Author: MadameCissy PM
Detective Constable Eve Cooper is assigned the case of six young girls found dead in shallow graves and reluctantly accepts the help of criminologist Kathryn Moore to find the monster responsible. When another girl goes missing Eve realises that if she wants to find her alive she has to fight her own demons and face what she has always tried to deny.Rated: Fiction T - English - Crime/Hurt/Comfort - Chapters: 5 - Words: 14,660 - Reviews: 15 - Favs: 5 - Follows: 5 - Updated: 10-17-12 - Published: 09-16-12 - id: 3058611
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Summary: Detective Constable Eve Cooper is used to being alone, struggles with authority and doesn't work well with others. Most of her colleagues consider her to be a lose canon. When she is assigned the case involving five young girls that have been found dead in shallow graves across Saddleworth Moor, she has to face not only the serial killer responsible but also her own past. Haunted by the memories of her teenage years, Eve reluctantly accepts the help of criminologist Kathryn Moore in an attempt to find the monster responsible for these crimes. They find themselves in a world of depravity and the worst of mankind but when another girl goes missing, Eve realises that if she wants to find her alive she has to fight her own demons and face what she has always tried to deny.
Disclaimer: All characters in this story belong to me, have been created and designed by me. Any resemblance to real life individuals is a twisted clash of fate. Most of the locations that have been used in this story have sprung from my own imagination though there are true facts woven into this story, like areas of Manchester that are mentioned and some of the techniques used by the Metropolitan police. As I have had no help in researching or writing this story, any errors are therefore my own.
Note: This story deals with serial killings of a brutal nature and graphic scenes of violence that some readers may find unsettling and also involves the romantic relationships between grown women. If any of these offend you, perhaps this is not a story you should be reading.
I wrote this novel for the 2011 NaNoWriMo (National Novel Writing Month, which takes place every November). I finished it in just under two weeks but then ignored the editing stage and moved on with my fanfiction stories. Recently I decided this story deserved to be properly finished and who knows, maybe even find a small reading audience online. This novel was originally titled "Deception" but I disliked it as the months went on. "Counterclockwise" came to me rather last minute and seemed far more fitting.
It was early November and autumn had noticeably begun to change into winter. It was bitter cold, with an unforgiving northern wind blowing, freezing all who dared to venture outside, and the clouds were thick and grey, signalling that the arrival of rain was imminent. Darkness fell quickly and the last rays of sunshine had not long disappeared behind the horizon, still painting it in vague shades of amber and red.
As he walked the wind ruffled the little bit of hair he had left. Here in the open the bitterness of the upcoming winter could be felt. His hot breath formed clouds of condensation in the crisp evening air. The weather forecasters couldn't seem to agree on when or if it was going to snow or not. The blonde woman on BBC One said it would soon be proper winter, with a crystal white dusting of the white powder expected to cover the area within the next two or three days. The guy on ITV had said it would just be a cold sharp wind that would make it feel like winter.
He didn't care about the weather. He didn't care whether it rained or snowed. What he cared about was that his secrets lay hidden here.
He looked up. The skin on his face was red and raw from the wind. He had walked the last half mile, his hands deep in the pockets of his coat but the zip only half way up. He knew he shouldn't be here. Though traffic was few and far between he did not want to be seen and yet he was here, aware that any passing car would see him, perhaps wonder why he was here.
He had been brought back here by his own wicked desire, by a need to know that the secrets he had buried here would remain so. He stared at the frozen ground underneath his feet. The freezing cold nights had turned the normally lose sand into one rock hard soil. It felt secure, like a confirmation that what he had hidden here would not be found.
Saddleworth Moor was quiet and stretched out as far as the eye could see. Located in the South Pennines it straddled the boroughs of Oldham in Greater Manchester and Kirklees in West Yorkshire. It was only scarcely populated and when walking here it felt like complete isolation. It was why he liked it, why he had first come here, and why he kept coming back.
The first time felt like a lifetime ago and, in a way, it was. Time was meaningless here, every day identical to the one before, yet he could still vividly remember the very moment he had stood here for the first time, the sun burning the back of his neck. Things had changed since then. He had changed. Standing here, surrounded by nothing else but the vastness of nature, it was as if he had walked into no man's land. The deep valleys cut out across the landscape were separated by the A635 leading to and from Manchester and West Yorkshire. To many it was known as the Isle of Skye, deriving its name from the public house that had once been located here until a fire destroyed it many years ago. To him it was simply the road that brought him here, that led to this place that harboured his secrets.
