back. She clapped her hands fast and jumped up and down exited to see what it was. She grabbed my hand and walked at a brisk pace to the door that led downstairs and ran down the stairs. I walked slowly hoping that I could see her reaction when I reached the bottom stair and I did. Her jaw was wide open, she was speechless and I walked up to her with a big smile on my face.

"Huh? What do you think honey?" I asked excitingly.

"Where did you get this?" She asked slowly.

"Oh you know, around town." I said with a big smile.

"Aren't people going to be looking around? Someone is going to find out real quick wondering what happened."

"I just thought it was something we shouldn't just leave behind you know? I'll get my share and you get yours just like last time."

"People are coming over in a few hours, we can't just...it's not going to work like that. You have to take it back."


"Now!" Just then the doorbell rang and it echoed through the walls. I looked at my wife and she at me and my stomach felt ill. "No, no, no, no, no! Not now. Babe, upstairs now. Be sure to lock that door behind you." We hurried up the stairs and I locked the basement door so no one could get down. I used my hand to trace through my hair wipe the sweat off my brow. I then walked up behind my wife in front of the door and acted natural. She opened the door to reveal my parents standing on the other side of the door carrying bags of food and wrapped presents for the holidays. Both of them had big grins on their faces and let themselves in while we stood astonished that my parents were together, happy, and not an argument in the air. 

"Sorry that we’re here so early, we were too exited to wait to tell you."

"Tell me what? That you and mom are back together?" I asked. 

"Yes. We have put aside our differences for the better. We know you're tired of all the fighting and we are too, we just want what is best for you." They started unpacking all the groceries and gave hugs to my wife and me but I was ill amused. 

"You have done this before. It didn't work."

"Well that's no way to talk to your father," my mother said, "this time we have really changed, honestly."

"Yea we will see." I said nearly put down. My father walked towards the oven and examined the turkey. 

"Your oven is at three fifty. That dries it out. You need to bring it down to three hundred and cook it longer."

"Well your not cooking are you? I'll cook it however I want."

"But the turkey..." My father has a way to keep his place high and mighty as he looks at everyone else and tells him or her they are wrong. This, of course, was the reason of all the divorces. Even if he were wrong he would never admit it. He would say something like "it used to be that way" or "no you're wrong" but never a "sorry, I was mistaken". In fact I have never heard him say the word sorry in any shape or form because he is always right. I guess he got it from his dad whom in turn I got from my dad and I hate to admit it but I am like him a lot even though most conversations are heated arguments I just tell him no now; that really seems to shut him up. 

"What all did you bring?" My wife asked knowing that the next words out of my mouth were going to be hateful ones. 

"Well, we brought that cranberry sauce that you guys like a lot and we brought the stuffing because we know you won't bother with that. We brought the electric carving knife for the turkey. Rolls, pie, and ale." Taking the ale out of the grocery bag I noticed they got my favorite kind and I grabbed one but I couldn't open it so I gave it to my wife and she opened it with ease. 

"Thank you." She nodded to me with pleasure then helped my mother unpack the last of the things. 

A few hours passed and the turkey was about ready. The potatoes started boiling and everything else was made. I brought down the temperature of the oven as my father requested and everyone got a little more starved as they waited for it to be done. Various people complained about the wait—especially my father—and everyone told him to shut up. As we waited we finished making the rest of the food and played various card games and like always, my father won somehow. 

"How the hell do you do that?" I asked. 

"What? What did I do?"

"You always win at these freaking things and it’s just a freaking card game. It's not like it takes skill or anything because you can only play with the cards you are dealt yet somehow you always win!"

"Whoa now, its just tactics. How I discard and the cards I pick up."

"So how the fuck do you do it?" I did shaking my right hand over the table throwing my cards down. 

"You watch your langua—" my father stopped my mother. 

"Like a magician I never reveal my secrets."

"Bull fucking shit!" I yelled while standing up nearly flipping the table. 

"Baby, you need to calm down!" My wife yelled. 

"Somebody has had enough booze." My father smirked. 

"I have not had enough booze!" I screamed. Just then a sound came from the basement. Something similar to a moan but in a severe case of desperation. 

"What was that?" My father said. 

"It was my stomach, I'm starved." I said. 

"No, it sounded as if it came from below us." My father continued. I stood in astonishment wondering what lie I could come up with that would ease the tension. 

"It's a living—"

"Dog!" My wife yelled. "It's a living dog."

"So you normally have dead ones sitting down there?" My mother asked. 

"No. Ha ha you're so funny, we just worded it wrong." My wife said in desperation while looking at me hoping I could come up with something. 

