Sometimes you see things that just ain’t natural. For Niall Murphy, that time was a Thursday night in March on the South side. His mind wavered between incredulity and cold certainty about what he saw that night. Black Mass? Blood rituals? No. No way in hell that actually happened (you know you saw it). Ridiculous (you saw it happen). Probably just misinterpreting (the signs) something. Best to get on with the day.
Niall made his way to work at the bookstore like any other day, reading (dark) poetry on a slow morning. Same routine that night, make his way over to Paddy’s to work the bar. Another March Madness night, too, so tips should/had better be good. On the way home, he saw a woman he thought he recognized from the night before, but he couldn’t (she looked) remember where (dark). After a few blocks, suspicion crept up his spin. Am I being followed? No, she’s probably just going home. To the same building. On the same floor (you’re being followed). To the room right next door? (definitely following you).
She tries opening the door. No dice. She mentions to no one in particular (?) that she forgot her keys; Niall, of course, notices. She asks if he minds letting her wait in his apartment until her friend gets home to let her in. She looks good, ready to go out on the town. Almost looks like the kind who hunts men like game, and is good at what she does. Long, black hair, distinguished features, unforgettable body. She starts up a conversation. She says her name’s Carmina. Nice name, goes well with that coal-black hair. She starts asking about Niall’s past, where he came from, how he got here, what he’s doing in these parts, is he religious, and other things. Darker things. She asks him how he could have abandoned his friend like that. Just run away while Costas was murdered. He wants to interject and defend himself, but he knows she’s right. All doubt disappears. Last night was real. Very real.
(and you ran to leave Costas to his fate, likely worse than death)
It was at this point that she left, and Niall felt more miserable than many times in recent memory. Alone (you let him die how could you). Low. He felt himself open his wrists in the bathtub and all was black.
But all was not quiet.