Season 1: Episode 1
Vigilante is a little experiment of mine. I haven’t written fiction since school, so I thought I’d give it another shot. But this is different to a short story, in fact it’s more like a TV show. Each week or so, the next chapter or episode if you will, continues the story.
Light peeked out of the curtains and shone onto the deck. I crouched still, under the window sill. Five minutes had gone by and I was still waiting. But for what?
Shouldn’t this get easier? After all, this wasn’t my first time. But I continued to wait. A girl’s screams sounded throughout the house. Was that… a chainsaw?
Now or never Gordon, time to make your move.
I tried to crawl forward, but my stiff legs fell from under me. The noise I made against the wooden boards was nothing more than a muffled smack but I paused anyway. No movement from within the house, nothing but the screams of agony.
I made my way around the deck to see a window half open. Part of me wanted to back out. But I had to persevere, it’s what she’d want.
I pried the window open gently and moved the curtain. Inside was a double bed, half-made, a dresser covered in papers, and posters plastered the walls of some heavy metal band I didn’t know.
The screams had reduced to mere whimpers now.
I heaved my body up through the window. A dull pain crossed my chest, and I grasped at the curtain in a last hurrah. That wasn’t a great plan however, I crashed head first into the floor below.
Without thinking I dove straight for under the bed. I nursed my poor throbbing cranium, and nearly missed the pair of bare feet that had just entered the doorway. They stepped closer, right near the bed now.
I held my breath.
And then the feet retreated.
Breathing in again I got out from under the bed. There was no going back now. My fear was gone, sucked right out of me.
I crept into the hallway, unsure of where to head to next. Following the whimpers I headed towards what could only be a lounge. And where I expected to see a cowering victim was nothing but a glowing television in an otherwise dark room.
A young woman lay on a table naked in chains. It cut to a hooded individual mopping up the blood that dripped from a guy who didn’t look too much alive.
My eyes darted away from the screen. There he was, the man I was looking so forward to meeting. His head lay against the cushioned couch. His hand grabbing at a nearby bowl of popcorn.
I moved like a snail now, every step towards the couch, placed carefully, one after the other, until my feet made it to their destination.
Out of my pocket I pulled a knife. Towering over the bald individual, I placed it at his jugular. The man startled and tried to push my arm, but I placed my other hand on his shoulder holding him down.
"Francis Armstrong?" I said, trying to sound as gruff as possible.
"W-what do you want?" the man trembled. The blade was sharp, pressed against his throat and a little blood trickled down his neck.
I’m not a violent guy really, but this bastard deserved it. And I had to make him see that I was in control.
"Where’s your wife?" I said.
"What are you talking about, I’m not married," he said.
"Yes you are, to Eliza Armstrong".
"Oh really Mr. Armstrong?"
"She’s been missing for two months now, and no one has seen any sight of her," I said.
"And I have a feeling – actually, I have proof that you were responsible for her disappearance."
"Fuck you man!" he spat. I dug deeper into his flesh. He shrieked.
The hooded man was now starting his chainsaw up again.
"Trying to sell off the murder weapon?" I said, raising my voice over the sound of the chainsaw.
I produced my phone which showed a picture of a household iron under a black light. It was covered in florescent splotches.
"You didn’t do a very good job of cleaning it," I said. "Where is the body?"
"I didn’t mean to, she – she made me do it," he said. "She was sleeping around, I saw the messages."
"Where… is… the… body?" I repeated firmly.
"In the backyard, I buried her…" Francis was now crying. His tears leaked down his face and of course that bloodied neck. He was a right mess.
"Show me," I stood to the side of the couch and pulled him up by the scruff of his shirt. And marched him to the back door, knife still at his throat.
Outside, he pointed to a spot near the fence, there was a patch of grass different to the rest.
"Thank-you for your assistance,” I said and pulled a pair of hand cuffs from my back pocket. I do like to be prepared after all. I attached him to a drain pipe that ran down past the kitchen window.
Police are useless, they need evidence handed to them on a silver platter. So I retrieved a spade from the shed and stuck it into the ground, and dug up a shovel load of fresh dirt. I stopped. Digging up bodies, that wasn’t my job. So I stuck the shovel back in and left it there.
Inside I took the phone off the kitchen counter and dialled the local police station. After finally reaching a woman, I spoke in the same gruff voice I had used on Francis. "43 Roberto Road. In relation to the Eliza Armstrong case. Murderer and victim both in the backyard."
"Could you please tell me your name?" the woman inquired. "No," I said and hung up.
Back outside I gave a wave to Mr. Francis Armstrong, now a crumpled heap on the ground, and I walked back onto the street from whence I came. My car was across the road, a few cars down. And I drove back to my apartment.
Climbing the stairs up to the third floor, I unlocked the door to my place of residence. My brother Alex was there on the couch snoring. The TV was still on, the hooded figure laying dead in a puddle of his own blood. And the credits rolled.
"Who watches this junk?" I said aloud as I picked up the remote and switched off the telly. Alex lay unmoving.
I logged on to the computer in my room and onto the police Intranet. Only the missing person cases were unlocked for me thanks to Officer Butz, and I opened the Eliza Armstrong case file. There she was, an old photo of her standing in front of a tree, the Autumn leaves at her feet. She looked back at me as if to say thank you.
I nodded in response, and closed the file.
Out in the hallway I saw the answerphone was flashing. I got up and played the message. "Hi Gordon, it’s Principal Barry here, just reminding you of the lunchtime staff meeting tomorrow. Hope to see you there this time."
Yeah right Barry. I headed back to my room and jumped onto my bed. The clutches of sleep already taking over.
Glancing at the marked assignments on my dresser, I smiled and lay back into my pillow. I had done well today.