"Yeah. We found this sick and injured dog wandering in our backyard and were trying to nurse it back to health."

"I'm allergic to dogs." My father grumbled.

"I know. That’s why it's downstairs. To keep away from you."

"Can I see it?" My mother asked. 

"You can't...umm--"

"He's really violent at the moment because it’s hard for him to see, you know how animals are." My wife saved me. 

"Oh I see." My mother sighed. Another moan sounded from downstairs.

"It doesn't sound like a dog," my father said.

"Well it is." I said in disgust.

"Maybe we should feed it?" My wife asked. 

"Good idea!" I yelled. I pushed my chair aside and took out the key to the basement out of my front pocket. I looked back to everybody before I opened the door and looks of worried faces were on my mother and father. Maybe they have changed for the better. Maybe they have changed. All I knew that was if Christmas from a couple years ago happened again then I would never want to see either of them ever again. I closed the door behind me and locked the door on a few locks that were on my side. Walking down the stairs an even louder moan came from my wife's present I ran down the rest of the way and kicked the thing telling it to shut up. It just grunted then moaned again after I kicked it so I kicked it again. "Listen to me, if you let out a single sound one more time I will fucking demolish you. Don't you test me." It looked up to me with its sad eyes wondering why I was doing what I was doing but everything had a reason. Like most religious people say if it happens it must be God's will. I wouldn't know how a loving God could let this happen but life is messed up. I grabbed the muzzle that was on its face and shook it around making sure that it was firm on its face then checked the lock on the cage to make sure it was secure. The chains rattled against the metal and I wondered if this was wrong. "Of course this is wrong," I said aloud and my wife's present looked up to me wondering if I would let it go but I just glared at it and pointed my finger at it, "Don't test me." I walked back upstairs and unlocked the door to see the same worried face on my parent's face, as it was when I first left.

"How is it?" My mother asked.

"It was just hungry, everything's alright now." 

"What are you going to do with it?" She asked again.

"Find its owner I guess," my wife said.

"I would hate to take it to the animal shelter," I continued. "If no one claimed it they would probably put it down."

"If you don't find an owner we will ask around for someone who wants it, no animal deserves to go to a shelter," my father said. My mother and I looked at him surprised that he said such a thing and I concluded to myself that he had changed and maybe things would be different from now on. Yes, the day may just be darker but it sounded all the same. No one would know the difference.

My parents left rather late. We continued to talk about life as we had our Thanksgiving dinner and everyone got along rather well especially me and my father, which was a life-changing event, but the world still sat on its axis and hell is still not as hot as Arizona. My wife and I smiled and laughed as we cleaned the dishes together, tonight was a good night and it was only going to get better. We took our time cleaning until we began to hear the chains rattle from down in the basement and steel clinging, my wife's present was trying to get out but I knew it couldn't. Just then the mood changed. 

"Damnit!" She yelled as she placed her hands on the edges of the counter. "What the hell is that thing doing?"

"Maybe we should address the skeleton in the closet."

"Its your skeleton! What are you going to do with it?"

"Same thing we did last time."

"No, no, no. Not in this house you’re not."

"Why not? We have been waiting for this!"

"I know..." My wife sighed. "We have to let it go though, it’s not time. We're still hot." I looked at her disapprovingly and she shrugged it off.

"It's seen our faces." I said.

"It's seen your face!" She yelled. 

"So were just going to let it go, regardless of what it's seen."

"Yes. It's not like anyone is going to think its you."

"I guess you're right." 

A visitor 

I woke up late in the night to see a pair of lights shining through our window. We had curtains covering the window but a little gap between the two curtains made a perfect spot for a peeping Tom. A couple of shady figures standing behind the flashlights peered through the window looking for anyone inside. They obviously saw my wife and I in bed but whether or not if they noticed that my eyes were open left me to wonder what their plan was. I looked over at my clock and its neon blue light read three o' clock. As I looked back over to the window the two figures were gone. 

Everything felt as if I was floating on a cloud as I struggled to keep my eyes open. The sounds of silence and the darkness of the room blended together to make it feel that everything was once sense of my body but that was rudely interrupted as I heard a noise further into the other room outside of our bedroom. I woke up almost instantly and jumped out of bed as quiet as I could without waking my wife. I walked into the next room and locked the bedroom door behind me so what I expected to be burglars wouldn’t get their hands on her. As I walked further into the next room I saw that they were trying to unlock the front door and with our cheap locks that came with the house, they were going to give in soon. I ran over to the closet on a opposing wall to the front door moved all the Christmas decorations that we were soon going to put up and I took out two long rugs that had an ugly shade of reddish purple and lined them up to the front door all the way across the room to the door to the basement. I then walked into the kitchen and looked through the drawers for my big butchers knife that I use to cut large sections of meat. I walked to the basement door walked down and turned on a light that was dangling from the ceiling, pushed at it so it would be swinging back and forth as I crouched around a corner up on an indent in the wall and waited until the burglars entered the house. 

