Dark Fiction - The Price of Fame
Written by Casey Douglass
Arnold walked down the shopping aisle, the distant screams merging with the approaching wu-wahs of the police. He reflected that it was a shame that shopping couldn’t be this enjoyable every time: less people, plenty of space, it was heaven.
Something crashed to the ground on the other side of the store. It sounded like glass but whether it was SWAT breaching or some clumsy soul knocking over a display, he couldn’t tell.
He rested a hand on the edge of a freezer cabinet, enjoying the frosty tingle in his fingers. Blood smeared the glass as he rubbed some of the frost away. The idiots had it turned up way too high.
Booted feet ran somewhere off to the left, sounded like three rows away. Another flurry of footfalls clattered on metal grates somewhere back in the stock area.
He smiled. Soon it would all be over.
He gripped the flesh around him and tugged it closer. She had been a beautiful blonde, six feet tall, with legs up to the sky. He’d never appreciated being small for his age, but when you’re pushing fifty and only five foot tall, you can squeeze into all kinds of places. Images of the others flickered through his mind, so many people, so many new suits.
He was tired, that was why it had to end. The thought scared him at first but he'd soon come around to the idea of giving himself up. It was the only way people would ever find out the scale of what he’d done. The police had only found two so far. Pathetic! Now he had it made, celebrity status, maybe a book...
‘Put your hands up and turn around slowly!’ a voice barked behind him.
He raised his hands, the innards of the human-suit slipping against the backs of his arms.
He rotated on the spot, careful not to let the amateurish stitches down the front split open. He smiled, the images of camera flashes and kinky fan letters juiced across his mind. He looked at the row of heavily armed police, their guns all pointing at his chest. One on the end removed his helmet, his face ashen, his gun quivering. ‘Caitlyn!’ he shrieked.
‘Shit,’ Arnold mumbled.
The gun went off. The future exploded.