||She knew she couldnt lie in bed forever avoiding the awful truth that invaded her life. It was 8pm and he would be here soon to remind her that it was no longer a dream.
A knock on the door.
Just a few minutes more of denial.
Wake up, my dear.
Maybe hell go away.
You cant stay in there another night you have to feed.
he awful truth.
The door opens and a shadow passes through coming to rest at the end of her bed. Please, I beg you.
I love you, he whispered softly.
I hate you.
Im sorry for that.
Youre sorry? The only thing youre sorry for is the fact that I loathe you. You could care less that you turned me into a monster. Why dont you admit youre a selfish bastard?! You wanted a playmate, a sick, sadist little playmate! Why?! Why me of all people?
Because I love you.
You take away the only life Ive ever known and you call that love. Do you know love? I did. I believed in it at one time. Now I know I was a fool. It was so easy to believe in something that was suppose to be beautiful and eternal. Happiness. Peace. Joy. God, I was so gullible. I thought I had found it. But nothing ever lasts, does it?
I am here with you for eternity.
She smiles, Yes and I can hate you for that long.
You will come around one of these days and realize that I gave you a gift that is truely amazing. But for now I just ask you to put everything behind you and try to make this work.
Do have have any other choice?
Will you try to stop me?
Why bother? Why not find someone who wants you little gift?
You smiled at me that night we first met. I never thought I would find someone like you but I did and I do not want to loose you. I love you."
A moonless Georgia night is about the closest thing on earth youll find to a black hole. The darkness beat down the timid beams of the headlights into small spots on the road. She preferred the moonlight, at least see would be able to see the country side she was passing through. But hadnt she seen it all before? Every weekend for a whole quarter now, highway 441 between Dublin and Millegdeville had become a habit. She could drive it blind.
This Sunday night she had her eyes open when she saw hazard lights in the distance. She slowed up to pass. If it werent for her high beams, she would have hit him. She muttered some obscenities and she brought the car to a halt. He stood in the road waving frantically. She pulled off the road to repeat to him what she just said a few seconds earlier.
Before she got out of the car she pulled something out from under her car seat. Better safe than roadkill, she thought.
Are you trying to get someone killed?
Im sorry but I have been here for over thirty minutes and no one has passed by. I was desperate.
Well, I stopped. Whats the problem?
He stared at her absently for a moment and then replied, Oh, yes. Im not sure. My car just stopped running.
I can stop up the road and have a tow truck sent out here.
Im in a bit of a hurry.
You picked the wrong place and time to break down then.
I made a mistake. I was being impulsive when I decided to drive. I should have flown.
You must not be on your way to Milledgeville.
Shouldve took the interstate.
I thought I would take the scenic route.
Youre driving at night. Youre not going to see anything anyways.
He laughed, As I said this trip was impulsive.
She smiled trying to figure out how she was going to get out this in a polite way. He seemed like a nice enough person but thats what serial killers neighbors say, too.
He took a couple of steps forward and held out his hand, Ive been rude not to introduce myself. My name is William. And you are?
She looked at his hand and then at his face.
His brow wrinkled as he looked down at his hand. He lifed his arms and said, You can frisk me if you like. I am defenseless. Honestly.
Thats okay. She began to wonder why in the heck she was still standing there talking to a total stranger, on the side of the road, in the middle of the night.
You want to shake my hand.
He held out his hand again and repeated, And you are?
Take my hand.
She took it, Michelle.
His grasp was cold and strong. It is very nice to meet you. He clasped his other hand around hers and stood there smiling.
You fool, she thought, have you lost your mind. She tried to free her hand but he wouldnt let go of it.
She kept eye contact with him as she slowly reached around and grabbed hold of the grip of the .38 that she had stuck in her waistband and pulled it out of its holster. Let go.
He said with some deperation, I cant. I need you.
She pulled the gun around and pointed it at his chest. Let go, now!
