dEaDINBURGH: Origins (Din Eidyn Corpus Book 3)

BOOK: dEaDINBURGH: Origins (Din Eidyn Corpus Book 3)
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dEaDINBURGH:

Origins

 

by

Mark Wilson

 

 

Somna

 

 

2014

 

London

 

 

I follow her along Carnaby Street, the sound of her heels clacking on the concrete becoming a metronome, accompanying the pounding of my heart in my chest. It doesn’t irritate me, this monotonous soundtrack, but rather it acts as an overture, joining the other London sounds building in intensity, stoking my bottomless appetite.

My Other giggles as he catches our reflection in the blackened windows of the Vans store. I shush him and he glares at me with undisguised contempt.

“It’s my night,
killer
. It’s me who’s in charge tonight; don’t fucking forget who I am.” The vitriol drips from his sneer.

That’s what he calls me,
killer
, like it’s a curse and reverence in one word. I nod once in reply. In deference. Now’s not the time. Besides, he’s right. It is his night. He’s in charge: he controls what happens, how it happens and to whom. These days, I’m just a passenger. No, that’s not right. I’m more of a tool for him to use to enable his insatiable urge to kill. Of course, I’m hardly one to judge having held those same appetites and compulsions all of my life. My Other merely… sharpens those instincts and gives me so many new, delicious ways to love my victims.

 

Once, maybe two years ago, I moved through this world of stalking and loving and blood and joy alone. I’d killed dozens by then – men, women, teenagers – but no children. They didn’t make the urge beat and pulse the way older people did. They felt too… familiar. Too much like me. Too… human.

My Other joined me after I’d killed a man in an alleyway in the Lanarkshire town of Motherwell. He was mildly drunk, his eight-year-old son skipping along beside him. Normally when my prey is with a child I walk away. I lose all compulsion to kill when a child is present, and I decided to return to stalking him another night, but as I turned to leave, I saw him land a heavy blow with his meaty hand to the back of the boy’s head. His son fell to the stony ground as I leaned in from a misty distance to listen.

“Too fuckin’ noisy,” he barked down at the lad.

The kid glared up at him from the ground. I caught the shadow of what looked like faded bruises around his angry stare.

“Don’t look at me like that, Matthew.” The man raised his hand to threaten.

His action did nothing to dampen the fire in the boy’s eyes. He stood, glared at his drunken father then lowered his head.

The man nodded and continued walking, his son running ahead towards their home, no longer interested in skipping alongside the bully he called
Dad.

I’d taken him then, of course. As soon as the boy had left, my urge came rushing back on the crest of a hundred beatings from my own father. A thousand insults of eternal mocking about my
obsession with footballers
.

 
He died very quickly – which was a disappointment – but cried and begged with shameful cowardice, which was wonderful, if too brief. I hadn’t had the opportunity to repay my own father for his
love
and this man’s death had proven an exhilarating substitute, and one that made a significant change happen within me.

My Other joined me afterwards and has been my constant companion throughout life and death since. Initially he’d been unobtrusive, an observer. An ever-present facet of myself in many ways. Keen to offer suggestions, but largely a passenger. Over time, he’d sharpened my appetites.

My kills had been careful in the past; after all, I’d killed dozens from all walks of life in many cities and countries. No police force had so much as linked any of my kills together. Once my Other began speaking to me, exerting his will, I became very creative.

 
I used different methods of dispatch and never stayed true to a certain type of victim. I’d like to say that this was all my own inventiveness but, truly, my Other has had so many good ideas these past two years. More and more it’s made sense to just let him take control. To direct, to command.

 

As she passes Merc Clothing, my victim’s heels screech a little, breaking the build-up of the moment for a split-second as she turns along Broadwick Street.
Perfect
.

As my victim passes Mozzino, my Other hisses at me.

“Now!”

I check up and along the narrow little road and then rush at her. She’s in her mid-forties, very fit and much smaller than I am. Most people are. I place my hand over her mouth, pulling her head back sharply, so that her hair presses against my chest.

 
Wrapping one beefy arm around her waist I lift her into myself and slightly to the side to avoid her kicking legs. Quickly I dart through the half-shut gates into a service yard, my Other laughing that sissing laugh. The one that reverberates around my head and makes my skin crawl. I ignore it. My Other is as excited as I am, maybe more so. He’s entitled.

I put the woman in a choke hold and she passes out. My Other looks at her and smiles broadly, his face a twisted mirror of my own.

As soon as she’s unconscious, I walk to the gates and close them firmly. Retrieving a canvas bag with a few implements suggested by my Other, I kneel beside her and begin placing my tools at her side. Sometimes I tie them and wait until they awake whilst I do this. The terror in my victims’ eyes as they see what toys I’ve thought ahead to bring for them is a wonder like no other. For her, she gets to stay asleep.

My Other issues a series of instructions, making my hands his own.
 
