I sat on my chair looking at the pile of papers kept in front of me. A huge stack of papers that needed to be worked on and submitted before the next week. Being a reporter wasn't as easy as I thought it would be because all I thought reporters do is talk in front of the camera when there was any news to be delivered, despite the fact that being a reporter was nerve-wracking. I still loved my job though.
"Iris, that's a lot of work you got there"
I turned around just to see the familiar face of my co-worker. It's Scott, I worked with him during the first week when I got in this company.
With a heavy heart, I nodded slowly.
"Yeah, what else shall i do? I am in love with my job."
"Ha-ha, what are the papers about anyway? the koala tragedy case?"
Shaking my head as a sign of no I said," no I'm working on the case of the serial killer."
He grabbed the nearest chair and sat down beside me with his coffee mug and listen closely " you mean the Angel Killer that mercilessly killed innocent women and always left a note behind but never got caught?"
"Yes, I wonder how do they work so perfectly every time that the cops couldn't even find a single fingerprint on the body or the note," I said thinking deeply.
"How are you even investigating about this I would have thrown up and quit my job," He said having a disgust face.
"Well, you know how much I love my job and how I kind of want to find the killer behind these tragic deaths. He or she has some insane skills to leave clues and yet not get caught" I said "anyways, don't you have work to do , Scott?"
"Your case is more interesting than my documentary on how pandaslive," he said sipping his coffee.
"WHAT? pandas are cute, their daily routine is a treat to your eyes " I said crossing my arms.
"Yeah whatever, tell me more about your case."
"Umm, yeah. So there was this recent case of a woman around her mid-twenties who worked as a bartender. No bad records, clean from drugs but was strangled to death, rose drawn on her arm with a blade. Her body was found near a river."
Scott once again made a face of disgust. “ Jesus ! ,How can a human do that to another human. like don't they have a tiny bit of humanity inside them? It's so non- human thing.
"Did the cops find anything?" I just shook my head and said " Nope but they found this note as usual." I showed him the picture of the note with a beautiful handwriting.
to understand something deep you have to get into its depth and to get into its depth you have to get some deep wounds- AngelKiller
Scott gulped. “His words hide deep meanings but still, I don’t get what he's trying to say, it's so confusing ,and angel killer? I thought angels lead the path of goodness not kill someone without mercy.
"I don't want to hear this anymore I'm good with my panda's," Scott said and quickly went back to his office.
He sat there unbothered flipping through the pages of his book, not even glancing to the scenes. A girl suddenly entered the room and tried to call him but him being himself didn't pay any attention to her and continued reading his book.
"Kevin?" she said again loudly in attempt to be audible to him.
"Yes?" He replied, finally looking up from his book.
"Let's get you ready. we don't have much time, you need to be up for the 20th scene" the stylist said taking the book from him and putting it in his bag. She tried to grab his chin in an attempt to start with the make-up when he leaned back," where's your glove?" he said in affirmation.
She gasped and looked for her gloves before starting with his make-up Kevin has always been sensitive with touches, his crews especially women, he doesn't want them to touch him with bare hands. Even if he worked in his films, he has his own condition.
No touching business
No Revealing clothes
If the movie has some scenes that go against his rules, he would either not sign the papers or his look-alike would have to do them. He has always been like this ever since his first camera appearance. He's only changed in his looks as a more handsome guy.
Many stars, co-workers even actress wanted to get to know him better but he ignored them and worked professionally. He won a lot of awards for his great acting skills. Won billions of hearts with his charming smile, honey brown eyes, sharp jaw line. He's the definition of perfection, his mannered attitude, respect for people in his industry.
All the Ideal requirements for any girl was in him.
After few moments of his makeover he was glowing .The stylists helped him wear his outfit for the scene and he was done. He's amazing to work with because he's always so determined and unbothered. His great acting skills always deliver the best work for the film.
He walked into the scene and went straight towards the producer. He stood there with his majestic smile that even the producer fell for him.
"Kevin, you're here as expected and you look handsome as always, ready for the camera?"
"thank you. I was born ready" showing enthusiasm and good spirits.
" Okay guys, quickly ready in your positions" he went to his position and was ready for his role.
" Three, two and one Action!" The director spoke and kevin once again star -struck everyone with his amazing skills.
