Snap it all up, Detective.

Submitted into Contest #144 in response to: Write about a character who’s pathologically camera shy.... view prompt

24 comments

Crime Funny Horror

This story contains themes or mentions of physical violence, gore, or abuse.

No no, you will not get a photo of me, Detective. But you can get a photo of my work.

Snap. Snap. Snap. Get all the good angles, please. I spent a very long time ensuring that everything was right.

The hanging body to the left of the warehouse, the bloody body to the right of the swimming pool… My work must be photographed beautifully. After all, I’d do the same for you if you had taken this much time ensuring everything was picture perfect.

Oh, by the way, did you like the way I arranged the bodies this time? In the shape of a heart… Oh, it did make me giggle as I pulled those squirming men out of their beds, down the stairs and into the driveway. As I meticulously bent their bones into the circular part of the heart, a smile licked my lips. Oh, Detective, I do hope you enjoyed it. Did you? Did you?

Sigh. Probably not. You’ve never appreciated my artistic form.

Anyways, this is neither the time nor place to ask your opinion of my arrangements.

Back to the point.

If I know you like I believe I do- and trust me, Detective, I want to say I know you very well, your fingers are probably shaking as you read this letter. You’ll wipe the sticky sweat away from your bushy brows, and you’ll gasp at your first solid bit of evidence that I am real. Yes, I am a real person, and not just a twisted nightmare to the Surrey police force!

Your legs will grow weak, and your chest will rise and fall a little faster. Perhaps time will pass in heart beats and not seconds? Ba-bum. Ba-bum. Ba-bum.

I’m excited to watch you open this letter. Then, you’ll photograph it. You’re meticulous with gathering evidence, you know? I wonder which way round you’ll do this. Read first or picture first… Only time will tell.

And now for a compliment.

Your skills have developed much since the first time I laid my spiteful little gaze on you, Detective. Oh, I remember back to when you were just a rookie, fetching the teas and coffees like a good little office bitch. Do you remember that ridiculous outfit you wore? Khaki brown was not and is not your colour if you don’t mind me saying so. Take it off.

Back then, you were so diligent, with bushy eyes and an excitement for life. What happened, by the way? I do hope that your inability to catch me hasn’t had too much of an impact on your mental health, Detective. It would be a damn shame. You seemed so fun to be around back then.

Every morning, you’d almost skip into the office with a wide smile. As usual, It would soon fade when that overweight Sergeant would summon you into his office. He’d wave his sticky, fat fingers in your face and order you to go and pick up the sweet treats from the local café.

Sergeant Dill? Sergeant Dilner? Sergeant Dilnest? Oh, I can’t remember his name. My memory isn’t what it used to be. Anyways, I called him Sergeant Dick. I’m sure you know who I’m on about. It’s important you remember because this was the first time I found you, and it created a routine for years after.

You dragged your skinny little body out of that stuffy, testosterone-filled office, down the road, up the hill and towards that sweet little coffee shop on the corner. You know, the one with the little red flowers out front? I never missed the way your face would flush pink, exhausted after your climb up the hill. Each day, you, and those flowers, were one shade.

Oh, yes, my little Detective, you’ve read that right. I’ve been watching you longer than you’ve been watching me. Fantastic, isn’t it? We were a match meant to be.

Speaking of true love, how is your husband? I heard you two arguing the other day. Tsk. Tsk. I don’t like the way he speaks to you. Only I can tease and torment you the way he did. Did you want me to sort out this pesky problem of yours? For you, Detective, I’ll do anything. Anything except let you snap a picture of me.

CCTV is a wonderful thing, isn’t it? I often wander past those little eyes in the sky, stalking everyone’s every move. Everyone other than mine, of course, but I’m sure you know this by now. I’m like a bad stench, lurking around your streets. You never know where it comes from, you only know that it had passed through as everyone tears their noses up in horror. I am everywhere and nowhere at once.

See, I would like to tell you a quick story now. But you must be kind. Oh, please be kind Detective, after all I am pouring my heart out to you. These little clues might give my game away, give my identity away…

Last weekend, I was thoroughly enjoying my cup of tea- It’s a small detail but you’ll understand soon enough.

It was my day off, you see, so I was really looking forward to just relaxing, putting my feet up, and sipping at that sugary goodness. You can imagine my shock when I heard the police sirens shrieking up my street! Those tin cans of doom pulled up right outside of my house. Luckily for me, I am much faster and smarter than you.

I was out of that chair quicker than you can say “Gotcha!”

Although, I must say, I was slightly disappointed it wasn’t you, yourself, who had come to collect me to whizz me off to jail. Why’d you get those ugly-looking creatures, you call teammates, to do this job? I thought we had something special.

Oh, yes, I remember now.

You’re frightened of me. I’m assuming you got my red rose, the one handpicked from our favourite coffee shop, yes? I’m assuming you freaked out, wondering how I got your address? And I’m assuming you ran the delicate thing for fingerprints.

Now, my shrewd little Detective, did you really think I’d give myself away so easily? Of course, they were not my fingerprints! And I can only imagine the shock of your colleagues as they turned up to 34 Crescent Road, clutching a warrant for my arrest, only to find a whole host of mutilated bodies. Quite a brilliant touch that.

If you were there, I’m sure you would have found me hiding in the closet downstairs. Your thick, skull-headed colleagues did not. The hunt would have been over by now if you were there. Perhaps many more would still have their lives.

I’m beginning to think you enjoy this game of cat and mouse. Are we flirting? Blink twice if we are.

Anyways, I have to go now. More people to kill, more bodies to bury. Or to leave lying around for you to find.

You can now photograph this letter, Detective. It’s the only thing of me you’ll ever get on camera.

Love from,

Your omniscient (and uncatchable) admirer.

