Crime Drama Thriller

“Mom! When are we having dinner?” Ava yells from the warm, white-walled living room downstairs. It’s a Thursday at 6:29 PM in Killow's sketchy area, and the sun is setting, allowing the moon to visit. “Soon sweetie! Can you heat the mashed potatoes we had last night? Megan requests. “Sure!” Ava answers. She sits up from the exquisitely soft couch, at least what it feels like, and makes her way to the kitchen.

 As she grabs the mashed potatoes from the nearly empty fridge, Lane, Ava’s brother, walks down to the kitchen where he sees Ava. He doesn’t say anything. Only notices the potatoes and the opened microwave.

 He sits on the couch and leans to grab the remote on the other side. 

 As Ava waits for the microwave to end, she watches whatever Lane puts on TV.




“Can you just choose something?” Ava shares irritated.

“OK, just wait. Why are you so mad?” Lane states while continuing to change the channel.

“I’m not, you’re just annoying,” Ava mumbles low and impatient.


Ava turns her head to the microwave as it signals it’s done. She walks over and opens the microwave to the scent of toasty mashed potatoes. “Mom!~” Ava shouts once again “C’mon!”.

“I’m coming! I’m coming!” Megan says as she speedwalks down the stairs. “I’m late,” she says under her breath.

“Thank you. Can you get the salmon out of the fridge?” she says as she rushes to preheat the oven.

“Sure,” Ava opens up the fridge, grabs the rose-colored salmon, and adds it to a plate full of cut potatoes and peeled onions previously prepared.

“Lane, get off the TV and help your sister by putting the table,” Megan commands directly.

“Fine,” Lane says lazily and stands up, taking his time.

“Hurry up, we don’t have all day,” Megan says vexed.

“Why are the both of you mad today?” Lane murmurs, raising an eyebrow but still listening, and grabs the plates and forks from the cabinets to join the mashed potatoes to the rickety but practical dinner table.

 The Moon is now obvious and shimmering. How lovely. 

Megan sets the salmon into the bright, blistering oven and shuts it to leave it in for 16 minutes. 

“Ok, now we wait,” Ava says while moving her way back to the couch. Megan sighs and grabs her phone from out of her pocket. “Ok, what's next…” She mutters as she checks her schedule.

As the minutes slip away like grains of sand through an hourglass, Andrew, father, comes home from working as a professional dentist on Barry St. “I’m home!” He announces.

“Hi, Dad.” Ava and Lane say in unison. “Hi honey,” says Megan as she looks at her phone. 

Andrew tosses his shoes onto the side and places his bag on the couch.

“How are you kiddo?” He says to Ava as he ruffles up her hair, moving to Lane and asking the same question. “I’m good,” Ava replies, focusing on the TV. “Same,” Lane responded this time looking at Andrew. “That’s good, that’s good…”.

He goes over to the kitchen and grabs a shiny cup from the cabinet “How’s your day, honey?” he questions Megan while filling his glass with fresh water. 

“Same as yesterday,” Megan answers without the motivation to keep the conversation going. “And how was yesterday?” Andrew quizzed her with a goofy but loving smile on his face, his attempt to lighten the mood.

She slightly chuckles “Well, what can I tell you? The directors want the plan by Monday and I’ve got nothing.” Megan mentions while continuing to scroll through her phone, that addiction getting to her. “At least you’re trying, I barely keep up with my patients, way too many people are breaking their teeth,” Andrew laughs joyfully. 

Megan laughs, though her laugh is as dry as salt. 

Andrew looks at her while taking sips of water, then puts it on the table and clears his throat. “Ahem, well I’m gonna go take a shower and then we can have dinner,” He states and walks down the hallway to the master bedroom, closing the door behind him. “Sure, we’ll wait for you!” Megan exclaims right before he shuts the door quietly. “Thank you!” He calls out from inside.


The oven alerts Megan that the salmon is cooked and edible.

