‘Sweetie, I brought dinner!’ Joseph said as he walked through the door. Two bags hanging from his hands, struggling as the scent of freshly fried chips wafted through the house. He could hear the kids playing in the sitting room, cries about lava and who died this time floating through the hallway. He kicked the door shut with a tan brogue, the bag of chips just catching against the charcoal trouser of his suit and leaving a streak of grease. ‘Aww man, I love this suit.’
He danced down the hallway, stepping gingerly through the maze of children’s toys and various pieces of parenting debris. ‘Joseph, honey? I’m in the kitchen.’ Monica yelled from the kitchen, straining her voice to be heard over the cacophony from the children. Clearly the lake of lava had spread through to the tiled floor where she was standing. ‘Can you come and distract the kids? I’m trying to bake the fairy cakes for the PTA meeting.’
He blustered in, dumping the chips on the table as he scooped up his children in a bear hug. ‘Rargh! The lava monster rises!’
‘No! Not the lava monster!’ Joanna and Edgar ran from their father. ‘The monster, the monster!’ He chased them from the room, sweeping them from beneath their mother’s feet. She paused from her baking to kiss her husband on the lips, before kicking him back through the door.
‘Do you want to dish up? I’m just going to go and change, managed to get grease on the suit again.’
‘Fine, but don’t forget to put your suit in for dry cleaning tomorrow!’ He smiled at her, shouted through to his children that he’d be through in a minute and made his way upstairs. He took off his suit as he did everything else, carefully and methodically, staring into his reflection.
Slightly greying hair, framed his wrinkled face from which two green eyes stared back. He raised a hand to his greying eyebrows, smoothing them down from their wild attempts at escape. A wholly average man living a wholly average life.
He turned to the plasma TV hanging on the wall, raising the remote like a pistol. Flicked through to his recordings, scrolling down the list past all of his wife’s crap, Desperate Housewives, Say Yes to the Dress and all of those period dramas. Reached the history portion, the battlefield tales, flicked through to the million episodes of NCIS and CSI. He started pulling on tracksuit bottoms as The Who’s Baba O’Reilly started flowing from the speakers.
‘I’m here in the field…’ He sang, pulling an old t-shirt over his head. Doing a little dance around the room when Monica yelled up the stairs.
‘Joseph! All dished up!’
He put all thoughts out of his mind and headed back down to his family. Chewed through some time before retiring to his office.
Turned on his DVR and flicked through. ‘Harold Winters, 12th December 1989. Baseball bat.’ H paused for a moment, relaxing back into the black leather chair, letting it swallow him into the darkness. ‘Yes, that was a good one…’
Serial killers. Just like us, but more killer-ey.
The Idiot in Tin Foil