I settle myself into the backseat of the cab and in that instant know that I am going to kill her. Kill her slowly. Agonizingly.
I feel the juices begin to ferment.
She turns to me. Young, blonde, blue eyed, good looking.
"Where do you want to go?"
"Mansion Place, please."
She smiles at me and I can tell that she is a kind person because I am a psychopath and I can read people. It's what we do.
"Sure." She continues to smile.
She turns back, indicates and pulls out into the night traffic.
I see her bound and naked, covered in blood, her eyes wide with fear, pleading with me...
I can barely contain myself, but I must maintain my façade, lull her into a false sense of security.
We drive through the city and I observe the revellers but knowing the revellers won't observe me, won't remember me passing by with my prey. Gratifying.
I look at the scum congregating beneath and bathed by the sodium lamps, drawn to the neon lights of the bars like cockroaches to putrefying leftovers.
I hate them. Hate all of humanity.
"Had a good evening?"
She wants to converse.
"Just been to see my Auntie. She's all alone since my Uncle passed away. Nobody else cares about her, not even her son. I guess it's because she has no money."
"Not many like you nowadays. I can tell you're a decent man."
I laugh inside. I had been to see my regular girl, a pro, but she hadn't been working and maybe, just maybe, if she had then I wouldn't have needed to kill. But it's too late for that now. Well, too late for Miss Sweetness and Light here.
"Nobody seems to care anymore. It's a world without values."
"Oh, I don't know, I meet a lot of nice people," she says cheerily.
"You're probably right. Perhaps I have grown a little cynical over the years."
I mustn't let her suspect anything - anything.
She concentrates on negotiating the roundabout before taking the exit north, north to where I live where I will overpower her, strip her, tie her up, play mind games with her, and whip her till she bleeds. Then watch with extreme satisfaction as she slowly strangles, legs kicking futilely, to death naked at the end of a rope whilst I wank myself to orgasm.
I feel my erection strain against the inside of trousers - I am sixty and have lost nothing of my drive.
"Are you married? I hope you don't mind me asking. I like to talk to my fares, can be a bit lonely driving a cab at times."
"I was married but my wife died, in a car accident. I still miss her; she was the best. The very best. Over twenty years ago..."
I tail off as though about to choke with grief - I'm an accomplished actor, have to be.
"I'm sorry, I didn't mean to drag up unhappy memories."
"It's okay, you weren't to know. I've had offers but-"
"I'm really sorry. I didn't mean to pry."
I can tell she's a really nice person - caring, loving, kind and generous - and it won't help her a bit.
I manoeuvre myself out of the cab, making a meal out of hanging on to the door, whilst grabbing my metal crutch.
"Could you open the boot for me, I need to get my suitcase."
"That's fine. Do you need me to bring it in? It looks heavy."
"Would you? You really are kind. It's full of my Uncle's old clothes. My Auntie, she's ninety now, wants me to donate them to charity. How could I say no?"
She smiles in an understanding and sympathetic way.
"Look, why don't you go ahead, open the front door and I'll bring your suitcase in. You can maybe make me a cuppa. We can have a nice chat. I hope that's not too forward."
This is just going to be so easy...
I slip my key into the lock; the moon is full and it's nearly midnight.
I hear her footsteps behind me and hold open the door - the fly is nearly in the web.
"Thanks," she says, and enters plonking the heavy suitcase down over the threshold.
I will make her a tea and then from behind render her unconscious by applying a rag soaked with ether to her nose and mouth like taking candy from-
A brilliant white light explodes within my being, a metallic taste in my mouth. I'm crawling on the floor. What the fuck?
I roll over on to my back, I must be having a stroke.
"Help me please, get an ambulance."
"I really don't think that would be a good idea, do you?" she smiles with a cruel gleam in her eyes.
I feel something warm and sticky run down over my forehead and in her hand, she is holding a wheel brace which is dripping with blood, my blood.
I attempt to raise myself, but my body feels as though it is composed of lead.
"Pathetic little man, all kindness, clinging onto his dead wife's memory, looking after his aged Auntie who should have been left to rot in a nursing home years ago. I despise you-"
"It's not like that, really it's not, honest," I splutter out.
"I'm going to put you out of your misery. I'm doing you a... favour."
She raises the brace high above her head and as she arcs it down upon my skull I laugh...