by Beth Harar
The young woman did not sense his approach because she was singing. At the end of the beach, where water meets sand, she paid homage to the ocean. The waves swept at her feet and, in the dark night, she almost glowed.
Not affected by her demon song, William crept forward. The creature thought that her repulsive chant would shield her from harm, and her ignorance made him quiver.
He took one step, then another. And when he was almost close enough to grab her tousled hair she turned.
“I’m sorry,” she said, smiling at him. “I didn’t know anyone was nearby.”
His lip curled and he took a step forward. The woman hesitated and took a step backward, towards the sea. “Did you hear me singing?” she asked.
William raised the knife.
In one swift movement the woman turned and propelled herself towards the ocean, but he was equally quick. He caught her white dress and yanked it down so that she plunged face first into the sand. She fought back, kicking and clawing, but he pinned her to the ground.
“Let me go!” she cried, stretching her free arm towards the sea, as if it could give her salvation.
But William was unaffected by her pleas for him to stop. She would not get away because he was meant to kill her.
Her death was his treasure and his gift to the world.