Andrew set the hand weight down and cracked his knuckles, exhaling slowly out as he did. He toweled off the faint sheen of sweat on his forehead, pushing back stray strands of black wispy hair as he did. He checked out the window, as he always did, more of a compulsion than anything. Hoping there was something decent on television (but not really expecting much; Andrew preferred to read but liked to keep the TV on for background noise) he walked through the apartment, more hallway to it than rooms, switching on lights and locking the backdoor, three times. A screen door, a lock on the larger door's handle, and a thick sliding-bolt lock. Andrew wasn't exactly a privacy freak so much as he was just paranoid; Constantly checking over his shoulder, always lingering at the windows, jumping at every noise. He was aware of his compulsions, accepting of them too, though he had a tendency to bristle when it was made fun of. "Well, lets just leave it at this, I hope you never get the chance to say 'I told you so'" his friend had said once, trying to be lighthearted about something that obviously terrified his friend. Andrew had just shaken his head, looking more irritated than anything, You'll See written across his often-unemotional features. Finally deciding on one of the numerous incarnations of the Law & Order series, Andrew settled into the round suede couch that took up most of his small living room. After about 15 minutes of the show, Andrew found his mind already wandering and pulled out a thin Asus laptop from the side of the couch. He sighed, almost wistfully as the thing powered on, bringing up a wallpaper of the interior of a man's skull. Since he could remember, Andrew had always loved gore; all aspects of it, blood and bones and every other bit of the human puzzle. He wasn't sure he had it in him to actually go through with the things he looked at, but the visuals alone were enough to do it for him.

Not too long after Andrew had found one of his favorite sites (an incredibly graphic Japanese site showcasing real photos of mutilation) he felt the all-too familiar fluttering in his chest acting up, like a hummingbird stuck somewhere between his throat and heart. He sighed, stretched and groped around on the side table without looking until his fingers slid across two familiar objects; one round and smooth, made of plastic and the other longer and geometric, cold and steel. Andrew popped two of the Valium into his mouth and tipped his head back, switching the safety off of the .45 magnum that sat next to his couch. He never understood the basis of his paranoia, had never really wanted to but he had always kept it in mind, never forcing it off like most others would. He'd purchased the gun when he was 16, after a string of awfully vivid nightmares where someone was always trying to kill him. The gun had always filled him with a sense of security and power, so he kept it near him almost constantly. There had even been a few occasions where he'd taken it out with him, the persistent worry that someone would jump him always fluttering around his brain like a mosquito, buzzing and stinging at random. The gun always rested comfortably heavy against him, whether in his pants or coat pocket, like a promise of security, a silent, seething power.

The television was just starting to dull into a comfortable drone when Andrew heard a loud crash, snapping him back into reality. To his horror, Andrew could hear footsteps down the hall of his small apartment, and a quiet rustling sound. I told you so... he thought to himself nervously, the giddy terror spreading through him like a fast-acting poison. Slipping his fingers around the familiar curve of the .45 he slid off the couch, bare feet silent on the carpeted floor.

The man never knew what hit him, save for the sudden agonizing pain in his left leg. Andrew had shot in the half-dark of the hallway, aiming at the large human shaped blob that had been facing away from him. Unaware of it, a strange smile began to spread across Andrew's face as he switched on the light to his bedroom, giving a face to the intruder. "Have you any idea how long I've been waiting for this?" He whispered, his own voice sounding strange and alien to him (Maybe it was the Valium, or most likely the ridiculous amount of adrenaline coursing through his system). The man rolled over, groaning and swearing, fumbling at his side for something. "Fuck you, man, I didn't wanna do this..." the intruder's words were cut off by another shot, followed by a high keening moan as he gaped at his hand, or rather what was left of it. Andrew hadn't known if the man was going for a gun or a knife, and had decided that either way this man was dead. He'd aimed at the hand going to his side, silently thanking himself for taking the shooting lessons he had all those years ago. Even at 22, he tried to make it to the shooting range a few times a month. It eased his stress, helped him to vent and he'd thought of it as a type of insurance, for just this sort of thing. He leaned in towards the bleeding man, still smiling the strange smile and locked eyes with him. He couldn't have been more than 19, blue eyes hollow and full of stupid rage, hair cut short and bleached blonde. His features still looked almost childish, especially in the heady mix of horror and anger that Andrew could be almost certain was coursing through him. He kept staring at the boys ruined hand, the middle and index fingers torn straight off, ivory spikes of bone poking out of the wet mess, up to his wrist almost covered in red. It made Andrew happy, the realization he was right. He'd been shocked that he reacted so quickly, so naturally to something he'd feared his entire life.

or a moment, Andrew wondered if his entire life hadn't been a lead up to this very incident, quickly casting it off as over-emotional nonsense (As he did with most things concerning religion or anything incorporeal). "You've made a hell of a mistake, my friend." He almost whispered, eyes gleaming in the half-light of the still semi-dark room. For some reason, Andrew started to crouch towards the boy without thinking, and the kid took it as his chance. Flailing, he swung his good hand in Andrew's direction, catching him in the side of the jaw. Andrew recoiled, still grinning and stood back up, eyeing the kid who now glared up at him in some sort of defiance. Andrew wasn't sure if the kid was just stupid or faking it, but he decided that he'd figure out soon enough.

