Raiin

By Alex Finch

(Graphic Content Warning)

Most only know me as The Raiin Killer. Nobody knows who I am beneath the mask. Or that I’m almost always smiling. Well, I guess this journal is a tribute to my dead psychiatrist. She was a fighter until the end, I had to admire that. She always told me to keep two journals, one for good moments, one for bad. This is one of the few good moments. So, I’ll jot down everything I can recall. Good memories wash away like sand in the tides, you know.

Let’s start with earlier last night. Let’s see, it was a school holiday, my target was in town, visiting her parents. I’d been watching them for a week, those two are like clockwork. But dear little Hannah had gotten a ticket to see Tron 6. And she was going alone. How pathetic. Maybe if she hadn’t disrespected my honor, she’d have someone to watch Tron 6 with. Water under the bridge. Oh, sorry. I was just thinking about where I might dump her body. I get distracted too easily. Anyway, she got tickets to see it at night. Great move, for me anyway. Her parents at this point in time would be winding down. And they were old, anyway. I flexed my hands in my gloves. I was already sweating from the full-body protection I wore, and my fingers hurt from the acid. Was a hairnet, a bodysuit, cling wrap, latex gloves, a full body covering, leather gloves, and a gas mask overkill? No. It seems like overkill until you leave a hair at a crime scene.

So, I used a backdoor while both targets were in the living room. I used a window, cut the screen on one side, and tried very hard to pry the window out without creating forced entry signs. The lock was weak and broke quickly, clattering to the floor. Nobody heard it. I’d have to fix it, but that should be fine. I climbed through the window. Oblivious, the two were still on the couch, watching some reality show. My moccasins made not a sound as I slid them across the floor without a creak. Little trick I learned from my childhood. I pulled my gun from my belt, still creeping across the floor. “Boo.” I said, muffled by my gas mask. They turned around barely having time to make shocked looks before I pulled the trigger twice. Two shots. I had a silencer on, of course. Barely made a sound. I love advancements in gun technology. Now all I had to do was wait.

She walked in, right on time. “Hey, I’m home! Mom, the new Tron was a-“ She had walked into the living room. I didn’t bother to hide. Why would I? I turned the gun on her.

“Scream, and you die as well. Kneel.”

Her shocked eyes flicked to the bodies on the floor, one of them still convulsing. I kicked it. I’d shot them in the lungs to prevent the screaming. The blood pooled around me feet, a small sticky puddle of dark red. It stained my shoes. Bummer. I really liked these. They were made out of expertly tanned and skinned human flesh. They left DNA of someone who wasn’t even alive. The police had to be having a good time with me. Either way, the blood would wash out. It was more about the footprints. My eyes never left Hannah’s face. “I believe I told you to kneel. Raiin does not ask twice.”

It made me smile to see her kneeling in a puddle of her parents’ blood. Aww, her vulnerable little face. So scared. Trembling. “Beg for your life, and I just may give it to you.” I closed my fingers around the trigger. That drives my victims nuts. She was weeping silently

“Please, please, I beg you, let me live, I’ll do anything, I’ll give you anything. I’ll do whatever you want, just please don’t kill me.” Had to admire her bravery. Her voice barely cracked. I stepped towards her.

“Oh, Hannah. I’m not going to kill you just yet.” I tried to ignore the endorphin high racing across my body. I always felt overjoyed when they kneeled. “I’m going to leave you alive, for now. Someone has to take the fall for this. Might as well be you.” I pulled out a syringe, injecting it into her neck. The tranquilizer took effect rather quickly. She was so small. I wrapped her fingers around the gun, leaving her prints on it. Perfect, now I didn’t even have to cover up the bloody footprints. I bound her wrists and ankles, wrapping her in a towel to prevent the blood from getting everywhere as I dragged her body out the backdoor. I took her to my little trapdoor in the woods, where I shed my outer layers, leaving only the bodysuit, my latex gloves, and the gas mask. And of course, my Belt of Many Weapons. My target was nowhere near breaking sedation. I had time.

I went in the secret entrance I’d carved into the hospital, checking the monitors before emerging from the painting like something out of Harry Potter. I’d set the cameras to record the empty hallway as I dragged Hannah to the other side and shoved her through the vent door. I went down after her, closing the door behind us.