It must have seemed like an invitation to the burglars to see a line of red rugs going to the basement with a light at the end of the tunnel. Because the light was still moving back and forth from its perspective position it appeared, as there was movement downstairs. The one who came down looked worried as I peeked around the corner to see his face but he was big and bulky. He walked under the light and grabbed it so it would stop moving and pointed his flashlight in my direction. He started walking my way until he saw another room beside this one and walked into the other room. Seconds after I heard him make a sound of disgust and a, "what the fuck?" as he looked in the other room. He must have seen the cage that once had something living in it for a day. We really roughed it up before we let it go and haven't gotten around to cleaning it up just yet. He must have seen the carnage that ensued. I looked around where I was crouched and saw several tools on the ledge I was on and threw them across the doorway and into the other half of the room. Instantly I saw the flashlight shine through the doorway and a haste of footsteps. He stopped in the doorway looking left then right to be sure that no one was going to attack him but with me being behind his line of vision there was no telling what I had in store for him. I stood up slowly now placing most of my body above his and I looked down at him subtly. As he took a slight step in he pointed his flashlight to his right trying to investigate the noise but didn't commit to investigating thoroughly making a large error in his position. 

His left hand was placed on the corner of the doorway in which placed his fingers in the room I was in as his palm stayed in the doorway in which he was standing. I looked down to his fingers and noticed he had a wedding ring on his wedding finger and some ring with a skull on his thumb. I leaned in towards him more and placed the cleaver in my right hand waiting for the right moment to strike. I waited patiently as his hand and fingers drifted in and out of position while raising the cleaver up above his body but the man never had the guts to enter. His hand began to move away when I took the chance as it left me cutting off his pinky and wedding finger as his middle finger held on slightly with a sliver of tissue and skin left unsevered from the rest of his hand. The cleaver cut cleanly through his fingers and into the wood of the doorframe leaving the cleaver stuck in the wood. He bent over in pain as he placed his hand in front of him in shock that he was now missing a few fingers but not even a second passed before I jumped down from the ledge and thrust my knee upward into his jaw pushing him square on his back on the concrete ground. I walked over and past him as he laid there in agony placing his cut hand up to his chest and I began to kick him in the ribs until he started yelling "stop". I did as he asked and stopped to stand over his head as he looked up towards me. I let out a big grin. 

"Pain is only temporary, I want it to last a lifetime." He turned onto his belly and scrambled to get on his feet again as I pushed him into the opposing wall and he tripped over a wheelbarrow. Stumbling to get back on his feet I heard movement above me on the main floor as the other man ran to the top of the stairs. 

"Hey! What's going on?" He said in a loud whisper as his friend stumbled up the stairs. 

"My fingers, he cut off my fingers!" I heard a click from the other man cocking his gun and I moved fast to turn off the light to the basement leaving him looking into the face of darkness as the other man ran away from it. "Let's go man, the guys crazy." There was silence for a few seconds and then I heard footsteps walk away from the basement and out the front door. I began to walk to the top of the stairs and watched the two men run in utter fear to their vehicles then drive away skidding in the street waking up all the neighbors. I walked beside the rug and sat down between the basement and the front door, I looked out the front door. Blood dripped from the doorway onto the concrete and onto the grass. I looked back to the rugs and began to roll them up and put them back into the closet. I closed the front door and walked towards the bedroom unlocking the door to see my wife still sound asleep. 


"I know I haven't been able to talk to you quite yet but your wife has told me a lot of good things about you, you seem like a great husband."

"Well thank you Mister..."

"Doctor Williams."

"Right. What has my wife been telling you?" He glanced over to my wife who was sitting right next to me on the loveseat and then back to myself.

"She tells me a lot but that’s not what we’re here for."


"She tells me that there has been a death in the family and that in order for her to cope appropriately she wanted you to be here as well."

"Is that so?

"Yes. To start things I wanted to ask you how you personally felt about your fathers death, it must be exceptionally difficult for you." I turned to my wife and gave her a look that said, "Really? My father?" and then looked back to the therapist. 

