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Authors: Krystal McLean

My Darrling

BOOK: My Darrling
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My Darrling

By Krystal
McLean

Copyright © 2013 by Krystal McLean

 

This is a work of fiction. The
characters and events in this book are fictitious. Any similarity to real
persons, living or dead, is coincidental and not intended by the author. The
author holds exclusive rights to this work.

No
part of this writing may be reproduced or redistributed in any form by
electronic or mechanical means without permission in writing from the author.
The only exception is by a reviewer, who may use a quote or a short excerpt for
review purposes.

 

All rights reserved.

 

First e-book edition: January 2013

 

Website:
http://krystalmclean.tumblr.com

Twitter:
@mcleantweet

Facebook:
https://www.facebook.com/WillowSeries

Dedicated
to Luc:

Thank
you for your patience, endless warmth, and for being a constant in this world
so full of variables.

“All
things truly wicked start from innocence.”

–Earnest
Hemingway.

Preface

They say
time heals all wounds, then they say life is short, that we don’t have much
time. I tend to believe the latter. Life is a fleeting luxury for most, here
and gone before we even know what to make of ourselves. And I may be young, but
I’m old enough to know that time heals fuck all.

This is my story, the story of a
relatively normal girl who fell vehemently in love with a serial killer named
Isaac Darrling.

My story is not meant to glorify
such grisly acts; rather it serves as evidence that we do not choose who we
love, and that when love is pure—when it comes straight from the chambers of
the soul—it exists entirely without condition.

Part 1

People were in dismay all over the
globe as the international manhunt for Isaac Darrling persisted. Isaac was
branded the Fallen Angel Killer because each one of his twenty-four victims
were found facedown with angel wings carved into the skin across their shoulders.
Their arms were severed off and the words,
“May your wings guide you home”
were painted in blood up each victim’s spine. When questioned by reporters,
Isaac’s friends, family and teachers often described him as an angel, citing
that he was quiet, tremendously polite, highly intelligent and respectable. He
even loved animals and children.

Investigators had very few leads on the Fallen Angel Killer
until last month, when Isaac fled from his Washington State apartment, leaving
his latest victim on a blood-drenched mattress for his landlord to find after
tenants complained of a formidable stench.

After spending eight months intricately covering up his
crimes, this was Isaac’s way of finally telling the public who the killer was,
who was responsible for the grisly murders that spanned across the United
States.

But he wasn’t going down without capturing the attention of
the media, of the world.

Investigators found a piece of paper stuck to the fridge in Isaac’s
abandoned apartment with the words,
“You cannot find what refuses to be found,
but it will be entertaining to watch you try”
scrawled across it.

After an eight-month-long killing spree, Isaac Darrling grew
bored of his own game, and was ready for the manhunt to begin. He wanted
notoriety, though. He wanted fame. And the media was giving him just that. His
face was all over papers, magazines, television and the Internet.

Isaac was only nineteen years old.

He would go down in history as one of the most prolific
killers of all time.

 

It was the end of September and New
York City was robust with crisp air, cardigans and pumpkin-spice-everything.
The grass was slick with dew and peeked up from below a blanket of gold, scarlet
and orange leaves. The summer smog had finally dissipated, and my lungs
gratefully drank in the brisk autumn air. The days were getting shorter, but I
didn’t mind; I prefer the night to the day. I come alive at night. Besides, my
pallid skin is impartial to the sun; after too much exposure I tend to look
more like a burn victim than a bronzed goddess.

It was the beginning of senior year and I was just settling
back into my post-summer routine. Now that summer was over, so was my social
life. I wasn’t one of those people who got good grades without trying. In fact,
I had to work my ass off if I wanted to get accepted to NYU for Criminal Psychology—something
that I’d wanted to do for the greater portion of my life, as soon as I was old
enough to learn that my father had been murdered when I was just two years old.

