Chapter One:

The young woman's body rolled down the hill, landing with a thump. He stood there, staring down at where she had landed. The body was naked, the red ribbon that he had tied in her hair waved in the slight breeze, the eyes were open and filmed over with death, her mouth open with her final scream. Smiling at the memory, he began taking his photos, feeling anxious as she laid down there with all the others. He knew it wasn't going to be safe here forever. No one had found them so far, searches and posters had been done, but the bodies remained. It ddn't pay not to be careful, though.

Leaving her, as well as the others, he picked his way through the country road, dropped his camera in the trunk of his sedan. The car was unnoticable, just a car. Anyone who saw it here would just assume the drive had stopped off to go take a leak somewhere. Slipping into the driver's seat, his reflection caught his attention in the rear view mirror so he tipped it so he could see it better. Clean brown hair reflected back at him, it was parted to the side, not too long nor too short. His face was decently pleasant, nothing standing out though. He was medium height, same in weight. He was rather on the nerdy looking side of things if anything.

There was nothing that screamed "Hey there, I just killed my fifth girl, look at me!"

Smiling, the all around average man smiled back. There was nothing creepy, nothing unnerving, in that smile. Absolutely nothing that would stick out. With a sigh, he looked down, seeing his hands. He would have to say they were one of his better features, nice, capable of many things ... including strangling the life out of his victims.

Starting the car, he pulled out on to the road carefully. He wasn't wanting to leave any marks if possible, didn't need anyone stopping to check, maybe finding something in his trail that he might have missed. And he sure didn't want to lose this spot yet. It was better for the girl, not just him. They were together here, nicer that they would have one another out there in thee dark. Truthfully, there was also the fact he didn't want to have to search out another spot as well.

Singing along with the radio, his mind went to his next pick. She was one of the prettier pieces he would have to admit. She had long hair and some pretty, big brown eyes that he swore sparkled when she would laugh. She was toll and slim. And he could not wait to taste her.

He had kept something from each of the girls. From one, a watch ... It sat under his pillow at night now, ticking away the seconds. His second victim had given him an earring. It was in green jade, a very unusal stone, meant for luck. Obviously it hadn't worked out so well for her ... but for him it had, leading him to his next victim, who had been her roommate. Third on the list was known for her voice, a very beautiful and talent one at that. She had sung for him on their long nights together, he even had tapes of it. Besides those, she'd given a ring. It was silver and turquoise in color, having some Indian design to it. It had been a present from her mother she had told him, and she had begged him to let her keep it. Fourth on the list ... Oh, she had been a handful. She'd fought him tooth and nail for as long as she could, as much as she could. And she had been a virgin to boot. How many times was he to find a girl in this day and age at 23 and still a virgin? Oh, this one had been quite a pleasure to tame, but then she'd become boring after awhile. She'd just cry and cry, it was a real drag. From her, taken a lock of hair. It sat, braided neatly with tiny red ribbons that held the ends together. It sat curled in a small glass bowl at his bedroom window. And finally,the one who had come to him. From her he had taken a tiny gold cross, the chain all twisted and tangled in knots. He had other plans for the cross itself though.

Wiping the blood from the golden gross with the end of his thumb, he lifted it to his nose, breathing in the smell of metal, the coppery scent of blood and imagined that he could still smeller her sweet scent clinging to it.

His drive took longer than it usually would but he'd taken his time, stopping at a gas station at the other end of town to get his gas, using a card. He'd put $10 in earlier, using cash then, at a gas station he had never used before. He'd kept his head turned, was friendly but not overly so, and made sure the place was busy when he'd gone in. No one would remember him.

He stopped at his normal grocers and picked up a gallon of milk and some cat food. His tomcat would be hungry and complaining by the time he finally got home.

As he was walking out, a woman walked in, her eyes on the purse that she was searching through. She bumped into him, reaching out a hand to steady herself and him.

"I'm so sorry," she said, looking up into his eyes. "Are you okay?"

His heart beat erratically, his mind raced. She was beautiful, when she smiled, her full strawberry colored lips pulled away from brilliant white teeth. Her hand, when she touched him, was soft and gentle, a caring hand, a tender hand.

"I'm, uh, fine. Are you okay?" he managed to ask around the lump that was his heart.