 She grabs a small cobalt-colored towel from the marble table and folds it into three layers, then lays it down on her hand and folds it once more, not wanting to burn herself. She grabs the burning plate of salmon out of the blazing oven, then props it down on the dinner table and quickly closes the oven, not wanting it to get the rooms hot as well. 

She takes out her phone again and scrolls till Andrew comes back. Like mother like daughter, addicted.

As time passes like a gentle breeze, Andrew returns from a quick shower. “I’m back, let’s eat!” He exclaims with delight. 

Megan puts her phone away into her pocket and looks up at Andrew. “Yep, let’s eat. Kids, come on!” She says firmly but with a touch of directness. 

“Coming,” Ava says in a monotone voice. Lane stands up, not saying anything, and walks over calmly, and takes a seat on a sturdy chair. 

Andrew occupies a chair across from Lane. 

“Ava, stand up!” Megan shouts sharply. 

“Ok! Ok…” Ava grumbles and lifts herself from the plushy couch, moves toward the chair waiting for her, and plops down. 

“Can we eat now?” a voice says. Ava.

“Sure, I’ll cut you a slice,” Andrew grabs the knife, cuts a fair piece of the appetizing salmon, and places it onto her empty plate. 

“Anyone else?” he asks, looking around the table.

“Yeah me,” Lane says as the words leave his mouth. 

Andrew cuts him a portion as well and watches the smoke leaving from inside the salmon, like a spiraling wisp. The scent hits as the smoke floats, wafting aromatic tendrils. He adds the salmon to his plate and suggests “Take some potatoes and onions, they’re good.” He taps some of the potatoes with the knife gesturing for Lane to take some. 

“You too Ava,” He says while cutting a piece of salmon for Megan and himself, then places it onto Megan's plate and his as well. 

“Thank you for the meal,” They all say in sync, grateful for what they have, knowing it’s better than nothing. Forks clank against plates as they sit in silence for their meal. It’s pretty quiet. 

Andrew straightens his posture and clears his throat once again. 

“Today was pretty interesting of a day for me, someone came in with their kid saying that they wanted to teach them a lesson for not brushing their teeth in the morning, so they asked me to show them all the “scary tools” in the dentist, telling him that we’ll cut his teeth in half to clean it,” the story grabs Ava’s attention and questions him. “What happened after?” she asks, intrigued. “Heh, well, we told the parent not to scare th-”


Megan and Andrew immediately stand up, cautious of their surroundings. “What the hell…” Megan says under her breath while looking at the knife just thrown through the living room window, right by the dinner table. Broken glass floods the floor, surrounding the bloody knife in the center. 

“What… what is that?” Ava says as she hides behind Lane, peeking her head out from his shoulder. “I-I’ll see…” says Andrew, though he sounds like he’s too afraid to move but he does anyway. He walks warily toward it as the glass crunches beneath his slippers.





Hovering over while he inspects it, he notices initials carved onto the side of the knife, the bottom half.


He traced the letters with his fingers while avoiding the iron-scented blood all over the tip of the knife. Silence fills the room. “Dad…? Wha-”




“WHO’S THERE?! I HAVE A KNIFE!” Andrew roars, trying to intimidate whoever's at the door.

No answer.

“WHO’S THERE?” Megan screams. “ANSWER US!”. Abruptly, the door reverberates with a series of scraping noises, reminiscent of nails scraping against a chalkboard or a chair being dragged across a floor. But only for a moment, then, it stops.

“I might have accidentally thrown my knife threw your window, my apologies.” the outlandish voice says from outside the door, the only thing in between the psycho and the fearful family. 

Andrew looks back at Megan, who is standing in front of the kids, powerless. 

Andrew looks back at the door and starts to walk up to it. 

“Andrew! What are you doing?!” Megan whispers loudly, trying to get him to think about what he’s doing. 

“I’m just gonna check, I won’t open the door fully,” he whispers back, understanding why she would want the door closed and locked. 

Carefully, he grabs the door handle, hesitates, but still unlocks the door and opens it only to show his face.

