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Under The Ground 1: Serial Killer

July 12, 2010

He sat down opposite me at the end of the row, and took a small tin of vegetable salad from his thin plastic bag. Slowly and carefully, taking pains not to tear the labelling, he peeled off the price tag (69p) and stuck it onto the blue pole. Replacing the now unpriced tin in his bag, he pulled out an identical item. Slowly and carefully, taking pains not to tear the labelling, he peeled off the price tag (69p) and stuck it onto the blue pole. Then he did it again. By the fourth tin, I had exchanged sideways glances with the people sitting next to me and lengthways glances with the people sitting opposite me. Then he did it again. Slowly and carefully …  And again. By now the pole had acquired a neat bulge of sticky 69p price tags. I thought about damage to tube property and workload for the cleaner. His bag was clearly full of small tins of vegetable salad. I thought about his diet. His intestines. Glances had turned to smirks and bemused shakes of heads. Then I realised what disturbed me. I could see cupboards in his bare flat, filled with meticulous neatness with countless tins of vegetable salad. Minus price. The man was a serial killer.

From → Under The Ground

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