Murder

Trained to Kill

Saul stood with his back to the derelict kitchen, gazing out the window at the storm raging outside. Serenity stood motionless in the doorway, waiting. She knew he had questions, but he just stood there as the wind hurled the rain against the glass. After what felt like an eternity, Serenity sighed and sat down at the broken table. She massaged her neck, trying hard to mask the tension visible in her body language.

Saul did that to her. She had known him half her life, or thought she had. Right up until she turned eighteen, she’d known Saul as the sexy older guy next door. She knew he drove a Mondeo, she knew he worked for a law firm in London and she knew that he just needed someone to look after him and maybe then he would smile. The thought made her smirk to herself now. Oh, how wrong she had been!

When she’d turned eighteen she had taken full advantage of her freedom to disappear for days on end, turning up when she felt like it, or when she found herself into trouble. The last time she had set foot into her parent’s home had been after she’d been away for a whole week, staying in some random apartment with a bunch of people she barely knew. She crept up to her parent’s house in the early hours of the morning, her eyes barely open as she stumbled up the steps to the front door. She kept her gaze down as she stepped over the threshold and came face to face with the body of her mother, limbs bent into odd angles, blood pooled around her head, laying at the base of the stairs. The next thing she could remember was being in Saul’s study with a paramedic shining a torch into her eyes.

That very night, Saul had told her who he really was. A member of a super-secret organisation created centuries ago by members of the community who wanted to protect their communities from dangerous people. They called themselves The Secure Community Society. Serenity had wanted to laugh at the name, but Saul had looked so serious that the laughter had died in her throat, The SCS would attend neighbourhood watch meetings, walk the streets late at night looking for any instances of trouble, check newspapers for suspicious patterns and…they would take out people who threatened lives in their communities.

Saul had taken Serenity as his protégé and had trained her to be an assassin. The Secure Community Society was a private affair and was definitely not operating under the knowledge of the Crown and Government so it was vital that she learn survival skills alongside her weapons and hand to hand combat training. She had excelled at everything she was trained in, specialising in axe weaponry, coming top of her class and graduating from the Secure Training School a year earlier than usual.

Those 5 years of training had hardened Serenity. She didn’t recognise the girl in her memories. She would never be that person again. The time had now come to take her final test: Kill a murderer, and get away with it. Saul was here because she was stalling. She’d been given 6 months to complete the task. That was deemed more than enough time, even for a first timer. Her deadline was up in just 48 hours.

‘Do you know what will happen to you if you fail to complete the test? Nobody outside of the SCS is allowed to know anything about us.’ Saul’s voice was low and gruff. Serenity could hear the suppressed aggression in it, despite Saul’s efforts to mask it.

‘I am well aware what failure means Saul. They’ll kill me.’ Serenity looked down at the floor as Saul spun to face her.

‘Then what the hell are you doing? You have just 2 days left Sere and you haven’t even submitted a target to HQ. How on earth are you going to satisfy all the criteria necessary for an assassination within 48 bloody hours? How?

‘Within your lifetime you have walked past thirty-six murderers. That’s a lot for someone so young. They have gone on to kill people. Innocent people. You have been trained to save lives, Sere. Think of all those girls out there like you who could one day walk in their front door to find their parents dead. You can prevent that from happening. Can you honestly say that you don’t want to prevent someone else going through what you went through? Well?’ Saul had paced over to stand before Serenity towering over her. She could see the tightness of the muscles in his arms as he fought to control his temper. She was his protégé, his project, and she was letting him down.

Serenity slipped a dagger from her sleeve and in a blink of an eye it was buried in Saul’s chest, puncturing a lung. Serenity finally looked up into his eyes as he staggered backwards, his eyes wide as he looked from her, down to the dagger in his chest, and back to her again.

‘I decided six months ago that my first kill would be the most important, Saul. I would pass my test by killing the person who murdered my parents. I knew I would find them, but I never imagined it would be you. Killing innocent people just to recruit their children into the cause? Why would you do that? It doesn’t matter. HQ approved my target and evidence. You can’t be allowed to destroy any more innocent lives.’

Serenity reached under the table and brought out an axe, which she spun and slammed into Saul’s chest. When his tortured breaths rattled between his lips no more, She threw some petrol around the kitchen and lit a few candles. As she walked away, she fished out her phone and hit speed dial. When the call connected she spoke just two words.

‘Its done.’

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The Captive

I’m just about to flip the indicator to turn into my office car park when something sharp digs into my side and a deep voice murmers in my ear.

“Keep drivin’ bitch or I’ll open you up right ‘ere, right now.”

I wince and shy away from the knife pressed to my side, clenching the steering wheel tightly.

“Take the M1 towards Northampton and keep your damned mouth shut. That clear?”

