His fingers linger over the creases on the browned piece of paper as if the page has been folded and re-folded over and over again. He glances over his portion of the letter, his left pointer and thumb fingers rubbing against each other while his right leg under the table bounces consistently on the hardwood floor. The letter is old-fashioned, it’s soft to the touch and the black ink runs smoothly across his clear message to her:
I loved you in the day,
I loved you in the night.
I loved the way you played,
I loved your guiding light.
But, you cheated on me,
You broke my heart.
You lied to me,
From the start.
Now I will hunt you down,
And end your life.
Cos’ baby I’m no clown,
I know how to use a knife.
His eyes are a smoky-gray like the ash left from a dying fire. They remain a cold, vacant stare as her soft wisps of her pale, honey hair sweeps around her ear which caresses her neck, cheek and jaw. It accompanies her beautiful grassy green and golden yellow eyes with that light blue creeping in around the edges. The top row of her pearly white teeth are showing, the dimples on her cheeks light up and the upward lift of her lips give off a ray of sunshine. She’s inexplicably perfect and he knows that. But what he doesn’t see is the man with her, tightly grasping onto her waist and pulling her into the cafe, a light curve of the lips as a sign of bliss.
William Bennet folds his letter horizontally three times. He kisses the blank side of it while wearing his bright coral lipstick which complement his rosy cheeks and his light foundation. The smacking of his lips to the paper came about with a slight click of the lips. He then gently places it into the opened side of the blank envelope. He licks the lips of the envelope to seal the letter in. Then he calmly flips it over to meticulously write her name and address in the middle of the envelope. He draws out the stamp to place in the top right-hand corner before drawing his breath in and forming a Cheshire grin on his face. It’s ready to be delivered.
Bennett shoots out of his chair and holds the envelope in his large hands, the fingernails painted a galaxy color with tiny white stars placed on each nail. He stuffs it into the front of his coat pocket and dashes upstairs to his bathroom. The multicolored lights glow amongst the blonde, brunette and jet-black wigs as well as a pile high of makeup products flowing out of the top drawer of the vanity. The tiles are a printer paper white with a white grout between each one. The dirty bathtub has turned into a light brown from his practice missions in the mud last week. On the right side is his white porcelain sink covered in splotches of a burgundy color. Yet what hangs from the right side are a flight of coat hangers hammered into the wall. Short and brightly-colored dresses hang from each one, underneath each is stiletto heels to match the colors.
Nonetheless, Bennett strides in and gets right to work to prepare for his delivery. He swiftly pulls open the top drawer of the vanity and grabs his foundation, eye shadow, fake eyelashes, a crimson lipstick, a tiny bottle of mascara, his favorite BB cream, concealer, highlighter, setting spray, contour palette, bronzer, eyeliner, eyebrow pencil, eye primer, and his endless brushes. He prepares a bold and easy cut crease makeup look after a lengthy hour and a half. Bennett pushes his lips out like the photogenic pose trend going around called the "duck face" to boost his self-confidence. Then he slicks back his short hair with a wet brush, pins any extra hair to his head with a few bobby pins, grabs his tan wig cap and slides it over the hair, before positioning his blonde wig on his head. He curls the ends of the hair and finishes his preparation with a daring mini dress and some black stiletto heels.
The clacking of the heels as Bennett stomps down the stairs echoes throughout the empty house. On the walls of the stairs hang frames of the woman as she walks down the street or is getting coffee at the café. He smiles as he passes them; at the bottom of the stairs is a life-size poster board of her with her hand resting on her hip and her lips pushed out. Bennett walks up to her, grabs her cardboard waist and smacks his lips against her paper ones. He knows one day he will be able to feel her real lips against his so every day he stalks her to make sure she never leaves. Then he snatches his keys from the hallway console table, throws open the front door and nearly falls as he forgets to step down from the doorframe. But, he catches his fall and climbs into his BMW M before zipping out of the driveway.
His gaze is unwavering and unabashed, his hands are folded quietly as his car is parked across the street from her new apartment. She’s not home yet, she’s at ballet practice until four. She will not be home until at least five because she will have to stop at the grocery store for her nightly meal, like she always does.
But, Bennett is there. He needs to deliver his letter, so, he steps out of his car, his stilettos hitting the concrete with a gentle smack. He slowly shuts the door of his car and marches up to her apartment. He stands at the top of the steps, reaches his hand into his front pocket and takes out the letter. He unwrinkled the letter using the door and his hand, once more he kisses the back of it, leaving behind the crimson red lip forms. He then crouches down and places it on the doormat which reads ‘welcome’. He steps back but forgets about the three concrete steps and plunges backwards, almost in slow motion as his back claps against the concrete and his hands stop his accident. Bennett yelps out in pain as he lifts up his hands which are scraped by the white concrete and beginning to drip with blood. But, he achingly stands up and trots back to his car, knowing she will return soon. His mascara is streaking down his cheeks and his lipstick is smeared across his lips where it once stood in perfection. Then out of nowhere, she’s home, but it’s only four thirty and that man is with her. Bennett glares at him, his brows forming a downward bend, his eyes narrow and his lip forms a straight line. The man is carrying flowers as he walks up to her and kisses her on the cheek. Mia Hall is dating someone else.
