Steps of a Killer

Screen Shot 2019-08-04 at 16.24.36Hampstead Heath is beautiful in the early morning sunlight. The dew sparkled on the grass giving it a magical appeal. Where I stood, the ground was elevated and I could see the city. People were waking or heading off to work. It was just a normal day for them.

For a moment, I looked over at the trees and breathed deeply. I could feel her. Exhaling, I took another breath and my feet moved in her footsteps. Briefly, my eyes closed as I advanced. This was where she was, where she walked, stumbled and broke into a run. Her feet became mine as I moved with her towards the trees.

I entered a pathway surrounded by trees and knew beyond a doubt this is where she was killed.

My heart is thumped. My breath was jagged and the adrenaline is surged through my veins as I entered a pathway surrounded by trees. Beyond doubt I knew this wass where she was killed.

I become her as a sob escaped me. I felt him following behind. Moving quickly, I stumbled, my head whiped around and his shadow attacked me. Crying out, I threw my arms forward hoping to knock him away. Instead we rolled together on the ground. Me and a shadow from the past.

We came to a stop having hit an obstacle. A shaft of sunlight hits the trees and a beam of light illuminated his face.

Later, I sit alone in the Danilion café sipping my drink and staring out of the window. The high street is full of shoppers. They carry their bulging bags and have no idea a killer could be amongst them. He probably looked like an average man on his way to do his business, to the pub for a drink, or to meet friends. They don’t know what he did. Or the life he took for his personal gratification.

My fingers worked the fabric in my hand, a bit of cloth that came from an evidence bag.

I felt the girl in my core. Her hopes and dreams for a future she will never have. Poor girl. Poor, poor girl.

Coldness enveloped me and for a second everything went silent. I took a sharp intake of breath – he was here! I felt him strongly.

My mind returned to the café and the surrounding people come back into focus. “Excuse me? Is anyone using this chair?” My blood runs cold. It’s the face of the man I grappled with in the forest.

I shook my head, too stunned to speak. He moved the chair to a different table and joins an older man. They chat and I stared at his profile.

His forehead jutted out a little and his hair is side parted, his nose was sharp and long, and he had a slight double chin.

How can he sit there looking like any normal guy?

Pulling out my phone, I selected Seb’s name and listened to it ring. Seb was my brother and a police detective.

“Cassie,” he answered.

“I’ve got him,” I state.

“What? Where?”

“Right here. I’m looking at him.” I was staring at the side of his head, unable to take my eyes from him, unable to fathom how normal he looked when he carries such a terrible secret. I suppose I expected him to look the monster he is.

“Where Cassie? Where are you?”

“The Dandelion café.”

“Okay, I’m on my way.” The phone went dead.

The man’s companion gets up and I hear him say, “Thanks for the coffee.” My eyes burned into the side of the killer’s head. He glances around as he raised the cup to his mouth.

My blood boiled. How dare he just sit there and act normally! He thinks no one knows what he had done but he is wrong. I know! I couldn’t help myself as I stood and moved over to his table to sat in the empty seat. He looked surprised as I said nothing.

“Can I help you?” he asked sounding like a regular guy. Normal voice open expression, friendly even.

Seb was going to be annoyed. He says I’m a loose cannon and unable to contain my feelings. He’s right. I shouldn’t be taking risks like this.

“I know,” I said quietly.

He stareed at me and says, “I’ve no idea what you’re talking about.”

I wish I could throw the fabric I still have clutched in my fist at him, asking if he remembers it, but because of where it came from, I can’t.

“Yes, you do. I can see it in your eyes.”

He continued to stare, and I could hear the sound of him breathing. “I think you’ve mistaken me for someone else.”

“No, I haven’t. I know who you are, or rather what you are.”

His Adam’s apple bobs. “And what’s that?”

I looked around. “Do you want me to say it out loud?”

He leaned forward and I flinched as my back pressed into the chair. In a whisper, he said, “You’re crazy, I don’t know you.”

As his breath washed over me, I realised she wasn’t the first one he’s killed.

The shock of his evil breath made me rise to my feet. I shouldn’t have confronted him. He stood up too, scraping his chair on the floor.

Glancing out of the window I urged Seb to hurry. The man gives me a hard stare and strides out the door.

Damn! I rushed after him while putting the phone to my ear and pressed redial.

