Author notes: Sentence prompts, about my serial killer couple Rikarah Pallaton and Gavin Berwin


The day Gavin had proposed to Rikarah, he had slid the ring he had chosen not only for its beauty and delicate antique appearance, but also because it happened to have come off the finger of one of their smallest, most slender female victims; they had both laughed when even so, it had been too large to fit on any of Rikarah's fingers except her thumb.


They do not think of themselves as villains, of evil, or even as murderers; no, they think of themselves as vigilantes, of harbingers of justice…in a way, to Gavin and Rikarah, they are in fact heroes, for they bring about the rightness of events, the fate others deserve, when no one else will.


"Do you remember the time that we-" Rikarah started, and Gavin shushed her with one finger to her lips, telling her softly, "I remember every moment, Rikarah, of my life with you."


There was an odd metallic smell to the box, suspicious red stains at its bottom, and as Gavin prepared to open it, his eyes gleamed, anticipating the gift awaiting him inside; anything from Rikarah was bound to be interesting.


Their newest victim took off as fast as his legs would carry him, eyes bulging, shoes digging a steady pattern into the ground, but they were just behind, every keeping up without any seeming difficulty; all of them could run, but in the end, they could never succeed in evading their inevitable fate at the hands of their blades.


If he were to compare his girl to a hurricane, Rikarah would not be the howling winds, fast and wild, destroying everything in sight, but rather the eye of the storm- deceptively still, suspiciously calm, luring one into a peace of mind just before the true destruction set in.


"You are an impish little elf, Rikarah," Gavin told his wife with affection, tugging at the ends of her hair, and Rikarah smiled slyly as she corrected, "Not an elf, but a pixie, one who has not yet grown her wings."


Rikarah's hands were always cool as marble, never seeming to absorb heat even in mildest of temperatures, and as they strolled hand in hand down the dimly lit sidewalk, the moonlight glowing overhead, Gavin rubbed one of her hands between both of his, seeking to transmit warmth for the thousandth time, even as he knew he would likely not be successful.


It is Gavin's style, Rikarah teases, to wear mostly black, simply because he will then not have to put thought and effort into deciding upon matching outfits; however, she knows very well that his favorite color is the startling crimson shade of freshly spilled blood.


Rikarah is not one to drink, preferring to remain fully sober, alert, and in control of herself and her actions at all times, and when he is with her, Gavin does not have much of a desire to do so either; it is his preference, he has wryly yet with some sincerity as well stated, to simply become drunk off of her beauty instead.


It was always in this hour, as the previous night became the following day's morning, that seemed fraught with magic for them both, in which anything could happen and all possibilities were endless, a time in between two periods.


For Gavin, other women, other girls, provided no temptation for him to sway from his single-minded, full-hearted devotion to Rikarah; they provided only a brief and occasionally interesting visual commercial from his true desire, the feature presentation of his beloved wife.


From the shoreline of the nearly empty beach front, just as the dawn's sky lit with the rising sun, Gavin stared forward with a faint smile, enjoying the view not of the act of nature unfolding before him, but of Rikarah's slim form in her striped bikini.


Rikarah often thought that Gavin could have been a rock star, had he chosen, and surely among his inevitable groupies, there would have been plenty of girls who had been wronged, plenty of girls who needed them to exact their special manner of vengeance.


"This is very soft, Rika," Gavin commented as she pulled tight the fabric over his eyes, then bound his wrists as well, and Rikarah smiled, telling him with satisfaction that his ties were made of genuine silk.


Waitress and bar tender by trade, justice bringer by chosen identity and role, the two depended upon the very bland ordinariness of their interactions with the majority of the world as a cover for what they really enjoyed in life.


"I will never harm you, Rikarah," Gavin swore, and Rikarah's dark eyes glinted as she tilted her head, replying coyly, "Well, some pain is rather enjoyable, when done correctly."


They have no nightmares when they lay down together at night, curled into each others' arms; they are secure in the knowledge that it is they themselves who bring nightmares to others.


Rikarah held the candle high, tilting it so the hot wax dripped down and splattered just slightly onto Gavin's chest, and as Gavin clinched his jaw, hissing slightly with pleasure as much as with pain, Rikarah smiled, savoring his expression.


"You are a true talent, Rikarah," Gavin declared as he stood before Rikarah's artwork, admiring, "no other has your eye for aesthetics, as well as your skill with keeping everything fresh when it generally so quickly falls to decomposing."