"Yes," she laughed. "I can be such a klutz." She looked over her shoulder towards the store and smiled at him distractedly. "Well, you have a good night now. I'm sorry if I hurt you." She waved as she turned, her short skirt bouncing along with her hair as she jogged towards the shopping carts.

His eyes followed, his mouth moving over words he wished he had said, witty words that would have left an impression upon her. She was so incredibly beautiful, bouncy and bubbly. He watched until she disappeared, slender tan legs moving athletically under her skirt, full hips swaying gracefully. He waited for the lust, for the call for blood to come from inside, but it was strangely silent.

Instead, he turned, making his way almost blindly to his car. Dropping the bag into the passenger seat, he sat behind the steering wheel, his eyes moving over every figure as they left. When he finally saw her, she was carrying her groceries in one arm, a bag of chips opened at the top. She munched on one as she reached an ancient red Camaro that had seen better and happier days. Pulling open the door with a loud screech that he could hear on his side of the lot, she climbed in, flashing her thighs as her skirt rode up.

He felt an ache start in his groin, felt his cock twitch as he watched her pull the door closed. She started the car and he saw her pet the dash, an affectionate little gesture he could almost feel himself as it caused his cock to stir to life in his pants. The inside of his mouth was dry and he reached for the mints he kept in the car, popping one in his mouth before starting his own car. He needed to see where this beautiful angel lived.

All other thoughts fled but of her. He had to know her name, had to find out where she lived and who she lived with. She was going to be his. But he wouldn't kill her. No, she was special, she would be his forever.

Her car pulled from the lot and he followed, wondering if she knew just how special tonight was going to be to her.

Following the Camaro wasn't difficult even in the heavy Friday traffic. Her right taillight was out, making it easier for him to keep her in view. He followed her, hanging back a few cars, managing to just slip past the lights before they turned red. When she pulled off the street and into the driveway of a medium sized ranch house, he kept going, finding a halfway deserted alley to park his car in about a block down.

Locking it, he walked back the way he had come, just an average man out for a walk on the street in the soft evening air. A hedge next to her house became his cover and he slipped into the backyard, stopping every few feet to listen intently for annoying dogs or people that might spot him.

His breathing sounded loud in his ears, but he knew it wasn't. It was excitement, the beginning of the hunt that had his heart racing with joy, the air whistling into his lungs. A light came on, the square shining brightly into the dark backyard, almost seeming to reach out to him with its aura of life and warmth. He slid past the bushes, noiselessly brushing through branches and stepping over sticks until he could see inside the room.

Buffy Summers pulled her antique Camaro into the driveway of the house that she shared with two other girls. For once the house was dark, the driveway empty and she could pull close to the back door instead of parking near the road. Both of her roommates had gone out of town to visit their families, to reassure them that they were okay. With the strange disappearances of five girls in town, everyone was a little spooked. Even she was taking more precautions then before, making sure the house was locked at night, carrying the pepper spray she'd been given when she'd moved away from home four years before. Yes, it was past its expiration date but she didn't have the funds to replace it and she hoped that just the threat might discourage someone who tried to attack her.

Walking into the darkened house took a little courage on her part, but she unlocked the door and flipped on the switch, walking into the brightly lit kitchen while laughing at her fears. Setting her bag down, she unloaded the groceries she had bought, milk, cereal, chips and bread, putting it all away before checking for messages.

There's been noting from Riley. She gave a disgusted laugh. She didn't know why she even bothered looking and wait anymore. Riley wasn't going to call. She had given him the ultimatum and she had lost. He was going to stay with his wife.

Well, at least she'd found out now before she'd invested anymore time or emotions into her relationship with him.

She picked up her mail from off of the counter where she'd dropped it, weeding out the junk mail and tossing it in the trash. With a sigh, she threw the rest in her purse and headed down the hall that led to her bedroom. A bath and then bed was all she could think about. Even though it was Friday, she had no date to speak of. She had turned down everyone with hopes that Riley would call. Now she felt disgust at herself that she'd even hoped he would call.

Dropping her purse onto the chair, she closed her bedroom door. Flicking on the light switch, she went to the closet and got out her robe. She kicked off her shoes, dropping down on the bed to rub her aching arches. Sixty hours this week on her feet, waiting tables, bussing them when their bus boy fell behind, being a prep cook. She was tired and ready for her two days off.