Seb’s voice comes through and I heard he is on hands-free. His blues and twos echoed down the phone and in the distance, as he approached.

“Can you still see him?” he asked after I explained.

“No, he’s gone. Where are you?”

“Two minutes. I’ll be two minutes. Stay there,” he said urgently, and hung up.

Moving away from the doorway, I looked up and down the high street, stopping sideways to look at the reflections in the shop windows hoping to spot him.

I felt his presence.

Spinning around, he was right behind me. Something sharp pressed against my skin.

“Keep walking,” he commanded. His touch consumed me. My psyche flooded and I saw everything he had done. How those poor girls suffered! I couldn’t do anything except walk with him. I knew beyond a doubt he would plunge the knife without conscience and disappear into the crowd before I even hit the floor.

Where the hell was Seb?

He walked me into an alleyway, and out of sight behind a large dustbin.

Seb! The sirens approached.

The blade was against my throat and his other ha nd was pulling at my skirt and underwear.

“How did you know?” His fetid breath covered my face.

“I know everything,” I told him as the blade broke the skin and I panicked.

“You know nothing!” he hissed.

“I know if you don’t let go, that man over there will kill you.”

He laughed, but still checked as Seb came skidding over. Grabbing him by the neck of his jacket, he threw him to the floor. With a knee in his back, Seb cuffed him.

“Are you all right?” he asked.

I pushed my clothes back into position and wiped the trickle of blood from my neck, Seb yelled at me again. “Yes!” I retorted, and he talked into his radio.

People gathered, wondering what was going on. They shouted in our direction, aiming phones. I tried to keep my face hidden. Seb yelled at them to stay back.

The man, the killer, is struggling on the ground trying to break loose. Seb was having trouble holding on to him. I couldn’t do anything to help as the guy swung round and pulled Seb with him. More sirens got louder as Seb fought to keep a hold on him.

Relief flooded through me as cops spilled into the alleyway. They relieved Seb of his prisoner and he strode towards me.

“You bloody fool!” he sid moving my hand from my neck, shaking his head. “Get that looked at. God, Cass, what the hell were you thinking?”

“I’m sorry,” I said, feeling shaken.

The killer threws us a strange look as they carted him off. My brother, Seb, and I are used to those looks. People often look at us strangely because we look so alike

“At least you’ve got him,” I said as we walked back up to the road.

“Have to link him with the crime yet.”

“Him attacking me will give you time to do that.”

“Don’t tell me my job,” he snapped, and I knew I’m wasn’t off the hook yet, although, he rarely stays mad for long.

An ambulance pulled up and I was glad to get inside, away from the curious eyes and stares. It is just a scratch and a plaster was all that is needed.

Seb drove me home and I took the tongue-lashing, as is par for the course. You see, Seb and I are twins, identical, and it’s unusual for a girl and a boy to be as much alike as we are.

He was a seeker, he always finds what he’s looking for, especially when it’s me. He can zone in on where I am, so I never get lost. Seb has no psychic power, but we work well as a team.

The End

 

This is the first story in The Adventures of Cassidy Newbold. It is available to download for free with Kindle Unlimited.

Also featuring Cassie is The Haunting

 

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My Week in Pictures

by Karen J Mossman

Today is chill out Sunday. A day to sit back and relax, which is what I did. This made me think of the all the things I’d achieved last week.

 

My Week-1

Besides writing, I love crafts and the top row of the picture shows containers made from painted recycled baked beans tins. With a little decoration and a cross stitch picture, they look totally different.

I also played around with pom-poms and made this cool little owl.

Next to that are flowers in a pot made from crocheted daisies.

The pink knitting is actually a multicoloured wool where it changes colour the more you knit. I saw this cute baby hat that seemed quick and easy to make, so started it last night.

I walk my dogs every day and if we go to the park we come across this beautiful palamino horse. Last year, I was calling one of the dogs back, when the horse came running over. Now I make sure I have a carrot with me, so I can give him a shout and and stroke him, too.

Two of my Electric Eclectic books came out in paperback. Distant Time and Down by the River. I’m really looking forward to receiving my copies.

And lastly I have a new Electric Eclectic book coming out. The Magic of Stories has been republished under the EE banner, and is full of short stories and poetry with a new cover and even more content. It will have a slightly different launch to that we have done before. I look forward to sharing it with you soon.

