"I want to kill him.”
A man sat quietly from someone else. They were in an office alone together. The windows were open to let the sun in and brighten up the spacious office. His eyes gazed far away into the distance. He’s been pondering about how he was going to phrase what he meant to say.
He felt enough hatred that he wanted to kill someone. He felt enough anger that it boiled deep within his stomach. Yet, he looked so tormented by the fact that he probably couldn’t go through with it.
“I have nightmares about killing him.” The man in the dark suit admitted without shame. He looked away from the window and down at his hands.
The thoughts he harbored, they were dark and gruesome. They were threatening, they were not moral. He’s had this burning fire that’s made him want to be vicious but he keeps it down rather well.
But he desperately wanted to kill someone, it was like his life depended on it.
“Will you kill him?” The other asked.
He was a psychiatrist. As much as he thought this man was a danger to himself and others, the psychiatrist didn’t report him to authorities yet. He was curious. He hasn’t had a patient who struggled so much to figure out who he was as a person.
The man looked up quickly when he heard the question. Would he? “I don’t want to kill anyone.” he said quietly, looking down to avoid eye contact.
He wasn’t fond of doing this but he sought out help in secret. He needed someone to talk to about how he felt. He didn’t want to go crazy, but that’s how he felt like. He was crazy.
He just always tried to suppress it.
“I should probably leave...him...but that’s not...a good idea.” He continued.
“You feel tied to him.”
Whatever it was, the man couldn’t face anything alone. He couldn’t deal with whatever it was alone. He couldn’t be alone. He was paranoid that something would happen.
Who he was afraid of was his own protector.
If he left, he would surely be found.
He knows what he did.
“I...um...rescued another dog off the street again. She ran away this morning.” He didn’t seem to believe the dog ran away. But this man looked so sad that there was nothing he could hold on to. “I know she didn’t run away. He says I could get rabies from all the strays.”
“You believe that?”
“He just doesn’t like animals.”
“James, I feel like you’re picking up animals off the street to find something you can take care of on your own. You crave a loving relationship which you aren’t getting so you turn somewhere where you can express any kind feelings you have.” The psychiatrist said. He was serious about James looking for something he could hold on to.
What was it like for him?
Why doesn’t he have a loving relationship? Was he resistant? Whenever he talked about the other person, there would be disdain in his voice. There was something going on, something deeper.
James remained quiet as he looked towards the window. His eyes were burdened. He looked for something that would give him relief but for weeks he’s been wound up and pushed passed his comfort zone. He couldn’t handle it.
He hesitated to tell his psychiatrist that he picked up an abandoned kitten this morning. He knew what it meant when he tried to help the animals.
He just didn’t want to talk about it anymore.
“Are you sleeping at night?”
“I have nightmares every night.” James said. “I would prefer to not take medication for it.” He sighed.
“Drinking is not a solution.”
“I’m not an alcoholic.” He looked up finally, making eye contact.
It seemed like everyone has been calling him an alcoholic though he knows that he’s not. He says that he’s not. Does his actions reflect that? Does he drink?
“How much did you have last night?”
“Enough to stay asleep.”
Well that must be a lot. His psychiatrist was skeptical. James may have been an alcoholic but he doesn’t like discussing it.
“You don’t have a good support system.”
“He says I’m an alcoholic when I’m not.” James pointed out. Apparently whoever he was with picked up on his drinking habits as well.
“Can you go one day without a drink?”
He was just about to answer that question but stopped. He’s been drinking everyday for the past month. Whether it was one glass or the entire bottle didn’t matter.
James was anxious, that’s why he was a little twitchy. He’s scared.
He won’t tell.
He tries to, but he doesn’t have complete transparency with his psychiatrist. He has secrets he needs to keep.
“Go one day without a drink.” His psychiatrist said. “Just one.”
Could he make it?
James nodded. He was going to try. It’s not like he was resistant when told what to do to help him get rid of his anxiety. If his psychiatrist finally recommended taking pills, he probably would. But he can’t take them with alcohol.