"He was such a hard worker. Never had the time for himself but a lot was expected from him. He never let anyone down."

"Your wife tells me that you and him didn't have a very good relationship with each other."

"She did huh? Well my father and I got along just fine it was just when he couldn't admit he was wrong when everything blew up. Like one time when I was growing up he told me to not to eat very hot foods because it would burn my taste buds and it is biologically impossible to re-grow taste buds. That's why old people can eat almost anything because they burnt all their taste buds. Now that sounds very smart if you didn't know the truth but the truth is that your taste buds die and re-grow everyday! I told my dad after I found out and he says that science has changed through the years and theories get proven wrong everyday. He denies the fact he has been lying to me since I was born and says it’s the scientists we never even met, that's who I should blame! It's been the way I found since they first questioned it! He's not only calling me wrong but is saying everyone else is the liar, not him!"

"Seems very childish to have a grudge about that." Doctor Williams said. 

"That's just the tiny things he does everyday. He never takes personal accountability he blames the scientists, says its not in his job description and that's why people think he's the greatest because they don't know better but I do because I know how he does it. No wonder my mother divorced him."

"For someone who says he gets along just fine with his father, you really don't seem okay about it."

"You know what? I'm not here to talk about my feelings, I am here for my wife." I grabbed my wife's hand and looked at her. "I think it's time we focus on her." The therapist readjusted himself in his seat and wrote a few things down before he looked back to us and smiled at my wife. 

"Go ahead."

"Well I want you to know," looking at me. "That I loved your father regardless of your feelings. He was courteous and helped me out a whole hell of a lot because my father is no longer alive as well. He treated me like his own and he couldn't have made me feel more loved."

"Thank you," I said. 

"With that said I want to make something clear, I don't think he had a heart attack. I think he was murdered." The therapist’s eyes widened and I turned to face her. "He works for the government and he makes that very clear I think someone was out to get him." My father was a simple accountant like person for the state, nothing like a secret agent or spy so I wasn't quite sure what she was getting at. 

"What did he do at this government job?" Doctor Williams asked. 

"I don't know, he never said but sometimes he would come over and have bruises all around his body and cuts on his face."

"We'll if he was something like special ops then he obviously wasn't good at it." I laughed. 

"This isn't a joke!" She yelled. "I'm serious about this." We both looked at her in disbelief trying to make heads or tails of what she was talking about. 

"So you think he was involved in some wild conspiracy and it ended in his death?"

"Yes! I think someone killed him to shut him up."

"This...someone. Who do you think killed him?

"It happened at his house so I don't think it was any form of military and if someone from the military was to kill him they would have shot him in the head to guarantee his death right? There were no bullet holes that I could see!"

"So you’re saying you think he was killed by someone whose profession was killing?"

"A hitman!"

"A hitman?" Doctor Williams questioned. 

"A hitman!" She yelled. "Maybe he used a poison to kill him. Something that looks like a heart attack!"

"So you do think he had a heart attack?"

"Well...yes. But it was induced by a poison or something!" Doctor Williams gave me a wild look and brushed his hair backwards contemplating what it all meant and how to approach my now crazy wife. 

"We'll I'm not a detective if that is what your hinting at." Doctor Williams said. 

"No, no, no! That's not why I'm telling you this. I just want to know...what compels a person to do such a thing?"


"Serial killers! I mean, that is what a hitman technically is right? I just want some closure. What compels a living human being to kill one of his own kind? It makes me sick just thinking about it." Now she’s getting to the point.

"Well. Serial killers have no remorse for anyone." Doctor Williams said. 

"How?" She asked. 

"It's a biological condition that affects their brains. They have no empathy for others which makes it easy for the killers to kill."

"If they don't care for anyone then how do they not get caught? Wouldn't it be obvious that they kill people?"

"We'll for some, it's easy to tell but others are able to hide easily. Most serial killers are also psychopaths and when you have a psychopathic brain you understand the inner workings of another's brain. You gain a heightened understanding of life and you take advantage of it. Psychopaths have charm and a high intelligence. They don't get tied down with feelings or emotions, which makes them have no empathy for others. Unlike most people, psychopaths always think rationally which means they rarely make mistakes and surprisingly enough people who are psychopaths and don't lead a life of crime, they get very successful."

"No emotions. Absence of irrational thinking. That's it?" She whispered under her breath. 

"What?" Doctor Williams asked. 

