September 27th, 1888
I keep on hearing the police have caught me but they wont fix me just yet. I have laughed when they look so clever and talk about being on the right track. That joke about Leather Apron gave me real fits. I am down on whores and I shant quit ripping them till I do get buckled. Grand work the last job was. I gave the lady no time to squeal. How can they catch me now. I love my work and want to start again. You will soon hear of me with my funny little games. I saved some of the proper red stuff in a ginger beer bottle over the last job to write with but it went thick like glue and I cant use it. Red ink is fit enough I hope ha. ha. The next job I do I shall clip the ladys ears off and send to the police officers just for jolly wouldn't you. Keep this letter back till I do a bit more work, then give it out straight. My knife's so nice and sharp I want to get to work right away if I get the chance.
Jack the Ripper
George placed the strange note back down on the desk that his friend had been working at just a few moments before. He really wasn't supposed to read it until it was released to the public but his curiosity got the better of him.
He then sighed heavily and ran his fingers through his thick brown hair as he looked around at the detectives scuttling amuck, trying to convey theories over to one person or another while avoiding and ignoring the few reporters following close behind and asking questions. It was hectic and watching it made him feel dizzy so he felt that it was time to take a step outside.
Weaving in and out of the crowds to get out of the building was easier than he thought it would be – he hadn't run into anyone like he did trying to come in – and he thanked God for that. When he opened the door, he was greeted by the stiff, crisp air that hung into the darkening autumn afternoon as well as the scent of a fag burning nearby. Turning his head, he saw a man smoking furiously as he stared off into nothing.
"Afternoon," he said cautiously as he walked up alongside the unfamiliar gentleman.
"Indeed it is," the mystery man replied without even taking a look over at him.
"Mind if I, uh, join you?" George asked taking a few steps closer and rolling a cigarette for himself.
"Nah," he says absently and then hands over a match.
"Why thank you…uh…oh dear – what is your name?"
"William," the man replies with a dissatisfied shrug before he inhales deeply and then lets all the smoke curl out of his nostrils.
There was a pause for a moment as George studied William with a serious expression on his face. He had never seen this person before and he seemed rather calm in comparison the rest of the city while a serial killer was on the loose, so he decided to make a mental note of him and try to weasel this man into the suspect list as well.
William was a young man, no more than his early twenties as he looked, with sharp features and icy blue eyes. His hair was a dirty blond color and his clothing slightly shabby. He had a presence that made him seem as if he were from the royal family itself but his curt habit of smoking and his obvious distaste for socialization, made him seem he was from the bowels of Soho.
"Well, uh, William, I'm George," he said introducing himself before stretching out a hand for a shake, which William pointedly ignored.
He allowed another pause before pushing on and trying to start some sort of conversation between them. "So, have you heard about those mysterious murders going on?"
This caught William's attention as a little grin came to play on his lips. "How could I not? It's the talk of the town."
"Well indeed it is!" George said, also finding himself giving an unusual smile. "And everyone has their own little theories of who's done it with such queer reasoning though I do always enjoy hearing their thoughts on it. What say you?"
"Eh," William said apathetically, "I quite frankly don't care who's doin' it. Should just let 'em do it. Damn whores on every corner in the east-end beggin' for a shillin'. Needs a bit of cleanin' up."
George's brown wrinkled in distaste, "but even so, I don't believe anyone should have to die that way. It's gruesome!"
"I'm not tryin' to sound…" his voice trailed off and he shrugged as he pondered. "Well, I'm not sure of the word I'm lookin' for but honestly, mate, think it through. If enough of those little doorway dowagers get sliced, one of two things will 'appen; one, most of them'll stop comin' out and roamin' the streets or two, they'll all be dead.
"I got some friends – good friends – down on the east-end. I'd like to visit them just once without bein' stopped by one of those damn whores, blockin' my way, y'know?"
"I do understand your frustration," George replied with a sigh, "but you must understand that murder is murder. If someone is killed, it's a crime."
William took one more deep drag on his fag before tossing it to the sidewalk and grinding it out with the tip of his shoe. "Whatever" he said and stood up. "I'll see you around though…George?"
"Of course!" George exclaimed. "I do hope that you'll be able to visit your friends without any trouble very soon."
He was about to walk away when he turned around and asked, "ya think it'll happen within the next hour or so?" George wrinkled his brow and gave an inquisitive peer. "I have to go see them tonight. My friend's lady is ill."
"Oh, I'm so sorry to hear that…but I'm afraid that the streets still aren't being cleared by the, uh, ladies just yet – despite the police's urgings…"
"Their loss," William said with a shrug and then walked away into already dark streets.
"Indeed," George mused and then returned to the warmth of the station. "Their loss, but our gain…"
To Be Continued…