The Seventy Year Cycle Killer

nassau

© Google Maps – July 2016

Kal Thompson knew he was very unpopular with the passengers and crew of the cruise ship Norwegian Gem. It couldn’t be helped.

Another gorgeous Summer day in Nassau, but the yellow crime scene tape wasn’t part of the tourist attraction. It prevented the contamination of his murder investigation. The murderer had to be on board.

The victim had been a young local women. The manner of her death was particularly gruesome. She was cut in half at the waist and her body was totally drained of blood. She was found nude, posed with her hands above her head, and the corners of her mouth literally sliced ear to ear.

He had read about a case such as her’s but it couldn’t be the same killer could it? After all, the Black Dahlia had been murdered in Los Angeles in 1947. How could the killer strike again seventy years later?

I wrote this in response to J. Hardy Carroll’s What Pegman Saw photo writing challenge. The idea is to use the Google Maps image above as a prompt to write a piece of flash fiction no more than 150 words long. Mine is exactly 148.

To read other stories based on the prompt, go to InLinkz.com.

When I looked around the Google Maps image, I saw the yellow tape and imagined a crime scene, but I needed something unusual. I looked up famous unsolved murders, and the mystery of the Black Dahlia became my template.

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15 thoughts on “The Seventy Year Cycle Killer

  1. A grim tale, James, but a good one. Could see it being an opening for something longer. I read about the Black Dahlia a few months ago, about the sadly short life of the victim and the sensational way her death was treated by the press. And yes, the killer was never caught. Intriguing premise well written

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    • Thanks, Neel. I’ve done a bit more reading on the Black Dahlia murder and learned details that would make my story a bit more improbable. At the same time, it makes the actual Black Dahlia murder more horrific.

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