Ross The Psycho
"We captured him last night at his father's house," Officer O'Neil said, leading her down the dark hallway of the police station. "He hasn't said a word since we brought him in; he just sits there, sullen and looking at the wall. We were hoping you could get something out of him."
"Well, that would be my job," she replied.
"Yeah. We're hoping you can establish some kind of motive, or something."
Kelly Holden thumbed through the manila folder she had been given. Inside were pictures of the crime scenes and as much information as the police knew about what had happened. She listened to the sound of the door creak as Officer O'Neil pushed it open and stepped into the dark interrogation room before her.
"You have company, Malloy," Officer O'Neil said.
Sitting at a table, clothed in an orange jumpsuit, bonded with handcuffs, sat a small figure. He must have been only about twenty-four, but he had a look about him. He looked like he was both twelve and seventy-five at the same time.
"Hello, Ross," she said, taking a seat across from him. "I'm Doctor Holden. I'd like to talk to you."
"You had quite the day yesterday, didn't you?" Kelly said, flipping through the folder again.
"I kept busy," he said coldly.
Kelly gave Officer O'Neil a glance. "Could you leave us?"
"But, Doctor. I don't think that's…"
"I'll be fine."
The officer sighed. "It's your funeral," he mumbled, shutting the door behind him.
"Ross," the doctor said, again turning to him, "anything you say in here will just be between you and me. I don't know what possessed you to do these things, but I would like to help you."
"What possessed me, huh?" he said, giving a small laughing tone. "Nothing possessed me. I just finally got around to doing it."
"How long did you plan this?"
"All my life." He paused. "Well, not consciously, no. I've only been doing that for the last year."
He looked down.
She placed her smooth hand on one of his. It was cold. "It's okay. You can tell me."
He chuckled. "I remember one time, my dad traded my shoes to some hobo as a snack in exchange for a beer can that had Cindy Crawford on it. Obviously, the next day I didn't have any shoes for school so I had to turn to my sister. She decided it would be cute to give me a pair of two-inch heel black pumps. Of course the kids made fun of me, calling me 'Ross the she-male' and 'estrogen boy'. When I told my family about it, they had a good laugh about it. For the next three weeks." His scornful laugh echoed around the room.
Kelly was not sure what to say.
"I'm sorry," Ross said, calming down. "I got off on a tangent. That story just kind of stuck out in my mind. I have more; would you like to hear them?"
"Actually, Ross, I'd like to hear one. Do you have one about your brother…" she looked down in the folder, "…Ryan?"
He smiled wickedly. "Of course, there are lots of them about Ryan. Why, I bet Dad's got a million stories about Ryan. And a million stories about Tiffany. And a million stories about Ryan and Tiffany. And then a million stories about the hobo he sold my shoes to!
"My brother is an idiot. He's as dumb as a teenybopper with the camera from TRL on her. What more can I say?"
"You could tell me about yesterday. What you did, and why you did it."
"What I did, eh? That's an amusing little story. I set up a small cage, you know, like the kind they keep cats in at the kennel. Then I put a piece of tin foil in the back if it. I was going to put a silver dollar, but then I realized that tin foil was both cheaper and shinier. Ryan, of course, was attracted by its shininess and climbed right in. Next thing you know, he's screaming in trunk of my Taurus on the way to the river."
"Ross," Kelly said slowly, "why did you do that?"
"Why'd I do it? Because he was an idiot! He was stupid, irrational, and he screws up everything he touches! Where as I'm a brilliant, responsible, genius, he was a complete and total ignoramus! So of course, who did Dad trust more? Ryan, naturally."
Okay, I think I see a definite pattern emerging, the doctor thought. "Ross, it says here you strangled your sister to death with an electrical cord…"
"Yeah, I would have shot her, but then the blood would have ruined her pretty little dress Daddy bought her and that adorable little hair she has to keep juuuust right."
"Tell me about her."
He smiled again, nodding. "Tiffany Malloy, Daddy's little angel, God's gift to everybody. Perfect 4.0 student, profitable business woman."
"Wait. Is this the same Tiffany Malloy that…"
"…that owns Tiffanysoft?" Ross finished for her. "Yes it would be. I believe she also owns Tiffany's Coffee Hut, Tiffany's Restaurant Chain, Tiffany's Hair Care, Tiffany's Charities for Underprivileged Orphans, and Tiffany's. She also has a hotels on Baltic and Pennsylvania Avenues."