Standing, she pulled the polo shirt off over her head, pulling her hair through the neck hole, and then letting it fall to the floor, stretching a little as she did. Buffy unhooked her bra, letting it drop forward and off her shoulders, dropping it on top of her shirt. She ran her hands over the slight marks on her shoulders, rubbing them gently. It felt so good, being touched and caressed, even if it was by her own fingers.

Standing, she let her hand slide over the tops of her breasts and around the firm globes, shivering as her fingers nudged taut nipples. She squeezed them gently, watching herself in the mirror over her dresser. Her head tipped to the side, her hair caressing her back as it swung with the movement. She sucked one long nailed finger into her mouth, wetting it with her tongue and then ran it around her nipple feeling her areola crinkle and tighten. Throbbing tugs of sensation pulsed through her body and she grew damp and swollen between her thighs.

"Mmmm," Buffy groaned, pulling gently on her nipple to keep those sensations growing. Her head fell back, her eyes half closed and she caught her bottom lip between white teeth. It'd been too long since the last time Riley had been able to get away, weeks since she'd felt a man's body against her own. And though a vibrator was a survival tool for a woman, hers had been getting much too much of a work out recently.

She unzipped her skirt, wiggling it over her full rounded bottom and let it drop at her feet. Clad only in a tiny red silk thong, she stared at herself in her mirror. Her hands slid down her stomach one slipping under silk and sleek lace to slide over finely textured curls and delve in the hot, wet slit between her thighs. Her eyes closed in pleasure, her fingers brushing delicately over the tight knot of her clit, rubbing gently, flicking and moving it until her hips jerked in reaction and she could feel the growing swell of pleasure that heralded release.

Buffy's knees felt weak, her heart rate sped until she could hear it beating in her ears like a roaring tidal wave. She pretended it was his heartbeat, her dream man's. He'd come up behind her, seeing her dressed in such a scanty and provocative manner. His arms would wrap around her from behind, his hand cupping one breast, the other tipping her face to his so that he could find her lips. His mouth would be hot, she thought. And wet, his tongue finding hers as he took what he wanted from her. His hands would demand her surrender, they would take without asking. And she'd willingly give. He'd mold her flesh, move her the way he wanted her. His mouth would give pleasure and demand that she do the same. She'd be helpless against his pull, lost to his desires. She could almost see him behind her in the mirror, his dark head bent over, watching his hands as he touched her, as he took her.

Her fingers quickened their own pace, dipping into the soft heat of her, thrusting into her cunt, feeling the wetness of excited flesh before circling round the sensitive bud of her clit. She was so close, her breath hissed out of her mouth, low moans mixing with impassioned pleas to her fantasy lover to fuck her, fuck her harder. In her mind she willed him to look up, to watch them in the mirror, to take her while he watched their flesh cleave and part. She wanted to see his eyes.


A startled shriek escaped her lips as she saw the reflection of eyes in her mirror, eyes that were in the shadowed face of the man who was looking into her window. She whirled, reaching down to pick up her shirt and hold it in front of her as her eyes met his for one long second.

Then he turned, and she heard the crashing of garbage cans as he ran. A car door slammed and she hurried out of the room, still clutching her shirt, trying to see if she could see a make of car or a license plate, anything. By the time she reached the window, he was gone.

She ran for the phone and called the police.

A half an hour later, Buffy told her story to a stone faced policeman. She wore a knee length, kimono styled heavy satin robe in brilliant jade green, holding the stiff collar closed with her fist at her throat as she gave the details to him once again.

"I was getting undressed. I was going to take a bath. I ... I saw eyes in the mirror and turned and he just kept staring at me. I think I screamed and he ran. I tried to get a look at his car but I wasn't quick enough." Buffy looked up at the cop, her face turning red as she skipped over a few tiny details.

Officer Gates looked at the beautiful girl, his eyes taking in the blush. He knew she was leaving something out and had a good idea what it was. A sadistic side of him was urging him to force the details out of her. He opened his mouth and his partner came in, carrying an evidence bag.

"We got footprints in the soil outside her window and I found this caught on some shrubs out there." He held up the bag which contained a small scrap of red ribbon. "Is this yours ma'am?" Officer Miller asked.