Bennett watches intently as Mia walks up to the front door, picks up the envelope rather slowly and shoves it into her purse as if she’s hiding it from the man. She unlocks the door and they both wander in, his hand on her ass. He turns around once in the home and slams the door shut.
Bennett stays in the driveway, his hands reddening and clenching up into a fist. His back is still sore and bleeding, his hands too are painfully red and burning. Nonetheless, he reaches into the middle cup holder and pulls out his handy makeup remover wipes to clean up his look. As he is rubbing away the mascara, he takes off his stilettos, grabs some white vans with pink roses and shoves them on his bare feet. Then he takes off, out of the car and around to the side of the apartment.
The grass is a wet green and the ten feet high honey-colored fence prohibits him from his normal stakeout spot. Mia’s neighborhood is full of younger men and women; her neighbor on the left side, though, is an older woman with three cats which she takes for walks daily. But, as it seems, the woman isn’t home tonight, the car is gone from the driveway and the lights are all off. Mia’s home is quite small, but the window for the first floor is a bit higher than the fence. She has a child-sized tree in her front yard with a small mound of dirt covering it. Her grass has been recently patched over and the railing up into her brick apartment is black. She has dark green bushes around the front of her home but again surrounded by some mud from the previous storm. Bennett is in love with her new home, it suits her personality and it would be even better with him in it too.
He unlocks the fence and walks into the backyard, there is an havoc unit in which he stands on for a better view. Through the window he sees Mia, the lights are glowing on her beautifully untouched face, her pale strands of hair are laying in front of her eyes needing to be pushed back behind her ears. She’s wearing black leggings and a hoodie, one Bennett has never seen before. But, that man walks into view and grabs onto Mia’s waist to kiss her. Bennett has had enough, he retreats home.
By morning, Bennett awakes in his bed with Mia’s poster next to him, he’s wearing nothing but the vans he had on that night. He blacked out again, his wig is laying on the floor next to the bed and his dress appears to have been thrown on the tv set in the corner of the room. He sits up, realizes where he is, takes his vans off before hopping in the shower to cleanse himself of the mistakes he may have made.
Bennett hastily gets dressed to head downtown to the café where Mia works. She works at the café from eight in the morning until two in the afternoon on Monday to Friday. Then on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday at three in the afternoon she babysits her best friend’s two children until usually six at night. Once she is finished, she drives home, prepares dinner, showers, brushes her teeth and is in bed and asleep by ten pm. But, on Tuesday and Thursday, she has ballet from two until four, she never gets home before five until now.
He parks his car away from the café and sits across the street in the park on a black metal chair and table to read and write. As he sits down, he watches as Mia serves an elderly couple their drinks, her hair is pulled back into a long ponytail and her black apron is covering the frontal part of her dark blue jeans. She’s gorgeous, but she does not deserve to live if she won’t be with Bennett.
By the time Mia returns home from babysitting, she is greeted by another letter:
As I sit here and plot your every move
I love you and you don't have a clue.
I watch you daily.
I love your smile.
I love these feelings you bring me inside.
I can only look, because I’m shy,
you don't look back, which angers my eyes.
I dream about you, as I look in your window.
You go to the store and I watch from the door.
When you go to lunch, I’m always there, somewhere.
When you kiss another, I get mad as hell.
You don't even know me, so why do I feel this way?
You’re something I want, that I can't have.
If I can't have you, then nor can anyone else.
Bennett sits outside her apartment as she reads his letters, her face drains of all color and her eyes widen. She takes an inhale of breath and stumbles backwards into the kitchen wall. She panics. Bennett is smiling at her frightened posture, he watches her run to the front door to lock it, but she forgets to lock the window he is staring in through. He sees her pick up her phone to text someone, Bennett assumes it’s the man so his yearn for Mia’s soul increases.
He waits for Mia to fall asleep, he knows this because her light will be off for a total of thirty minutes and her phone’s light will not flashback on. But, this time instead of Bennett driving home, he quietly opens the window he is watching through. He pulls his weight into the house. He smells her fragrant perfume which itches at Bennett’s infatuation for her. He breathes in the scent and his lips lift upward showing his yellow, crooked teeth. He sighs and removes his shoes as to not dirty up the house. He places them by the front door, then begins to tiptoe up the stairs to his admirer’s bedroom. Bennett opens her door and notices her softly asleep in her bed, she is curled up in a ball with the covers slightly over her head. He reaches into his pocket and pulls out his pocket knife.
Bennett leaves with her blood and scent splattered on the walls, but also all over his face and clothes. He will never forget the day they met, he passed her in the coffee shop a year ago and instantly fell in love. Now, he carries her dead body back to his car, tosses her in the trunk scattered amongst plastic bags. He then strolls back into the home and upstairs to her bathroom.
Bennett finds some cleaning products and a roll of paper towels. He proceeds to flawlessly clean every inch of Mia’s room, removing the blood stains from the walls and bed to the best of his ability. Once he finishes his job, he leaves the police and the man a note:
She’s not here and we will be long gone by the time you figure it out.
Good luck, Sherriff Goodman.
Bennett races back to the car and drives home. Once he’s in the garage, he opens the trunk to find her fascinating untouched body. She’s so beautiful. He kisses her blue lips before carrying her into his paradise to live with her forever.