"Oh...nothing. It's nothing." If that's what she needed to know then I could have told her that. It's simple to think that blocking all emotions is all it takes to get over a murder but maybe it was more complicated than that. I don't know what I did but I can sure say that I felt no remorse. Maybe it was because the Rockwell's were slime and they deserved to die. Maybe its because I may be a psychopath myself. I let go of my wife's hand and I looked at my own hands palm up and wondered if these hands were those of a maniac killer who felt no remorse, had no feelings. Then what did I feel towards my wife? Is what I feel towards her just a feeling of understanding and not love? I wondered if that was true then what did love really feel like. I thought back to when I saw advertisements for beaten animals or starving children and wondered if I ever felt anything towards them. I'd imagine others have since that what the advertisement is geared to do but what about me? Did my wife ever feel anything? Maybe she was trying to make sense on what she was supposed to feel too.

"Is there anything else you needed?" Doctor Williams added.

"I don't think so. Did you babe?" She said while looking at me.

"No. I appreciate your help."

"No problem. Now could I talk to your husband privately? I had a few more questions for him," Doctor Williams asked.

"Umm, I guess so if that’s okay with you?" Looking towards me again. 

"Sure." My wife gave me a big hug then walked out of the room closing the door so soft that I couldn't even tell that she had left.

"With such a great deal of grandiosity I am worried about your wife." Doctor Williams addressed.

"I am sure she is just fine. She really gets into those conspiracy theories and doesn't leave room for anything else."

"Is that so? Through the whole time I have known her I would not have picked that up. Either way if this is something that she pursues further I need to know. Though it’s rare in people other than who is directly related to the diseased I fear that she may have had a mental break."

"Like what? She's become crazy or something? I highly doubt it. No one has a sounder mind than us." 

"Still. Please let me know if anything of that sort continues she could lose it like those psychopaths we were talking about."     

Sending a message: Part one 

Mid afternoon while I was working in my office around town I was gazing out the window from our twenty something floor looking at the little people walking on the sidewalks and the cars driving by and I thought about jumping. I walked back and forth along the large glass panes that made up my corner office and I contemplated the meaning of death. I don't do this more than an average guy does but more so in the last several months. Could you imagine that? A newlywed man getting the girl of his dreams and after a few months, he wants to kill himself. Most men might imagine this as a joke to themselves that its because they are chained to one woman and one woman only. No more fantasizing about those models you see on the runway and definitely no more porn unless if your woman swings that way and a man can't help but feel tied down like a dog in the mud. 

I, of course, was not bummed about this fact nor was I bummed any other typical man might, I thought about where everything would take me. I have wealth and I have power but is that something I have to do again after I die? Or is it just nothing? Will my eyes just see the darkness that surrounds us for the rest of eternity? It's hard to think about myself but organizations of people believe this very fact. How can I think that everything is useless? Every breath a waste. Whether there is an actual figure on the other side to guide my way or it just comes naturally. Maybe I'll forget everything and start again and what if there is no karma or judging scales to determine how your life was. Maybe it's as random as everything else in this world if it is not created for a purpose. What of my wife? Would I never see her again or will she be with me forever? Some religions say till death till us part and another says for an eternity, who gets to decide that? I want to be with her forever doing what we do best. I want to grow old with her again and again rather to never see her again. She is the definition of beauty and as I looked down from more than a hundred feet I wanted to know if there is an end. There was no god to give me an immediate answer but someone else decided to talk to me to ease my burden. 

Moments after my thoughts I received a phone call but not through the company phone. I reached into my pocket took out my cell phone and looked at the number that was being displayed on the screen. It was not a number that I or my phone recognized. It was a local number so it couldn't have been a telemarketer and it couldn't have been related to business because they would have called the office instead. It rang a few more times then ended. I sat my cell phone on my desk and sat down rotating my office chair left then right trying to figure out who it was and what it was all about. After a few minutes I looked back down at my phone and the caller didn't leave a message. "Must have been nothing," I muttered. I moved the mouse to my computer and proceeded to work then my cell phone began to ring again. I stopped doing what I was doing and picked up my phone again to see it was the same number as before. I decided to answer it this time. 


"It's a rather nice day today isn't it?"

"I guess."

"Not a single cloud in the sky."

"Uh huh."

"Weird, it being fall and all."

"Defiantly. Weird stuff."

"But it's colder than a mother fucker."

"Depends on where you’re from."

"Meaning cultures that accept mother fucking or how temperature affects people from different regions?"


"You know, I like you."

"That's kind of weird."

"No. I mean I dig how you live and how you act in certain situations."


"You may be new at this but you know how to get out of a jam."

"I'm aggressive. You need to be aggressive to get things done."