"No, I don't think it is." Buffy wrapped her arms tighter around her, more than a little freaked out. The man had been in her yard, watching her undress. Watching her ... masturbate. She felt invaded, almost raped, her privacy taken from her by one man.

"I also found a small. .. ah," Officer Miller hesitated as if searching for the right word, "biological sample."

Buffy closed her eyes, silently wishing she could ignore this nightmare. "You mean, he jerked off out there watching me, right?"

"Yes," he answered, his face was as red as hers. "We'll take a sample, see if his DNA's in our system. It'll take a while to do though, ma'am. I'm sorry to say, this technology isn't fast."

"So what the hell do I do in the mean time?"

"Keep your doors and windows locked, keep your blinds down, your drapes closed. If you have any more problems, call us and we'll get right out here. I'll see about having a cruiser come through your neighborhood for the next few days." Forrest Gates put his pen back in his pocket and stood. "Ma'am, most of the time, these perverts are just looking for a thrill. You scared him away, you saw him. He won't come back here. He'll be looking for easier pickings. If you follow what we said, you'll probably never see him again."

Buffy felt a chill shudder through her. Every cop drama, crime movie and detective show she'd ever seen came back to haunt her. "I do nothing, you do nothing, and ... What if he comes back?"

"Then you call us."

It all sounded so simple. But it had taken them fifteen minutes to get here the first time.

Buffy held back her sigh of disgust and showed them the door, watching as they walked around the side of the house before she closed and locked the door. For once she wished her roommates were home.

She sat in the living room and waited until the police left before going into her bedroom. Then she stared out the window at the empty back yard. She'd looked out here so many times in the year she'd been living here and had seen it as just a yard, a place to have parties, to spend time with her ex when he could get away. Now it had a different feeling to it, a dirty, almost evil feeling.

She reached over and pulled on the cord that lowered her blinds, blocking out her view. She drew the curtains closed and only then felt a modicum of safety.

Forrest and Miller stood next to their cruiser, a small evidence kit in Graham's hand.

"She said she heard a car, shouldn't we check the neighbors, see if they saw a strange car in the area?" heLangdon asked, putting away the sample he'd taken.

"No, you can't go riling folks up just because some girl says she saw something. We got the samples and the pervert is probably long gone and won't be back. Shifts almost over, call it in and have them get someone to drive through a couple of times." Forrest took off his hat and slid behind the steering wheel, thinking about the dinner that his wife had promised him tonight. And maybe if he was lucky, dinner would come with dessert.

A week passed slowly, a week in which she felt as if she were being watched. She couldn't see anyone, she just had that hair raising feeling on the back of the neck suspicion. It happened at work, at home, even at the grocery store. She'd turn the corner and feel him watching her. Her eyes scanned faces continually, searching eyes to look for recognition. Or a knowledge that he'd seen her that night. She jumped at little things, couldn't sleep. Her appetite was off.

And her blinds stayed down, her curtains drawn.

"Buffy, you're losing it," Nina said to her one day as she was getting ready to leave for work. She was staring out the front window, her eyes scanning the street before she walked out to her car. "One pervert and you're ready to jump out of your skin at the least little thing."

"Yeah, you're not sleeping nights either," Eve, her other roommate chimed in. "I can here you pacing in your room at night. Girl, you need to get laid."

Nina had laughed even as she gave Eve a dirty look. "You think the sun and the moon revolve around a man's penis."

"Yeah, and your point is?"

"Nympho," Nina accused without any heat in her voice.

"Would you two stop, I'm fine. I'm just having a little problem with sleeping." Buffy stepped between the two even though she knew they both got off on digging at each other.

"Okay, but you should go see my doctor. He could set you up with these killer sleeping pills. One of those and the world could explode, you wouldn't hear it," Nina gave her a wink as she drank the last of her coffee. "I could call and get you an appointment."

With a deep sigh and another look out the window, Buffy picked up her purse. "Yeah, okay. I guess it couldn't hurt."

The two friends watched as their roommate left the house, hurrying to her car and looking in the backseat before she opened the door.

"She really is losing it," Nina said, shaking her head.

"Yeah," Eve agreed. She smiled. "When she's institutionalized, I got dibs on her room."

"No fair!" Nina said, throwing the last of her toast at her.

Neither saw the blue four door pull away from the curb where it had been parked, slipping in behind Buffy as she drove away from the house.