Through the Eyes of Madness—Part Twelve
By: David K. Montoya

As the sun crept into the morning's sky, there was a sense of anger. Even the rain fell from the blackened clouds with a more violent force, down upon the already aggressive pedestrians that traveled the wet sidewalk to their destinations.

People that had visited the city always left wondering why would anyone in their right mind would want to live in a place like that. But, there are plenty with an estimated ten million people that called it home. It was once named gloomiest city in the United States, and third in most violent places to live in the country.

Yet, despite everything its inhabitants openly called it their home and had no desire to relocate elsewhere. In the face of everything that was said, even with the murders, the rapes or the muggings it was where they hung their hats and called home. The rain banged against a single pane window as a disoriented Detective Dean Tidwell rolled out of his soddened bed. The echos of the rain filled the lifeless room as the sound of his electric heater ignited.

"Bloody Hell," Tidwell croaked under his breath.

His dark bedroom was a deep level of cold Tidwell felt as he his feet met the hardwood floors. He wanted to go back to sleep, but knew that there was work to do. The internal struggle was short lived, with responsibility as the winner of that campaign. The Detective's bones and joints popped in protest as he forced himself to his feet.

Tidwell stumbled forward through the cold and darkness, eventually into his tiny bathroom. He removed his undergarments and stood in front of the mirror above his sink, while he examined what was once a specimen of physical health. A Golden Gloves winner in his late teens, a second degree black belt in traditional Kung Fu, Spent four years as a Thirty–one 'A', a legend in the police academy in how easily he completed the course. The Chief of Police during that time at his graduation from the academy said that Dean was a, "Natural Officer and leader."

Of course, that was then, but now? Now Dean Tidwell was left only with his shame.

A shame of failing health, how his body continued to betray him. If the Captain actually knew Tidwell's ailments, he would had forced him to retire years earlier. A decade prior, he learned that he had cancer and paid a physician to clear him. While he took the chemo treatment, he continued to work the beat and no one was any the wiser.

A shame of multiple failed marriages, Tidwell never had a problem finding a mate, even now, the detective was not hard on the eyes. But for him though, it was the trick of keeping them. Each conjugality he had resulted in all of his wives leaving unbeknownst to him while he worked at the station. He knew that as a person, his habits were odd and strange, even, but all he wanted was someone to love and accept him for who he was.

And, a shame of a broken family.

He wanted to have his family's love, but he was the Black Sheep and would never ascend to the glory his other siblings had achieved. After his father's death, nothing no longer appeared to matter, whether it was a subject or a person, but for a short while Tidwell attempted to be normal, but quickly learned that it was all in vain.

As he stood in front of the mirror, he wondered what was the point. Only twenty years prior, Tidwell could have walked into any club flashed his smile and walked out with any woman he so chose. But Now, with all the sagging he saw in the reflection, which nauseated him, Tidwell felt he was old and useless. He knew deep in his soul that once retirement came, he would curl up in a ball and basically die a slow and meaningless death.

He felt that he had had enough.

Tidwell rushed from the bathroom back into his bedroom over by his headboard. He lifted his pillow and found his trusty sidearm that awaited for his return. You'll never let me down, Tidwell thought to himself, and picked up his revolver.

He clicked the safety off of the gun. It was ready. With live ammo. Tidwell sat on the side of the bed, and placed the barrel of the weapon into his mouth. Tidwell was finished and no longer wanted to live. His finger found it's place on the cold metal trigger and awaited for him to give it a welcoming hug.

Tidwell sat there for a while with the weapon in his estuary ready to fire. But he could not. Slowly he let his finger from the trigger and then laid it onto the bed, with a growing swarm of self pity the old angry man cried out in a howl. For several moments, the old man wept with all of his heart and soul.

Tidwell let out another howl, but it sounded more like an angry growl this time around. He fetched up the revolver once more, and placed it back into his mouth and pushed the barrel passed his uvula to the back of the throat. Dean hyperventilated as he placed his finger back on the trigger and again, made sounds that were reminiscent of growls.

With the hard metal in the back of this throat, Tidwell fought the urge to retch. He sensed his finger as it applied more pressure on the trigger and felt his rapid heart rate in his neck.

"Do it!" Tidwell shouted passed the barrel of the weapon.

He felt the pressure that mounted atop the hard metal.

"Do it!" He shouted again.

Tidwell bit down on the shaft and squeezed his eyes shut, more tears flowed down his face. He growled again, and tried to apply the final bit of stress to finish the job. His arm went limp and the gun fell beside him and he screamed out in a conglomeration of frustration and anger, "Fuck! Shit! Fuck!"

Tidwell screamed silently, and wept uncontrollably once again.