I sat down on my desk with my coffee mug. It's my time to pack up and leave but I want to complete as much work as I could today. Few moments later, I heard some noise from behind. For a moment I was scared who could it be, cause there was nobody left except me. But to my surprise it was none other than my co-worker Scott.
"What are you still doing here?" Scott said walking towards me.
"You scared me to death Scott, can't you knock and then come in? I want to complete as much work as I could today so I stayed behind" I said looking at him.
"Looks like you over worked yourself cause there is no door here" He said trying to contain his laugh. " yeah but at least you could knock on something then". I said looking back at my laptop.
"okay next time I'll knock you on your head and then talk to you" He said and closed my laptop.
"Oh my! why did you do that? I didn't save it you stupid" I said angrily.
"Don't worry, it will be saved automatically. Let’s go it's late now" he said grabbing my hand and walking out. I quickly picked my purse and went with him.
"Where are we going?" I asked him
"As usual, McDonalds" He said and drove us off.
Looking out of his expensive penthouse , he stood there in his silk robe drinking his greek wine from the wine glass. he really admired the view from there, later heard a knock on his door.
"Come in" he said focusing back on the view.
"Hello Mr. Cress , I'm here to dress you up for today's ceremony." The stylist said which made his lips curve into a smile.
"What am I wearing tonight?" he said keeping the wine glass on the nearest table.
"Tonight Mr. Cress you won't shine as a star but as a moon" he said checking him from head to toe.
"Are you going to dress me in red?" He asked
"You know me so well Mr. Cress, now let's get to work we don't have much time" he said directing him to the dressing room.
After some time of makeovers and dress ups, Kevin was ready to shock everyone in the preview ceremony tonight with his looks again. The stylist groomed his coat for the last time and looked at him with a huge smile on his face. He held his shoulders and said " you're perfect Mr. Cress, you're now ready to go and win millions of hearts again."
As the stylist was a male, he was allowed to touch him without any equipments. Kevin walked to the mirror and looked at himself in the reflection, impressed by the stylist's efforts.
"Red is stunning as always" He smirked to himself when another man came, "your limo is waiting to drive you through sir." he informed and waited for him to come along.
I wore a blue dress but it didn't satisfy me, maybe I should change into another one. I started searching through my wardrobe for a perfect dress and finally found it. It was a red full length dress with floral net designs. I started putting make up when Scott texted me "Hurry up, I'm outside." I quickly replied and look at myself for the last time in the mirror "perfect" I said to myself and walked outside where Scott was with other workers. I sat on the passenger's seat and buckled myself.
"You look beautiful tonight" He said looking at me.
"Yeah I know now let's go or we're going to be late "I said to him and he drove us off to the preview ceremony.
After a few moments of driving we finally reached the event, here I stood with my mic taking interviews of all the stars. They are so kind and the use of their wise words is just impressive, I couldn't help but to squeal upon seeing my favorite stars, I suddenly remembered I'm not here as a fan but an reporter so I acted professional. I was taking an interview of the actress of the famous upcoming film when a black limo came and stood at the entrance, the loud noises and cheers increased and all the fans started chanting a certain name "Kevin Cress ". I quickly ended the interview with the lady and exchanged my sight with his. There he is melting everyone's heart with his infamous charming smile, people began chaos just to look at him and take pictures, but he acted professional and calmly walked on the red carpet. I walk towards him in order to interview him too cause that's what I am here for. I stood next to him and started talking "So Mr. Cress, we're glad that you can finally made it till here."
"Yes, thank you. I wouldn't miss such a chance and disappoint my fans, would I?"
"Right, so can we have a quick interview with you Mr. Cress?"
"I would like to express our sincere gratitude for letting us interview you tonight Mr. Cress. So, when are we going to see you on the big screen next?"
"Soon. I've signed a movie."
"Your fans have been waiting for your movie for quite some time now."
"I would really want to thank my fans for their support"
"We will definitely pass on your message. Could you please tell us more about your upcoming movie?"
"It's an action plus thriller movie. I'm the main protagonist who portrays the role of a policeman who gets trapped by venal politicians."
"Wow, that's interesting. Thank you for the interview Mr. Cress, enjoy the event"
"No worries and thank you." He said politely and walked into the building.
No matter how polite he was I felt a bit uncomfortable and nervous around him, I don't feel this around other stars so why him? maybe I never saw him in person? I don't know but he still has different aura around him.