They never found my father’s killer, and I felt that the
only way I could get any type of closure from what had happened to him was to
get inside the heads of killers, understand why they do what they do.
Understand how someone could take my dad away from me, from my mom.

I grew endlessly fascinated with murder stories by the time
I hit my teens. They didn’t fascinate me in the same way outer space and flash
mobs do, of course, but I like to know what it is that pushes people to the
edge, and what eventually sends them bounding over.

I found myself completely immersed in the details of Isaac
Darrling’s case. I had taken extreme interest in real life murder cases before,
but this was different. I was drawn to Isaac’s case like a ravenous predator to
its prey, and no matter how hard I tried to get him out of my head, I simply
could not.

It was difficult to get a clear picture of who this boy was,
exactly, and somehow that fueled my interest in him even further. Friends,
family and teachers described him as extremely quiet, unless he was around
people he knew very well. They said that Isaac mostly kept to himself, and was
always reading a book, playing guitar or listening to music. Isaac graduated
from high school with honors.

It was also divulged to the public that he was an only child
whose father killed himself—blew his brains out—when Isaac was only eleven
years old. Isaac was raised by his mother, who pushed him into modeling
throughout his teens so that he could make money for her reported drug and
alcohol addictions. Isaac’s mother declined to speak to the media once news
broke that her son was the main suspect in the Fallen Angel killings, but other
family members spoke to the press, releasing any information they could to help
catch Isaac. Photos from some of his modeling jobs were also released online,
and I felt sick with guilt when I looked at them and thought that Isaac
Darrling was easily the most handsome boy I had ever seen in my life.

Cold-blooded murderers couldn’t be beautiful.

But Isaac was.

I found myself enamored by the picture of Isaac that was
displayed on the Interpol website. Each day, as soon as I got home from school,
I’d raid the fridge and take my findings up to my room, open my laptop and scan
the news for updates on Isaac’s case. But I always found myself back on the
Interpol website, staring dazedly at the photo of the boy with almond brown
hair and huge eyes as gray as the sky before a storm. He looked so innocent,
passive even. But the proof was out there; he was a sadistic killer who’d all
but verbally confessed to his crimes.

Investigators spoke to the media and had them warn the
public that there was a chance that Isaac fled the country the night he
abandoned his apartment, before they busted down the door to apartment 419 and
discovered a deceased man with the famous markings of the Fallen Angel Killer.
They also released sketches of what Isaac could look like if he changed his
appearance. They included a sketch of how he could look disguised as a woman.
He made a horrendous-looking female.

Now that there was finally a name and a face to the killer,
people seemed even more paranoid, like it somehow made everything more real.
And although most people were living in fear for their lives, there were a
disturbing amount of fan pages and support groups for Isaac popping up all over
the Internet. One fan page in particular that made my stomach twist was titled,
“We Love Isaac Darrling.”
Girls chatted about their growing interest in
the killer and his case; they chatted about how beautiful he was. One post
read:
“Isaac is too beautiful to be a killer. Those aren’t the eyes of a
murderer. He must have been framed! I’ll support him through this, until the
end.”

I stopped reading there.

Were these people for real? They called themselves fans of Isaac
Darrling. I called them sick in the head. I didn’t understand how they could
support this wretched monster. I felt deflated, began to lose hope in humanity.

But was I any better for thinking that Isaac had the face of
an angel?

His face didn’t make him any less guilty or his victims any
less dead, and I knew that. But I was afraid of the world I lived in, afraid
that people placed so much value on appearance that as long as you looked good
enough, you could get away with murder.

The days seemed to blend into each other as I continued to
research Isaac. I was becoming addicted to his case, to him. I wanted so badly
to stop thinking about him, but no matter how hard I tried, I couldn’t get
Isaac out of my head. I read all about his victims, read interviews their
families gave, read interviews given by Isaac’s old friends, classmates and
teachers.

People opened blogs to compile all the information they
gathered about Isaac’s case, anything to help capture him so we could all live
in peace again. Friends and family uploaded numerous photos of the killer so
that people would be able to identify him more easily.

