It was one of those drowsy summer nights in New York,
the type that made you want to stop whatever you were doing and lounge right there on a couch or a chair and admire the view and take in the moist, hot air.
Unfortunately, the night being a hypnotizing one doesn't mean I was hypnotized, but it did take all that I had to keep my eyelids up.
It hadn't been hard to figure out who he was striking next. It had been no more challenging than a game of connecting the dots, looking at who the victims were and their relations to each other.
Obviously some attempt was made at fudging the results, but as statistics would show, those attempts were futile.
As if it was a rehearsed performance, the sound of footsteps echoed on my fire escape, cutting through my train of thoughts.
My initial reaction, of course, was annoyance in the interruption, but as a few seconds passed and I took holt of myself, it turned into a mix of fear and excitement.
"So, Xaviar," I said, with my back turned towards him as I was before. "What's with the unannounced visit?" He tensed up -- I could feel it.
What had been a calm evening was now one of suspense and eerie silence. He knew I'd knew, but probably not this soon. People tend to underestimate women.
There was a slight breeze as he walked towards me and then held his knife next to my neck.
Then, "Time's up, Ava," I could almost feel him smirk.
"Why do you say that?"
"You know it is. You're too smart to not know."
"Am I really that smart?"
"Too smart, and that's why we can't have you."
"Is that why you killed the rest of them?"
"There were reasons for that. Don't play dumb with me. How much do you think your life is worth?"
"If I tell you, do you let me go?"
"You pay first."
"Ah, classical capitalism. I see the businessman in you has not yet left."
"Shut up or die!" His patience was similar to that of a toddler. The fact that he needed to get away quickly may be a factor, but still.
I knew the one thing that got to him. I was calm, too calm, with the immense pressure of death before me. The truth was, I was scared.
I wasn't exactly wealthy, and being calm is just an Ava specialty.
And with that came the startling realization that I had stalled for a long time, too long.
through my flesh
and filled me
with jolting pain
and it went
I woke up in the arms of Sebastian, my fiance. There was a pool of sweat on my pillow from my nightmare.
And yet my nightmare would prove useful years later, when a strikingly similar case that had baffled investigators was solved by my mere dream.