It was dark. The moon poured its usual bluish hue onto the snowy ground below. Thankfully the ground was not frozen yet allowing him to dig the hole much faster. He had made the mistake of trying to dig through frozen ground the first time. He recalled that first time, as he finished scooping the dirt out of his hole.

She was beautiful. He remembered her thick blonde hair and her bright blue eyes staring up at him. He even recalled the way she tried to scream when his knife went through her bountiful chest. Thinking about her now, knee deep in a hole in that same meadow, made him excited and he reached in his pants to feel his excitement. He licked his lips and looked to the tree that he had buried her under. It wasn’t too far from his new hole. The snow had dusted the limbs of the dead tree, leaving the ground below it fairly dry. John could still see the lone rock he had half buried over the top of his first.

He remembered cutting her up and shoving each body part into the canvas bag, saving her lovely head for last. He had placed it in the bag, just like he had learned: face up, eyes open, allowing the spirit to flee. He then closed the bag seeing her wonderful spirit fade from her blue eyes and was overcome with sadness. It had been a travesty that he had had to destroy such a beautiful creature. Dave had told him that it would be the hardest part.

“Destroying a creature like that is like pouring out a perfectly aged wine and not getting a drop,” Dave had said.

He tossed his shovel onto the ground and pulled himself out of his freshly dug hole. His latest creature was in the bag next to the hole; its head still lay on the ground next to it. He opened the bag and gently laid the head in the bag – face up, eyes open, allowing the spirit to flee. He closed the bag and zip tied it shut, just like he had several times before. He lowered the bag into the hole, and gently let go as the bag settled onto the dirt below.

He lit a cigarette and began to bury the canvas bag.

This creature was not his favorite. It was nothing like his first. This one was tattooed up and down, and had dark hair that had been cut short like a boy. She had been shorter, than most of the other creatures, but it was ok; they were usually a little easier to fit in the bag. Dave had told him once that the shorter creatures were generally harder to take down. This one had not been. She had been an easy one.

It was late, and most of the bars were closing, a perfect time to pick up fares. She stood on the corner shivering and hailing for a cab when he had pulled up. Her short black hair was covered by a bright white fedora. She wore a white button up shirt under her heavy pea coat, and jet black leather pants.

“21st and Woodlawn, Cadbury Apartments, please,” she had said.
“No problem,” he’d said.
He set the meter and pulled away from the curb.
“Pretty packed in there tonight?” He asked.
“Excuse me?” She honestly had not understood the question.
“The club, was it packed tonight?”
“Oh, um, no it wasn’t too bad,” streetlights flashed across her pale face as she stared out the window.
“That’s too bad, I was hoping for some fares tonight,” he gave a short laugh.
“Um, ya that sucks,” she seemed a bit apprehensive.
“Well maybe I could go back and pick up your friends back at the club?”
“Your friends at the club – surely you have friends back at the bar I can pick up and take home.”
She laughed, “Good luck getting my friend to give up her new Camaro. Drunk or not she’s driving that bitch home.”
He laughed again – this was going to be an easy one, “new Camaro, huh? I love Camaro’s.”
“Well you’d love my friend’s – it’s pretty sweet.”
“So, why didn’t you ride home with her?”
“I got to work in the morning; so I’m going to bed. She’s a night owl; she’ll be out all night.”
“I’ll be out all night too.”
“Well if you see a bright pink Camaro cruising around, that’s her,” she laughed. “Tell her to go home!”
He laughed, “I’ll see what I can do.”

For the next few minutes, the cab was quite. He went over the process in his mind a hundred times. When he arrived at the creature’s destination, he got out and opened her door. Luckily for him the creature had passed out in the back seat. He injected her in the heart with the go-to-sleep-concoction that Dave had taught him how to make. With the creature completely under, he traveled to the meadow.

The trickiest part of the entire process was hiding the taxi cab. He had found an easy way to do this, with Dave’s help of course. Across the road from the meadow was an old abandoned campground. Trees and weeds had overtaken the campground, making it almost impossible to spot a car. A nearby bridge allowed for perfect cover to drag the bodies to the creek bed.

After pulling into the shadows at the campground, he pulled the creature from the taxi and threw her small frame over his shoulder. It was always a bit of a walk to the creek bed, and tonight would make the walk even longer, as the snow would make things treacherous on the rocky path below the bridge.

He arrived at the bridge and had found it impassable, causing him to expose himself as he crossed the road. Luckily for him, there was no traffic. He scooted across the road and made his way to the creek bed. Dave had told him that it was the ideal location to end the creatures’ lives, as the water would wash away the blood. Even though it was cold the water was still flowing.

The creek bed had been a sacred place to him. This is where all of his creatures would have their earthly lives ended. He would set them free as their paralyzed bodies stared up at him in complete fear. Unfortunately this one didn’t ever wake up, not even during the rape. Dave had warned against using too much of the concoction fearing it would send his creatures into a coma instead of paralyzing them. He stabbed her in the chest and pressed his ear to her breast, listening as the heart beat slowed and then finally stopped. Satisfied he began the destruction of the creature.

He threw the discarded clothes into the canvas bag followed by the numerous body parts save for the head, which he carried to the spot of the fresh grave separately, face up, eyes open, allowing the spirit to flee. He gently lay his creature down at the newly picked spot and pulled his hidden shovel from a nearby tree. Dave had always hidden the shovel close-by the newest plot.

He finished burying the creature and planted the chosen rock directly over the creature, carefully packing the dirt down around it. He found a few nearby limbs and covered the fresh dig just as the moonlight started to give way to the early signs of daylight.

Satisfied with his work, he began walking back to the car. The air was definitely colder now, and he could feel the chill stinging his bare face. He stuck his hands in his pockets and began the walk back to the car.

He decided to forgo trying to cross under the bridge as the rocks below had become even more impassable. He made his way to the blacktop, lighting another cigarette along the way. Dave said that there was nothing like a good cigarette after releasing a spirit.

The road lie ahead and he could hear a car in the distance. It was too light out to try to hide, and the car sounded like it was coming exceptionally fast. He ran. He hadn’t run in quite some time – it was awkward. He stumbled up the ditch and onto the blacktop, losing the cigarette from his lip. He reached back to try and pick the cigarette from the air as it fell to the ground. In doing so, his feet slid out from under him and he fell hard to the ground – his face bounced off the pavement, instantly causing blood to gush from his nose.

He could hear the sound of the car coming closer and closer. He tried again to get his footing, doing nothing but slide across the pavement. He fell to his chest, his face narrowly missing his lit cigarette that lay on the ground. He looked toward the sound of the car and could see it barreling toward him. He tried again to get his footing, but slipped again. He reached out with his arms, pulling himself – sliding himself across the pavement toward the ditch. The car’s engine roared. He pulled his feet to his chest and with a final push he managed to slide himself into the ditch.

Relieved he was off the road he looked back toward the car. There was nothing he could do but smile. The pink Camaro slid off the road and into the ditch killing him instantly, face up, eyes open, allowing his soul to flee.

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