Tom and James sat across from a man wearing a pair of blue jeans and a white t-shirt. He was young, handsome, with the palest skin one could have. His eyes sparkled in the daytime of a sapphire and he walked with swagger that could be confused with arrogance or complete confidence that the universe was moving around them. The man drummed his hands and they all sat in silence.

A waitress came over and dropped two black coffees, to the man and James, while a cappuccino to Tom. As soon as she left Tom spoke up.

“You said you had something on the case we are working on, a tip? or information? Did you know Tyler?”

The man’s eyebrows rose “Who?”

Tom could see James give him a sidelined look.

“The man who had a murder basement in his house, it’s been all over the news.”

“What, no, second rate killer, guy was absolute amateur from what I heard. No, no, I heard you guys are in to that” the man put his hands up and waved them about while doing spooky sounds “you know”

James wiped his mustache and leaned forward “and what if we are? Are you into the whole” James mimicked shower scene from psycho then sat back and shook his head.

“I am.”

“What?” Tom said.

“Yes, I am a serial killer. One of the best.”

James groaned and pulled out a note pad and produced a pen.
“Alright, name?”

“Mick Gendal”

“How long have you been a serial killer?”

“A long time, James” Mick smirked.

“Tom arrest this guy, open and closed” James flipped his notebook closed took a swig of his coffee.

“First, I could be joking, second, where are the bodies, third, I just arrived this morning, no way for me to do in this Tyler fellow. Look, I called you two specifically because” Mick searched around the ceiling and windows for the words, both Tom and James followed his gaze trying to spot what he was looking for. Mick scowled and tapped rapidly on the table “I need your help”

“Pardon me?” Tom said

James face broke out into a grin “You opened up with that and now you asking for help?”

Tom elbowed James “Help with what?”

Mick regained composure after drumming his fingers together. “While I did not know Tyler, I did know others like him. Much better then Tyler. They have all met an early demise. I believe that all these cases are connected. You two, as clunky as you are, have a reputation of getting results. Even in the worse scenarios. We marvel at your” he searched again “stupidity? Towards the situations you get yourselves into and then, somehow out of them.”

“You damn right.” James wagged a finger at Mick.

“You said ‘we’, who exactly is that? and why would you be following us?” Tom said.

Mick smiled. His eyes gleamed and he leaned back into his chair crossing his legs and roping his left arm around the back.

“Look, no matter what you do in life, business, art, sport, whatever. One needs to stack the deck in in their favor. You need to make sure that when you go into the action, that you have the advantage, you can’t lose. You are the house in your life, and the house always wins. Eighty years, that is how long I have been a serial killer.” Mick held up his right palm. On it was red circle, strange symbols and sigals line the inner rim and in the middle was a repeating circle that spiraled into infinity. “When I hunt, I always win. When I am hunted, I always get away or, you know.”

“So the ‘we’ is some sort of Hogwarts for serial killers? Holy Hell” Tom rubbed his forehead with his index finger and thumb “Couldn’t get any worse”

“of course it could, it could of been Hogwarts for demons or something” James waved the waitress over.

Mick snapped his finger and pointed at James “Yes, that is what I need your help with”


“No, the demon”

Both James and Tom froze. While they both knew, since that day neither of them had spoken about it. Somehow they tried every other supernatural entity that they could think of to explain away the case of Tyler. None of them sufficed. The void, the black door in their minds banged and clamored on its hinges. The memories buried and contained, but now bursting and clawing back into consciousness.

“What do you know about demons” Tom spoke up.

The waitress was approaching and Mick leapt from his chair and leaned in, his face inches away from theres.

“You two are the only ones that anyone knows of that has come across a demon and lived to tell the tale. You are fucking rock stars. I need your help to survive this thing. I need to have victims, I need to have blood. I can’t do that if this thing is hunting us like it is. The risk is to high. Time is ticking” As the waitress arrived Mick was leaving “I will be in touch” waved them goodbye and left.

James looked up at the waitress “Banana muffin, side of Jam, please. Tom? Nothing, alright, that’s it, also the bill when you have a chance.”

Tom sat resting his head on a clutched fist and stared into his memory. What was left was not much.

“How did we survive it James?”

The waitress returned with the muffin. James spread jam over the top and took a large bite.

“Did we?”

Tom and James our unlikely duo of paranormal investigators are trying to figure out what might be going on when they receive a call asking to meet. They run into Mick Gendal some one who openly admitted to being a serial killer, and not just admitting, but flaunting. That is when the stacked deck line came to me. Mick embodies this statement to his core, yet there is a bigger house in his world that he is against and as he says ‘The house always wins’.

Our demon is still out there, watch out as you roam the streets.

You can read their beginning story here - What’s in her Eyes