His hands began to shake as he pleaded, It wont hurt. Please, dont yell.
She had no idea what he wanted but she knew she wasnt going to be the one to give it to him. Let go of me!
He let go of her hand and began to laugh. She took hold of the grip with both hands and aimed at the madman who stood before her bent over in hysterics.
He righted himself, still chuckling. You forgot to load it, he spat out. You are a fool.
He had no idea why she was amused until she pulled the trigger a second time.
A week later she returned to school in Milledgeville. She had went to the police and told them everything but they found no body or car. Therefore, they had no reason to keep her in custody.
She really wanted to be the murderer she believed herself to be. A man died by her hand and her gun. Of that, she was sure. Her finger pulled the trigger. Her eyes beheld the blood from his wounds and her nights were filled with the recurrent nightmare of his face twisted in the awkward expression of pain and amusement. He had told her that she would not be rid of him easily. He had been more than correct.
Those memories were the only proof she possessed of her crime. There had been no witnesses and no body.
"Tell me again how it happened and don't leave out any details," ordered the therapist. Like the others, he did not believe her either. He was commanded by the state to change the truth to a dream. She guessed it was easier for them to deal with a psychopath than a confessed murderer whose victim got up and walked away with a bullet in his chest.
"I was returning home from a night class up in Milledgeville. It was dark, very dark. I nearly ran over the man when he jumped out in front of my car. I ran off the road in order to miss him and..."
"...you stopped," he lazily interupted.
She glared. He knew the story just as well as she did. "... and I stopped. I got out of the car to check for damage."
"...and you took your gun."
She sighed. The therapist seemed as tired of listening to the story as she was telling it. He said it was necessary. The first couple of visits he took notes but soon realized her story had not changed. The story would never change. She would keep on telling the truth and the state would keep on paying for her therapy.
"I kept the gun with me for protection. I didn't like the idea of travelling alone at night without it. In case I got stuck alone out there on the highway or something."
"So you took your gun because you were scared?"
"Yeah, I took my gun because I was afraid."
"You told the sheriffs who went to the scene of the 'alledged' crime that you did not have the weapon on your person." He always took the precaution to refer to the shooting as an 'alledged' event. She really hated that.
"I know the laws. I know that carrying a concealed weapon is illegal."
"So you lied?"
"Yes," she sighed, "I lied."
The therapist was concentrating hard on the contents of a manilla folder spread out upon his lap. "Continue," he said without looking up from the paperwork. She figured he was too engrossed in his doodling avert his attentions to her.
"I took my gun and put it in the waistband of my jeans. It was concealed by the jacket I was wearing. I then got out of my car to check for any damage. That is when the man who jumped out in front of me approached. He seemed very happy to see me. He asked me if I could give him a ride to the nearest town because his car broke down. I told him I would call a wrecker for him. I did not want to be toting around a stranger. I began checking out my car then. He followed me and apologized profusely and said he would pay for any damages."
"He did not appear threatening?"
"No, he appeared anxious. He started going on about how he needed to be in Atlanta before morning."
"When was it you felt you were in danger?"
"I told him I would send a wrecker out and went to get back in my car. That's when he stopped me and that's when I got scared."
"What did he do?"
"When I reached for the car door he grabbed my wrist. 'I need something from you before you go,' he whispered." She wasn't sure about the whispering. He could have been screaming at her for all she knew. His voice was quiet, gentle, and forceful, all in a melodious tone.
He whispered for lack of a better term.
"I didn't know what he wanted, although I had a guess, but I knew I wasn't going to give him anything. So I reached for my gun. He backed off when I pointed it at him but he did not let go of my wrist even though I was yelling at him and pointing a gun at his head. He seemed genuinely amused by the fact that I had produced the gun."
"You got mad and shot him?"
"No. Well, maybe. But he wouldn't let go of me. I kept telling him to stop and I tried to get to my car. I struggled. He just wouldn't let go." She paused and shrugged, "I just pulled the trigger."