"I bet she got you lots of neat stuff, right?"
He laughed again, louder than before. "Oh, man, you're a riot! Besides the headache she gave me through her constant pocketing of Dad, the only thing I've ever gotten from her is a pain in the ass. No…wait… I take that back. Two Christmases ago, I got a card from her. She told me her chauffer had quit and asked if I would be interested in the job.
"I was close to her. Well, closer than I was to anybody else."
"It says here that she did not put up a fight. Did you drug her?" "Pssh. No. She just went off into some boring monologue about how this was going to make her a martyr for women everywhere. That and she didn't want to mess up her hair. Embalmers don't do the best of hair care, you know."
Kelly nodded, and again turned to the folder. "You were arrested at your father's house, correct?"
"But you didn't kill him."
"You...heh heh…you wouldn't believe me."
"Yes, I will."
"No, you'll think I'm crazy." He paused. "Well, crazier."
"I promise, whatever you say, I'll believe you."
"I had my gun pointed straight at his head. I was biting my lip, trying to stay cool. I kind of wanted to cry; I knew that if I killed him, I would never get what I have always wanted."
"His attention." He looked away from her. "I don't hate my father. I want him to die a horrible and agonizing slow death, and then burn in the eternal torments of Hell while thousands of demons ram his battered and broken body with electrified pitchforks while he is eaten by burning rats, but besides that, I wish him only the best."
"I see. So, you realized you loved your father; that's why you did not go through with it."
Ross bit his lip, and then said slowly, "No. No, that's not it."
"What was it, then?"
"Well, like I said, I had the gun pointed at his head. On the couch, surrounded by beer cans and porno magazines was Mr. Floppy."
"He's a stuffed bunny. I gave it to my dad when Mom kicked him out. I was just a kid back then."
"And he kept it all this time?"
"Because Mr. Floppy means a lot to him?"
"Ross, don't you see? His keeping of this bunny means that he really does love you."
Ross laughed again. "He didn't keep the bunny because he loved me. He kept it because he thought Mr. Floppy talked to him."
"We always thought he was a little out of his mind, but last night… Last night, I heard him too."
"Yeah. See, I started yelling at my father. Things were said, and he made me angrier. I shouted, "You love that damn bunny more than you love me!" and started to point my gun at it. Mr. Floppy…heh…he looked right at me and said, 'Don't do it Ross. I've got a family. Okay, so maybe we're not a family in the conventional sense of the word, but I love each and every one of my mistresses equally. What are they going to do when there's no longer a Floppy-Go-Round for them to ride?
"I was shocked, and I let the gun fall to the floor. I had to laugh; it was ridiculous, a talking bunny. Then it hit me that I had actually killed my brother and sister, and I just kind of lost it. I think I started crying." Ross could tell he was starting to lose it again.
"What did your father do, Ross?"
"He said, 'Come here, Ross,' and outstretched his arms. I know I started crying then as he hugged me for the first time in forever, if ever." Ross smiled, a tear in his eye, thinking of the memory.
Kelly felt happy just hearing of this beautiful moment.
"Then," Ross continued, "then he kneed me in the crotch, tied me to a stack of beer cans he had glued together for God-only-knows what reason, and made fun of me for crying like a girl until the police came.
"All because of that damn bunny."
"You think I'm crazy."
"No, no I don't. I'm very glad I met you, Ross," Kelly said, pushing her chair back, standing, and shaking his hand. "It was a very interesting talk."
She started to walk out the door, but his voice stopped her. "Dr. Holden," he said. "Thanks for believing me."
"No problem at all," she said, walking out of the room.
"So…?" O'Neil asked.
"He's insane. Stamp him up, wrap him up, lock him up; he's completely off of his rocker. He thinks a stuffed rabbit talked to him."
"A stuffed rabbit? Oh man, that's a new one."
Ross sat on the small cot, alone in the darkness of his cell, knees pulled up against his chest. He wondered why his life had to be so screwed up.
"Hey, Malloy!" a guard said. "You've got a visitor."
Ross felt his feet touch the ground as he started to walk over to the bars. Upon seeing the figure beyond them, he felt anger build up inside of him.
There was his father.
He was dressed in a brand new suit, and looked like he had on a Rolex. Under his left arm was Mr. Floppy.
"Hello, Ross," Jack Malloy said.
"Hello," Ross said coldly.