The road was quiet and totally abandoned. He hadn't seen another car for at least the last four miles. Many people had chosen to go home early, alarmed by the ever changing weather forecasts and frightened by the prospect of snow. On his way here the roads had been full of commuters desperate to make it safely back to their houses before nightfall. He had been one of the few to drive in the opposite direction, away from the city.
Now that he was here all that he could hear was silence. Not a single soul was out here tonight. The weather was too unpredictable for hikers and the nights had become too cold for campers. It was just him now, a lone figure against the unruly backdrop of nature, as far as the eye could see, just him and the endless silence of his secrets.
To many others he seemed like an ordinary man with an ordinary job living a quiet, ordinary life. He had a mortgage, just like most of his neighbours, and he paid his utility bills every month, without fail. He walked the dog at night and emptied the bins twice a week. But there were things about him nobody knew. Dark secrets he had learnt to keep. It had taken time, and a lot of practice but he had managed it. He had become a different man. There were dark shadows living alongside him and every so often he would give in, their sheer power would overwhelm him, and he would come back here; to remind himself of whom and what he really was. He'd stand solemnly, like a ghostly figure against the Moors backdrop, staring at the soil beneath his feet. The wind rustled the barren branches, like a voice calling from a distant past, speaking in a language he did not understand. The sound of leaves falling to the ground could sometimes be so deafening. Here lay his secrets. Here lay the truth about him, about what he was, about what he would always be.
He slowly turned around after about ten or fifteen minutes had passed. Standing still had left him frozen and he zipped up his coat to his chin and pushed his hands deeper into his pockets. He walked slowly, his stride showing his determination and his eyes were fixed on the road ahead of him. There, in the distance, his car was parked in the lay by. It was a simple blue Vauxhall Vectra that didn't stand out in traffic or amongst his neighbours' cars. He drove it to work every single day, blending in seamlessly with the other road users around him. Nothing about his appearance or his car alarmed those who lived beside him yet he knew that they never got to see this side of him.
His pace quickened as he came nearer and a shiver crept down his spine when he felt the first drops of rain beginning to fall. They seeped behind his coat, into the back of his neck and were followed by another and then another. He fumbled with his key, pressed the automatic unlock button and quickly got into the car. He had only just closed the door and turned the key in the ignition when the heavens opened and released a torrential downpour upon the world.
He sighed in relief when the engine began to roar. The radio automatically switched on and he fell into one of BBC Four's late afternoon plays. He didn't listen to the voices coming from the speakers and instead his hands grasped a tight hold of the wheel before putting the car in reverse. He made a sharp U-turn and began driving back into the direction of Manchester. Soon the stillness and vastness of the Moors would be well behind him and he would once again disappear into the rush of city life. He'd fade into the background, unnoticed by those who surrounded him. His face would not stand out from the crowd. No one ever looked at him and would guess his secret. Once he left here he would once again become again the man they all thought they knew. He'd come home and enter the warmth of his living room, pretending to have forgotten about where he had been, but he never truly did forget. The Moors were part of him and the secrets that he kept here were too.
In our society, children are raised to believe that monsters are not real, that they are a figment of their imagination, creatures that only exist in fairy tales or in the movies. Children always fear the demons under their beds or in their wardrobes and find reassurance in their parent's words of comfort when they are shown that there are in fact no monsters living in their bedrooms. A child's illusions are filled with foolishness, he thought, and so were the illusions of adults. Monsters do exist, even if the world did not believe them to be real. They live among us, in the faces of those we have come to know or love. And they have learnt to thrive in the light as well as darkness.
He watched in his rear view mirror how his secret grew smaller in the distance. The rain hammered down on the roof of the car and the wipers frantically swept across the windscreen to provide him with a clearer vision but no water, no endless pouring rain, could wash away how he felt and he smiled, reassured that for yet another moment he got to cherish his secrets. With a steady hand he reached out to turn up the volume of the radio and the voices of the actors on the radio grew louder. He carried on driving, closing in on the city of Manchester quickly. The voices in his car were like invisible companions, the unknown and nameless witnesses to where he had been. He felt a rush of adrenaline as he turned right at the end of the winding road, leaving the vastness of the Moors behind him. His fingers clutched the wheel firmly, like it was a lifeline of which only he understood the meaning.
Soon he would see the endless city lights, painted across the ink black sky. A city that was full of dreams and illusions. Full of fear and of hope. It was a sanctuary for angels and a haven to monsters. He would soon be home and he would slowly disappear, fading like a quiet figure in the mist. He would live behind the mask of his own creation and be the monster underneath the bed or in the wardrobe amongst all of those who still believed that monsters weren't real at all.