A man was going home alone, late at night. Marlor watched him as he walked towards the forest. His victim. Unknowing of his presence. It couldn’t be better.
He followed him into the woods. He couldn’t see him. Silently he followed the sound of his footsteps. The thrill made the kitchen knife in his hand shake.
The sound of a door opening in the dark. Marlor stopped. A light came on between the trees. A window. He sneaked closer. The man was alone. The perfect story.
He walked slowly up the stairs. Tried the doorknob. The door was unlocked. He walked down the entrance hallway. He could see the light from a room. He looked in, hiding behind the wall.
There was no one there. Just an empty canvas on a stand. Paint. An atelier.
He heard a sound behind him. Something came down on his head.
He was tied up on a chair. The man was walking around the room. Doing things. Moving a cup. Cleaning some dust. Marlor’s knife was lying on the canvas stand. The man turned towards him.
Soooo… Sneaking up on me, are we?
Marlor said nothing. The man grabbed a chair, sat down with the back in front.
I’m glad you came. One can go crazy out here. I… He paused. -I can’t seem to find any inspiration. Do you know what I mean?
-You do. I can see it in your eyes. I’m quite good at reading people, you see.
-What do you want from me? Marlor tried to be angry.
-What I’m wondering is: What did you want from me?
-Let me go! Marlor was pulling the ropes, trying to get loose.
-It’s no use. I was in the boy scouts for many years. Knots are one of my greatest skills. He looked over at the empty canvas with a worried frown. -What do you do for a living, my friend?
Marlor glared at him. The man looked back with a relaxed expression.
-I have all the time in the world. I’m a painter, as you probably can tell. Not a very good painter, but still… Let me guess. You’re no farmer, your hands are way too delicate for that kind of work. You’re probably not living off crime either. If you wanted to rob me you would either have jumped me in the woods or emptied my house when I was out. No, you’re after something else.
He sat there, examining Marlor’s face for a while.
-Hmmmm… You look creative. An adventurous spirit… I know! You’re a writer!
Marlor’s look flickered.
-You are! You are a writer! Haha! Damn, I’m good. He got up from the chair. -That brings us back to the initial question. What would a writer be doing here?
He walked back and forth for a while. Grabbed the knife. Looked at it. Looked a Marlor.
-You… No, it can’t be. He took a step closer. Bent over, looked into Marlor’s face. -You sick bastard! You’re after a story, aren’t you! You were going to kill me just to find out how it felt! And write about it! Of all the psychos I’ve met in my life…
-Fuck off! Said Marlor. I wasn’t going to kill you, just stalk you, maybe scare you a little. I mean, it was a research thing. I had no inspiration, and… You know, to get something to write about.
-I know exactly what you mean… He touched the canvas thoughtfully. Stroked the knife. A vicious smile spread across his face. -Fate sure has a sinister sense of irony sometimes… Funny. This morning I ran out of red.