He waits outside of the Delorn household located on Marcuson Drive. It’s around 10 P.M., and inside a brown station wagon, he puffs a Tahoe red. This is it. This is the moment. This is what he needs. The King stares in the rear-view mirror at a pair of eyes gazing at him. They are illuminated by the streetlight above and, although they are the same pale-blue specters staring back, he doesn’t recognize them. They belong to some sort of demon and all in all this is an out of body experience. If anything, the reflection is looking at him.
“Are you ready?” it whispers, slipping his hardened hands into leather gloves. The King then pulls out a tube of valentine-red lipstick and says, “I’m sorry, Mommy.”
He opens the car door, steps out and quietly shuts it. Always try to avoid triggering a howling chain, he thinks to himself. Because when one dog wakes, ten dogs wake. And when they wake, people wake. Remain a shadow, quiet and lurking.
The King sneaks to the front porch, lifts up the welcome mat, and at the tip of his steel-toe boot, there is a key. He knows about this because the shadow staked-out the Delorn residence a week before. He noticed their daughter, Haley, get off the bus and retrieve the key. Her parents were not at the house that day. Henry was at work and his wife, Cathy, was at Pilates.
And this happy, beautiful family of three, well, The King smirks at them because he knows the Achilles heel of their security. He unlocks the door and proceeds through the dark threshold. Upon entering, the intruder is greeted by the sweet smell of cinnamon. The atmosphere is warm, as sugary dreams dance through their sleeping minds. And the walking nightmare, middle-aged and drenched in misery, slowly creeps down the hall.
From behind one door is the sound of tremendous snoring, and the one across from it depicts pictures of fluffy kittens and a sign that reads: STAY OUT! – the explanation point has a little heart instead of a dot. The King smiles and the demon growls, “Little girl, little girl... I’m coming for you.”
The intruder takes out a box cutter and slowly extends the blade. His leathered hand grips the doorknob. He carefully opens the door to reveal an innocent angel sleeping. She is blonde, thirteen and forgot to wash the thick, black, emo makeup from her eyes. Her mother always said to her, “This goth mess is just a phase. One day you’ll outgrow it.” But sadly, Cathy Delorn was wrong – because The King slit the girl’s throat in her sleep. Haley wakes up instantly and tries to scream, but the monster holds her mouth shut and hisses, “Go back to sleep, sweetie. Go back to sleep.”
She tries to push him off, but grows weaker as blood rushes from her neck. Haley’s strong grip becomes frail and eventually lifeless. The King stares into her wide, green eyes as the aura inside them vanishes. Haley’s sheets are drenched in crimson youth and the bastard says, “Now stay asleep, bitch.”
He leaves the bedroom and notices that the snoring has stopped. Followed by the abrupt silence is the sound of heavy, bare feet aimlessly stomping the floor. The King shuts Haley’s door and quickly, but quietly, steps into the bathroom. He slips behind the shower curtain and hides. About half a minute later, Haley’s father enters the bathroom as well and turns on the light. Henry Delorn is half asleep and has no idea that the pearl of his life has been murdered.
He yawns, walks over the toilet and pulls down his boxers to urinate. As Henry relieves pressure, he notices blood on the tile floor. This causes him to jolt awake, but before he can react, The King pulls open the curtain and stabs him five times in the stomach. What little life the father has left is taken as he falls and cracks open his head on the toilet bowl.
Meanwhile, Cathy Delorn stands in the doorway. She has witnessed the whole murder and is too shocked to move. See, her intentions were to get a glass of water. A kickstand in Cathy’s mouth forces her jaw to drop. She wants to scream, but the amount of terror prevents her from doing so.
The King and Cathy make eye contact.
Before she can run away, he pounces towards her and grabs the woman. She struggles but quickly stops when the maniac holds the knife to her throat.
“Make one more move and I’ll bleed you like a pig,” The King growls. His large body and the wall behind her prevents Cathy from moving. She starts to quietly sob.
“Please don’t kill me,” she manages to calmly plea. “I’m pregnant.”
The King leans in closer, and, with a snarl of sour breath, growls, “Even better.”
He takes the blade and stabs her repeatedly in the gut. Cathy Delorn falls to the floor, barely alive and tries to scream. But she is quickly silenced by an intense kick to the teeth. Fragile, helpless and dying, Cathy bleeds out and dies. Along with her life goes to the four month baby inside.
And The King, the horrible excuse for a human being, takes lipstick to the Delorn family’s lips. He paints on a smile and whispers, “Don’t be sad, little ones. Don’t be sad.” Afterwards, he puts his hand in the daughter’s pants to checks her hymen – still tight – and writes on the wall in valentine-red: She Died A Virgin.
This is his masterpiece.
While he is at the Delorn residence, The King makes himself at home by spreading peanut butter on bread and pours a tall glass of low-fat milk. It is then his cell starts to vibrated. The contact name on the screen reads: MARION. With great annoyance, he growls, “What the fuck does this bitch want?”
But when he answers the phone his voice becomes chipper. He exclaims, “Hey, honey! Sorry, I didn’t tell you, but I had to pull a late-nighter at the office. Is everything okay?”
On the other side of the line, The King’s wife is sitting on the foot of their bed. She sighs and replies, “Well, you could have at least let me know.”