Sometimes when they have just finished a kill, and stand together, chests heaving, limbs and sometimes faces splattered with blood, weapons still clutched in white-knuckled hands, Gavin and Rikarah simply look at each other with smiles stretching their lips, and there is no need for words; in silence they can manage near perfect understanding of each other just as well.


Anyone who were to observe their daily activities would believe the two to be fairly static in their lives, stuck in aimless, minimum wage jobs which lead them to nowhere, but Gavin and Rikarah know that it is their nightly activities that truly inspire them, and it is those that show the journey of their time and their growth together- both as a couple and as individuals.


They are not a blazing fire but rather a stray, persistent spark, ready to catch flame and send each other into a roaring of heat and destruction when the conditions are right.


It is not Rikarah's physical strength that drew Gavin to her, though when considering her small size, it is rather impressive; rather it is the strength of her mind and character, the way that she never buckles, never flinches, never shows real pain or grief, embarrassment or uncertainty, and never, ever fear.


"It suits you, Gav, don't you think….it goes well with your personality," Rikarah smiled, and Gavin had to agree that the plastic wolf's mask with shaggy hair and an open, snarling mouth did indeed show the aspect of him he normally had to conceal from the world.


With all his natural coordination, athleticism, and his usual physical grace, Gavin had regardless never been ice skating and did not take to it easily; as he held Rikarah's hand, eyes focused on his feet before him as he awkwardly attempted to keep his balance on the slick ice, Rikarah grinned, debating the merits and comedic value of letting him fall.


The wind whistled through the rustling orange and golden leaves, the slight chill to the air fingering through their hair and tousling it in multiple directions as Rikarah and Gavin together, Gavin's arm snugly encircling Rikarah's shoulders, Rikarah's arm circling his waist, and leaves crunched heavily beneath their feet; fall was the season in which they had met, and it was always a special time of the year for them.


Rikarah rarely mentions her past, and of Gavin's, she knows nothing at all, nor does she ask; it is not that they have forgotten what came before in their lives, but rather that they have no interest in remembering or referring to it now, when their present and future is so much more interesting to them both.


"I could never love a man who couldn't dance, "Rikarah laughed, face slightly flushed, as she looked up into Gavin's arms, having to stretch her arms up to lock them around his neck, and Gavin lifted her by the torso and held her so that her legs were wrapped around his waist and they were now face to face, smiling into her dark eyes as he said to her, "Then I do hope my improvisation is satisfactory so far."


His body was long and lean, its sinewy muscles surprising in their capability, and tattoos marked his arms and chest; hers was small and delicate, almost childlike in the shallowness of her curves, and she too displayed black inkings, self-designed; at a glance one would think such differing forms to not be compatible, but Gavin and Rikarah have long ago determined that they fit together flawlessly.


If Rikarah had to choose a religion, she would not choose to worship any particular god or deity, or any supernatural being; she would instead devote herself to her artwork, to creativity, to justice and to the darkness of humanity she finds herself so often drawn towards….and of course, to Gavin, for what they have together is sacred as well.


She always tries to get in one final line, one parting shot before ending the lives of one she has chosen to enact justice against; it is her version of a farewell, but moreover, it is Rikarah's way to amuse herself in her send off.


"If you could travel every part of the world, and see the face of every person existing, know the hearts of all…wouldn't it be amazing to know everything there was to know, every secret on this earth?" Rikarah mused, lying back in Gavin's arms, and Gavin twined his fingers in her hair, murmuring back to her, "I do not need to have such knowledge, nor do I care to, Riki…I only need to know you."


Rikarah loved Gavin in is every day mode of casual dress, the way he managed to give off a sense of danger and intensity even in jeans and a dirty t-shirt from the way he spoke and moved, the way he interacted or held back from interacting with others; but when Gavin puts on a suit and tie and makes an effort to respond to others with smoothness and cultured grace, he becomes so irresistible to her that she can barely stop herself from throwing him to the ground and freeing him from the formal confines of that suit immediately.


They are very rarely ill, rarely show weakness or vulnerability of any kind, even in their bodies, and so the first and only time that Rikarah fell sick, Gavin sponged her brow, checked her temperature, propped her up in his arms and fed her warm chicken broth with such anxious concern that he could not stop his hands from shaking, and he himself felt nauseous with his dread of what might happen if his efforts could not cure her.