What about your week? What have you achieved or done, we’d love to know

Embers of Webster Street

by Karen J Mossman

 

Walking up to the front door, I was about to press the buzzer when the warden appeared. “Your mum’s not herself today, Jennifer.”

“What’s happened?” I asked following her down the corridor to mum’s flat.

“She’s telling everyone John’s coming.”

I pursed my lips, “John’s, my dad. He won’t be coming.”

“That’s what I thought.” She said, pushing open Mum’s door. “I’ll leave you to it, then.”

“Thanks, Megan.”

Mum’s flat was small, a bedroom and bathroom led off the lounge which also incorporated the kitchen. I still felt guilty living in our family home while she lived here.

Mum, wearing a pink sweater with a stain on the front and black slacks was holding a photo of Jessica and me.

“Ah, there you are,” she said, as Jessica came in behind me and sat on the arm of the sofa.

She was stroking the photo with her thumb. “My girls.” She murmured and looked up at me. “Your dad will be here soon.”

I glanced at Jessica who was watching Mum closely. “Mum, dad won’t be coming.” I told her. “Why don’t I make us a cup of tea, instead?”

“Yes,” she said putting down the photograph. “That will be nice. Get an extra cup out, just in case he comes.”

I said nothing as I moved around the kitchen filling the kettle and putting tea bags in the pot.

We sat around the table like we used to, and Mum poured the tea.

“Do you see Dad at all?” she asked.

“I don’t know what you mean.” I stirred my tea. Jessica looked at me and back to Mum.

“Your dad and I said you’d grow out of it, but you haven’t, have you?” I sighed and looked at Jessica.

When I was a child, I talked to people they couldn’t see. Jessica, who didn’t laugh often, thought it was funny until she realised I was serious. She and I were like two halves, she the introvert and me extrovert.

“Who are they and what do you say to them?” She once asked while we were doing puzzles in the front room.

“They’re people who’ve lived and died in this house.” I said, not looking up.

“Aren’t you afraid of them?” Her blue eyes and blonde hair were the mirror image of me.

“No, and you shouldn’t be either.”

“What do they look like?” she asked.

I thought for a moment. “I can’t always tell. I don’t really see them individually.”

She screwed up her eyes in that funny way she has. “What do you mean? I thought you could see them?”

It was hard to describe. “I can, but I see shadows, I suppose; wisps of people doing what they’ve always done when they lived here. I don’t even know if they’re aware of each other.”

Jessica and I had been born in the house on Webster Street and had lived there all our lives. The shadows had been there for longer than we had.

“Wow!” Jessica seemed transfixed as she looked around the room trying to see what I saw. “Cool, you better not tell Mum and Dad, though. They’ll think you’re silly.”

I never did, which was why Mum’s question lingered in the air. Jessica looked glum.

“You haven’t grown out of it, have you, Jennifer?” Mum repeated.

I couldn’t discuss it with her and especially not now. “Mum…”

“We knew you were different but didn’t know what to do about it.” She was having one of her lucid moments and it made my heart ache. “You were the only one who didn’t cry at your dad’s funeral.”

Without thinking, I said. “That’s because he was standing next to you.” Jessica put her head in her hands and groaned.

“You can’t do this!” Mum shrilled, getting to her feet and knocking over the dining chair. “I’ll get Jessica to stay with me. She was always the nicer one, now get out!”

There was no reasoning with her when she went off on one like this. It would end up with us all being upset if I tried. So, I left and went down to find Megan, who was sitting in her office chatting to a Home Help. I tapped on the door to get their attention and they turned to look at me.

“Sorry to interrupt, but I can’t reason with her and it’s best just to walk away. Will you keep an eye on her? She should calm down now I’ve gone.”

The Home Help looked sympathetic and Megan said, “Of course. I’ll pop down there in a minute to see if she’s okay.”

I nodded, “Thanks. Give me a ring if there are any problems.”

“She’ll be fine, I’m sure.” Megan said with a smile.

It wasn’t far to walk home, that’s why I liked the accommodation Mum was in, convenient to get to day or night. I put my head down and with hands in my pocket tried not to think of the how it always hurt when she did that. I wanted my mum back, and that would never happen now. Even her lucid moments were getting less.

I didn’t notice the car till the horn blared and Tom, my boyfriend got out. I say boyfriend and although I liked him, it was hard being in a relationship when Mum was this difficult. Tom was a good man who didn’t push me and was always supportive.