So one day at a time for now.
The session was done and James had to leave to go back to work. He was a lawyer at a small firm that represented the small businesses in the city. Lately, the lawsuits tend to pick up during major tourist seasons. He was always busy.
James was disappointed that he didn’t like Florida like he thought he would. He was disappointed that he didn’t like being a lawyer as much as he thought he would. There was one reason why he wanted to be a lawyer in the first place, but that reason is dead. He was clinging so hard to other things to keep his life going.
The scenery was different. It was good to have a new life. Though it didn’t feel as right as it should’ve.
He felt void.
He felt tired.
He felt empty.
It was like things haven’t been going his way for a while.
He sat in his office alone, a small black cat stretching on his desk. She could fit in the palm of his hand. The cat purred when he rubbed his finger on her ear.
At least there was something that wouldn’t bite back at him.
James had been feeling under the weather all day. Was he getting sick? He was getting a fever but it wasn’t enough to make him leave.
His secretary let him know that someone was coming up to see him but he was sure he didn’t want visitors, even clients. He lightly picked up the cat in his hand, and placed her in his front suit jacket. She yawned and shuffled around before going still from falling asleep.
“Ah, Mr. Blair.” It was the detective he met yesterday.
What was he doing here?
“Can I help you with anything?” James asked politely.
Well, the detective has no leads on his case so he wants to talk to all the people that gave statements first. Mr. Blair was at the top of the list.
The detective couldn’t put his finger on it, but there was something slightly odd about Mr. Blair. There was something that happened to him, he’s holding on to trauma isn’t he? Elijah could feel it.
“Oh, well I was hoping to get a referral. Are you a divorce attorney?”
“N-no. I’ve chosen to stay far away from that.” James said quietly, attempting to smile but he couldn’t. He just looked away to the window.
“Are you married?”
James was about to answer but most of the light left his eyes. He ended up drowning in his own self pity as he remembered why he hated that question when anyone asked him.
“My fiance was murdered...on our wedding night so...” James didn’t want to unload his life to a complete stranger but he couldn’t help but answer the question.
“I’m sorry to hear that.”
“It’s fine. The killer was murdered a few months ago so I feel...a little better...I think.” He wasn’t sure what to feel.
The detective was trying to know more about him, and it’s not like James didn’t know what was going on. He was an FBI investigator himself so if anything, he knew. But it was always nice to have someone to talk to when there’s no one around.
Before James could say anything about the referral, the small kitten in his coat pocket peeked out to look out into the light, staring right at the detective. The detective did have questions about...that.
“I’m not allowed to bring strays home.” He said sheepishly.
James couldn’t help himself.
The detective literally wanted to give James every pet in the world. Why did he feel so sorry for him? James looked like a lost puppy himself. Maybe that’s why.
“You like animals?”
“I was never really much for pets years ago, but now I think about having a shelter.”
The detective felt like someone had punched him right in the stomach. It hurt so much to talk to someone like this.
Who was James Blair and who hurt him?
The detective needed to find out.
James was appreciative of someone coming by who didn’t want to talk about work or anything related to business. He did know that the detective had objectives to fulfill in his visit but a minute or two to talk was nice.
“I also came here to ask about your client that was killed three nights ago.”
James gave a statement about her. He wouldn’t do it if he didn’t know her. He stared off for a second, thinking about her.
She was so nice, yet she had an unfortunate end.
“Yes, she was one of our biggest clients.” James said. “Her family owns a chain of boutiques by the beach. She never really caused problems with anything. I was mostly her lawyer for settlements. She bought out other stores but made sure the owners were compensated greatly.”
So she was a good woman.
“There were a few others of your clients that were killed months ago.”
“Bryson Filler was burned alive. Wayne Hill was found on the streets with his limbs scattered. Justin Hugh had his organs pulled out from the inside out through his mouth.” James listed the other three that were killed.
How did he know all this?
“You watch the news.” Elijah wasn’t quite sure if the news was enough.