Gavin tended to be a man of intensity, a man who expressed his happiness with a shift in the lighting of his eyes, with small smiles or varying pressure of his touches, and so when Rikarah can make him laugh, make him lose his control enough to throw back his head and truly show mirth or amusement, she is very pleased with herself, satisfied in her ability to affect him as no other could.


They do not think of their lives, as they present them to outsiders, as lies, but rather as truths which are missing a few pieces vital to making their meaning fully understood; it is enough to them that they do not lie to each other and have no need to, for with each other there is perfect understanding without needing to say anything at all.


They are not vampires or demons, not mythical or supernatural beings, or anything other than fully mortal humans; they will not live forever and are as susceptible to death as any other, but they, unlike most, know how to keep themselves from being vulnerable, and they suspect that this will keep them living if not forever, for a very, very long time.


Gavin and Rikarah are both people whom are steady and secure in themselves and their lives, never letting themselves become shaken or frightened by any threats that others might see as tremendous and terrifying; it is appropriate then that the only thing in life that seems to truly rattle them, to overwhelm them at times beyond knowing what to do or say, is each other.


"Please," their latest victim begged, his breath coming in harsh tears as his chest heaved, and he reached out with grasping fingers for something, anything to ground him, and Rikarah leaned in close to him, her warm breath tickling his skin as she cupped her hand around his ear and said to him softly, "You have ten more seconds to make any final requests, but I cannot guarantee that I will grant them…ten…nine…eight…"


Anticipation can be even more satisfying than the climax of the kills themselves, and so sometimes Gavin and Rikarah drag out the time that it will take them to go through with the actual death, instead choosing to cut with shallow flicks of their knives, to give them time to beg, to cry, to scream…and sometimes they back away and simply wait, letting life seep out slowly rather than to end it with one flick of the wrist.


Their obvious talent, of course, is their skill in weaponry, their knowledge of exactly what it took to end human lives, but what others do not realize is that just as important as their ability to kill is their ability to manipulate and charm, to socially maneuver their way into others' lives; Gavin and Rikarah's true talent is to talk their way into and out of any given situation.


"You know, Gavin, as much as I enjoy the actual justice part of the equation, actually giving people what they deserve…sometimes I think it's more fun to find them, you know, to be out there looking and judging and making a decision….the search is just as exciting, you know?" Rikarah asked, and Gavin nodded thoughtfully, agreeing that yes, there was something to be said for this process of selection.


In spite of her grim view of humanity and what she saw as their sins towards their own kind, in spite of her conviction that very few on this earth were truly deserving of remaining alive and unchallenged in their actions, Rikarah found that she still had a genuine fondness and affection towards humanity overall, even an odd sort of love and optimism that all could be well, that she could make it well through her efforts, and over time it seemed that Gavin was beginning to come around to her way of thinking as well.


"I cannot believe you have persuaded me to watch not just the first, not just the second, but now also the third of this mind-numbingly boring, ridiculous, and infuriating series, Rikarah," Gavin muttered under his breath, letting out a long sigh as he slumped back against the couch cushions, and Rikarah shushed him with a wave of her hand, busy scribbling on the notepad in her lap as she reminded him, "Shhh, you know I'm taking notes, Gavin, girls like this Bella and guys like this Edward are EXACTLY what we are looking for in our potential targets."


"It is simply an experiment, a lesson in the laws of physics…which object will drop first, the lighter pinkie finger, or the heavier thumb?" Rikarah mused allow, as she held the knife to the trembling figure's left hand and Gavin held his knife to the right, both preparing to cut through in the very same moment.


Gavin at the wheel, windows rolled down, Rikarah's short hair tousled, his longer hair blowing gently in the breeze, the two of them are silent, hand in hand as Gavin steers with one propped wrist, enjoying their time together; soon they will have a new home in a new town, a new relocated life, but for now there is only peace and relaxation in this afternoon sunlight on the road.


There is much that they simply do not know- about each other's past, about their future, whether this be the jobs they will have, the homes they will live in, the difficulties they will face- but one thing they both know for certain is that whatever has happened and whatever will come, they will face it together.


It is corny, he knows, and perhaps he will never feel that he can say it aloud without provoking her laughter, but to Gavin, his heart was a dark room, locked tightly away until Rikarah gave, holding out in one small hand the sparkly key to open it up.

50. Breathe

Sometimes when they lie together in bed, they hold each other so tightly that they literally take each other's breath away, and when they finally release each other, gasping, laughing, their hearts are so full that each moment seems to write itself permanently onto their souls.