I walked into my favorite room in the world, dragging my target by her wrists. White walls, a table with the best restraints I could steal, a metal chair, and a box full of everything I needed. I felt at home instantly. I loved being here, to be honest this was my happy place. I remembered the body. Right. I tipped her up and onto the chair, tying her to it. When I reached the point where she couldn’t move. I checked the small watch I’d kept in the box. Still about 10 minutes until she woke up. I read a beat-up paperback of When You Reach Me while I waited. She started to stir, before jolting. She tried to scream through the duct tape over her mouth while twitching in her chair. “It’s bolted down, Hannah. You’re not going to knock the chair over. Just relax. I can promise you this will be fun.” For me, anyway. But she didn’t need to know that. I reached over and pulled the tape off her mouth. “Scream all you want. I soundproofed the crap out of this room. Nothing’s getting to the surface.” She didn’t scream. Instead, she summoned the last dregs of her bravery.

“Who are you. What do you want from me!”                   

 I laughed. “Hannah, don’t you remember me?” I pulled off my gloves, my gas mask, my hairnet, and the cling wrap around my face. Recognition flashed in her eyes.

“You’re that girl from prom… Cara, right? The one who said I insulted your honor? You tried to kill me! I was in therapy for 3 years trying to forget you existed!”

“Correct. Except I just wanted the threaten you. That knife just enhanced my point. And you think that night ended well for me? I was in court-mandated therapy for months. Do you know how hard it is to hide your true self for months at a time? I spent weeks locked up, don’t you think I might’ve been a little bit upset? You caused all that. Just because you thought I lied about reading Dune. You’re pathetic. And wrong, on top of that. But I guess we can see who the real winner is now. You’re still in school, getting a degree in, what is it now, liberal arts? Because you still don’t know what to do with your life? And I’m a doctor. In a hidden room in a hospital. With you at my mercy. It’s nice, isn’t it. Being on the other side of that? Being the one without the power, isn’t it great? I suggest you keep nice and still while I do this. Otherwise, I’ll strap you to that table there and use a chainsaw to slowly cut your chest open. Sound fair? Good. I promise you that when I get around to killing you, in this chair, it’ll be much quicker.”

I looked around, finding my mirror in the corner. I figured I’d start on a little small talk while I set up. “So, you want any music while I do this? Instrumental, metal, rap, what are you into these days?” I dragged my mirror out in front of her. “Because I’ve been on this nu-metal revival thing. It’s really just as good as I thought it was all those years ago. You won’t believe what these kids are doing with music now, can you see that alright?” I waved my hands in the mirror. I wanted her to see every second of what I did to her. I wanted her to see the blood leeching from her body, without even the option of looking away. “Too bad about your parents, though. I almost wish you’d stayed in a hotel. But then I wouldn’t get to see you kneeling in a pool of their blood. What a picture, I almost wish I carried a camera.”

It seemed to just now break over her that her parents were dead, and that I had killed them. She started twitching, seething with a crying rage. Journal, I tell you. It took far too long for this to run its’ course. I put in earplugs while she screamed and cried for hours. I asked if she was done, but it appeared she wasn’t. She didn’t shut up until she’d fully drained her rage and become a sobbing mess. I kept the earplugs in, just to be safe. “Well, now that you’re done, I’m going to start. Now, if you move, this might kill you or damage your brain. Hold still, please.” I pulled out a small pocket knife and flipped the blade open, holding it close to her left eye. It was still leaking tears and her face was shaking. I slapped her. “I thought I told you to hold still. Don’t make me ask again, because next time I’ll just put your head in a vise. It’ll hurt, and I’ll keep squeezing until your head pops like a balloon. Understood?”

She didn’t answer, but her head was still. “See? A little cooperation.” I pried open her fluttering eyelids. Brown eyes, rimmed in red. So pretty. I slowly pushed my knife into her eye. She howled in pain and writhed in her chair. My blade slipped, cutting her lower eyelid. “Now look what you’ve done, Hannah.” Blood was dripping from her eye. It looked painful. “You’ve messed up, now I have to go back in there again. Come on, let’s try to keep still, alright?” I went in again, this time using my arm to hold her head in place. I entered the blade into her eyeball, ignoring the screaming and kicking. A rush of fluids dripped from it, whitish and sticky. The eyeball itself crumpled and deflated like a white balloon around my knife. I cut it out as she went limp. Of course, she passed out. They all did. Right before I removed the last of the eye. I wish she could’ve seen it. I considered eating the eye, but I never liked eyes much anyway. I started stoppering the bleeding and sanitizing the wound, applying just a touch of a numbing agent. Didn’t want her to bleed to death before the fun part.

 I opened a canister of smelling salts. She woke, disoriented. She saw her bloody but not actively bleeding eye socket. “If you start screaming now, good luck to you.” I held out a water bottle. “Here, you’ve been crying a lot. Replenish those fluids.”

She warily drank from the bottle, spitting it out immediately. “Oh my God, is that blood?”