Isaac looked happy in most of the pictures. He played with
dogs and little children in some, and he posed in a tux in front of a swimming
pool illuminated with floating candles in another. He had a dimple on his right
cheek and his teeth were like ivory, his lips like red satin.

I wondered what he was thinking in each picture. Was killing
something he desired to do for a long time? Or did he just snap one day? Did he
regret anything he did? Or was he too numb to feel anything at all?

I was immersed in an article detailing Isaac’s troubled home
life when my mom knocked at my door. I nearly jumped out of my skin, quickly
closed my laptop, then grabbed a book and peered down at it, not actually
seeing the words.

 I felt guilty for sitting in my room on a Friday night
researching this cruel, sadistic monster. Most girls my age were having
sleepovers, or going to the movies, or sneaking out to attend house parties.
The guilt weighed on me more so because I felt that my fascination with Isaac
was turning into something different; I was beginning to feel sympathy for him.
And every time I thought about Isaac’s sky-gray eyes—or his smile, or that prominent
jawline, or those high cheekbones—I forced myself to remember his victims and
their families. I forced myself to remember the despair he caused, the
gut-wrenching, irreversible pain.

“I’m going to bed now, sweetheart.” Mom’s eyes were
red-rimmed, her voice somewhere between a whisper and a croak. She was just
getting over a horrible cold. “Elijah is already asleep, so I wouldn’t wake
him.”

Elijah is my half brother; he was seven years old at the
time. Eight years after my dad was killed, Mom remarried a man named Michael,
and shortly after that they had Elijah. He’s one of the best things that has
ever happened to me.

 “Goodnight,” I murmured. “I’m just going to read a chapter or
two before bed.”

Mom cocked her head to the side and squinted her eyes at my
book. “When did you learn to read upside down?”

“I—Oh.” I cleared my throat and flipped my book right side
up and smiled ruefully at her.

“Sweet dreams,” she said through a yawn as she stepped out
of my room, quietly closing the door behind her. “And please lock your window,”
she added as an afterthought once she was in the hall.

I clicked my window shut and flipped the lock.

I glanced over at my laptop. I knew I shouldn’t open it
because if I did, I’d type his name into the search bar and spend the rest of
the night—

I opened my laptop and typed Isaac Darrling into the search
bar and spent the rest of the night flipping through photos, reading news
articles, and trying to understand who Isaac was, beyond his crimes.

This time I learned that he was a vegetarian because he had
always felt a strong connection to animals. I learned that he had aspirations
to be a pilot. I learned that he liked to read sci-fi novels and that he liked
old horror films, but hated the newer ones.

Oddly, out of everything I learned about Isaac, nothing
painted him as a malicious, masochistic monster. He seemed quite the opposite,
actually: loving, with strong morals, sensitive....

I just couldn’t figure him out.

My eyes started to burn from staring at the computer for too
long, so after a piece of toast with peanut butter to quiet my grumbling stomach,
I finally went to sleep.

I did not dream of Isaac; I dreamt of his victims.

I dreamt of blood, of fear. I dreamt of a swinging blade and
useless, unheard pleads.

Screams.

Cries.

Angel wings drawn in blood.

Death.

 

In the morning I awoke to rain
pattering lightly against my window. My room was dark, the sun cloaked by
bloated gray clouds. I sat up, then immediately plopped back down. It was too
early for the excruciating task of sitting. The faint smell of cinnamon
permeated through my bedroom, and a hunger pang kicked at my stomach. Mom was
either making french toast or cinnamon buns for breakfast.

Elijah opened my door and poked his head in. He was still in
his Batman pajamas, his hair a mess of light-brown strands. He was so tiny, his
eyes so round and alive. At only seven years old his innocence had not yet been
tainted, and it showed in the way his face lit up with excitement over the
smallest things.

BOOK: My Darrling
4.51Mb size Format: txt, pdf, ePub
ads

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