A tense tale wherein a serial killer explains his motives and intentions, while ruthlessly stalking and murdering his prey.
You'll just have to trust me when I say that I don't believe in fortune tellers. But there was this one, you see. How I came to find out her home address was, well, I followed her home from the supermarket one night, and the next night, and so on… You get the picture.
I had been watching her, in fact, for a month.
Her habits were so perfectly predictable.
She didn't seem to have a job at first. But she bought groceries twice a week, stopped for a sandwich at a local specialty shop for lunch both days on the way there, and then returned home. Other than that, she never left the house. She was like clockwork, which is perfect for guys like me. I'm not average either to what is expected for someone like me. But I'm not going to describe myself. I think that would just complicate things.
It was the last night, when I followed her home that I'd really begun to get a kick out of the sign in her window. 'Fortunes Told' the sign said in bold blue neon.
That's rich, I thought. Why didn't she see me coming? I had been watching her all of this time. I had been following her and checking her mail to make sure that there was only one recipient at this address. She hadn't seemed to notice me even once.
And that was when I made my move, certain that she was a fraud.
As I closed in, right hand in my jacket pocket, tightly gripping the ether soaked cloth - The old tricks were the best tricks, after all – she dropped one of her bags, jerked her head to the side and then spun around. The look on her face was one of shock and then dazed amusement. It was as though she had just remembered something important.
I went along with my own honest surprise, though my first impulse was to throw her to the ground and hold the cloth over her mouth until she stopped struggling and then strangle her right there on the sidewalk until she stopped breathing. Luckily for me, I do have some control over those urges. I stepped back and took a breath, then asked, "Are you okay?" The words were barely more than a whisper. She took my breath away. I was amazed at how much she reminded me of… her. But then they all did at one point or another, much to their eventual downfall. 'Her who,' you might be asking yourself, but I'll say simply that it doesn't matter. It'll all come out eventually or it won't, but I've no intention of getting as personal as all of that with you just yet. I want you to understand or I wouldn't be telling you all of this. But somehow I don't think telling you all the gory details of my childhood is going to make you cozy up to the idea that you're talking to a serial killer. This isn't a feminine network movie of the week. I don't need you to cry for me. I just want you to understand why she was the last. Where was I? Oh yes, the fortune teller…
"It's you." She stated with a slight bewilderment, but certainly no fear and my heart lurched to a stop momentarily. She knew. But how was that possible?
A second later, I came to my senses. Of course she didn't know. It was obviously a part of her pitch. She thought I was here for a palm reading or something. This was what she did for a living, after all.
"I came for a reading." I told her, still honestly dazed by the encounter. I thought I was playing along, quite nicely. Seconds later, the awkwardness was gone. I had regained the calm, normal, outward appearance I pride myself on. While inside the voices eat at me constantly, worms gnawing at my brain, at my very soul - the very essence of my being corroding day by day until I break down and do what they ask - I appear normal to most.
She had shocked me out of my normal rut, however, and for now the voices had silenced.
I had helped her to carry her bags into the house, but stopped just inside the doorway.
She took them from me and came back a few seconds later. "I take my clients in the living room, just over there." She said, pointing off to her left where she obviously wanted me to go.
I twitched noticeably then as the voices screamed in my head once again, breaking their unnatural silence of the past few minutes. I know she saw it, but she didn't seem disturbed in the slightest.
'She takes her clients in the living room.' One said. 'I'll bet that's not all that slut does…' said another.
I shut them up for the moment, lowered my head just in case I was unable to keep a moment of discomfort from showing and walked into the living room.
'She seems nice,' I told them.
'NICE!? She seems Nice!?' a voice asked, 'you think they all seem nice,' it said, 'but you know what she wants… what they all want. The WHORE! She'll need you and use you up and hurt you and then hide you away in the closet when her real man comes over, and when she's really through with you, she'll get rid of you. Just like SHE did. Just like… She walked in right then and I managed to keep the voices at bay for the time being.
She had a deck of cards.
She told me that she had known I would come.
I was certain that it was a line used for every customer. A part of me wanted it to be true though, a part of me wanted her to know the truth. That part didn't want to hurt her. It wanted her. It was already in love with her. But the rest of me hated her. I wanted her dead. With every kind word spoken, I wanted to slice flesh. For every soft sound of her voice, I wanted to make her scream.