“I also have a friend that’s an investigator. He doesn’t shut up.” James laughed to himself. It was the dearest thing for him to smile because he doesn’t do it often.
“Remind me to talk to everyone about that.”
“I actually don’t mind. I’ve always wanted to be a criminal justice lawyer, but I just didn’t get that far. It wouldn’t be the best choice for someone like me.”
Well if he had interest, that should mean something.
The investigator felt the need to tell James to go for it anyway. What was there to lose? He wanted to tell James that it could be a perfect fit, even for a quiet and sad man like him.
“We could use lawyers that have an interest in protecting people.”
James didn’t see it like that. He would hate to know that he’s representing a murderer. It’s not as easy as it looks.
James didn’t respond as he lifted his kitten into his hand and set her down on the desk. She meowed as loud as she could at James and he pet behind her head to get her to quiet down.
“Listen, I haven’t been able to get an opinion from anybody yet, and other investigators are hard to talk to, but I wanted to ask your opinion on something.” Elijah wanted to believe his hunch about James.
Yes he seemed like a broken man with so much baggage it would take years to unload. Yes he was twitchy and fragile and looked like a lost dog who needed a bit of happiness in his life. But Elijah had a feeling he was smart, and it’s not because he was a lawyer. James did say he had an interest in criminal justice. Maybe he was smart enough to formulate opinions that might help.
“How many killers do you think there are?” Elijah asked.
James looked up towards him. He was hesitant to answer the question. It would’ve been better to ignore it, but James found himself staring at Elijah.
Might as well entertain him a bit.
“Two.” He answered. “Based on what I’ve heard, some murders show up in pairs with similar times of deaths in different places. There has to be two.” He looked down again, still hesitant.
Elijah liked the answer.
“Do you think they know each other?” He asked.
“What makes you think they would?”
“Like you said, the murders are paired. Most on the same night too. I think they do this for sport.” Elijah weighed in. He was very interested in this case.
And to have someone to talk to who wasn’t a detective was different. It gives a different perspective.
If only Elijah knew.
“Some of the things that happen have to be with held from the public. It just gets really bad.”
James took a breath. He’s heard that it’s gotten bad. He’s heard about the wild killers that are running the streets.
There was something he wanted to talk about but he shouldn’t. He barely knew Elijah. He shouldn’t say anything that might get him in trouble.
But maybe if he just gave a cry for help?
Something that only Elijah would be able to hold on to?
Elijah could tell there was something on James’ mind. Does it have to do with the case? Elijah suddenly thought that maybe James wasn’t quiet, he was just a man that kept to himself.
If he had ideas though, he shouldn’t.
He didn’t want to push James any further. It would be best to give him space. There would be other times for him to talk.
“Thank you for your time, Mr. Blair.” Elijah got up and buttoned his jacket. “Hope to see you around.”
James looked up slowly as the investigator walked out of the office.
He remembered the investigator from yesterday. Elijah. He’s working on the murder case that has everyone talking.
Who could the killers be?
Elijah walked down the hallway and passed by someone who was heading in the direction of James’ office.
The young man had bright blond hair, like it was bleached. His roots were darker as his hair grew out. His eyes were a piercing hazel; it looked like aggression could be seen in his eyes, a fire so bright it could burn down the whole world.
Elijah couldn’t look away.
As he passed by, chills rose up his spine. But it was more abrupt than yesterday. These chills literally made his stomach churn with uncertainty and fear. It was a gut feeling like something was wrong.
The young man just barely smiled as he looked over to the detective. The edges of his lips curved upwards in an almost flirtatious smile as he walked by.
It felt like an eternity went by. At least for the detective. He turned back when the young man walked by, and he still had his chills on his skin, the goosebumps making his hair stand on ends.
Who was that?
Would it be wrong for Elijah to find out? His gut said he needed to know. He’s never walked by someone who’s made him shiver the way he did.
For a split second, somewhere in his mind he had this feeling like he ended up on a hit list. He didn’t know whose but he knew he was on it.