The night was fairly quiet as I walked down the lonely neighborhood street to my house. I lived in a nice sub-division of my city and always enjoyed the little island of quiet houses surrounded by the bustling sounds of the late-night city. It was early fall and the weather was getting to that nice medium between warm and cold. The stars were blocked from view by a veil of clouds turned orange by the evening lights. I let the cool voice of the wind settle my enraged senses as I rounded the corner.
Mom and Dad had been fighting again. Angel, my little sister, had run to her room when it began. She asked me to come with her, but I’d said no. I’d had this false hope that maybe they wouldn’t fight tonight, that maybe, just for once, they would think of us instead of themselves and not argue. But deep down the dullest pits of my stomach, I knew that they would still fight. Dad had come home and was immediately met by my mom hurling all kinds of complaints at him. He had been already perturbed by the day’s earlier work, so the fuse was as short as usual. Toward the middle of the fight, I ran up to both of them and screamed about how much I hated them. They stared at me in shock, apparently realizing that I still existed. In seething anger, I threw on my purple hoodie and stormed out the front door, without looking back.
Long evening walks always relaxed me; The smells of freshly cut grass from lawns, the feel of warm concrete beneath my feet, the soft glow from random windows in houses, and the sounds of crickets chirping in the bushes. I wouldn’t think at all, I would just empty my mind if all thought. Sometimes, I would just stop walking, and get the feeling like I was a part of something very big and very beautiful. But then I’d go home, and my parents would either still be arguing, or one of them would be gone, staying at a friend’s house.
I sighed as I turned the last corner, dreading another day waiting for another argument. Sooner or later, these walks wouldn’t help my anger, and then I would have to do something more drastic to stop myself from having to deal with this. God knows what I would do if something in me finally snapped.
But before I could begin to dwell on that dark thought, I noticed a police car down the street. How long had I been gone? I glanced down at my phone and realized I’d been walking for almost an hour. Who knows what could have happened between now and when I’d left. As I began jogging down the street to my house though, a sudden realization gripped me in the stomach so hard that I almost screamed. The police car was parked in front of my house.
I charged across the lawns of nearby houses and dashed up to the front door, which I realized had been broken down. The glass that had made up its inner frame had been smashed, and now the shards lay in deadly heaps on the front hallway floor. I made my way through the doors remains and stepped lightly through the field if glass pieces. After making it across the hallways shard-covered floor, I turned the corner and almost tripped on the gutted corps of a police officer. I jerked away from it in terror and held myself against the wall, staring at the body as if it would reanimate at any moment and kill me.
That’s when I heard the soft footsteps on the dining room floor. They were precise, deadly sounding steps that cut through the eerie silence like a knife. Whoever it could be was rounding the table and entering the adjacent kitchen.
“M-mom?” I gasped, “Dad? Angie, is that you?”
The footsteps stopped suddenly, but I heard no answer. For what seemed like forever, there wasn’t another sound, just dead silence. Red and blue lights flashed from the police car outside. Fresh blood still pooled beneath the cop’s broken body.
Then a voice, raspy and dark, spilled from the kitchen doorway.
“I watched you,” it said, “I watched you all evening. It must suck to have these bastards for parents, right?”
I didn’t know what to say or do. I just stood there, staring in the direction of the voice.
A second later, a human figure emerged from the doorway and entered the hall. It was a man, dressed in black pants and a white hoodie splashed with blood. Black hair fell into his eyes, strange eyes that didn’t have lids or didn’t blink. His face was void of color, and the sides of his mouth and been cut to form an ugly, terrifying smile. In his right hand, he held a knife, dripping with red gore.
I stared at him, and he gazed back, both of us not moving a muscle.
“You seemed to have it pretty bad,” the man suddenly said, “so I helped a little. You don’t have to worry about them arguing ever again. They went to sleep.”
Went to sleep? I didn’t know what to think, I didn’t know what to do. I began trembling as the man drew closer, his deranged smile widening.
“It’s ok,” he chuckled, “I won’t kill you. The cop and you’re family were enough.”
The man’s face suddenly triggered something in my brain. I remember coming across an article on the internet about a killer who, when at a young age, killed his parents and brother and had managed to evade getting caught ever since. The article had called him Jeff the Killer. Deep down, I knew this was possibly the same guy because he fit the description of the article. But every fiber of my being was telling me not to believe it.