I ended my work here and went back to Scott.
"So how did it go?" He asked sitting back in his seat.
"Everything went fine Scott but-"
"I felt uncomfortable around him I don’t know why" I said playing with the hem of my dress.
"Who? Kevin Cress?" he said looking at me.
"Well Duh? He's the rising star and most talked person across the globe, you would have felt nervous that what if you messed up the interview with him." he smiled genuinely.
"Yes, that must be it, now let's go home I'm tired. All I want is my cozy bed now." I said whining.
He laughed and started the engine to drop me off.
Her cries wouldn't stop, her begs for mercy wouldn't come to an end. He stood there amused by the scene in front of him. She would be joking if she said she wasn't scared to death right now, I mean who wouldn't?. He hummed a song while picking up a knife from the table next to him, slowly walking towards her with a smirk plastered on his face.
"Women will be women, they love and they cheat not even thinking about the condition of others" he said in a tone less manner.
"So much of a burden you are dear, why don't you just quit?" he said touching her face with the knife he had, she tried to kick him but the ropes wouldn't let her." Beautiful face, hazel eyes and sharp jaw line, everything perfect but of no use." he said staring deep into her eyes.
"If you don't stop someone else has to do it for you and here I am" he said with a smirk on his face. Slowly he put his knife near her throat and started applying pressure on it. Blood started gushing out of her throat and she started losing consciousness, all she wish is for someone to save her or to die quickly rather than feeling this type of pain. She tried to wiggle out of the ropes but it was of no use. He pressed harder and her cries began to disappear, by the time he had more of his type of fun she was gone. Like always he took her arm and skillfully sink his blade into her skin carving a rose.
I woke up due to my phone ringing aloud which caused me sit up and check my phone. I was quite amazed by 15 missed calls from Scott, wonder what does he want at such a time. My phone rang again and unlike before, I picked up but regretted it right after.
"Iris!!! Where are you right now??!" He screamed through the phone.
"At home, where would I be in the morning and what do you want? you know I work at 9 am not at 7." I said to him more like a whine.
"Well where ever you are hurry up get here right now."
"There's another murder and guess what it's the actress from the upcoming movie with Cress, you need to cover it up so hurry up I'm hanging up now" his words left me shocked, the actress from the last night preview?
After reaching the actress' pent house, I were amazed by the her wealthiness. Reaching the crime scene, a horrifying scene met my eyes. The body laid stiff and pale on the stone cold floor with dried blood all over her. I wanted to throw up and leave but I also wanted to find the criminal and prevent any more deaths or should I say murders next. I quickly took my camera and started taking pictures of the body, the scene in front of me was terrifying. Who kills like this? even animals don't hunt like this murderer. Suddenly my eyes met with a piece of paper in her hands I put on my gloves and carefully picked up the note, what I saw next left me confused as well as frightened.
"Clever as a devil but prettier, little did you know that we're not in wonderland anymore Alice?" ~AngelKiller
The cops came in with the FBI and told me to go out since they want to investigate more about it. I quickly stood up to take my belongings and went back to Scott.
"So are you done here?" he asked me.
"yes, now let's go back to our office I have to search more about this" I told him and he nodded.
once we arrived I quickly sat at my desk and opened my laptop to see the latest news. 'The famous actress Lisa found dead in her penthouse, the whole industry is shocked upon hearing this news. As far as we know the clues indicate that the actress was a victim of the Angel Killer' a reporter from our company delivered the news. I searched more about this case and came to know that the actress had a boyfriend and was found with other guys in the preview night. What does this mean? so did her boyfriend kill her and does that mean he is also the angel killer? this seems fair but what about the other murder cases by angel killer? I took my camera and viewed the note that I took at her pent house. His words were like poetry with deep meaning yet I couldn't understand it. I was so lost in my thoughts that I didn't realize Scott was standing next to me,"What are you thinking about so deeply?" he asked me while handing me a cup of coffee.
"I just realized that the actress had a boyfriend but was found with other guys in the preview last night, could it be her boyfriend that killed her? and if he is, what was his relation with the other murders that happened" I asked him. He seemed so clueless and confused at my words but so am I.
"Shall we go and him then?" He spoke finally.
"Maybe we should at least that's what we can do right now. Come on let's go" I said and stood up. We went to his car and drove off.