I was conflicted, but I had learned a long time ago that I would just have to live with inner conflict.
"So, you knew I would come tonight?" I asked as she laid out the cards.
"Yes." She said simply. And then she spoke the line that I will remember forever. "Like all that we do in life, it was written in the stars."
"The stars?" I asked, and perhaps my voice had a bit too much sarcasm, but she didn't seem hurt at all.
"There are many tools for divining but the stars can tell us much. From the moment of your birth, your exact position on the earth and the position of the stars above you tell us about your personality. The stars tell us all about your likes, dislikes, hobbies, and personal traits."
"And those things can't be changed?" I asked, "Not by experience, or trauma… or having your fortune read?"
"Maybe… That is not for you or me to know."
With that she started the reading.
With startling clarity, she read me like a book, though not with any real detail. Nothing ultra descriptive that would cause alarm. The tower, she said spoke of great destructive forces and tragedy in my past and the wheel of fortune spoke of destiny, meaning that whatever I was concerned about was my destiny and I should stop fighting it.
I was tempted to ask her outright at this point if she knew that my silent question had been about murder, but I changed my mind at the last second. I wanted to believe this. Was it really written? Was it really my destiny? Was I meant to do this, even here and now with this woman? Was she merely the messenger? I suddenly didn't want to kill her anymore.
Half way through the reading she reached out and took hold of my right hand with both of hers and I, in shock, allowed it.
Her body went rigid. Her head went back as though she'd been punched in the face and then she collapsed to the table.
I jumped backward from my seat, thinking that she had just died somehow, shocked and uncertain of what I should do. The chair fell to the floor behind me.
Then her head came up, and the voices started again. Only this time, they weren't in my head, they were across the table from me, coming from her mouth.
She smiled at me, a seductive smile and climbed up on the table. She arched her back and thrust her hips, raising her butt off the table once and pulling her dress up with both hands.
I couldn't help but look down; the only part of me now in control was the part that wanted her. It was as if she had taken all of the dark voices into herself.
I stared at the white panties as she lifted the dress and then she was leaping off the table and I fell backwards to the floor.
My head hit hard against the wall, my neck twisted at an odd angle. She climbed on top of me and tore my shirt open.
"SLUT!" she screamed, jerking her head to the side like a tourettes patient, then to the other side, "Fucking bitch!"
"Stop," I said, but that wasn't really what I wanted.
"Stop," she mocked me, "Stop." She began to grind against me then and my body, already partially aroused, responded, of course.
Enraged, knowing that it was the demons from within me that had taken her over, I pushed her off and tried to get to my feet.
She got back on her feet quickly and punched me hard.
I was knocked backward into a small end table where some flowers had been displayed in a vase.
Thinking quickly, I grabbed the vase as I tumbled into it and lifted it as I regained my footing.
I smashed it into the side of her head.
I knew if I gave them time, they would recover and probably kill me. They'd threatened before to leave me and take someone else. They had said before that I would be their next victim. I had laughed at the time. As if I wasn't the one with the knife. As if I wasn't the one doing the actual killing here. Who needed who? Who was a voice in whose head? Apparently I had been wrong in that assumption. Maybe the psychic had been right. Perhaps they had chosen me. Perhaps it had been my fate all along. Perhaps, as she had said, it had been written in the stars.
All of these thoughts occurred to me in a matter of moments as I pulled my trusty blade from its sheath and raised it in the air.
A silver candle holder from the mantle place hit me upside the head once, knocking me to the side before I could land the killing stab. Another one knocked me toward the window. The demons – for surely that was what they were – cried out with her voice in rage as she hit or pushed me one last time. I was too delirious from the last two blows to tell which. The result was that I went crashing through the large picture window behind me.
I'd never even seen her pick up the candle holder. Some serial killer I was. How long had I been doing this? At some point it had begun to rain. The glass had not all broken safely out of the window as it often did in movies. In fact, large pieces of the double pane had remained in place which had slashed me in several places and knocked me off to the side where I lay sprawled on the wet grass in what amounted to a lawn in such areas.
I didn't even look around to see if anyone was watching. Surely things had gone too far out of control here. My left side was numb. I knew that wasn't good. When I looked back at the window, she was standing there, looking down at me.
"You aren't worthy of us." At the time, that sentence ended with my name. I don't feel inclined to tell it to you now. They moved her hand up over her chest and massaged her breasts. "You'd rather fuck her than kill her."
