Horror Fiction

Before the pandemic, Frank’s life was easier, and his popularity was gaining traction. His work was getting noticed, appeared in the papers, yet his occupation, his lifestyle was threatened by the newfound plague and attempted to derail his life, much like others lives at the time. To rise to the newly formed challenge he needed to find other ways to not only fulfill his chosen destiny, but his occupation, his lifestyle, or his legendary status would fall to the bellows of obscurity. This could not happen. Frank was already invested; his hands were dirty, bloody, so to speak. He already dove into the deep end and now must find a life preserver.

As he walked to the park Frank decided from that moment on, he will no longer be overshadowed by 1 pesky illness. This controllable sickness, this man-made disease, endangered Frankie’s legacy to the world; his gift to give all who needed to study a man of his talent. Currently unknown to the populous, his career was not at a standstill but overlooked by the general public since this disgusting disease took hold. If these worms, these insignificant weasels, these miscreant scoundrel infestations would have worn a mask, if these bottom feeders would have followed the social contract and looked out for each other Frank’s life would already be under examination, under review, being investigated by the highest and the brightest in the world but alas he had to wait as it was only inevitable for his fame to come to pass. And yet that was the dagger in the heart, how much longer did he have to wait?

That was the main design for his plan. He needed the answers he found within himself confirmed; to know that what he surveyed in the depths of his soul would be the truth to his life. As he saw himself, he was an anomaly, a unique omnipresence of evil, something he never understood but hoped 1 day would make sense and as it finally showed signs of life it came at the worst time.

“The night stalker never had this much trouble,” he exclaimed! The passerby’s heard his commotion as he had had a tendency to talk to himself, but they shrugged it off and continued on their way to their worthless lives.

Frank was a young man of considerable wit, brains, and brawn. Above average-looking Frankie (his friends would have called him Frankie if he had any) needed to brainstorm on his entrepreneurship and what better place than the park. Mostly a people person and extrovert by nature, this new global epidemic made some considerable hurdles for him to jump through. This was unplanned and although, he was undeterred and motivated to better his situation like any business model dictates, the changing landscape necessitated new strategies. At one time, he would use his wit, charm, and humor on these bottom feeders coercing them into a night of horrific philanthropy, but that time has passed. As he walked, very few passed by him. This was going to be harder than he thought.

As people spent more time indoors, introversion was the new norm, and the key to the new age occupation of killing was something of a mystery to Frank. He didn’t exactly know where to go from here, but he talked himself into the obvious conclusion. Time to change. Even though he spent years refining his social skills to a charm that would make Ted Bundy blush, he didn’t want to throw that away. He couldn’t start over; it would ruin the character study so many were going to clamor for! It was like Michael Jordan retiring from basketball and trying to play baseball! That didn’t work for His Airness!

Frank worked hard on his figure for years in the gym (which was a great way to entice those self-entitled conceited scum), spent years in the library studying classic conversation (it came in handy to impress those late call closing whores at the bar), spent what felt like a millennia listening to the life of Chopin and Bach through piano (to dazzle the “just out of the relationship single mother tinder bitches who challenged themselves to go out and meet), he could not give in the new norm that easily after so much time given to extrovert refinement. He made himself desirable, intelligent, disarming, and not overly smug but the perfect kind of confidence that would seduce the oblivious as well as the attentive. It took years for Frank to look the part…to look normal; an above-average male specimen worthy of “moms’ admiration.” A nice guy who just happens to have a rape kit in the backseat for spur-of-the-moment nihilism.

The training came in handy. After college, he needed to find a means of income to subsidize his hobby if he wanted his hobby to become a lifelong career and legacy. He was a novice henchman at best and not ready for the big screen, so to speak. As luck would have it, his first victim would be his girlfriend of surprisingly considerable means. He would stalk her at night for practice while she was on her way home from the library. She noticed him noticing her one day and took it upon herself to strike up the first conversation. Not being ready for committing murder just yet, Frank decided to keep her around just in case his mood would change.

Murder was at one time a glamorous dance that grew into a personal relationship between 2 or more people if you were lucky. Over the years, like everything else in the world, it grew cold and systematic. Homicide was no longer a celebrated affair between strangers, friends, or lovers but now considered a random act of violence, watered down in a sloppy archaic system of brutality. Anyone and everyone felt they could achieve a monstrous overtone of sadistic behavior, but in frank’s mind, it was only for the truly societal dismembered bodies, the ugliest of cut-throat fiends and bogeymen in which he was a patriarch.

Basking in murder porn on television, reading about the shady rejects dejected from society exacting revenge on helpless victims, delving into the heartless acts of inner-city survival delegitimized the pinnacle trait of assassination. Frank felt the need to revitalize this trend, rebrand it into the Godless sin it once was at its prime and he was the perfect monster to achieve this feat!

His murderous affairs were random, creative, unique, personalized, everything needed for a well-rounded case study for generations to come. Frank still remembers his first massacre before this awful atrocity took hold. Daisy, his first attempt at a treasonous affair of the social contract was studied and evaluated by Frank for weeks. He did this for her to gain that extra personal relationship so the thrashing would feel, for lack of a better word, congenial for both parties. A parting gift he bestowed to all his victims. A charitable donation, he thought was not above him in this situation.