His first view is a man wearing baggy clothes and a baseball cap on top. Looks to be in his 40s.

His face…, his face was the scariest part of him. It was all scratched and beaten up, decorated with a purple eye. 

His hands were dripping blood like how rain fell off a leaf. Gracefully and doesn’t care where it lands. 

His shoes were all torn and bloody like a book with every page broken and decomposing. 

Upon seeing what he sees, Andrew doesn’t shut the door immediately, he just closes it a bit more, only allowing the stranger to see half his face. 

“Who the hell are you? Why are you all…, bloody? If you don’t tell me right now, I’m calling the police,” he says with a stern face. 

He looks at Megan, seeing her holding the phone with her finger hovering over the number nine, then turning his immediately, not wanting to let the outsider have an opportunity to move.

“Woah, calm down, pretty boy, I just want my knife.” the unfamiliar face says, laughing, as if this is all just a joke and the blood on the knife is just ketchup. 

“What’s your name?” Andrew asks, wanting to confirm if it’s his knife.

“Wade Diaz,” the smile on his face widens as he declares it.

Andrew recognizes the initials on the knife match up with his name.

“Why the hell would you throw a bloody knife at our window?” Andrew queries harshly, not letting his guard down.

“Oh, that? That was just a distraction,” Wade voices casually.

Andrews's eyes widen. Quickly, he turns around to see his family turning their heads, flabbergasted. 

“Andrew…? ANDREW?!” Megan vociferates, scared and confused.

“Dad! Dad, where are you?!” Ava screams, coming out from behind Lane.

Lane just stands. Doesn’t make a single move, trying to process what just happened. For his father, just disappeared.

 “G-guys…? I’m right here…!” He screams. 

He then turns to Wade and shouts “WHAT HAVE YOU DONE TO ME?!” and bolts toward Wade with his fist going for his already beaten face.


Andrew has gone right through him. He stumbles as he runs out onto the porch and looks behind him, Wade facing his way. Andrew’s face tells Wade it all. He’s terrified. 

“Why don’t you ask them?” Wade says while a grin plays out on his face. “Wha-what did you do…?” Andrew mutters while fighting back tears. Fear contorts his face.





Wade walks up to him, arms behind his back, and his demeanor exudes a serene composure. “You don’t remember me do you?” he inquires with his smirk getting bigger and bigger by the minute. Andrew looks at him, frightened and frozen in time. “Maybe these words will remind you,” Wade’s smirk falls into an unyielding look as if carved from stone, his expression now deviates from any sign he was previously amused.

“Better to be dead than just exist, right?”

Wide-eyed, Andrew remembered.

The memory seeped in like thick, cozy honey spreading its warmth.

“It’s not hard to forget, huh?” Wade says. His eyes looked at him with his smirk steadily creeping back up. 

Eleven years back, Wade lying in bed, surviving from a thread. Surrounding him are Andrew, Megan, and Wade’s wife, Rosa. Ava and Lane are still in line to be brought into the world. Dull stares either at their phones or at Wade, lying on the bed, resting his thoughts.




The monitor follows his heartbeat, going slower and slower at every breath. Rosa sighs. Tired, fed-up sighs. After six months, off and on of chemo, fighting for every breath against lung cancer, everyone in the room is tired and silent. 11:34 PM, the night tucks in the sky with its tranquil veil and hushes all those who disturb.

“Maybe we should go. It’s getting late.” All looks turn to Andrew.

“You wanna leave, then leave,” Rosa says harshly. 

“Mom, he’s right, we have to go, we’ll come back tomorrow,” Megan agrees, feeling pity for her mum for her stress. Rosa buries her face in her hands seeking solace in the shadows of her palms.

She releases a heavy sigh, the pressure of the moment evading with it.

“Fine, but I’m coming back at 7:00 in the morning.” Rosa declares then gradually rises from her seat. She walks over to Wade and gives him a tight hug before leaving hesitantly.

