Disclaimer: I can't even afford a season of the Mentalist on DVD... what on earth makes you think that I actually own the series?

He laughs and smiles, oh he smiles. Charming and golden, he performs to the crowd.

But beneath his smiles, his lies, is a cold and calculating mind; in his chest pulses a heart that beats for one thing above all else: blood. He's shrewd, but his grip on reality is tenuous, a thin, fine thread stretched almost to the snapping point.

He feigns humanity well, and people don't realize how close he totters to the brink. He smiles and he laughs, he smirks and he beams. And no one realizes that his soul is hard and bright and cold, honed and hammered to a fearsome perfection; wrought, like the rest of him, to bring him closer to his desired blood-vengeance.

Patiently, he waits for his target to present himself.

And he smiles.

A/N: I've always thought that Red John and Jane are almost two sides of the same coin. Obviously Jane doesn't go around killing innocents, but, similarly to Red John, he possesses a certain disregard for the rights and feelings of other people. Likewise, he's single-minded when it comes to getting what he wants. Yes, Jane cares about certain individuals, but for all we know, Red John also has specific people that he cares about. I'm by no means saying that Jane is as bad as Red John – for one thing, Jane is capable of guilt – but that doesn't mean that the two men don't share certain crucial characteristics. So, who is the subject of this piece? It's up to you.