The Collector (488 words)

"What's in the bottles Frank?"

Ah, so they have found the cellar. I knew it wouldn't take them all that long, now this is where it gets really interesting.

Before I flash officer Spencer my winning smile and tell him "no comment." I better introduce myself.

My name is Frank Clarkson, and I am about to be world famous, but lets not get too far ahead of ourselves here. Officer Spencer is asking me about my collection of bottles, so lets start there.

In the cellar of my house there are four wine racks, each has space for twenty five bottles, three are full and the fourth only has three empty slots left. I don't like wine, in fact I don't drink alcohol at all as I find drunks vulgar.

They are all waxed sealed and labelled by my own hand, they also appear to be empty at first glance. They aren't empty, they are full of the dying breaths of my girls.

My collection started entirely by accident, I was entertaining a lady of the night. I don't even remember her name it was that long ago. She was your usual sad case, drug addled, looking for the next hit type of girl. Not the classier lady I prefer these days but I was young and didn't know any better.

Anyway she died on me, I didn't kill her, those days were still yet to come. I leaned in to check if she was breathing just as she released her dying breath.

It felt like I inhaled her soul, it was beautiful.

After the high had passed I was of course left with her body, the sad empty shell of her former self. It was worthless and offensive, so I cocooned it in bin bags and threw it in the canal.

She wasn't found for months, any traces of me were washed away, no one mourned her.

After that I still saw my girls but the urge wasn't sexual anymore, I had tasted the divine, and I wanted more. On the anniversary of my first taste of life I treated myself to another.

I splashed out on a proper piece of class, she called herself an "escort" to me she was little more than meat. As my hands closed around her throat and her eyes rolled into the back of her head, I leant in close and sucked the life out of her.

It was everything I remembered it was.

After that I gained pace a little, that's the thing about addiction your last hit was never enough. 

It took me a few more to perfect my technique and even longer for the idea of bottling to hit home. Now I have quite the collection, and some truly beautiful vintages, 97 was a very good year.

So that is who I am dear reader, now if you excuse me I have an interview to give. . . 

"No comment." 

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