He apologizes and adds, “I got caught up in a bunch of paperwork. I swear that new guy we just hired screwed up all the reports. He makes me so damn, I mean – darn – mad.”
Marion sighs and says, “Okay, well are you about to leave?”
“Oh yeah,” The King tells her. “Some of the guys asked if I wanted to catch a beer tonight, but I told them that Hannah is doing her song tomorrow for church. By the way, how is she?”
“Same ol’ grumpy bear Hannah,” his wife says, as she applies Nivea lotion to her legs. She lets down her faded blonde hair and adds, “Well, I’ll be asleep by the time you get here.”
“Well don’t let me interfere with your beauty sleep!” The King exclaims, as a fake smile pulls across his face.
She laughs and replies, “Alright.” And, with a voice sweeter than honey, she says, “I love you, Paul.”
“I love you, too,” he replies, giving her a kiss over the line. After Marion hangs up the phone the monster adds, “Stupid bitch.”
Because The King is tired of pretending he is someone else.
As he takes a shower in the Delorn’s bathroom, he washes the blood from his hair, his hands and his face. He scrubs away the monster and reverts back to Paul Kruger – the man his wife fell in love with. Paul Kruger: Supportive husband, loving father, Boy Scout leader and Alcoholics Anonymous representative. The King is suppressed back under his naked, wet flesh.
Paul puts the bloody clothes in a trash bag, and, because he and Henry Delorn wear the same size clothes, he switches into a pair of stolen khakis and a white t-shirt.
Before leaving the house, he looks back at the carnage and bloodshed and says, “I’ll see you in Hell.”
He speeds back home as Enya’s Boadicea plays from a mix CD. He tosses the trash bag out the window and lights another Tahoe. See, according to Paul, taking an innocent life is better than sex, better than any high, and especially better than being saved. And that evil thing inside him, well, some would call it Satan, but he calls it The King.
He is aware that killing others is a sin, but he’ll cross that bridge on judgment day. Until then, the world is Paul’s playground – and he will feed again.
As he pulls into the driveway of his huge McMansion, Paul puts the lipstick tube in the glove compartment. He checks the mirror to make sure there isn’t any trace of blood on his face.
Jump to the part when the liar unlocks the front door to discover his seven-year-old daughter sitting on the couch. This is the only person in the world Paul loves. Adorable, innocent Hannah, her blue eyes are full of tears and she clings to a Care Bear. Her soft, brown hair is tangled from sleep. She says, “Daddy, there is a monster in my room.”
“Oh, honey!” the real monster exclaims. “Come over here.”
He extends his strong arms, the same ones that held Haley Delorn down, and invites his baby in for a hug. As Hannah falls into his embrace, she says, “Yes, there is. He is in my closet and I’m scared!”
Paul looks into her huge eyes and replies, “Now, Hannah, we’ve been over this before. Remember when we checked the closet last time and it was just a yellow raincoat? Remember?”
Hannah is silent for a moment and then nods her head.
"Sounds like to me you’ve got a big imagination."
He picks the little girl up and heads down the hall to a pink Hello Kitty room.
After placing her back on the bed, Paul walks over to the closet door. But before he can open it, Hannah starts to whine. “No, daddy!” she cries. “Don’t do it! The monster is–”
“Hannah,” Paul interrupts, sternly. “Remember Deuteronomy 31:6? – Be strong and courageous. Do not be afraid or terrified because of them, for the Lord your God goes with you; he will never leave you nor forsake you.”
His daughter is still hesitant, and he adds, “I promise you, there is no monster in this closet. Want to know why?”
“Because God loves you and would never, ever let a monster hurt you – let alone allow one to come near you.”
With that said, Paul Kruger opens the closet door to reveal nothing but his daughter’s clothes. At first, Hannah jumps in fear that a demon will spring out, however; the warm and caring face of her father reassures her. “See, baby? The only monster in here is this Raggedy Ann doll.”
He picks up the red-headed, button-eyed girl and brings it to his daughter’s side.
“Now you’ve got three friends protecting you,” Paul tells her. “Sunshine Bear, Raggedy Ann and – guess who else?”
Hannah thinks about this for a moment and finally bursts out, “Jesus!”
“Atta girl!” he exclaims, giving her a playful raspberry. She laughs and laughs the way any naïve little girl would. Her soul, guiltless and fragile, is eclipsed by Paul’s lie – because he is her daddy, a good man, and center of the universe.
He kisses Hannah on the forehead and says, “Alright, now you get some sleep, princess. You’ve got a big day tomorrow at church!"
“Love you, daddy!” the little lamb says, rolling over and wrapping her small arms around a pink pillow.
Paul carefully shuts the door behind him, and it is then a dark voice yells, “Liar! Hypocrite! Monster!”
“Shut up!” he hisses back to the voice, hitting the sides of head with both hands. The voice lets out a twisted chuckle and fades to silence. Paul swallows the darkness down, shakes it off, and proceeds into the master bedroom where his sleeping wife is.
He takes off Henry Delorn’s clothes and stashes them under the bed. In his boxer briefs, Paul nestles next to Marion. She mutters something in her sleep that sounds a lot like, “Goodnight, honey.”
“Goodnight,” he tells her.