Toronto. Friday, May 3.
The day had been a spring delight, a welcome relief for Torontonians who had endured much of the winter in the frozen north. The temperature, unusually high for early May, was still sixty-eight when Mengalli’s plane touched down at Pearson Airport. Still dressed in his black trousers, white shirt and black windbreaker, he used a forged passport in the name of Pietro Lopez to clear Customs. He took an airport limousine to the Airport Hilton on Dixon Road where a room had been reserved in the name of Xylex, Inc., Grand Cayman. After he signed the registration form with a scribbled and illegible signature, the desk clerk handed him a room key, a legal sized manilla envelope, and the key to a white 2002 Cadillac Deville, also rented in the name of Xylex. Both the Caravan and the room had been pre-paid by a wire transfer from a bank in Grand Cayman.
He declined the service of a bell boy and carried his luggage, one black canvas suitcase and a black leather overnight bag, to his second floor room. He showered, shaved, then sat on his bed, a white hotel towel still wrapped around his hairy mid-section. He lifted the manilla envelope from his night table, then opened it. Inside was a report based on the results of the exhaustive and covert surveillance of Cedric Nelson, an investigator with Cyclops Private Investigations, Toronto, Ontario, Canada. Nelson boasted ten years experience with Cyclops, and prior to that, eight years as a senior investigator with C.S.I.S., Canada’s Security Intelligence Service. The subject of the report was Kerri King.
Mengalli quickly scanned through the preliminary information, detailing the subject’s name, birth date, place of birth, age, education, work history, and so on. He was only interested in what she looked like, where she lived, her habits, and with whom she associated. With that information, together with his own surveillance, he could begin to formulate a plan, one designed to complete his assignment then flee the country, undetected. He was pleased that Nelson had included numerous photos of the subject. He was disappointed that almost all of them showed her heavily disguised, wearing baggy clothing, large dark sunglasses, and either a Yankees of Blue Jays baseball cap. Several photos showed her entering or leaving her parents’ expensive North York home, either alone, or in the company of Mike King, her father, Karen King, her step-mother, or Steve Monteith, her male friend. The report stated the she spent most of every day and evening in the company of Monteith, who lived with his mother, Helen, in nearby Thornhill. Only three photos showed the subject in normal clothing and not wearing a hat or sunglasses. In those photos the curves and perfect proportions of her body were clearly visible. Mengalli studied each, fascinated by her beauty. Although he had been totally objective and dispassionate in virtually all of his killings, this one bothered him. He had never killed anyone so beautiful. It seemed a shame to waste such pulchritude on death. He briefly considered using it for other, more carnal purposes, then carefully returned the report to its envelope.
He dressed in clean black pants, black T-shirt, and his black windbreaker. He hid his eyes with sunglasses, then left the hotel. His destination was North York. It was time to begin his own surveillance, the aspect of his profession he most hated, but knew was necessary. Its importance could not be underestimated. There was no room for errors. The process would require hours of boring watching, note taking and photography.