There was a slight glare from the light but she continued to look. It was darker than normal this afternoon, the sun seemed to go down earlier. The sound of heels tapping pavement could be heard at the other side of the alley. Instinctively she clutched her keys, placing them between her fingers. Her wedding ring made it difficult for the key to fit but somehow it slid in. Her phone in the other, using it as a guiding light, searching for the apartment number. Sirens wailed in the distance while television noises echoed through the hall. But then it became silent, as if all the oxygen has suddenly disappeared. The darkness from the other side began to shift, slowly at first. Out of the void a figure began to appear, the lights casting a dim silhouette over his face. And then a small light, a set of legs followed by hair and face. A woman. A lost sheep. Somehow she managed to step into his view, just when he was getting ready for the night. She seemed to be the perfect warm up for the approaching festival. Tonight was his night. Under the mask he could only hear his own breathing,
Until the rhythm became him, then he would go.
The front pocket of his uniform was glowing, a white phone peeking from under the cloth. He looked to the streetlight, and from under the mask it looked like the light was fading.
She didn’t notice him until he was only a few paces behind her, how quiet he moved. A slight chill went up her blouse, causing goosebumps to stand at attention. It was mid May but between the silent bricks it felt like December. Cold with a hint of the end. She looked at the houses, watching the numbers climb. Her own destination seeming farther, while the end was still following. A Mis-step gave him away, for his feet were in sync with hers. She turned to see a small figure, a teenager. His outfit slightly dirty, the singe of the day’s grime was still on his sleeves. His hands were long, they almost didn’t belong to him. The streetlight flickered and his face appeared, only for an instant. Pale skin and hollow eyes, until two pupils appeared from the dark circles. A mask. She thought back to her husband, and wondered how she would never stroke his chin again.
He walked to his prey, and reached into his pocket. A flash of silver illuminated in the alley. Under the mask he could only see one thing, her. Her body began to grow larger as he lumbered towards her. Suddenly it grew smaller, and her feet began to move quicker. No matter, they always run. He turned to the left and continued down the hall. His phone still sitting in his pocket.
She ran down the halls, screaming for help. It wasn’t enough for the occupied apartments seemed to only house lights. She turned around and noticed that he was gone. A slight trickle began to crawl down her legs, the liquids from earlier making an escape as she searched for hers. Her phone light was now off and the keys were no longer within her hands. She crawled into the pile of trash next to the rusted gate. The smell was only tolerable because her life was on the line, but she still gagged. And then it became quiet, no longer rustling plastic and drastic heartbeats.
His hand reached down
Her hair was snatched
His shoulders bulged as he lifted her
The trash bags rolled off her legs as she was taken
He kneeled next to her and unsheathed his knife.
In the distance a trickle could be heard, a fresh puddle forming in the gutter. In the dark it was colorless, but in the morning the street would turn Crimson. He lifted her body off the ground and tossed her into the trash, the festival was about to begin and he was late. She wasn’t…enough. He reached down into his pocket and checked his phone. His screen mirrored that of the alley, his new canvas. Leftover blood was streaked across the LCD lights and for a second the cells made a kaleidoscope on his mask. A solitary red flash was pulsating in the corner until a hold transmission button appeared. He pressed it and the screen went black. A lone sigh escaped from the nostril holes and a set of words refracted off of his face. The screen read “Lost Sheep” and his transmission ended.
I sat in the corner of my room, numb. Tears unable to fall and words no longer forming. What had I just witnessed? The ending of an innocent life or the craving of a sadistic man. The two accounts both open on my screen, wondering who’s story was the real one. I was afraid, but most of all I was confused. How, how could I watch that? How could I sit still and experience the end of an existence. I wondered who was the real monster as the same night sky began to fall over my bedroom window.
This short came from the idea”what would happen if someone live-streamed a murder?”