“Every murder is the end of a story, yet so many tales take it as their start.”





Hardened wood scraped along flesh as the young child crawled within the darkness to meet the silhouette of a form that laid out across the dirtied floor. Her tiny hands found themselves within something warm and liquid-like, its color indescribable due to the lack of lighting in the horrid room that smelt of tobacco and liquor. 


No response, and the only sound that could be heard was the very pounding of her heart that beat within her chest. A soft sob escaped her lips as her head rested against the shoulder of the woman who was currently lifeless. The darkness hid the scarlet red that seeped from her mother’s head, matting within her hair, and congealing in a pool of blood beneath where her body lay. It also kept secret the battle scars along her cheeks, the lacerations along exposed arms, and ebony bruises that made up the masterpiece of her frame. 

It was minutes before that the sound of a bang had erupted throughout the household; a tiny, shed-like structure that had been her home since the moment Cairi was born. It was barely standing anymore, and how it continued albeit the ongoings of their current life was beyond what a five-year-old could merely understand. They were forced in the hands of low-class life, scrounging for food, with bones peaking through thinned skin as shere proof of their crappy life. 

The sound reverberated through the air, waking Cairi from a deep sleep in the very bed that sat feet away. Rustling and a hushed voice had been drowned out by the opening of their front door, which slammed closed seconds later with silence following. 

Was it minutes, hours, or days before footsteps creaked along the floorboards? The smell of rotting flesh had been exposed to the elements, and the young child had not moved from her place beside her mother’s corpse. Had she been forgotten? Left to starve until death? It would have been a better ending than when strong, hairy arms pried her from her mother.  

The very arms that ripped her childhood away. 

Her face burrowed within the man’s chest, eyes tired and body sore from lying on the hardened floor. She was covered in dried blood, dirtied from days without bathing, and dehydrated from lack of water. He was warm, unlike the coldness of her mother. Yet warmth would be the endeavor of his torturous ways. 


“Be complicit; if you do that, my love, not even I could save you from your future.” 


With a pounding heart and widened eyes, Cairi woke with a start; a jolt of her body as if electrified by the nightmare that played throughout her mind. She still felt the warmth throughout her, causing sweat to bead with perspiration along tanned, freckled skin. Her cheeks were flushed, breath escaping in rapid whisps. 

“You’re okay,” a tired, deep voice spoke only moments before grasping onto her lithe body, only to tug her within his naked form. “Only a nightmare, you’re okay.” 

As if those words and familiar voice were like a blanket of relaxation, every tense muscle within her body relaxed into his arms. “I’m sorry…” 

His lips pressed against the side of her head; unbeknownst to him, where her previous wound had been, hidden beneath messy locks of onyx hair. “Don’t be.” 

Yet, she was. As understandable as her flaws were, Kevin was massively patient with her. Was it the love that he held for her? Or the fact he was brought up with such noble qualities that even the mess that corrupted her life wasn’t enough to scare him away? Was she just that lucky? 

“I’m going to shower,” Cairi added after a few minutes of silence. Her lips grazed over his jawline before finding their place upon his mouth; leaving a peck of a kiss before prying herself away from him. “I’ll be a few minutes.” 

A few minutes. 


“Psychopaths subvert written rules, yet the power of love is creative and flexible; that’s how we win. That’s how we were always going to win.” 


A few minutes of obliviousness.

A few minutes where the crisp end of a needle met his skin; dipping into muscle, and shooting through his bloodstream and to his heart where it quivered harshly until it no longer could beat. 

A few minutes where his heart went into chaos, leaving him speechless and unable to breathe. 

A few minutes that her mind was carelessly thinking of their day, rather than realizing the catastrophic ending of her lover’s life. 

A few minutes where the dial tone of the hotel’s phone split through the silence of the room. 

A few minutes, and a letter laid beside another lifeless body. Words written out in perfect cursive, scribbled along peachy white paper, with creases from travel:


“In the sorrow of death is the proof of love, of the bonds that exist beyond our reality. 

It is within unfortunate gain that your value ceases in this world I brought you into.

Heaven gained an Angel, and you, my darling, gained an enemy. 

‘Til death do us part, Cairistiona.


- MK “


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