Chapter 2

Knock knock! I heard movement behind the door. The sound of hurrying heels was loud on the wooden floor. I heard keys jingling close to the door, so I took a step back so she wouldn't run into me when she came out. I hid the rose behind my back and waited for her to come out.

When she opened the door, she looked at me and gave me a huge, sparkling smile.

"Dayne! Hey! I'm ready to go now. Sorry I kept you waiting." I smiled at her.

"No problem, Silvia. Come on, babe, let's head to the car." I slung my arm over her shoulders and walked with her down the hall to the elevator. When we got inside the elevator and pressed the button for the ground floor, I pulled her into a hug. She put her arms around me and giggled. Her laugh was twinkly, but not as beautiful and melodious as Beth's laugh once was. With Beth's laugh, you could practically hear the glitter in her voice, like she swallowed gold and it seeped into her vocal cords. I smiled wider at the thought of her.

"Um, Dayne?" Silvia asked. "Are you okay?" I snapped out of my reverie and tilted my head down to look at her.

"Yeah. I'm fine."

"Really? Because we're at our floor and I can't move with your arms around me."

"Oh! Sorry." I removed my arms from around her and took her hand instead. We walked into the lobby of the hotel that she was staying at and out the front doors to my car. I played the 'gentleman' card and opened the door for her. After she got in, I went around to the driver's side and got in.

When I sat down, I turned my head to face her and found her staring at me already. She had a curious smile on her face.

"So babe. What are our activities for this evening?" She said it with a seductive slur.

I countered with a smirk and my own alluring tone. "You'll see. I'm not telling you until we get there."

She laughed, mumbled something incoherent and looked away out the window. I pulled out of the parking space and onto the road. The streets were packed with rush hour traffic, but when we pulled out, the open spaces and quick-moving lanes seemed to open up for us.

I knew that she was very impatient, and could see that she was just itching to ask me where we were going. But she didn't ask me. I watched out of the corner of my eye that she was anxiously fidgeting and when I turned towards her, she put on a huge smile. I knew that she was excited.

It took about forty-five minutes to get to my house and she was doing everything possible not to blurt out a million questions about where we were going. It wasn't until we had to turn on the hidden driveway when I got a reaction out of her. I turned into the tunnel of trees that opened to my driveway and Silvia screamed.

"Dayne! Look out! You're driving into the trees!"

I laughed and she turned towards me. Just then, the car broke through the ferns that seemed to camouflage the drive into being mostly non-existent. The canopies of the trees were gathered into making a ceiling of interlocking leaves. The light that filtered down was a soft, shady green.

I looked over at her and she was trying to calm herself from being so scared before. She grinned and gave a small laugh.

"Are you okay?" I asked her. She nodded.

I drove down the long hallway of trees towards the light at the end, which was the opening to the clearing. Silvia was in awe of everything and had a look on her face like a little kid in a Sweet Shoppe. I turned onto the driveway and pulled up in my usual parking spot in front of the garage.

Silvia looked out the window and gasped.

"Silvia," I leaned over so that my head was right next to hers. "Welcome to my home."

-oooooooooooooooooooo-

Silvia stood facing the bookcases, admiring my collection of novels. Every shelf was a framed photo of something in nature and a doo-dad at the end. Silvia liked the pictures the best. Wow, these are amazing, she thought to herself. Did Dayne take these? They are fantastic.

There was only one picture of a person. It was of a beautiful girl who was in her mid-twenties, by the looks of it. In the picture, she was laughing. Just by looking at her grinning mouth, I could practically hear a laugh that sounded like golden bells chiming. Hmm…I wonder who this is. Dayne has never mentioned anything about a girl. Maybe a sister? She kind of looks like me…Silvia thought.

Dayne was washing dishes in the kitchen from the dinner that they had just consumed. Only Beth offered to do wishes with me, Dayne said to himself. Silvia had left the door leading from the kitchen to the living room open, and Dayne turned around to look at her. She was holding a picture – the picture of Beth. The only picture he had of the woman he loved so much. The woman whose life he took because of his troubled childhood.

No. This is not okay. How could she touch my photo of Beth? He dropped the dish he was holding back in the sink, splashing soapy water out of the basin and on the floor.

"Dayne, honey? Do you need help cleaning those dishes?"

She should not have touched my picture. She has to go. Dayne tensed at Silvia's voice. "Uhh, sure. You can help me dry." He grabbed the wine bottle from the island and leaned against the wall, near the doorway.

"All right, here I come." Her heels make a klop-ing noise as she moved towards the kitchen. She walked out the door, right past Dayne who was lurking unseen by it. She stood in the middle of the area and put her hands on her hips.

"Dayne? Where are you?"

Dayne had a brief flash of déjà vu of the last meal he had had with Beth. He faltered and brought the bottle back down, eyes filling up with tears. He opened the cupboard behind him and quietly pulled out two glasses.

"Right here, dear."

Silvia whipped around, and then clutched at her heart.

"Babe, you scared the pants off me."

Dayne gave a little half-smile and handed her a glass.

"Dayne? Are you okay?" She wiped away a tear that had spilled on Dayne's cheek. He hadn't even known he was crying. "Sweetie, come here." She pulled him into a comforting hug.

He let go and led her into the living room, where Beth's picture was. He put the bottle and glass on the coffee table, and picked her picture up off the shelf. He stroked it gently with one finger.

"I'm s-sorry. I don't usually d-do this. It's just…you remind me so much of her," Dayne sobbed. Silvia walked over and looked at the picture. "This is Beth. She was my girlfriend a few years ago. I loved her s-so much."

"What happened?"

"She died."

"Oh, Dayne! I'm so sorry! That's horrible."

"It just gets so hard sometimes. I miss her…"

"Aw, Sweetie, I know you do. You must."

It was then that Dayne regained his composure. He placed Beth's picture back on the shelf. He took a deep breath and picked up the bottle. Dayne took a deep swallow and then bashed the hard, glass bottle into Silvia's head. When the force of the bottle collided with the hard bones of her head, it shattered into a waterfall of lethal, broken glass and tinkled as it hit the ground. Silvia collapsed onto the living room floor and her head hit it with a sharp thwack. There was a crunching noise as her body settled on top of the glass shards.

Dayne walked over to her and felt for her pulse. He felt a rhythmic beating under her chin. He squatted down and lifted her into his arms. On the ground, there was a pool of blood. A drop from Silvia's head fell and splashed on the floor.

-oooooooooooooooooooo-

Again, there was lovely girl chained up in my basement. This time, she was bleeding heavy. I chained her up, but I was one pair of handcuffs short.

Silvia's feet were chained to the cinder blocks, but if she tried hard, she could get her feet free, but it was the best I could do. I guess I had somehow lost them in the cabinet.

When I was done, I went upstairs to my closet. I grabbed a pair of gloves, broom and dustpan, a bucket, a sponge, and some bleach. I took the broom and swept around the blood puddle to get the glass. I swept the pieces into the dustpan and dropped them in the rubbish bin.

I snapped on my gloves and poured some bleach into my bucket. I got on my knees and began to work at it. The bleach seemed to be my companion on the nights of spilled blood. I kneeled down on the smooth wooden floor and started to scrub at what seemed like the thousandth blood stain on my floors.

I was oblivious to the cars that had pulled up to the house and the men with guns and vests surrounding the house.