I nodded. “Yours. And I’m going to make you drink every last drop. And you’re going to like it.” It was only a few ounces of blood, stuff I’d salvaged from her eye wound. And a small hand wound I’d created to supplement it.

Her face was so white. “I don’t want to drink it. Please don’t make me drink my own blood.”                

I smiled. “Aww, you think you have a choice? You’re so cute.” I tipped her head back and carefully started pouring the blood down her throat. Funny, I’d never seen anyone cry over this stage before. It was just some simple dehumanization combined with reinforcement of the truth that I was the one in control here. But she was crying as I forced her to drink her own blood. I left a little bit at the bottom, finishing it all off it one gulp. I wiped my mouth. “Oh, you taste amazing. So, any plans for this weekend? Hanging with some friends, maybe?”

She looked like she’d never seen a person drink blood before. Pathetic. I went on. “I’ve got another target this week, someone else who was in our class all those years ago.”

“You… became a serial killer… because of one thing I said in passing. Once. Oh, God, what is wrong with you.” She seemed disoriented, barely registering anything. I doubted she was even hearing me or controlling the words coming out of her mouth.

I pulled a pin out of  my bodysuit, one of two that I used as lockpicks. I ran a little hand sanitizer over it before using it to sort of pierce her nose. The needle kept it from being too bloody, and I was hesitant to remove it, lest she pass out again. “Let this be a reminder, don’t insult your captor. So, I guess I need you in decent health.” I found another water bottle, half full. “Here.”

She eyed it warily. “What’s in this. What is it this time, my own tears? Urine? My parent’s blood? Oh, God, please tell me it’s not my parent’s blood.”

 I opened it. “It’s water, Hannah. I’d rather you die the way I want you to than from a slow and painful thirst. Drink.” She did, seeming relieved that it was indeed water. I smiled, knowing I would make her wish to die of thirst.

I pulled a razor out of the box in the corner and started shaving her head. “Stay still. I hate the smell of burned hair.” She looked unrecognizable without hair. But I wasn’t done. I shaved off her eyebrows, nicking the thin face skin as I went along. She didn’t look like herself. I certainly hoped she didn’t feel like herself. I wiped away the tiny trail of blood on her face. She had her one eye shut while I did. I walked away and she opened her eye. She made a small pathetic cry as she looked at herself. I was busy with a much more fun task. Heating up my small branding iron. It was a bunch of stripped paper clips, bent in the shape of my signet; an unequal sign with a vertical line down the center. I put a small lighter to the signet, heating it until the metal grew red-hot. “Now, I get one shot at this. Please, as always, stay still.” I pressed the end to her forehead, branding her. Her flesh burned, giving off a sweet and smoky scent. I love that smell; I wish it could be made into a perfume. But even a perfume wouldn’t have the agonized screaming. I pulled out my earplugs, delighting in the sound of her scream.

It was a much higher pitch than you would think, just the right amount of crying. What a beautiful moment. The endorphin rush came again, and I could barely hold the iron steady. My hands were shaking with pure, unhidden glee. I put the iron down on the concrete floor, letting my body and mind enjoy the moment fully. It seemed to strike her that I’d marked her as something I owned, like writing my name on the inside of a book. It was true, though. I had complete control over her, her body, her thoughts, her feelings, her life. In my hands. Oh, I loved the feeling. A better feeling than anything I’d even felt.

Her screaming died down. She didn’t pass out, thankfully. She was a strong girl. So strong. Now, time for one of the best parts. I walked around her until I was standing behind her. I smiled and made bunny ears behind her head before pressing two fingers to her throat. She gasped. “No, no, sorry, not a knife, just cold hands. I’m just checking your heart rate.” Her pulse was out of control. I couldn’t sedate her in the traditional way with her heart like this. I shrugged. “Desperate times, I guess.” I closed my hands around her throat, choking her. She gasped desperately for air, her breaths becoming shallower by the second. She blinked rapidly before her head dropped. Fully unconscious. I had less than a minute, so I worked quickly, moving her to the table.

As I clamped her arms, she woke up, struggling again. She registered where she was quickly. I always knew she was smart. I had her tied facedown on the table, with a little bit of room for her to writhe in pain. I loved watching them squirm. “So, remember Dune? The scene where Duke Leto is about to enter the worst pain of his life? He’s saved, of course, by his false tooth filled with airborne poison, but I found the prior moments much more interesting.” I had brought a candle with me, and I lit it. “Where’s it going to fall, Leto?” I watched the candle melt into a puddle, tipping it every once in a while to get the blazing hot wax to drip onto Hannah’s skin. I cut the back of her shirt open, admiring the blisters forming, red and white. The way she twisted from each drip, her muffled cries, they were everything. The wax covered her back, left bright red marks on the sides of her neck, burned her feet so she couldn’t run, and swelled painfully under her fingernails.

