Chapter 22Mature

Daniel was working the register when he arrived, offering him a wave as he entered. Inside, the place was thick with the scent of an air spray, making Alex rub his nose. As he walked around the store, the sharp oxygen scent of the spray remained the most prevalent one. The few scents he could find in the air came from the inventory on display.

Heading back to the rear of the store, and seeing that Trevor wasn’t in his usual place, Alex crouched down out of sight. Some of the scents near the floor grew stronger, but the spray had settled and had the same effect down low. What scents he could pick up were those coming off of the products on the shelves, and a few from under the carpeting.

With the shelves in good order, and little sign of customer traffic, Alex had to ask Daniel if he’d seen the guy. As he made his way to the register, he could feel the question pause in his lungs. His friends were already involved in this being lookouts; he didn’t want to drag his coworkers in as well.

Hoping Daniel wouldn’t ask too many questions, Alex presented the question to him. He hummed as he thought back. “Black and bleached hair? No, I didn’t see anyone like that.”

Alex nodded with a slight smile. “Thanks.” Although he didn’t see any sign of question in his coworker’s gaze, he gave him a quick goodbye and left. On the way back home, he breathed a sigh of relief. Clear on all three fronts. At least for now.

 

Friday, September 30th, 2011

Moon Phase – Waxing Crescent

 

As his classes on Thursday went by, Alex debated whether to patrol the same places again. His high school and his neighborhood were where the killings were happening most often, but the first time he had to kill to feed, he hadn’t found a single trace of his attacker.

Once his History class was done, he spent a few minutes setting up location makers on his GPS. Looking over the network of locations, they were spread throughout several square miles. The killings in the northernmost areas, and his personal encounters in the south.

Seeing how huge of an area he would have to patrol to narrow things down, the idea became even more daunting. Deep down, he began to feel what he was sure his father did sometimes. If this guy was using the entire area he’d mapped out as a stretch of territory, his chance of finding him was slim.

His first thought was to search the forested areas near his neighborhood, starting with the park across Highway 6. It was more than large enough to offer a place to hide, day or night. As he made his way there, crossing over a rise on the highway, he could feel his chest sinking a bit.

The End

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