Three years ago, I dialled 999 when Dad fell off a ladder hitting his head on the paving stones. He died instantly, and Tom was one of the first police officers on the scene.

Mum, who already lived her life in profound shock, went downhill from there.

Tom got out of the passenger door. “Jen?”

“Oh hello, I was miles away. I’ve just been to see Mum. She’s had another turn.”

He walked with me and the car crawled alongside us driven by his colleague. “I’m sorry,” he said. “I know it’s upsetting. She can’t help it now. I think it’s time to make that phone call, don’t you?”

I knew in my heart of hearts I needed to ring Social Services and have them assess her again. But even though her lucid moments were getting less, they always made me hesitate. “I know you’re right.” I said giving him a half-hearted smile. “It’s just so…” I trailed off.

“Difficult,” he finished for me.

“Yes. I know I have to face it sooner rather than later.” We stopped at my garden gate. “I just feel so guilty all the time.”

Tom put his hand on my arm and said, “I know you do and you really shouldn’t. It’s not your fault, Jen. You did the right thing for her and you must do it again. Make that phone call.”

Tom was so always so wise. “I know.”

Tom turned to his partner in the car. “Des, I’m going to walk Jen inside.”

“I’m fine, honestly.” I told them looking at Des as well. I didn’t want to get them in trouble.

“He had a curry last night, so yeah, it’ll give me a break.” Des quipped.

“Ignore him,” Tom said, and I smiled.

There was always banter between those two and they often made me laugh even when I didn’t want to. We walked up the path to the from door.

“Do you want a cup of tea?” I relented, as he seemed intent on coming in.

“Never say no to a cuppa. You know me.”

I put the key in the lock. “Well, your daft mate better come as well.”

Des didn’t need telling twice, and I knew they would take it as an opportunity to skive. Tom went straight up to use the toilet and Des lingered in the hall talking on his phone.

I went through to the kitchen, put my coat over the chair, and filled the kettle trying not to think about what Mum had said when Jessica appeared.

“Don’t say anything, favourite child,” I told her, forcing a smile. It wasn’t Jess’s fault, poor love.

As Des came into the kitchen and Tom down the stairs, Jessica retreated.

“So, what happened this time?” asked Tom, leaning against the table.

“Just the usual really. You know what she’s like.”

Des looked out into the back garden, “My nan was like that, normal one minute, unreasonable the next. We never knew what mood she would be in.”

“It’s more than that, Des,” said Tom as I put the bags in the teapot and filled it with hot water.

“Oh, I know, I was just saying. I sympathise with you, Jen. I know what it’s like.”

“Let’s go out tonight?” Tom suggested.

“Oh! I’d love to, thanks for asking,” said Des and I laughed. Tom picked up a tea towel and threw it at him before turning back to me.

“Ignore him. We could try that new Italian place on the high street.”

“Desranos?”

“Yes, that’s the one. It would be good to get your mind on something else for a change, what do you say?”

I nodded. “Yes, okay.”

“I take it I’m not invited, then?” said Des.

“No!” Tom and I said at the same time and grinned.

“Seriously though.” said Des. “I went the other week, and it was nice. The food’s really good.”

I handed them the tea, and we all stood in the kitchen drinking when their radio burst into life. They had a shout and quickly left. I emptied their tea down the sink just as Jessica came back into the room.

“I know,” I said, as she always knew what I was thinking. “I shouldn’t commit to a relationship when he doesn’t know about this?” I swept my hands around the ghostly images. “And there’s Mum, she needs me even if she doesn’t always know it.”

Jessica remained impassive as I turned away and washed the cups.

A couple of days later Mum walked in through the back door.

“What are you doing here?” I gasped, abandoning the meat I was frying.

“I want to see Jessica and I want to see John!” she demanded.

She went into the front room where Jessica was sitting. “So! You’re keeping secrets from me, are you?”

“Mum! Please!”

“And where’s John, where’s your dad?”

“I can’t just bring him back like that. You shouldn’t be here. How did you get out?”

“I walked, how do you think? Anyway, I heard you telling Jessica that you could summon anybody, and I want to see John.”

“I know you do, but I was a child then. It’s not like that now. They need to be left alone.”

She was poking around the room, peering behind the sofa and curtains. “They? Who are they? Where are they?”