After what seemed like a life time we finally reached his home, we got of the car and went towards the door. Scott rang the doorbell and a man opened the door. "Hello, how can I help you?"
"Hello, Are you Mr. Lee?" Scott asked the old man on the door.
"Yes I am, what do you want?"
"Well we would like to have a talk with your son Mark"
"Okay come in, he's inside" He stood aside for us to come inside. Their house was not too big but it was cozy. We went inside and sat down on the couch waiting for his son. Soon he came out of his bedroom with red puffy eyes, he walked towards us and sat down from across us.
"So Mark, how are you doing?" I started asking him about his condition.
"I'm not well, She died young what's worse than that?" He said looking down.
"We're sorry for your loss Mark but we would like to ask you some questions.
"Sure go ahead"
"Where were you at the preview event ?"
"I was at my home, I'm a writer for a magazine so I had to complete it at anyhow"
"Okay,did you have any arguments with the actress?"
"No we were perfectly fine"
"okay of all the victims of the AngelKiller, did you have any conflicts with them?"
"No I don't even know them"
"Who do you think Angel Killer would be?"
"It would be someone who had a conflict with her and wanted revenge, I swear if I find him I'll kill him" He said through gritted teeth.
"Calm down Mark, did you know that your girlfriend was with other guys at the event?"
He looked at me with wide eyes and said "other guys? no I have no idea about that"
"Okay Mark we'll take our leave now take care." The only suspect we had is innocent now I'm back to where I was before. If he isn't the criminal then who is?
I sighed for a thousandth time, the killer is getting on my nerves now I'm back to where I started. I took out the photo of the note and read it carefully what is he seriously trying to say, wonderland and Alice? was he someone close to the actress ? I put the photo back and focused on the news been displayed by Scott. I can't help but smile at him, his expression was priceless when the panda grabbed his shirt. I looked back at my laptop and thought about the talk we had with Mark, he was clueless about her being with someone else. So, I think it was karma with what happened to her but what loss was the killer receiving with whatever she does? he/she must have had a reason behind it. So many questions were lingering in my mind that caused a killer headache for me. I closed my laptop and wanted to take a walk outside when I got a text from Scott. 'Let's meet at the restaurant nearby I'm done with my work'. I replied and quickly grabbed my car keys, I walked towards my car and drove us to the place where Scott wanted to meet me. After moments of driving, I finally reached the restaurant I saw Scott waiting for me at a table I went to him and sat down. It looks like he didn’t see me coming because he was busy looking at memes on his phone and when I sat down he got startled.
"You scared the hell out of me Iris" He said putting his hand on his heart.
"Sorry" I said laughing. We were talking about random things when a guy entered the restaurant, he was tall and masculine. "Doesn't he seem similar to you Iris?" Scott asked me while looking at man. I turned around and saw that he was looking for a place to sit since there was none, he wore a mask and when he removed his mask my eyes grew wide. He, the guy who I met and took the interview of was Kevin Cress. "OMG!! it's Kevin, what's he doing here?" Scott said half screaming. "What do you think people do here, Scott?" I said non chalantly. He looked back at me and smiled wide "You do know how to joke, Iris "he said trying to contain his laugh. I rolled my eyes and focused back on eating when a guy stood next to me. "Hello, I think we've met before" a fruity voice met my ears which caused me to look up at none other than Kevin. "Oh yes we met at the interview" I said fake smiling. "Do you mind if I sit here cause everything's full?" he asked amiably. Before I could say anything Scott quickly nodded and told him to sit down. I don’t know but I actually feel very uncomfortable around him, which causes me to not like his company here. "I'm sorry if I'm disturbing you both" he said again. "Not at all, feel free to sit down" Scott once again didn't let me speak. Soon after some chit chats Scott spoke "What inspired you to become an actor, Kevin?" He looked taken back by the question but calmly replied "When I was a kid I was often impressed by the acting of other actors, and when I grew up people told me I'm good at handling my emotions you know when I'm sad I can show it as well as hide it. A close friend of mine suggested me to become an actor since I'm too obsessed with acting and that’s when I debuted as an actor." I nodded slowly thinking about his answer. "What about you Iris, why did you become a reporter instead of any other careers?" He asked looking at me. "Well, I like to deliver truth and the fact that Google searches the articles written by me is a matter of pride, I also like to meet new people from different fields and get to know them". I said rubbing my chin thinking if I missed something when another thing popped up into my mind "Oh and I also love to travel" I said giggling. Scott smiled wide where as Kevin seems to be in a deep thought, he immediately broke his chain of thoughts when Scott shook his hand in front his face. "Oh sorry, that's actually very great Iris. You're an impressive reporter keep up the good work". He quickly complimented me which I replied with a smile, after we finished our dinner I excused myself to use the washroom, few minutes later I came back and we talk a bit more when Kevin spoke, "I think I need to go now it was great meeting you both, here's my card feel free to contact me" he gave us a card and was about to leave when Scott stopped it and asked for his autograph. He handed him a book and a pen to sign it, Kevin smiled gently and wrote something on it and handed it back to him. He bid goodbyes and left, as soon as he left we also parted our ways and went home.