"Well...you don't talk aggressively, you seem relaxed and collected when you talk."

"Well that’s because talking aggressively intimidates the other party and more times than not it intimidates people."

"Am I aggressive?" 

"Doesn't sound like it." 

"Good because I don't want you to feel threatened."

"By what?" The man on the other side didn't respond. "By what?" I asked more aggressively. 

"You see, I like that. Your raw aggression is so powerful and I want to use that."

"And you are?"

"The man whose associates and friends are dead." 

"I stole your money too." I grinned. 

"I know."

"We're those your men about a night ago?"

"I've been meaning to talk about that, the mans whose fingers you chopped off, he wants his wedding ring back."

"I'll see what I can do."

"So what do you say, will you help me?"

"About that guys fucking ring?" I asked in a little laugh. 

"No, I want to meet you, maybe use your talent."

"It's not just my talent you want, you’re talking about my wife too?"

"Right and what are her views on this?"

"On what? I don't even know who you are."

"You mean you have no idea who you've been messing with?"

"No...and I don't really care."

"You have been fucking with the Kazmir's." I started choking on the saliva that was in my throat and started gasping for air.

"You mean the actual Kazmir's?"

"Yes!" He yelled. The Kazmir's are thee and only prominent crime syndicate in the area. With the lack of a better word they are essentially a mafia but they are much more powerful than just any ordinary mafia or gang. People know they exist, they talk about it from time to time but no one has really had proof of their crime-ridden existence. People who talk about them disappear, police who investigate their activity disappear, and people who look at one of them funny disappear. It has become a running joke for people that if someone is not with you, the Kazmir's must have gotten ahold of them as sick as it may sound and the Kazmir's breed off of that power. They were something me and my wife had worried about while doing what we do but have never taken seriously because she does it so well, until now. We have rustled the hornet’s nest and there is no turning back from what we have done but I felt fearless, like I was walking on water, invincible. 

"Ok, so you're one of the Kazmir's. Now what?"

"You move your body to our restaurant sometime in the future and we will consider your application. Don't keep me waiting."

"And if I say no?"

"We wouldn't want that, we would make such a mess of you."

"Right." I ended the call and let out a great big sigh. I may or may not be joining their ranks to save my wife and me but one thing I did know, I was going to fuck with them first.

Something stupid

I went down to the gas station to fill up my car. I felt into my pocket and noticed I forgot my wallet as I clicked the debit option on the keypad to the pumps. I instantly remembered the cash that we took from the Rockwell's that I stored in my trunk. I canceled the transaction and then I cautiously walked towards my trunk thinking that I was being followed by someone bigger than me wanting to settle a score. I opened the trunk and looked at the mess that filled the void that would normally be their, if it wasn't for our incident that my wife and I had. I moved my hand through all the trash to find a blood spattered garbage bag and reached inside taking out a wad of cash and took out the first crisp hundred-dollar bill and threw the rest of the wad into the trunk. 

"That’s a load of money ye have there kid." I looked over to see an old man leaning on his old truck wearing his old clothes of ripped flannel and a dusty trucker cap that belonged to a towing service. "Seems like that’s what the world revolve around ever since we put you youngens in charge. Killing, stealing doing whatever your hearts desire" The old man stunk of sweat and oil and I felt disgusted to the core.

"It's always been like that. People have always stolen. People have always been killing."

"Yeah, that may be true but there is no longer a reason. People stole from em banks because they had nothing, they wanted a better life, they wanted a chance to do something. It’s a shame to see a very bright kid born into poverty and they are unable to do anything with their talents. People now lie and steal and murder another man just because they feel like it. It seems like the rich get richer and the poor stay in the gutters all because of one mans greed."

"It's always been like that. People don't change, the times do. You can’t tell me that criminals did crime for the greater good."

"Alphonse Capone was told to be a modern day Robin Hood. Other Depression era outlaws destroyed credit records leaving innocent people debt free, they were focused on the greater good."

"Alright." I waved to the old man telling him that I was done talking but he continued.

"What kind of outlaw are you huh? Are you the kind who does it fer the money or the glory?" I stood there thinking with the hundred-dollar bill in hand shaking it through the air. I walked back a couple of steps and reached back further into the bag of cash and went down to the very bottom where blood had settled from the former Rockwell's. I took out another wad of cash but this one was covered in blood and I shut the trunk behind me as I walked to the old man.