“Nobody’s here, Mum.” I said, trying to be patient, but she wouldn’t listen.

“Yes, they are. They’re always here.” She carried on looking determined to find something. “You said that. I heard you say it.”

I looked at Jessica, and she wore that haunted guilty look.

Running out of the room she said. “I’ll find them. I will, I’ll find them.” As she went upstairs, I was just about to follow her when I smelled burning. The meat!

The frying pan had caught fire and ignited the curtains. Panicking, I threw a tea towel over it, but it caught fire too. Thick smoke billowed and engulfed the kitchen forcing me out into the hallway.

It happened so fast and Mum was upstairs! I covered my mouth and nose with my arm and tried not to cough.

“Mum! Mum!” I screamed expecting her to appear.

I was just about to go after her when I was grabbed around the waist. I’d hardly registered someone kicking down the door as they pulled me outside.

“My mum! My mum!” I screamed, but they didn’t listen as the flames headed for the stairs.

Within minutes a fire engine had arrived, and everything became chaotic and surreal. Water hoses spurted at the windows and fireman with breathing apparatus went inside. They put ladders against the upstairs window and I watched with horror as they headed up.

People gathered round to watch and as I sobbed, I could see faint shadows in the windows. Thick smoke poured out of them, and flames licked the gutters through the broken glass.

Screen Shot 2019-05-08 at 10.57.19They brought Mum out, and it was too late. Once I had been checked over for smoke inhalation, Tom took me back to his house as I had nowhere else to go.

The following day I insisted on going back to see the embers of Webster Street. My family home was burnt to the ground.

His arm was around me as I stood and sobbed. “I don’t understand why you need to see this. You’re only torturing yourself.”

One day I would tell him although I’m not sure he’d understand. I took a final look at Mum, who for the first time looked happy. Dad, his arm around her protectively had the twinkle back in his eyes. Finally, standing next to them was Jessica, my depressive, suicidal sister.

This is just one of the stories in The Magic of Stories book. It is available to read for free on Kindle Unlimited. Or to buy from all good book stores.

Amazon UK
Amazon US

The Magic of Stories cover (Jon_s MacBook Air)

SHE IS HERE!

CASSIDY NEWBOLD IS FINALLY PRINTED #free #paranormal #crime #stories

I wrote this story quite a while ago and only now am I releasing it. She has here own page and her stories are in one collection and free for my readers. Read about her and download your free copy.

 

The Adventures of Cassidy Newbold

 

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Electric Eclectic Stories

Today is Electric Eclectic book day. You will be seeing EE all over Social Media. So if you see a post, like this one, or on Facebook, Twiiter, Google, anywhere! Can you please share it?

For readers –  All our books are novelettes. This means if you love reading and are short of time, these books are ideal for reading in an afternoon, an evening, or on that journey.

Lots of authors, lots of genres. You can put Electric Eclectic in the search bar at Amazon.

Or visit the website

#electriceclectic #novellas #novelettes #shorterreads #books #authors #readers

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For writers – something for you too:-

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More info on today’s Electic Eclectic Book Blatt

 

Hazard, a Nineties Song

Do you remember Richard Marx’s Hazard ? I loved it and the video was dark and moody and told a story. The music is haunting and shot in black and white makes it very atmospheric.

Who did kill Miss Mary? We never got to find out and so, inspired by the video, I wrote a story.

Mary became Mary-Jo and it is told through the eyes of her best friend, Shelby. She, like her father, she had visions and when she ‘saw’ her friend was in trouble, she had to return to the town she’d left behind.

The first person she turns to is Mary-Jo’s boyfriend, Ricky, named after Richard Marx, of course. But he doesn’t know what happened to Mary-Jo and why she is missing. They had had a row, so he is not looking for her. He is broody and angry and it takes a while for Shelby to discover why.

Then there is the sheriff, Rawden Hughes, who Shelby has a history with. She is not so delighted to see him again, but knew it was inevitable.

Then there is her Pa, strangely sober for once, what is he hiding? Why does he accuse her like he does?

Long buried secrets surface and a recent review called it a thriller of a tale. I’d call it a crime, and a mystery, with a little paranormal thrown in.  I would love to hear what you think.

Down by the River is novelette and available on Amazon UK and Amazon US for just £1/$1.

#murder #crime #shortreads #thriller #richardmarx #hazard #dollar #pound

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