The next day went as usual of me exploding my mind with thoughts about the murderer so called 'Angel Killer ', it has been a week and I'm not even close to anything. When I think about last night, I got to admit it was pretty interesting and fun talking to Kevin where I would feel uncomfortable with him. I was lost in my train of thoughts when a person from my company came running to me,"Iris, your killer is back there is another dead body found near a river let's go hurry up". Maybe this time I will get something for sure, I'm not going to lose this chance, I hurriedly stood up to run towards the van and left as soon as possible.
Upon reaching the area of crime, my eyes started searching for something suspicious unfortunately nothing seemed mysterious. I walked towards the cop to ask for permission to take a look at the body so that I can get further with my case. A terrifying scene of a woman around twenties laid subtle on the grass, I asked Scott to take background check on her so that I can know what she does for a living or anything useful for me. I bend down and carefully picked up her left hand to see the rose mark carved onto it, after checking all the things on her, my eyes went on a folded piece of paper with a white rose next to it.
The problem repeats over and over, it's a never ending story but if you want to reach me look around you ~ Angel Killer
His/ her words were like the words in novels that gives you chills, yet it never meant anything to me or should I say I never understand them but this time it was something different it said 'if you want to reach me look around you' does he/she know that I'm trying to reach them so they made me their next target ? these thoughts have me frightened now. I stood up and looked around once again when I saw someone behind the tree with all black outfit and a mask. Here we go, he/she must be the one I've been looking for these past months. I was scared as hell but I had to do this so I fastened my pace and quickly walked to the tree where I saw him but once I reached there no one was there but a note on the bark of the tree.
What you're looking for is on the other side of the hell, you haven't seen my bad side yet. I'll see you soon. ~ Angel killer.
My eyes went wide and my hands started trembling with fear, his words were simple but it they had a deep impact on me and I'm sure he's after me now. These words cannot be written by a woman so I'm concerned it's a dangerous psychopathic guy. I quickly went back to the van to grab a water bottle and chugged it down, exhaling deeply I looked around to find Scott but he was nowhere to be seen. After all the investigations were done I finally spotted Scott with some co-workers, I went to him and asked him where was he as I waiting for almost an hour for him.
"Sorry I went to buy some equipments for my camera, I was so lost looking at those cool lenses that I didn't know time went by " He said laughing. Seriously some people can never change.
"You're an insane person Scott we're investigating about a crime scene and you were there looking at camera lenses" I said angrily. " Yeah but I can't help I when it comes to lenses and photography" he said giggling and went back to the van, I followed him and asked him to drop me off to the company.
I took a sip from my coffee and took out the notes I got from the crime scene and looked at them again, these notes still frighten me and I can't help but shiver at these words. Am I going to end up like those women or something worse? suddenly a loud thud was heard behind me and I got startled I quickly stood up and looked behind me, soon I was relieved to see Scott and not the psycho guy from before.
"How many times have I told you to knock and then come in" I said angrily. "And how many times have I told you there is no door here, don't just stand there like a statue come here and help me stand up I fell you know" he said in pain.
"Why should I! you fell yourself so you get up yourself too" I crossed my arms and stared at him.
"I was trying to surprise you" he said getting up.
"No one asked you to do so, why are you here anyways?" I asked him while sitting down again.
"I'm here to show you this" he handed me his book which he carries around every interview he takes, I flipped through the pages of autographs of many famous stars but stopped at one which is of Kevin Cress, his autograph is impressive he also wrote something below it
"Scott you're a cheerful guy keep up the good work and I wish for your best."