I tried not to let their display arouse me. I turned my head to the side. And that's when I saw my knife.
"You're Weak." They cried through the fortune teller and leaped out of the window. I had only to reach to the side, pull the knife over - heart thumping wildly in my chest, wounds all over spiking with pain, muscles fighting me every step of the way – And thrust the knife outward, burying it in her chest as she landed atop me.
I had intended to play with this one a bit. I'd initially wanted to enjoy the kill slowly. But at this point, there was no other option. I didn't know if I could regain the trust of the voices, but I wasn't going to go down without a fight. Any doubt which had previously existed regarding my calling, faded from me as I lay there in the cold rain with the fortune teller on top of me. This was what I had been born for. That woman who had raised me, abused me, tried to kill me and left me for dead? She was no more to blame for my condition than the men at the children's home or later at the institution. The fortune teller had not been to blame either; nor had any of them. I didn't have to cast blame anymore. This would be the last. What a relief that was. I knew as she drew in that last ragged breath and I held her tight in my arms that I would never feel the need again to punish my mother. She was finally dead to stay.
The rest of the world? That's an entirely different story. The women – the ones who look like her anyway – were just practice. I was meant for something so much bigger. And this story is just the beginning of that.
The voices took me back. They flooded back into me as the life drained from the fortune-teller's body. They had regained confidence in me. I had proven to them that I was strong. This had all been to show me that they could easily choose someone else. But now they knew that they had nothing to worry about. And I'm relieved. I don't think I could have gone on without them; at least not for long. They keep me from making mistakes.
But let's stop stalling and get to the big picture. Maybe you enjoyed the story about the fortune teller and maybe you didn't. Me? I found it to be a bit lacking. It ended too fast – very anti-climactic. But what can you do? You bury a knife in someone's chest and things tend to end pretty quickly. I had little choice in the matter. You, on the other hand, I intend to take my time with. Laugh all you want, but what did you think the purpose of this little story was?
You see, I gained something else from the fortune teller. It takes someone special for the demons to just be able to enter like that. I mean anyone can be possessed, but it takes a special kind of mind to have the connection that I have with them; the connection that the fortune teller instantly formed with them.
Apparently I have had this gift all along. That's how I was really picking my victims, you see. The fortune teller opened my mind further to the gift. I have to see someone. Or share something personal with them. Then I can see all sorts of things about them. It builds a connection between us. And then, like a homing beacon, I can use it to close in on them. Already I've used it to lead me to a few, but this… Oh this is so much better. I can feel you right now, reading my words and I haven't even put it out there yet. Imagine how much stronger the links will be when you're sitting there reading it for real, in the present. You already know so much about me. And, like a parasite, I am attaching myself to your mind. You'll feel me in there now and then, rooting around for valuable information that will lead me to you. Then it's just a matter of which of you live closest to me. Eventually I'll get you all though. I'll be on the road by the time you read this, probably well on my way to you. As I said, just writing it was enough to get a feel for the future readers. Maybe all it will take for me to close the final distance will be for this moment to arrive when you're sitting right there reading these words.
It's not possible, you might say, but it is, I assure you. My first few victims by this method would scream to you in affirmation of this if they could still draw breath. And if they could, I would let them. Knowing it won't save you. You may think this is just a story now, but at night, as you lay in your beds, you'll think of me and wonder. It may even make you lose sleep. If you're one of the ones that live a good distance away, you may go for some time without incident and begin to feel safe. You'll think to yourself. 'It was just a story.' And that's even better for me because I'll catch you completely off guard. Maybe I'll come disguised as a mail man. You'll think it's just a substitute for your regular carrier. Or if I'm not in a playful mood, maybe I'll just slip in through a window or door in the middle of the night. I've become very adept at lock picking over the years. A basic kit is less than fifteen bucks online. And every security system has its flaws. Most of which can be researched in a weeks' time. And if you don't live alone, night is the best option anyway.
"No," you'll say, when I get there. "Not me." "You're a monster… a murderer." I've heard it all. There was a time when it actually bothered me; when the thought of being some sort of creature of the night, feared by society actually depressed me if I had cause to think about it. But the fortune teller taught me something. She taught me to stop feeling guilty of who I am. There's no point in torturing myself. I was born for this. All the justification I ever needed was written in the stars long before I was ever born. As was your fate.
See you Soon.