His heater clicked as it turned off automatically. He was left alone with his sorrow and the never–ending sound of the rain, that was from outside of his home—it was a sound of angry rainfall as crashed against the fake paneling.

Finally, Tidwell stood to his feet and wiped away the tears with his forearm and once again moved back into the bathroom. Again, he stood in front of the mirror and stared deep into the unrecognizable image that peered back at him. After a brief moment, the Detective said, "I'm not strong enough to join you today, father. I want to… I do… But, I'm not strong enough."


Betty sat in a hard wooden chair with her hands tied. Clasped together, they rested on her lap and shook with fear. She was blindfolded. Her mind raced for two days now, but she was fairly certain that her captor was not going to kill her—if that was the case she would already be dead.

Oddly enough, the man was quite nice to her needs, to the point that he walked her to the restroom and spoon fed her three times a day. Something a murderer would not had done for his victim, unless the man saved her for a later event.

Betty had lost time, when she heard, "Time to wake up."

The voice was the man who kidnapped her, but there was a hint of excitement to his words while he spoke.

"Big day today, Miss Betty."

"You…you know my name," Betty asked softly.

"Oh, sure. I know a lot about you," The man replied. "For example, I know you are having an affair with Detective Grayson Copeland, who is one of the leads in the Slasher case."

"Slasher case?" Betty asked.

"Yes, that's what I call it anyway. They haven't caught me yet." He said. "They keep confusing me with that other guy. But, I will set the record straight soon."

Betty felt the man as he removed her blindfold, and for the first time saw her captor. He was a silver haired and bearded man who was ghastly white, she noted that with the blindfold removed she smelt a strong odor of stale cigarettes. The way he breathed confirmed that, while he had a small beer belly, he wasn't too overweight to breathe as hard as he did.

"You ready to help me," he asked in a weak voice.

"If I refuse, will you kill me?" Betty asked bluntly.

"Absolutely," He answered without hesitation in his words. "See Miss Betty. I don't need you alive to complete my plan. It is a courtesy to Detective Copeland, after all he's the one who's gonna make me famous."

Betty knew clearly that she was in an immeasurable amount of danger, but her curiosity could not have been contained and against her best judgment asked, "How is he going to make you famous? You do realized he has a partner who is just as involved."

"Yes, the partner," he laughed. "Detective Dean Tidwell…"

His demeanor shifted and an anger swept across his face, "Tidwell?! Let me tell you something about dear Detective Tidwell!"

He glared down to face Betty, they are so close together that his nose bumped hers. After a brief moment of silence, the man grinned and then a chuckle followed. The Captor slowly pulled away from her as he said, "Well, he's quite the character."

The man chuckled and turned away from Betty for a moment to regather himself before he continued, "Tidwell does not have anyone in his life other than Copeland and his wife."

Betty's face unconsciously shifted at the mention of her lover's wife.

"Ouch. Sore subject, I bet," the man said with an amused smile. "Well you have my sincerest apologies, Miss Betty."

He grabbed a near by chair and pulled it up to face Betty, and had a seat so he was comfortable as he spoke: "But, you see, Copeland, has you. You are his mistress, which means when it comes to you it is a relationship full of lust and passion."

Betty shot him a semi–impressed expression.

"Despite the shitty appearance, I'm no dummy, Miss Betty," he said and then stood up from his chair. "His wife got lucky, I guess. I almost had to fetch her after you two lovebirds split for that short time."

He chuckled with full amusement and continued, "But he couldn't get enough of your… Well, we both know what he couldn't get enough of. No need to be crude."

He laughed out loud at his own joke.

"So… Who do you think he will notice is missing first, his sexless wife or the woman he can't get enough of."

Betty's stomach churned when she realized, "I'm bait."

The man turned and smiled brightly, "Well… Let's say yes and no."

"You want to be caught?" Betty asked.

The Man sat back in the chair that faced Betty and said, "Well, it's a bit more complicated than that I'm afraid. There are steps that need to be taken to become famous."

"I–I don't understand."

"You see, all famous slashers in history have been apprehended, well other than Jack the Ripper," he explained. "I have left all the right clues to lead your lover straight to me."

"But… But, he might kill you where you stand," Betty said, in an attempt to get into the man's head.

"Oh. I'm completely okay with that Miss Betty," he said with a bigger smile. "As long as you tell them the horrors I did to you and the others. I will be as famous as them all."

Betty was afraid to ask the obvious question that lead from the man's previous statement, but she had to know the answer and eventually asked after a few moments of awkward silence: "But, you haven't done anything to me or anyone else for that matter."

A demonic masked covered the man's face as he leaned in to face Betty once again, and said in a chilling voice. "Not yet, but that is about to change."

To be continued…


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