I nod jerkily as I make my way towards the motorway. My mind is spinning with a million questions. What does he want? Where are we going? Am I going to survive this? His breath is hot against my cheek but I just put all my effort into driving.

Once we get out onto the M1 he relaxes slightly. He orders me off the M1 and on towards Northampton, but then at the last second forces me out into the surrounding countryside. I look helplessly at the emptiness as he directs me up a small overgrown mud track. My chances of getting out of here are rapidly shrinking and my control on my fear and panic begins to slip. I scowl angrily at myself as a tear slides out of the corner of my eye.

I pull up next to this group of buildings and people stream out of various doors, surround the car. My shoulders slump as they greet my captor with claps on the back and hugs. My jaw drops when I realise they aren’t all men. A handful of them kiss him passionately, not seeming to mind when he fondles each one in turn. I sit silently in the car, hoping they forget about me so I can leave. My hopes are dashed when he opens my car door and hauls me out, shouting to be heard over the clamour.

“I will take this woman as my thirteenth wife. Make preparations!”

He drags me towards the largest building, the other women in tow, as all the men disperse, chattering and talking. We pass a huge room covered in mattresses on the floor and I’m shoved into a tiny room next door with big bolts on the outside. My captor looks me over with two women draped over him, making my flesh crawl.

“Once I have had my fill of my other wives it will be your turn. Get ready.” As he turns to leave, one of the women slips a knife from a sheath strapped to her thigh and drops it, carefully, behind the door.

Days later the grunts and moans slow next door and he swaggers into my tiny cell. I don’t hesitate and plunge the knife as deep as I can, dodging around him out to freedom….

…and straight into the crowds of people there to ‘witness the marriage.’ The stunned silence deafens me as I stand before them, their master’s blood on my hands. My eyes widen as one by one they drop to their knees, prostrating before me, each one mumbling.

“Mistress.”

Our Crazy World

The distant echo of following feet,

Teased and tormented my ears.

I didn’t know that tonight was the night

To have listened to my mother’s fears.

 

He stopped my cries with a rough angry hand

My heart with a plunge of the knife.

I’m not the first girl he’s sent to the grave

For looking just like his ex wife.

 

Wounds in my flesh matched the wounds in the hearts

of the loved ones that I left behind.

Sometimes the darkness of our crazy world

Can ruin far more than the mind.

Hell Hath No Fury…

I sat quietly in the jury box, my hands in my lap, half-listening to the Judge. I glanced up and out over the courtroom, fighting the urge not to smile. Of all the times to be called up for Jury duty…

The people vs Andrew McMorran. He was accused of murdering his pregnant fiancée. They said he stabbed her repeatedly in the stomach and breasts, and pushed the knife up inside her over and over again. The details had made many physically sick. The nation had been in uproar, calling for retribution. Andrew was nearing 50, and Maria, she was a beautiful young wannabe, just 23 years of age, teetering on the edge of fame as a fresh faced young starlet of the screen.

He had protested his innocence, claimed he had been drugged and had woken with the murder weapon in his hand. He insisted he had found his ‘young-enough-to-be-his-daughter’ girlfriend brutally murdered in the kitchen. Unfortunately for his story, there was no sign of a break in and all the forensic evidence pointed towards him as a culprit.

Which is exactly how I had made it look.

Andrew clearly didn’t recognise me, I’d have been out of the Jury like lightning if he had. I’d changed my appearance a lot since before. Gone were the soft bouncy blonde curls he liked so much. My hair was pixie short and jet black. I’d gained a little weight too. He always had liked his girls painfully thin. It turned out a little meat on my bones made me look ten times better than the skinny rake I had been when I had once been his girl.

He’d promised me the world: Fame, fortune, parties and all the trappings of his lavish lifestyle. I was 18 and fell hopelessly in love with the then, 30 year old entrepreneur. When I found out I was pregnant I was so happy. I had visions of us getting married and having many more beautiful babies.

Andrew had other ideas. I watched his face turn dark as thunderclouds as I told him my happy news. I can remember him screaming in my face, spittle flying from the corners of his mouth.

            “I thought I told you to sort out contraception, you stupid bitch. You’ve ruined everything! I want some hot sexy beauty on my arm not a fat waddling pregnant chick. Get rid of it..”

He dumped me that night.

When I heard the news about Andrew proposing to Maria after finding out she was pregnant, something snapped inside me. He’d dragged me to the abortion clinic and made me kill my baby. What made Maria so damned special? I wasn’t going to let her have what I couldn’t and it was about time Andrew was made to pay.

I was brought out of my reverie by the Judges words.

            “…I sentence you to death, by lethal injection.”

I bowed my head further as the smile I had been fighting broke free across my face.