THOMAS

Posted: April 5, 2015 in Chat

Thomas was smiling. He was at peace again. Smiles for the neighbours who never registered anything or anyone, smiles for the passers by on the pavement as he made his way to his car. He was headed for another town, somewhere he had not been before, but large enough for him to go unnoticed. No smiling then, he had to be anonymous.

Only special people smile at strangers, people who have some prized thing. And he had a new project. He smiled. Thomas had a new project; he was… was it happiness? He smiled; he was ready.

His apartment was meticulously tidy: everything had to be in its proper place. One misplaced item drove him frantic, and then something would  happen he could not account for. To avoid giving himself away like that, he had learned over time to live by a strict, often a difficult regime. But it meant he could get on with his work. It was worth it. And he was about to enter double figures; this was his entry into major status.

He had a new project. He relished the planning stage, the surveillance, the mapping out of routes and alternative routes, the predicting from statistical evidence all the possible variations. And he relished the slow but careful preparation of the premises, equipment, transport. The actual event had started to seem a distraction from the preparation and aftermath.

A proper, methodical scan through his supplies, and he drew up a list: new plastic ties, sheets of polythene, the all-important new coverall, that particular type of glove. His implements would have their customary sharpening, sterilising, thorough cleaning. But that was part of the second stage. The subject had to see this part, it was part of the process; it was essential that all was revealed at this point, that there was no possibility of reprieve; the sheer and utter inevitability of the next stage was crucial; it had to be understood thoroughly by all parties. Timing was essential: too much and the subject went dead on him, too little and the shock-effect took away the true appreciation.  Perhaps if he included the event in the care and attention put into preparation; that, instead of despatch, the event could be prolonged; the silence in the head demanded more than the moment.

So, he had a new project, but also a new method to incorporate. This was going to be a good day. It was on, and his heart rate increased as he entered into the first stage…

And then his phone rang. He had forgotten to turn it off. He had forgotten that. His phone was ringing.

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