His cursive writing is amazing but it somehow seems similar to me like I have seen it somewhere but I can't keep a finger on it. I kept looking at the autograph when Scott spoke " if you want it so much I can give you a copy of it " He grabbed the book from me to keep in his bag and turned around to leave, before he could leave I stopped him and asked for a copy of the autograph he happily nodded and left the room.
I was looking at the photos I took at the investigation but nothing seems to make sense while I was observing the photos I received the copy of the autograph I asked him to bring. I inspected every single detail of it when an epiphany hit me, I immediately took out the note I received earlier and put both them on the table. The next thing what I saw was a great evidence I could ever get, the curves, letters and everything were same. Is this it? Have I found my killer?
I quickly gathered my belongings and went straight to Scott to show him what I found, I called out to him which caused him to jump in his seat and look back, "What's gotten into you?"
"Look this, I think I know who the Angel killer is!" I showed him the two pieces of paper and he widened his eyes in shock" Have you gotten paranoid huh Iris, how can a famous movie star can go around and kill someone for no reason?" He stated. What he said was actually true, how can he freely go around the city without being recognized by anyone, it seems like I need to find a solid proof of him committing a crime then only I can prove him as a criminal. I looked down with a disappointed face but soon it vanished when I asked him "How can these have the same handwriting then?" He didn't answer for awhile which I took as I was right
"Let's take a graphology test then" he said and stood up. A graphology test? yes, it can prove if that is the same handwriting or not. I followed after him and went outside.
He stood there observing every move of them at the shooting, he was soon to be called out for the photo shoot of the next upcoming film 'Imperfections'.
Letting boredom get the best of him, he took out his phone and scrolled through his contacts but stopped at one which was of Iris, a smug look was noticed on his face when he thought how easy it was to get her number.
[ Flashback] [ Kevin's Point Of View]
I picked up my coat and went downstairs to be greeted my servants, I nodded my head and twisted the door knob when one of my maids interrupted me" The dinner's ready sir",
"I will have my dinner outside tonight" I spoke sternly without looking at them and went outside. As soon as I sat buckled my seatbelt, I put on some classical music and put on a mask like I always do when I go outside then I drove off to fancy restaurant where I usually like to have my meal without any cameras and reporters as one of my friends is the manager of it. I went out of my sports car and entered the restaurant, I was amazed by the amount of people there it wasn't this full when I last came here. After a small conversation with my friend I went to find a place to sit when I spotted the reporter that interviewed me earlier, I thought to approach her since there's no place to sit and she's are the only one I know here when I went closer, I saw another figure sitting with her and it was no other then Scott. We were best friends when we were small but as we grow up, we both wanted to become actors unfortunately only one of us was selected and that was me. Since then, he started hating me and it broke our friendship. I went to them and asked if I could sit with them, while we were talking about our careers she excused her to use the washroom I took this as a chance to drop my fork intentionally and bend down to pick it up. I immediately took her phone with me and copied her contact number to mine, I straighten myself up and placed her phone back. We talked for a bit more when I thought it's better for me to go home now. A smirk was visible on my face while I drove myself home.
[ End OF Flashback ]
His chain of thoughts were interrupted by the crew members calling him for the photo shoot. He put his phone back into his pocket and went for his photoshoot.
After an hour of waiting, the result of the test was in front of me I slowly opened the envelope and took out the white sheet of paper from it. I read it carefully but a certain line caught my eyes
"The handwriting is 100% identical"
My mind was flooded with only one thing ' Did I found my killer?', I picked up the paper and marched towards Scott. " Hey look at this" I said giving him the papers. He turned around and took the paper from me, after observing everything his eyes went on the last line and his eyes widen.
"But why would he do it?" he asked confused, to be honest I also don’t know why he does it but I need to find it out.
"I absolutely don't know but I'll try to find that too" I said and took a seat beside him." What do you think about it?"
"Think about what?"
"What made him kill everyone?"
After 10 months-
I see Scott rushing into the office from the station.Not knowing why,I also ran behind him. I had already moved on from the incident. I was now assigned the woman empowerment section.Scott, however was not over the fact he had learnt...
TO BE CONTINUED IN THE NEXT BOOK!