"And you killed him?"
"No. I keep my first chamber empty as a sort of safety since my gun doesn't have a real safety on it. I pulled the trigger and the hammer hit nothing. Click." She was still upset about the gun. The gun was no longer hers. The sheriff said since it "might" have been involved in a crime that it would have to be confiscated. Her first thought when he said that was, "What am I going to defend myself with when he returns?"
The therapist finally looked up and asked. "He thought you were bluffing?"
Her mind had wandered off again to the nightmares. She shook off the thought and answered, "Apparently so. He let go of me and started laughing."
The therapist looked back down at his notes scratching his chin. "What did he say?" he asked.
"He said, 'Even it it had bullets, it wouldn't matter. You can't get rid of me that easily,' and then he came towards me again. I still kept the gun up and I told him that I had the bullets but he kept moving closer and he kept laughing. That's when I shot him." She stopped. The picture of his face, the blood, the flash of the powder, all flickered back.
"Is that when you went to the sheriff's office in Irwinton?"
"When you returned to the place you had run off the road there was no man nor a car?"
"Nothing except some tire tracks in the grass."
The therapist went back to his notes. The report from the sheriff stated that there was indeed two sets of tire tracks on the shoulder of the road but otherwise their search yielded no other signs of an encounter much less a murder. "Where did you shoot this man you claimed to have killed?"
"In the chest," she replied pointing to the center of her chest.
The therapist nodded. There was not much else he could do. This was the third week of therapy, two appointments a week. So far the only thing these meetings have done was to convince her that she was going insane, not that she was getting better. That night was not a hallucination but dead people also do not drop of the face of the Earth without a trace.
The sheriff's department had checked all the hospitals for any recent admitants with gunshot wounds. There were none. She had gone under hypnosis in hopes that she would remember the license plate to the car. She never saw the license plate. They had checked her car for fingerprints. The only ones were hers. An extensive effort had went into finding her assailant/victim but nothing turned up. That is when the state recommended a psychiatric evaluation.
"How'd it go?"
She snarled in response.
He nodded sympathetically. "That good."
Shaking her head she mumbled, "I'm not insane."
He put his arms around her and held her close. "I believe you."
And she believed him.
But the nightmares continued.
They grew more real with every visit.
The voice. The face.
That dreadful grin.
Her limbs were heavy and immobile as she lay on the moist ground beneath the cover of darkness. A soft breeze gently shifted the dark sillohettes of the trees above her. She slowly opened her eyes to peer up into the night sky watching silently, struggling no more. Her life blood slowly seeped from the open wound leaving a cold wet trail down her neck to a puddle on the earth. The ground slowly soaked up all she had left to give of her life as she stared up to the stars waiting for the inevitable.
To her dismay, the inevitable never came.
The sillohettes of the trees above crept along the moonlit sky. Mother Nature forced her presence upon the earth, not enough to make a man cower in fear or bow down in awe but just enough to make one feel uneasy. In the shadows, something was stalking. Footfalls concealed by the wind beating at the leaves. Screams hidden in the trees.
She only wished she could scream to ensure herself that she was still alive as she lay staring up at the sky but she could not move, only watch. Time had no bearing on her soul now. It could have been hours. It could have been seconds. Since she had regained conscienceness the only thing she was certain of was that she was going to die. The shadow passed around her muttering or chanting beneath the winds. He had brought her here for revenge. She had killed him once and now he sought out to return the favour.
As the sun sets in its heavenly home,
night rises to greet its children
in a frigid embrace.
Limbs, inanimate, lay upon the ground,
beneath the gently shifting shadows
of the darkened skies.
Dreary eyes peer into the darkness,
The soil partakes of the life blood
spilt upon its soil,
greedily awaiting the sacrafice.
The victim silently beckons an end,
ignorant of their true fate,
taking their last mortal breath.
Lifeless eyes peer into the darkness,