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Don't Fear The Reaper
The clanking of the deadbolt echoed through the hallway. I slide my keys into my pocket, and checked my robe for the combat knife I always carried. I grimaced as I started down the stairs that led to the parking lot. Pulling out my phone, I checked the CNN website and saw that most of the articles were dedicated to the Reaper. People called him the modern “Jack the Ripper.” No one could catch him; he was like a phantom. Loud ringing interrupted my thoughts. The ID showed it was Jimmy, my best friend.
“Hi Jimmy, I…”
“Zack! Thank God! I got you! Have you seen the news yet? ” I was puzzled because Jimmy spoke without his trademark stutter, but decided not to mention it.
“No Jimmy, I was just leaving the courthouse and going to dinner.”
“Going to dinner!” Jimmy screamed. “The Reaper has sent a letter to the police detailing his next target who is a former soldier and a city judge!”
Blinking several times in surprise my began to tick but I was to sleepy and couldn’t make sense of Jimmy’s words. “What does that have to do with me?”
“He was talking about you! He is going to kill you!” He yelled again.
“Jimmy what exactly did the Reaper say in the letter?” I asked quickly.
“He s-said that he was going to s-stab you in the chest.” Jimmy said, his stutter beginning to return, I noted.
“Where and when is he going to strike?” I asked making sure to enunciate every word.
“Tonight at s-s-seven in the parking lot at your office.” He stuttered.
Glancing at my watch I saw that was it six fifty-six. “Almost time.” I thought.
Jimmy screamed. “Wait Zack you need to run, no s-soul can kill the Reaper!”
“Well I’ll tell you if he can or can’t be killed later, Jimmy.” I said as I ended the phone call. Removing my knife and tossing my robe away, I took one quick glance at the clock. It was 7 p.m. I heard clapping. Wheeling around, I turned to face the direction of the clapping and saw a man in front of me dressed in black with a knife.
“Count me impressed, Judge Markaway. Most of my victims panic when they hear they’ve been marked for death.” His voice was more of a hiss and reminded me of a snake.
“That would probably be because I’m not afraid to die,” I lied readying my knife.
“Maybe.” He hissed. The hairs on my neck stood up.
“But we willn’t know if you’re afraid of the Reaper until I stick my little knife into your neck and you experience death for yourself!” He said before charging at me aiming for my stomach. I stabbed downward, but he caught my wrist as I grabbed his. It was a battle of strength now. The tie lasted for a second before he slammed his head into mine. Then he slashed at me. I dodged.
I tried to slash at him, but he knocked my hand away and kicked me in the gut. Staggering backwards, I tried desperately to regain my breath. Reaper slashed at my side, but I managed to block. Using the momentum, I twisted around and slashed at his unprotected back. He dodged deftly backwards.
He sliced my arm and I staggered back holding it, realizing that Reaper was directly in front of the ramp that led deeper into the parking lot. Circling around the ramp was now at my back. He stabbed at me. I sidestepped and Reaper went plummeting to floor below. I heard a soft thump so I backed away from the ramp. One look, and it was clear to me that the cut went straight to the bone. Using my sleeve as a bandage for the deep gash, the blood quickly soaked the cloth.
“I need to end this soon…” I muttered in between ragged breaths.
“Yes, this will be over soon Markaway.” came Reaper’s snake-like voice. I whirled around and expected to see him, but he was nowhere in sight. Then I realized my mistake. There were six different ramps that led up from the lower floor, and in the dimly lit parking lot Reaper could hide anywhere that wasn’t in my immediate sight!
My mind began to race. Reaper’s malevolent chuckle broke my thoughts. “You’ve impressed me, dear judge. No one has lasted this long against me but I’m afraid I must put an end to this charade.” The whirling of his over coat was the only warning I had before pain exploded in my back in two different places. I twisted around to slash at him, but he had already retreated into the darkness. “Come on! I roared.
Reaper appeared in front of my like a wraith. I wanted nothing more than to stab him, but my body wouldn’t move. Blood loss... “Now, let’s see if you fear death!” He said as thrusting his weapon into my stomach. Time seemed to slow down as I felt the excruciating the pain. “I’ll see my wife soon; I wasn’t going to die alone!” I thought. I pulled my blade back and thrust it into Reaper’s heart. His hood fell back as he staggered away.
His face, so familiar to me, now twisted into an insane grin. “Now let-s-s find out if I fear death-s-s loving-g touch.” He said as he fell backwards dead. The last thing I heard was Kate’s voice “Its all right Zack. Jimmy’s gone. It’s over.” She whispered and I let the darkness take me.