"Me? I do it because I get to see a live man die before my eyes sucking in his soul with my breath as it leaves his body. I do it because its fun." Then placed the bloody wad of cash in his old wrinkly fingers and closed his hand around it. Fear appeared to me as I looked into his eyes and he took a few steps back holding the money tight within his hands. I smiled then headed towards the gas station. I heard him slam his door shut and start the engine then drive away as fast as his car would let him. 

The door to the gas station dinged as I entered and I saw the gas attendant was preoccupied with his paper that he was reading so I went into the back and grabbed a few snacks and a drink. As I approached the cash register I saw a television behind the gas attendant showing a picture of what I assumed to resemble me. 

"Can you turn that up?" I asked the gas attendant and he turned around to un-mute the television. The now news reporter on the screen talked about a teenager who was kidnapped for a day then let free after being beaten brutally. The news reporter stated that a sketch of her assailant has been made then flashed on the screen again. 

"That’s ten fifteen mister."


"The things you got. Ten fifteen," the gas attendant repeated.

"Twenty for gas too." The gas attendant pushed a few more buttons and I handed him the crisp hundred-dollar bill. He gave me the change and I saw that there was a jar on the table for a family in need for Christmas. I put the rest of the change in the jar and the gas attendant gave me a look of confusion as I walked away. I took a few steps outside to see a police officer with several flyers of my face he looked at me in shock as I tried to speed past him.

"Sir!" He put his hand on me stopping me to pass by quickly while dropping the fliers on the ground and I tried to look away. "Sir you’re bleeding!" I looked down to my hand that carried the wad of cash. 

"Yeah. I need to get home."

"I got bandages in my cruiser."

"It's ok. I'll treat it when I get home."

"Are you sure? I can treat you right now."

"I'm sure." I walked away as quick as I could and started my car to drive away without even thinking to fill my empty tank. 

Sending a message: Part two

Placing some packing tape on the small cardboard box sealing the box shut my wife walked in the front door with bags of clothes and useless trinkets for our house. I wanted to hide the package from her but as I looked back and forth in the kitchen my wife walked up to the table and placed the bags on the ground. 

"What do you got there?"

"A box."

"A empty box?"

"A box, with stuff in it."

"What do you have in said box?" I rolled my eyes at her because her personality was to know every little thing I was doing while myself, likes to do things freely without consent of another person. 

"It's for work." Which it was not. 

"Oh? Then why be so secretive about it?"

"Because you're getting in my business. I don't like that."

"I know. Just sometimes you get too emotional about your pride and yourself and you do stupid things. You mail papers for work, what's in the box?"

"You're never going to know," I said firmly. 

"Babe...why won't you tell me?"

"It's none of you're business. It's for work and that's it." I put more tape on the box making sure it would remain closed and walked out the front door box in hand.  

The routine

The routine starts just as any other. You need to get the confidence and integrity to follow through the whole way. This, of course, is one of the hardest steps. You always fantasize about it, dream about it too but its that moment when a thought becomes a reality. You need to be smarter than everything that comes into play. There is no room for mistake yet we are human, we frequently make mistakes and that's what gets us killed or caught. You need to be perfect and make no excuse for mistakes. You've got to treat it with a certain degree of professionalism it will appear to be your job, like you have done it thousands of times when you have not. Enjoy it while in the moment but don't treat it like a game, you make mistakes if you believe it's just a game and some mistakes can be your last one. It could have been my last but it led no traces to me. 

My wife and I sat at a small round table in the restaurant facing each other as we sat on separate sides. I looked at her and she at me and I knew almost instantly what we were going to celebrate. Almost instantly our waiter walked up to us with his slicked black hair and his suit and bowtie. He placed a wine list between us and asked what we wanted to drink. 

"Wine. Give us your most expensive bottle."

"Yes mam." He left us be as my wife reached across the table and grabbed my hands and looked into my eyes. 

"So...its been a stressful year and I'm surprised to say that we made it."

"The police call off the search?" I asked. 

"No, but it is now no longer on the top of their list. Majority of their funds are now being designated to other cases, at least that’s what John tells me." Our crime happened towards the end of summer, it was now spring. The times sure did get hard but we made it. 

"How did you feel about the whole situation?"

"It was hard to deal with after the adrenaline wore off but when I realized that after you do something like that you need to have a certain attitude. You need to change how you view things." This was most certainly true you may look at it as a crime before but after you do it you try to justify it saying that you were in the right and this was how things were supposed to be done but without acknowledging what you have actually done. I imagine serial killers have no problem with this because it is said that they have no empathy towards another person but when your just a normal person the guilt could very well just drive you mad. You need to look at the crime as a thing that just happens and that everyone does it--even your Grandmother, I bet she has at least in her mind. Everything needs to become a thing. It is not a creature with a name but a random thing like plastic or metal or even paper. No regret, no remorse. 