I unstrapped one wrist, forcibly twisting her body. There was one last place I wanted to try. “This is going to hurt, Hannah. I won’t lie to you. This is going to be the worst pain you’ve ever felt.” I dripped the wax into her empty eye socket. The skin bubbled, bleeding and leaking blister fluids like tears over her face. She passed out from pain again, barely screaming before unconsciousness took hold. Her body twitched even still, involuntarily spasming to get away from the blazing heat the covered her. Her body didn’t know that there was no escape from the pain, no escape from me. And I had only just begun.

 I tied her back to the chair, taking advantage of her being knocked out. I made sure the ropes were pressing on her still-leaking blisters. She’d have much more pain every time she moved now. Maybe now she’d hold still. I woke her gently. She was clearly still in agony. Her speaking was labored as she begged “please, no more. Please just end this. Please. I’m so sorry. I’m so sorry. I never meant what I said. I’m so sorry for everything I’ve even done.”

 I looked skyward. “Hear that, God? I think that counts as a confession.” I turned back to her. “Well, your soul’s safe for eternity, but I’m not done. You see, I love making you scream. I love the terror in your eyes. Oh, pardon me. Eye. I love the way you convulse and twitch and spasm, it’s like a drug to me. And I’m an addict. I won’t stop until I get my next hit.” I pulled a scalpel form my belt. A small, delicate weapon. And quite a beautiful one. But now for just yet. I let her see the scalpel before putting it back in my belt. Instead, I pulled the needle from her nose. “I knew this would come in handy.”

I used the needle to pop and drain every exposed blister, a mixture of blood and pus covering her skin to an inhuman point. She made this little noise every time I popped one. A little squeak of pain. I smiled. She didn’t understand why, I didn’t bother to explain. If I had, she would’ve kept her mouth shut. And I wouldn’t get the endorphins. Oh, I could feel the chemicals circulating in my brain. It was like how I’ve been told a hug feels, comforting, warm, safe. After I’d popped them all, leaving her surrounded by her own bodily fluids. I stepped back, admiring my handiwork.

What a sight, her face screwed up and red from blood and tears. The shreds of her shirt barely concealing slow drips of blood and blister fluid down her body, dripping to the floor. Her eyelids desperately trying to save her from this sight, squeezed shut. “Hannah, open your eyes before I cut away your eyelids.” Obediently, she opened them, seeing what I saw, for I hadn’t removed the mirror. Her defeated sigh was everything. I’d broken her, officially. I had so much more planned, but after the target breaks, you can’t even enjoy it. They just accept the pain as a slow march to death. I felt angry. Enraged. She was cutting all this short with her cowardly broken spirit, that little… I punched the wall. It felt good, so I did it again and again. “Why are you broken?” I screamed. “I had so many plans, I haven’t even dissolved your hands in acid! Why did you break, why did you break! You’ve ruined the kill I’ve been planning for years! I promised you I would be quick. You don’t want to last, well, maybe I don’t want to keep my word.”

I whipped around violently, greeted by a forlorn face that had overdosed on pain and now had become numb to it. I hated that look. The end of my fun. I rummaged through my box, finding the method of death she had brought upon herself. A clamp that tightened with every turn.

 I fastened the clamp around her ribcage, taking small pleasure in how she winced. But not enough. She’d become too numb. “Well, Hannah, sorry our time had to be cut so short. You did this, you know. Not me, you. Farewell. You knew you wouldn’t leave this room alive.”

 I tightened the clamp to silence, other than her labored breathing. The clamps pushed on her flexible rips, making her gasp for air. She passed out from lack of oxygen just before—

 Snap.

Her ribs reached their breaking point, splintering to impale her lungs, the other side protruding through her thin skin, pure white bone surrounded by red blood and the red meat of her ribs. It was a beautiful final moment, the contrast of colors, the rich and metallic scent of blood that filled the air. I wish there was a way to capture that moment, all the emotions, the spray of the blood, the way pints of it covered my floor, the loose chunks of ragged and still blistered skin sticking to the splintered bone.

Journal, I hope this has worked in a way that I can re-read this and feel that rush of endorphins every time I do. I hope this has been useful. And I hope anyone who finds this delights in the fact that it was written in blood, so much easier to harvest and write with when the body grows cold beside you. Until this weekend, journal. My next target is near. I think I will, in fact, dismember this body and throw it into a river. Yes, I’ll do that.


Bio: Alex Finch is an American writer with no digital footprint.

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