"Look, I just wanted to come by and say, 'thank you'. My phone has been ringing off the hook with offers to do talk shows, TV interviews, and low budget movies of the week that nobody will watch, but Lifetime will buy the rights to them anyway. You've made me a wealthy man."
"So, you're saying I did something good for you?"
"Yeah, I guess so."
"So… does that mean you're proud of me?" Ross asked, meekly, feeling his hope get up.
"Hell no! You murdered both my children in cold blood. I wouldn't be able to go on right now if it wasn't for all the money they're pouring down on me. No, I want you to die a slow death and burn in Hell for what you've done! Of course, I think we both know that the American justice system you'll probably just die for a martini, and burn yourself on the prison tanning beds, but that's life, isn't it?"
Ross sighed. Why did I even bother? "Wait…did you say both of your children? Dad, what about me? Ross?"
Jack stood in silence for a moment, before bursting into a fit of laughter. So much so, he had to wipe away a tear. "Oh man, that was a good one. Glad you can keep your sense of humor even in prison."
Ross collapsed, seating himself on the cold, murky floor. He had that feeling: the one where you want to laugh, because if you don't, you'll cry.
"Well, I have to go," Jack said, "I'm worn out from Meet the Press Meets the Bunny that Outwitted 'Crazy' Ross Malloy. Goodbye, Ross."
"Bye," Ross said, sarcastically. Under his breath, he added, "you no good son of a -"
Mr. Floppy looked back at the kid sitting on the floor. Well, technically he was an adult, but he still seemed like a kid. He always would. Then he turned to Jack, smiling and happy. He would have bit his lip, if he had teeth. "Hey, Jack," Mr. Floppy said slowly.
"I want to stay here with the kid for a while."
"Why would you want to do that?"
"I've never talked to a crazy person before," Mr. Floppy said, seriously. Then he and Jack both laughed.
"Well, okay, Floppy. Just call me if you need anything, okay?"
Ross could not believe it. He was coming back. Must not have gotten enough blows in the first time, he thought. "What do you want?" Ross demanded.
"He wants to stay with you," Jack said, pushing the bunny through the bars. Ross did not say anything. "Well, I'm gonna go. Bye, Ross. Bye, Floppy." He turned and walked out silently.
For the longest while, Mr. Floppy and Ross sat on the floor, silently staring at each other. Finally, Mr. Floppy broke the silence, "Look, are we having some kind of staring contest? If we are, you should know that my eyes are made of plastic; I can't blink."
"You can talk," Ross whispered, slowly and disbelievingly.
"Well, no, not exactly. I'm a stuffed bunny, Ross. My voice is all in your head. You're a fruitcake! Almost as nutty as your father."
"He's not my father. He never loved me."
"Stop that!" Mr. Floppy said, slapping Ross across the face. "What's with all this love crap anyway? What is love? I'll tell you what love is; it's a meaningless idea thought up by the Hallmark and the Hershey companies in order to force cheap, meaningless gifts upon the American public. Love is nothing. America wasn't built on love. America was built on good ol' fashion revenge!"
"Yeah, like you did last night! Good work, by the way. You did the American thing."
"Wait wait wait. You're saying, I did the right thing? I murdered two innocent people! I'm a monster!"
"Ross, let's face it. Ryan had his moment the second time he was on television describing what the twister sounded like. He was no longer a contributing member of society."
"With breasts like that it was only a matter of time before she started releasing pop singles. We don't need another Britney Spears; heck, we don't need the one we've got! You made America proud, and I'm proud of you for it."
"Wait…did you just say you were proud of me?"
"Uhh…maybe I did," Mr. Floppy said, seeing a weird look in the young man's eyes.
"Ahh! Let go! Let go! Let go!" Mr. Floppy shouted, struggling to push himself away from the boy's hug. "Mr. Floppy no like! I said stop it! Oh, Jesus," he said, looking at the kid, "are you crying again? Stop it, right now!" Seeing he was getting no where, and feeling Ross shake as he tightened his hug and smiled weakly, Mr. Floppy patted him awkwardly on the back. "There…there…" he said, looking around to make sure there was no one watching. "If you tell anybody I'm letting you do this, I'm going to rip out your throat. Mr. Floppy has an image to maintain, and that image does not include sensitivity."
The hug continued.
"Okay, look," Mr. Floppy said, "I get what you're getting at, but can we cut this out now? These convicts have radar and we're sending out the 'shower signal', if you know what I mean..."