I simply obey. The pleasure I feel washing over me isn’t diminished by this act of near servitude. Quite the opposite is true. Surrendering myself to my Other’s voice, to his needs and his commands, amplifies my experiences to a plane I could never have achieved alone.

Cut the artery. Remove the trachea. Crush the kidney in your fist. Kiss her.

My Other laughs as he commands. I’m in the moment, entirely, when my mind starts to drift. I pull my attention deliberately back to the beautiful act of deconstruction I’m doing to this once hard-earned muscular body, but I can’t seem to stay focused. I think of the kills I’ve done since my Other joined me. So many. We’ve learned so very much together. Something feels wrong. Something is… not pleasurable. Something hurts.

Dozens of kills flash before my eyes. Disembowelment, hangings. Arms severed, genitals eaten. Livers fed to stray dogs. Strangulations, beheadings, skulls caved in, eyes gouged. So many beautiful communions with my prey. My Other learning from me. My Other teaching me. Football – always football – my only other love. My Other loved Manchester Utd even more than I did. We enjoyed the history of the club, the greatest players. Sir Alex. All our heroes in red. We stalked one of our heroes,
the
hero actually, through the streets of Paris, but my Other cried out that we must not. He was special.

 

I drop the gore-covered surgical scalpel and shake part of her intestine from my hands and turn to look into the face of my Other. His smile is toothy and wide. He looks different: I’ve never seen him so happy. I blink hard several times and smile back, mostly out of reflex. He smiles so rarely that it just seems the thing to do, to smile back.

My eyes narrow and drop to his hands. He has a large kitchen knife from our bag. It’s dripping with warm, bright blood. Blood too fresh to be hers. My fingers feel around to where the pain lanced in my spine and disappear into the stab wound.

I feel my Other slide the eight-inch blade into my neck, plunging it through the trapezius.

“Why?” I gurgle, a clump of blood splattering from my mouth.

My Other laughs.

“Don’t need you anymore,
killer
.” His voice is a slap of sarcasm.

I feel the blade being pulled out. It’s actually quite a pleasant sensation. Not unlike defecating. I fall to the ground, my face coming to rest on my victim’s open abdomen.

“I’m proud of you,” I whisper with my last words.

He laughs.

 

 

 

He stands over the body of the killer and sighs. A sort of sadness passes over his being, only briefly but long enough for him to notice the desolation and be surprised by it. He hadn’t considered that he would feel a sense of loss.
Still,
he supposes,
two years is a long time, and I have learned an awful lot from the killer
. He absent-mindedly flicks the knife sharply to his right imitating samurai he’d seen in movies cleaning their
katana.

Cocking his head to the right he moves his eyes dispassionately along the bodies in front of him. The man at his feet, face plunged into the growing pool of blood of their victim. He coldly removes his own clothes. Standing in only his Spiderman underwear, he walks slowly to the gate, rearranging his face into one of a traumatised seven year old. With a final look over his shoulder, he whispers, “Goodbye, killer.” And slips through the gate in search of a policeman or Samaritan.

 

 

 

 

Steven takes another long pull on his cigarette and jabs at the
volume minus
button on his remote. He nods towards the door.

“Can you check in on him again, love?”

His wife, Sharon, smiles at him, indulgingly.

“If it’ll make you feel better, of course.” Sharon creaks quietly halfway up the staircase leading from their living room to the two bedrooms on the second floor. Pausing, he lifts one ear in the direction of one of the doors and listens.

“All quiet, love. Turn that up a little, will you?” she asks, descending the stairs and taking her seat once more.

Dermot Murnaghan speaks a little louder as Steven jabs the
volume up
button.

 

“So it seems that Matthew Houston, the seven year old who disappeared two years ago on the night of his father’s murder, is settling in well with his aunt and uncle.”

Dermot’s kindly face is replaced by the head teacher of Noble Primary School.

”Yes, we’re very pleased with Matthew. Despite his ordeal, he’s adjusted very well to normal life once again and is proving to be one of our brightest pupils.”

Dermot nods sympathetically and looks into the camera as the footage from Noble Primary disappears.

“After two years held captive by what appears to be Britain’s most prolific serial killer, young Matthew Houston’s bravery and spirit is an inspiration to the people of Scotland and Britain. Dermot Murnaghan, News at Ten, in absolute wonder at a genuinely heroic little man.”

 

Steven jabs the red button, turning the image off.

“He’s a special kid, isn’t he, Sharon?”

He is, love. To have been under the control of that monster and fight his way free is amazing, but to have come home such a confident, assured young man, it’s a blessing, Stevie.”

Steven nods his agreement. “He’s some boy. Only thing he’s asked for since he’s been back is a poster of David Beckham.” Steven’s face drops a little. “He’s a wee bit obsessed, is he not?”

Sharon shook her head. “You were the same with football at that age. It’s good for him.”

Steven smiles. “Aye, I suppose so.”

Rising, he makes for the kitchen to brew another cup of tea for them.

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