This demonic murderer never ceased to amaze authorities, for he seemed to have the luck of the devil on his side. Every time he got even close to incarceration, he managed to slip through every police department’s fingers. And he always killed ALL of his victims.
He came even closer, and raised the knife a little higher.
“I should spare you the rest of the pain this whole fucking world has in store for you,” he said, “But I’ve decided to let you live. Tell your story to the world, tell them how beautiful my face is.”
I was still plastered to the wall, and even now I refused to run, to move an inch. Something was telling me to stay paralyzed. Even though he was coming closer with that knife, I felt a sense of actual honesty from his words. He said he wouldn’t kill me. But why should I believe that, why am I not moving?
“I’ll be leaving,” he said, “But not without leaving you something to remember me by.”
The knife, moving faster than a bullet it seemed, plunged deep into my stomach. Pain suddenly burst through my body, so badly that couldn’t even scream. My mouth opened but nothing came out. I stared with wide eyes at my perforated stomach as it gush wamr blood onto the floor and the knife handle. The Killer was laughing through his scarred lips and yellowing teeth, sending a sick feeling coursing through my shocked body.
The knife slowly withdrew, it’s smooth edges running along my inside. I could hardly breathe. My vision was getting spotty and I couldn’t think. All the while, Jeff laughed with insane hysteria.
“Tell everyone you saw me,” he said as he turned away, “If you don’t lose too much blood and die first.”
All I could see now was his back as he went around the corner and left through the remains of the front door. I slid down to the floor and clutched my soaked lower torso, though blood still seeped through my weakening fingers. I felt everything around me spinning away, becoming less tangible and more hazy and distant. Darkness began to flood my vision, flooding in from the shadowy corners and encompassing everything else. Jeff hadn’t wanted me alive at all. He’d given me false hope so that my death would be all the more painful. My parents were obviously dead, the cop was dead, and most possibly my sister was dead. Why shouldn’t I join them. At least the pain would finally go away.
I closed my eyes and took in one, final, deep refreshing breath, then allowed the surrounding black to take in what spirit and soul I had left.
But right at the gateway of eternity, I felt something, a physical touch fathoms away in my subconscious. I sought to ignore it at first, but then the feeling continued. Someone had placed there hand on my stomach wound, and I could feel it healing. The sudden realization that I could continue living hit me, and before I knew it, I was struggling to regain consciousness.
My eyes opened, and I was back in the hallway of my house. Red and blue lights still flashed from the doorway. The cop was several feet from me. I looked at a clock and realized it had been almost two hours since I’d gotten home. Then I noticed the girl in front of me.
She was like nothing I’d ever seen before. This girl had milky-white skin, paler than full moon. Her whole body was adorned in black, from a velvety dress and stiletto high-heels to painted fingernails and glossy lips, all the matching shade of a starless midnight sky. Her hair was equally black, but with a bluish shine to it, like raven feathers. Her most intriguing feature though, was her eyes. Pitch black like everything else, but completely and utterly black, no white in them at all.
“Sshh” she says with a finger to her lips.
I open my mouth to say something but stop when I realize the blood has stopped flowing from my stab wound. Her hand had been covering it a moment before, and now she drew it away, without a drop on her delicate fingers.
“There,” she purrs with satisfaction in her silken voice, “All healed up. Now listen to me closely. I saved you from dying so you’re going to do a few things for me in return. Understand?”
I give her a wordless nod.
“Good. Fist thing is, the medics will be here soon. You’re going to be in the hospital for several days. Once you get out, you’re going to tell everyone your story of how you are the soul living survivor of an attack from Jeff the Killer. We don’t need to fear him anymore, and I have a plan to bring him down. With your story and my idea, we get him out of the shadows and finally into where he will never escape.”
She stops when we both hear a pair of sirens coming from a mile away. She turns back to me and says, “They’re coming for you. Tell no one you saw me.”
She stands and makes her way toward the door but stops when I call after her.
“Wait,” I gasp, “Who are you?”
She turns back to me and studies me for a moment with her bottomless eyes.