She lived in an apartment complex that was for aspiring young people, ready to make their mark on the world. Imbecilic daydreamers, talented trash ready to dip their toes in the collective bloody stool pool that is the global economy and wash their hands of their humanity and civility in search of the all-mighty buck. She was intelligent but not smart; the small-framed blonde of 5’7, 110 lbs should not have been so trusting of the commonwealth that she surrounded herself with as to render her and her abode so easily accessible. The first floor, with windows open? Screens aren’t going to protect this self-involved, narcissistic gash of a slut. It was almost too easy and simplistic. If she wasn’t so self-centered with her online accounts, she would have noticed her cat hanging from the neck by the kitty litter she never takes out and the precautionary tale of freshly matted shoe prints on her regularly vacuumed carpet.

At the time clowns were all the rage. So, in accordance with that current trend, Frank rented a tux, bought an utterly fantastically morbid clown mask, and waited under her king-sized bed for the right time.

The perfect time was already predetermined before entering through the window. On the ride home, this bulimic mistake of human flesh would hit the drive-through and overindulge herself with the local McDonalds cuisine filling her fat, squirrel-like cheeks with a 40-piece chicken nuggets then proceed to throw up when she got home. While in the shower, when her sobbing was at its most and best delectable pitch, Fred horizontal hustled out from under and proceeded to dance joyfully to the bathroom door. It was an art form, a dance with the devil was never shared with another, he surmised. From out of his pocket and now secured on his anxious white knuckles rested a brass beautification of facial demolishment. They were called “Brass Knuckle Bombers” by the company who made them, but these were now called Sandra’s as they were modified by Frank with small spikes on the knuckles for the un-relentlessly attack of an epic pummeling for his celebrated victim.  No sooner did he put them on did he proceed to smash the glass separating him from her then reorganize her face and body into an abstract pulp of human bone and sinew. It was a magical display of power and grace. He worked the body for the most part until the screaming stopped then the face was final. The papers called it a malformed mishap and unsightliness, but it was a symphony of blessing blows from the devil’s advocate until she was no more but a perfect memory in his mind.

               “That was then, this is now,” remarked Frank. It was a beautiful day to sit on the park bench watching the little ones play together on the playground, not wearing masks, laughing at himself while daydreaming of a time once lived. He now wore a mask, a clown face mask which was not completely out of the ordinary considering the status of the epidemic. He sat and wondered how to get back to those times where he excelled, where he was being molded into a demi-god.

He grew accustomed to wearing masks, sometimes a clown smile face mask, sometimes a skull facial mask. He even went so far as to wear Superhero masks, just to change things up. He needed to be safe and protect himself as there was much work to do.

The kids would joke and play with him, disarming themselves from the black cloud of danger that lurked around Frank and he indulged them by chasing after them playfully adding to their joy, but in the back of his mind, Frank knew that was too easy for a man of his competence. He graduated from the simple and simplistic, to challenging and formidable.  He needed that niche, that perfect personality of perpetual shamelessness all serial killers had.

His thought process was soon interrupted by a woman unleashing her kid onto the playground beside him. As she sat down next to him, while rummaging through her purse, he couldn’t focus on the task at hand. She didn’t wear the required mask, an obvious sign of vanity, he thought. He could tell her attitude was that of the “Karen’s” in the world. The, I’d like to see your manager mentality, her audacious and snobbish mannerisms, that indecent gawking voice she used to talk on her phone loudly already sent Frank into a spiraling frenzy of deathly speculation and reflection. His insights of her demise were something he recoiled from, then all a sudden, like a thunderous applause or lightning striking to his cortex; it came to him like a providential decree. This epidemic was sent up to him from below. His victims, these vermin he always gravitated towards were once hard to pick out from a group but now not so much. They were now easy to pick out. He was baptized in the idea of accountability. That was his theme of mayhem. Frank was not to go down as a normal serial killer, but as society would see it, a vigilante of personal responsibility!

They didn’t wear masks! These grandiose, hollow, pompous rodents were the key to his salvation. As he sat back creating an emasculating display of disgustingly missions of fruitful bloody endeavors, he reached for his pack of cigarettes and zippo to light up and exhale a breath of fresh death.

“Excuse me, but can you not smoke around the children or me? It’s very disturbing to think you think you can do that in a playground or by me, a nonsmoker,” this Karen sitting next to him said.

Soon the laughter and joy flooded out. Kicking his feet and laughing a silly, maniacal chuckle came over him. This was serendipitous. This was providence. As she got up and walked away obviously annoyed, grabbing her kid along the way, and looking back in disgust every once in a while, Frank put on his clown mask, flicked his cigarette at the closest kid, and began again his once stunted journey dancing toward his revelation like Gene Kelly in Singing in the Rain. Things were back to normal.

March 12, 2021 20:40

You must sign up or log in to submit a comment.


RBE | Illustrated Short Stories | 2024-06

Bring your short stories to life

Fuse character, story, and conflict with tools in Reedsy Studio. 100% free.