It was a cloudy morning when Harold Fletcher decided that it was the perfect day to go out. When he woke up that morning the urge he felt to go for a walk was strong. It began to rain as he walked. Split, splat, split, splat. Did he run from the rain? No; he decided to embrace the rain. In fact, there was something about the lingering smell of rain in the air that made him feel truly alive. It was still early in the morning when he reached the pier. The salty sea air teased his senses, and lured by the welcoming invitation of seagull cries, he ran towards the rushing waves.
As he approached the beach, he noticed something: a pile of maggots, all crawling one over another, feeding violently, and fighting for the right to live. Cautiously, he approached the scene. The smell of salt in the air faded and gave way to the smell of rot, strong and horrifying. There it lay, still as stone, twisted and turned in an unnatural position. A human carcass laid on the sandy beach. What was left was not pretty, and there was no doubt that this had not been a natural death. The victim had clearly been stabbed in the chest over and over again with a pocket knife. It seemed as though the killer had ruthlessly destroyed the body.
Police were notified and were on the case, and Harold was interviewed. There was nothing left for Harold to do afterwards. The once bright day had turned dark. The walk back to his home was bone-chilling and Harold had an eerie feeling, as if someone were following him. When his quaint cottage-style home was in view, Harold breathed a sigh of relief. However, the thought that he was home and in his safe haven did not last long. The night went on creepingly and Harold could not get rid of the feeling that someone was watching him.
Harold woke early the next morning wondering if he should go out for another walk, but he supressed the urge. The last walk had not turned out so well after all. The urge to go out for a walk was not strong anymore. He walked into his living room and stopped. Splattered violently on the once stark white wall was blood, red as the dawn. Written on the wall was a simple message: you're next.
Haunted by the words Harold felt that there were no other choices than to leave as soon as possible. He skipped town with a newly commissioned identity from the police. Harold left so quickly that he only brought one thing with him: his knife. Harold had no clue how far he had driven, but nightfall had arrived, and the stars were yet again twinkling. Exhausted, Harold stopped in a little town where everyone in the suburbs knew one another, and town picnics happened annually. It was so much like his old home that Harold felt as though he had never left. It was not long before Harold settled in the local motel for the night. It was a small red brick building with a neon sign indicating its vacancies. He paid in cash, opened the door and immediately fell down on the bed. He decided that he would leave early in the morning if the uneasiness still haunted him.
The sun had just started its ascent when Harold awoke the next day. As soon as he opened his eyes, the urge came to him again. He desperately needed to go for a walk,even though he was still wary of what had happened before. He pocketed his knife and ran out of the motel, almost as if he were pushed out of his bed by desire. Harold let his feet decide where to take him, and it was not long before he ended up at the local park. He checked his watch; it was nearly dawn but it was still dark. Aside from another early riser walking his dog, he spotted no one in the park.
"Perfect," he said to himself as he drew out his knife. The next victim. How clever of him to fool the police into thinking he was just an innocent bystander. He would start it all over again, right there and right then. All he needed was his sharp acting skills and his knife. It was a routine that could not be stopped. This was going to be another satisfying kill.