"You're a little asshole, boy. You should've found another way to secure your stash, or whatever the hell you're breaking in here for. You're going to fucking die tonight." Distantly, Andrew was aware of how giddy he'd sounded and felt saying that, as he cocked the revolver again and shot two more times, obliterating the boy's kneecaps. Sobbing curses and agony, he writhed next to Andrew's bed, the tough act obviously as gone as his chances of getting away. Andrew grabbed hold of his legs and dragged him towards the living room, suddenly glad to have mostly tile and wooden floors. He laughed again at the unlikely turn of luck, at the pure ridiculous irony of the entire situation. Always keeping an eye on the boy, he turned up the sound on the television and switched the air conditioner onto high, then almost as a second though grabbed the bottle of Valium. Kneeling down on the boy's chest, he cracked open the bottle and shoved a few into his mouth, clamping it shut until he reluctantly swallowed. Andrew let go and shifted his weight so his knees were burrowing into the kid's shoulders and grinned down at him. "What the fuck did you just do, poison me?" The kid moaned, tears coursing down his cheeks. Andrew shook his head, the smile never leaving his face. "Oh,no. That'd be far too kind compared what I'm going to do to you, kid. Consider what I just did a favor." Andrew watched as the boy's eyelids reluctantly sagged and eventually fell, his body going slack. When he started dragging him again, Andrew thought he heard a few groans of protest or even a word or two but ignored it, knowing the kid wouldn't be moving too much anytime soon.

Andrew paced beside the bed, watching the young man's chest rise and fall with drugged, uneven breaths. A feeling akin to vindication floated through Andrew's mind, soothing the endorphin-wrought aches he was feeling. Now that the adrenaline faded, Andrew began to think rationally again, and the thought of killing this boy was pure ecstasy to him. The kid's eyes fluttered, his head rolling with a quiet moan, the pain still dulled from the Valium. "Where the hell am I?" he managed out, coughing a few times before trying to actually move. "Interesting choice of words, my friend." Andrew sat down on the bed next to him, stroking the boy's bloody legs. Beneath all of the wigger-ish apparel, he found the guy attractive, in a idiotic, soon-to-be-dead sense. The kid blinked tears out of his eyes, shaking his head frantically. "Mister, don't kill me, you don't have to, trust me..." Andrew reloaded the gun and chambered a round, smiling at the boy. "I know I don't have to. I want to." He leaned close and kissed the boy's cheek, brushing back his pale blonde hair, staring down into the terrified eyes. "Do you know what terror is, what constant paranoia does to a person? I do." He whispered, kissing his cheek again. "Dude, what the fuck are you talking about, just fucking let me go! I didn't do anything, I'm sorry I broke in but FUCK DON'T KILL ME!" He screamed, voice cracking. Andrew wondered if 19 was too high an age to guess, maybe 16 or 17 was more accurate. Not that it mattered, the guy would be dead by the end of the night.

"I have spent my life waiting for this moment...waiting for some little asshole like you to come busting into my sanctuary and...and doing whatever the fuck you're here for. " He cocked the gun at the boy's head, smiling calmly and whispered "and I've always been ready." He fired a shot into the pillow next to the boy's head, and listened to him scream. He struggled against the ropes he'd just now noticed, trying to kick his legs and screaming in pain when he did. Andrew slid onto the bed, on top of him and used his legs to hold him down. He smiled as the kid began to panic. "Oh fuck, oh goddamn oh jesus fuck..." he gibbered, his whole body shaking in fear. "What's your name?" Andrew whispered, serene as a Buddhist monk. The blue eyes glittered with tears as he shakily whispered "Johnny." Andrew wrapped his fingers around Johnny's throat and squeezed, watching his eyes flutter. "Well, Johnny, didn't your mother teach you better than this? Who told you to go breaking into houses and fucking with people, hm?" He let go and Johnny wheezed, finally gasping out "I had to. In debt, drug money, couldn't pay the bills..." Andrew laughed and shook his head. "You should've managed your money better, my friend...who'll pay your bills now? I certainly won't, and neither will you." Johnny clenched his eyes shut against a fit of sobs, trying to shake Andrew off of him. He leaned in and kissed Johnny on the lips, tongue sliding inside of his mouth, sucking deep. While he kissed him, he gently placed the barrel of the gun against Johnny's head, broke the kiss and pulled the trigger.

Whatever brains Johnny had were now sprayed across Andrew's pillows, his walls painted with a patina of red and flesh. He shuddered, feeling a strange calm settle over him, comfort like he'd never felt before. He kissed the hole in Johnny's head, probing the raw edges with his tongue and shivered again. Carrying the gun back out to the living room, he felt a feeling of duty, a sense that he'd done the right thing. He settled in to watch TV, glad that for once in his life, he'd been proven right.