Case # 453
by Jude Ensaff
It had taken us four months to find it. Four months. Not long when you have all the time in the world. But we didn’t, and that last hour had cost us. That endless hour: 4 till 5 p.m.
He’d said it was in the woods, deep in the woods.
‘Just turn off the highway, follow a dirt track,’ he said. ‘You’ll find it.’
His voice had a dismissive air about it; he seemed to be laughing at me as he spoke. In May.
‘Ain’t no point asking me which highway neither. That’d spoil the fun, now, wouldn’t it?’
We’d tried every psychology trick in the book- agreed with him, confronted him, pleaded with him, even got his long lost sister to talk to him, but nothing worked. In July.
‘Your psycho babble ain’t gonna work on me.’
Why would it? In and out of hospitals all his life. He’d fooled them all. He was sane, civilised.
When we got to the cabin, time was up: there was no fooling us.
The child was the worst. Never seen anything like it. I had to turn away for fear I’d faint with the sight of it.
Smelt them before we even entered. Dishes piled up, drapes torn and them just lying there rotting, except for the child. She’d only been killed recently. Fresh blood splayed out around her and a note lay pinned to her, just like the others.
Time and date of death recorded: 4.23 p.m. August 1st.