“Jane,” she says, “I’m Jane. I too lost my family to Jeff five years ago. I lived through it by sheer will-power, and have vowed to track him down and kill him myself, even if it takes the rest of my life. But if we work together, it won’t have to be the rest of my life. I’ll visit you again, soon.”
She turns one last time and disappears. I stair blackly at where her body had been until the medics bust through the front and throw me onto a stretcher. I mumble a thank you as I’m loaded into the ambulance. The doors shut, and I close my eyes, allowing peaceful slumber to take over.
I’m released from the hospital a week later with several stitches and a scar I’ll have for the next thirty years of my life. The media coverage swarms me after that, asking for interviews, talks on TV shows or the radio, videos on the internet. In some ways, I’m thought of as a local hero, which flatters me. The attention I get is great, but nothing like what happened the first day of school. Apparently, Jeff was a lot more infamous than I’d earlier perceived. So many people kept asking me about it, I had to hide in a janitor’s closet for two whole periods, just to rest.
After that, though, things calmed down and everything was back to normal. My parents were buried side-by-side a week after the murder and I attended the funeral. Angel had turned up missing, but she was believed to be dead. I now stayed with a wealthy single uncle in another neighborhood. The school I now went to was different and more preppy than my last one, but I learned to fit in easily after my fame wore off. I hadn’t disliked the attention, not by a long shot, but it grew unnecessary and became rather distracting.
When the fans finally dwindled away, I was left with a nice circle of friends who had become my new family. My two best buddies were Alex and her gay friend Ryan. They were both more than hilarious and always chose the best places to hang out. What’s more, they didn’t really care about the Jeff incident, they liked me for who I was.
All was well until a month after school started when I saw her again. I was eating lunch outside on the campus with Alex and Ryan when I noticed a dark figure standing alone by the corner of the science wing. I only saw it for a second, but that’s all I needed to remember. I excused myself and jogged toward the corner. No one was there when I arrived, so I turned the corner and there she was, looking exactly the same her dark clothing. Only this time, I could sense something like anger flowing from her. Her facade was more portentous than our previous encounter.
“What have you been doing?” she said in a hiss, “Your fame has died off already. Do you think two weeks of news coverage is going to bring Jeff from the dark? Because it won’t.”
I was stunned, but quickly regained my composure and said, “I’m sorry. I thought I’d done good. I want things to be normal now.”
“Things will never be normal until Jeff is dead,” Jane said.
I didn’t respond. Instead, I thought about it. Although I’d pondered all this ever since my parents’ murder, everything came flashing back to my mind. My parents weren’t necessarily the best, they argued almost every night for years. Should I really be upset about losing that? I’d lost my sister as well, but she was very possibly dead and there was nothing I could do about that. I had friends, I was being taken care of, and life was good now.
What if things had stayed the same? My parents would still be arguing, I would still be tormented by there yelling every night and so would Angie. Had I really lost my parents? Or had I been saved from them?
“I did my side of the bargain,” I said without thinking, “I told my story and everyone loved it. That’s it. I don’t know what else I could do from here.”
If her appearance earlier had been threatening, it was nothing like her demeanor now. She flew forward and before I knew it, her hands were wrapped around my throat in a vice-like grip.
“I saved your pathetic life,” she hissed, “and I can easily take it away. You will do as I say, or I can make you wish Jeff had finished the job.”
“Kill me,” I said through clenched teeth, “I don’t care. It would be better than doing work for you, you bitch!”
“Bad choice of words, my dear.”
With power beyond that of human, she tossed me against the wall as if I were a retched fly buzzing around her head. My head smacked against the brick and star exploded in my vision. When I fell to the ground, I could barely see. But I could feel it when her hand ran along my cheek.
“Poor boy,” she said in an almost soothing tone, “You could have been my best weapon. Now, I’m going to make your life a living hell.”
When I could see clearly, she was gone without a trace, as if she were a puff of smoke on a soft wind. My heart hammered in my chest. What the hell had I done? I’d just made enemies with not only the person who saved me, but a creature with powers beyond that of natural. Something slow and painful was ahead of me.
I could feel it deep within me. I could feel it in my stab wound. I could feel it in my cheek where her fingers had just brushed my skin.
Jane the Killer was coming, and death would be right behind her.
Credit To – Nightstarsmith