April 29, 2022 17:32

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24 comments

Yenuli Y.
13:03 May 16, 2022

Hi this was a really good story told from a physocopsthic mind (?)

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Holly Guy
15:01 May 16, 2022

Thank you. I really appreciate the comment :)

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Yenuli Y.
17:04 May 16, 2022

Your welcome: D

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:11 May 11, 2022

Hi Holly, this was a great story!! Thanks for recommending it! I loved the overall narrative and the dialogue was fantastic and super creative! Also, I love your website! Major kudus for putting that together so well!! I'll be checking it out more in the future!! :)

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Holly Guy
16:25 May 11, 2022

Hi Daniel, Thank you, again. I really appreciate the support, it motivates me so much to continue writing. Thank you, about the website. It took a long time to perfect it! I now have four books published on amazon so i needed a website where i could post my work, but I cannot afford a professional to design it for me... Oh well, this will do for now!

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Daniel R. Hayes
05:59 May 12, 2022

I know what you mean, I'm putting the final touches on my first novel and it was extremally hard and time consuming, but I'm super proud of it and I can't wait for people to read it. I'm looking into illustrators for the cover now, and it will be available on Amazon like yours in a few months ;)

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Holly Guy
10:22 May 12, 2022

Hi Daniel, congratulations on your first novel! Will you be self publishing or publishing with a company?

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Daniel R. Hayes
16:28 May 12, 2022

Hi Holly, I plan to self publish my first novel on Amazon, because I want my work to be seen by a larger audience. My next project I will try to get traditionally published :)

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Holly Guy
11:25 May 13, 2022

Brilliant- I highly recommend self-publishing. Do you have a social media page? You can follow me on instagram: hollyguywrites and we can support each other on there too :)

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Michał Przywara
21:35 May 10, 2022

Very nice, very creepy :) A perfect blend of camera shy and voyeur. I like the playful tone of the narrator, very much at odds with the context. It definitely gets that sense of obsession, of domination across. These crimes aren't about murder, they're personal, they're a dialogue. Small comfort for the victims of course. There's a lot of delightfully creepy lines here. I liked "Blink twice if we are." All the instances of being watched *right now* are skin crawling. I do wonder who the killer is in relation to the detective. There's o...

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Holly Guy
09:57 May 11, 2022

Hi Michal, Firstly, thank you for taking the time to leave such a positive comment! And I absolutely love my disturbing one liners littered through a story- keeps my readers on edge! So I'm glad you enjoyed them. Also, great theory! I am going to publish a sequel to this story in the future, so keep your eyes peeled.. you might be correct ;)

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Vadasz Sara
20:29 May 08, 2022

Ohh, this was a treat, thank you. I like the way you tell two stories, introduce two characters in one monologue (letter). Also, I have the feeling the serial killer will prove less smart in the end.

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Thom Brodkin
16:31 May 07, 2022

Holly you’re quickly becoming my favorite Guy. I too was drawn in by the three designations you chose. It’s not an easy trifecta to pull off and yet you did so masterfully. I feel like this is the kind of story you can revisit for future prompts. I’d like to see more of the cat and mouse especially because it’s not entirely clear who is the cat and who is the mouse. Great job. Keep writing.

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Holly Guy
17:24 May 07, 2022

Hi Thom, this is such a lovely comment! I really appreciate the support. That is such an interesting idea, bringing this story back in a future entry- I might actually use that. Thank you !

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Mike Panasitti
15:14 May 07, 2022

Greetings, Holly. Well-written, but I disagree with Felice. I don't think the epistolary form served the story as well as a combination of other points of view (first and third person) would have. I was reminded of Raskolnikov as I read. Was Crime and Punishment an influence? Take care, and if you have a moment, please check out my submission for last week's contest. It addresses criminal-mindedness as well.

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Holly Guy
17:18 May 07, 2022

Hi Mike, thank you for the constructive criticism. I didn't really have any particular influence when writing this story. I just knew I wanted a humorous, dangerous and yet alluring main character. This form of writing is my favourite style but I will take your feedback into account. Thank you.

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Chris Morris
07:18 May 07, 2022

When I saw that you listed this story as "crime" "funny" and "horror" I was immediately intrigued to see if and how you'd manage all of that in such a short story. You absolutely did though - very cleverly written and the dark humour comes through in your arrogant killer's letter. Really fun and engaging story, well done. And I hope the detective does catch that killer!

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Holly Guy
17:10 May 07, 2022

Hi Chris, Thank you for taking the time to read my story and for leaving such a lovely comment! My favourite genre is a twisted yet slightly amusing main character with questionable actions. It's great to see that you enjoy it.

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Felice Noelle
13:44 May 05, 2022

Holly: I noticed you are fairly new as a writer on Reedsy and was curious about your style. I've read two of your stories so far, both letters, and find that a fascinating way to approach a prompt. So clever. Such an interesting point of view that tells a lot in so few words. I really enjoyed both stories I read. On both, you left me wanting more, so you could expand these. I would read. Good, engaging writing. Thanks. And now you have two more likes, another comment, and a follow. Maureen

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Holly Guy
13:58 May 05, 2022

Hi Maureen, I hope you are well. Yes, I'm fairly new on Reedsy, however I have been a published author for quite some while now. I use Reedsy to play around with different tones, styles and structures. I am loving this process too! As you've correctly pointed out, I have used the letter structure quite a bit- I think in about four of my stories! I think it iss concise, powerful and engaging way to interact with and grip the reader. Which story in this format was your favourite? Thank you for such a lovely comment, I adore compliments and ...

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Philip Ebuluofor
11:44 May 05, 2022

Fine work. Easy to read.

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Holly Guy
14:00 May 05, 2022

Thank you, Philip!

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Philip Ebuluofor
05:57 May 07, 2022

Pleasure

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