“Goodbye, I’ll come back, I swear,” Rosa says while hiding her face in Wade’s shoulder. 

“Thank you…” Wade replies weakly. 

 Approaching him, Megan wrapped him in a stiff embrace, releasing him with a tentative step. It is Andrew’s turn to say goodbye but, he turns around, meeting their spent eyes.

“Can I say goodbye to him alone…please?” He requests kindly, waiting for their response. Megan and Rosa look at each other puzzled but allow it.

“Uhm…sure, we’ll wait for you in the car,” Megan responds, looking back into his eyes. Then, they walk out the door. Andrew smiles warmly and turns back to Wade, his smile shifting into an unyielding, rigid look as he looks into his paralyzed eyes.

“Have you decided?” Andrew firmly asks.

“You’re not marrying her,” Wade answers.

Andrew signs.

“I didn’t want to do this,” he says while pulling a syringe full of fentanyl and injecting it into his IV bag.

“Better to be dead than just exist, right?” Andrew says with a grin and walks out feeling accomplished.

 The next morning, Rosa is dumbfounded when the hospital calls her. They explained they found fentanyl in his blood where it’s been all night. The main suspect was Andrew, for he was the last person who was with him. Interrogation with the police was the first thing he was greeted with when woke up, but of course, he refused and lied his way out of it. They couldn’t just arrest him, evidence was scarce. So, he’s just a murderer on the loose and he was for eleven straight years.


“Glad we could meet again Andrew,” Wade says, with a wide grin along his face. “You can’t leave now though, stay a while, learn how it feels to be dead. And you remember my name, don’t you?” he grins.

“I-I’m sorry, I’m so sorry, Mike! Please, bring me back!” Andrew pleads as he places his head on the floor, scratching his forehead on the rocky porch, begging.

“No can do, you’re already dead,” He smiles, however, no pity is visible from it.

“Wh-what…?! How?!” said the anxious man.

“Oh, it’s rather simple really. Once you trace your fingers on that knife, which you couldn’t think twice before touching it,” he chuckles. “I was able to kill you, and I did.” the smile on his face grows bigger and bigger by the second. 

Andrew breathes heavily upon hearing this.

“What if Lane or Ava touched it?! You would want to kill your grandchildren?! A-and Megan?! Don’t you care about them?!” Andrew bellows, anger possessing him.

“Why would I? I never met my grandchildren and Megan took your side when you killed me!”

Mike's words escape his lips with rage, but quickly reminds himself to stay undisturbed.

Andrew stands up from the floor. “They can’t live without their father! Don’t you know that?! You are one yourself!”

“Scream all you want. You will never go back to the life you lived.” Mike says grinning from ear to ear.

Worry traps itself inside Andrew. “Well, what am I supposed to do now?”

“Be forgotten, just like how I was,” Mike says satisfied.

Andrew swallows. His hands shaking.

“W-why are you all…bloody?” Andrew asks, curious.

“I’ve been through hell Andrew, and soon you will too,” Mike replies happily.

“Wh-what do you mean, I will too?” the man asked scared.

“Well, in a couple of hours, your soul will travel to hell and you will burn and scream with every breath in your lungs. Until you can’t scream anymore but you will still burn away,” Mike answers.

“So I suggest you leave and experience what you never did, just remember you can’t touch anything.” Mike’s grin plays across his face, excited about what will happen to Andrew in hell.

Andrew’s jaw quivers like leaves in the wind, but finally realizes he will never meet his family again. As the screams from inside his home continue to haunt him, the air grows more thicker by the minute. With a heavy heart, Andrew walks away, finally accepting what will happen to him. His life is over, hell has a special spot just for him. After walking on a slim wire for so long, his debts have finally been paid.

“I’ll see you in hell,” Mike says as he walks inside. Two police cars show up. Their red and blue lights beamed with light as they rushed inside, going through Mike.

The doomed man keeps walking down the path, waiting for the hours to finish.

A doomed man indeed.

December 14, 2023 19:30

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