"Yeah. It was harder than I thought it was going to be."

"Here's your wine." The waiter said as he walked up to us. He opened it up and poured each of us a glass very professional like. "Are you two ready to order?" I looked at my wife. 

"You're buying." I said. The waiter looked towards my wife with a pen and pad in hand.

"We will have two of your specials."

"Four or five course?"

"What's in a five course?" I asked. You need to pick your applicant wisely. If you are weak then don't choose someone who will be stronger than you, man or woman alike humans are unpredictable. No matter how much you think about your plan and how to go about things, when you have the upper hand anyone can act in a way you never expected. You can find them anywhere. At your local grocery store, at a doctors office or even simply on the street. Whoever it may be you must figure out what you’re getting into before you jump head first. Do they have family? Do they own any animals? Who lives with them? Are they early to rise or a late nightwalker? These questions and many more need to be addressed to be sure that nothing wrong will happen. Several people don't do this and most of the time they are successful but that doesn't always mean you will. A simple dose of caution never went too far. 

"We start with a salad, then soup, an appetizer, main course, and finally a desert."

"What's in a four course then?" My wife asked. The waiter laughed to himself because he knew we weren't used to going to fancy restaurants. 

"Same thing but you get to choose between a soup or salad."

"I want that," I looked at my wife then at the waiter. "I want that." The waiter then looked back to my wife and she rolled her eyes. 

"You're eating a salad. Meat and potatoes aren’t going to cut it. We will have the five." Looking at me then the waiter. Soon as you figure out who and where it will happen its time to address how it will happen. Will you attack while they are sleeping or when they are focused on work? Best time ideally is to do it is when they are alone but it could be done at any time as long as you know your escape. Will you use a knife or a gun? A blunt object or something around the house? All depends on how quiet you want it versus how clean or messy. Do you want to feel them bleed or do you want to see them die. 

"Garden or caeser?" The waiter said looking at my wife. My phone began to ring and my wife gave me a look like she was disgusted. Everyone turned to look at me and the man playing the piano stopped playing in the background. I hit my fists on the table being angry at myself then a feeling of dread pulsed through my veins. I had an idea who it was and that gave me grief like no other. I took the phone out of my pocket and saw who it was, was who I expected. I picked up the glass of wine, chugged it, and then stood up having the phone in hand. 

"I have to take this." I walked away from the table weaving in between tables and fellow patrons trying to get outside. I answered the phone. "Yes?"

"You have some fucking nerve doing what you did I hope you realize that."

"Hey! Mister Kazmir, how are you doing?" Some people in the restaurant heard me and nearly choked on their food. 

"I was doing great. I was spending my time with my family until it was addressed to me that I have received a box of bloody fingers. Rotten out and the smell! I couldn't believe the smell."

"Just treat it as a thank you present from me to you," I said. 

"Thank you for what? I am considering killing you now?"

"Aww Albion! After all we have been through. You said your man needed his ring back and I gave it to you." The last thing is the clean up and the alibi if you were ever questioned, that's why you are better off offing someone you don't know. If you do that correctly then you need no alibi. A clean up is dependent on how trusting you are of your own skills or if you want to make people think they simply disappeared. If you think you made a mess and your DNA is all around the epicenter then you better clean your mess up. Sometimes people hide the bodies. It can vary between a hidden grave or a wood chipper just make sure no one is watching. 

"There's a ring in there? Hey, look through that disgusting box for a ring!" He talked away from the phone. "If I would have found any evidence at our associates place, mark my words! I would guarantee to you that it would go straight to the authorities."

"I don't know what you’re talking about." I wasn't sure if he was trying to get me to confess over the phone. 

"You're cute. Just you wait!" He screamed. 

"No. You wait. You wait until I stand right before you and kill you with my bare hands!" I ended the call and stomped back inside giving everyone a forceful scare down their spines, walked up to my wife and sat down. She was eating her salad and gave me a steady look of caution. 

"Babe?" She asked. 

"Are you ready?"

"Ready for what?"

"Are you ready?" I asked again. Her look changed and she sat up in her seat and put down her fork. 

"I...I don't know, we just avoided the police by a feather and you want to do it again?" She whispered. 

"There is no doubt in my mind that we are ready."

"Well...who is it?" I poured myself another glass of wine and raised it up to her and she did the same. I let out a big grin and even though she didn't know who it was, she didn't detest to the thought as our glasses dinged together.  

Remember me