Kapotnya, Moscow – Russia Winter 1999
It was cold in the ancient Mercedes. The air from the struggling heater was no warmer than the breath from her mouth. Her unrelenting talk grated every nerve in his body. He let it continue, hearing but not listening, content that soon he would silence her voice for good.
Finally, after an hour’s drive from his shitty neighborhood, he turned off the freeway and entered an equally shitty industrial estate. It was here he would end her life and get rid of her body in a dog food factory. A fitting end for a cheating bitch.
The drab buildings that marched along the road matched the gray day. If she was curious as to why he had brought her to the industrial park on a Sunday, she didn’t ask; she just continued babbling about her friends and the inane things they had done during the week.
Even when he pulled the lumbering vehicle over to the side of the road in front of the factory, she was oblivious. Oblivious to his dark mood. Oblivious to his intentions. Oblivious to the fact that each word – each peal of her sweet laughter – twisted the knife of her betrayal further into his guts.
At 17 years of age, Dimitri Molenski already had a hard look about him. He was hard. In fact, he was a psychopath. Like most psychopaths, he hid it well. He could be charming and adaptable, but ironically it was his bad boy persona, not his charm, that had attracted Inga Svenson to him.
When they had been introduced at a party by her new friend Kristina, Inga – the daughter of the new Swedish ambassador – had immediately been attracted to his swagger, his rudeness and his clear disdain for her.
The beautiful 18-year-old was not used to any man being rude to her. Indeed, she was the one normally showing disdain. Disdain for groveling boys her own age. For the middle- aged men who moved in her parent’s social circle, making no effort to hide their lechery. For the old men who leered at her when she was out and about.
During a giggling visit to the ladies room during the party, Kristina had warned her that he was from the wrong side of the tracks.
“He’s bad, Inga. There’s a rumor he even killed a man in the summer.”
Far from dissuading Inga, this information only made the mysterious Dimitri more desirable.
“Can you imagine my father’s reaction if I brought a boy like that home,” she said.
They both laughed, although Kristina was secretly horrified that her friend would even consider such a thing. But the fact was, Inga wasn’t just considering it.
Within an hour, the beautiful daughter of a Swedish diplomat was kneeling at the feet of the small time Russian thug in a dark alley beside the nightclub, busily breaking down his disdain for her.
Her relationship with Molenski had indeed driven her father wild. But the more he raged, the more determined she became until, eventually, her mother stepped in, persuading her father to let it be.
“She will tire of him in a few months, how could she not? He is a scumbag. Have you noticed his eyes? There is something dead in them… like the eyes of a shark. She will surely wake up from this spell he has her under. It’s important we don’t alienate ourselves from her. We must be there to pick up the pieces when it’s finished.”
The ‘few months’ had turned into eight, and Inga had not yet tired of Dimitri. She was under the illusion she had managed to coax a softer side of him into the light. For his part, Dimitri tolerated her. Her father’s position and her glamorous looks gave him status among his peers, and of course, the sex was a bonus.
Yes, he knew how to play the game, but occasionally his mask slipped. Those slips were scary for Inga, but rather than taking them as a warning sign, she tried all the harder to coddle him. To somehow make up for the difficult childhood that had no doubt molded him into this sometimes volatile and angry young man.
Inga finally paused and looked around.
“You’re not saying much,” Inga said, in almost perfect Russian. “Where are we?”
He finally turned and looked at her, but didn’t answer.
“Dimi, what’s wrong?” she asked, placing a hand on his arm.
“Marat saw you.”
“Marat saw you with the old man. Saw what you did in the carpark, you fucking whore!”
“What? I don’t know what you’re talking…”
It was the first time he had ever struck her, and Inga’s mouth fell open, a red hand mark appearing on the flawless skin of her cheek almost immediately.
“Dimi!” she said, tears filling her eyes. “Please, I have no idea what you’re talking about.”
She really didn’t. Inga had been faithful to Molenski the whole time they were dating. But unfortunately for her, the leader of Molenski’s gang, Marat, didn’t like the amount of time his lieutenant had been spending with her. It was interfering with his ‘work’ and costing the gang money.
It was easy. All it took was a few whispered words. Molenski’s jealous streak and short fuse took care of the rest. Marat thought the stuck up Swedish bitch would cop a beating and then piss off back to daddy.
Even he didn’t realize the depths of young Dimitri’s ‘badness.’
With her cheek burning, the young Swedish girl finally did, though. Through her tears, she could finally see it in his eyes, and when he produced the knife, she knew she was in serious trouble.
“Did you really think I wouldn’t find out?”
He didn’t wait for an answer. Before she could open her mouth, his hand snaked out and swiped his blade across her left cheek. Inga screamed and clapped her hand to her cheek, attempting to stem the warm blood that flowed through her fingers. She began to fumble for the door handle with her other hand.
He laughed and stabbed her in the left breast. Inga shrieked in agony and intensified her efforts to escape the vehicle. Molenski laughed harder. The stab wound was not deep enough to do any real damage; he intended to stretch this out as long as he could.
“Dimi please!” she begged her giggling torturer.
Then he stopped laughing, and it was worse. He put the blade of the knife under her nose. Inga’s hand froze on the door handle.
“First I’m going to make you sorry you were ever born, and then I will send little bits of you back to Daddy.”
In full survival mode, Inga pulled the door handle and pushed his blade away simultaneously as she desperately lunged from the car. As quick as she was, he was quicker, and he managed to grab a fistful of her soft hair before she could escape and began to drag her back into the car.
“I think your ear first,” he said.
Inga groaned in pain and with a strength borne of panic, jerked forward. Hard. She felt searing pain as her hair was torn out by the roots, allowing her to spill out of the car onto the cold concrete. She scrambled to her feet and ran, leaving a stunned Molenski with nothing but a fistful of hair.
He was out of the car and after her in a flash, but she had a good start.
The terrified, sobbing girl ran as hard as she could, her breath coming in hitching bursts that plumed in the cold winter air. Blood from the wound in her cheek poured down her face and splattered onto the concrete sidewalk leaving a gory trail.
His footsteps were closing on her.
If only she could make it to the main road.
Molenski was almost upon her, his knife still clutched in one hand, the other reaching out for her blonde hair, trailing behind her like the ribbons of a fast flying kite.
With one final effort, Inga opened the gap another inch as she rushed headlong into the cross street… then disappeared under a truck.
Molenski skidded to a stop, fast enough to avoid the same fate as Inga, but not fast enough to avoid the truck altogether. He hit the side of the vehicle and bounced, flung back onto the sidewalk even as the driver slammed his brakes, locking up the wheels of the big truck which screeched to a halt, fifty feet down the road.
The stricken driver jumped from his cab and grasped his head in both hands, wailing in shock. Molenski rose to his feet slowly, oblivious to the driver and the scattering of people that came running from their places of work. He had eyes only for the bloody, broken body in the middle of the road.
There was no sadness or loss. Only a deep, raging fury that Inga had stolen his right to torture and execute her for her betrayal.
The distraught driver began stumbling towards him, wailing.
“I’m sorry, it was an accident; she came right out in front of me…”
Molenski spat on the sidewalk before turning and walking away without looking back.