As we knelt over the latest body, I caught a flash of movement out of the corner of my eye. I looked over at my partner just in time to see a look of shock and pain explode across his face. He let out a gasp and slumped forward, leaving me looking at the knife that may have killed him. Blood dripped off the long, thin blade. Joe’s blood. The man I’d worked beside for nine years. My eyes traveled down the arm and up to meet the eyes of The Knife Man.

“I’ve got just one question.” I asked the man I’d been hunting for two months.

It was a mistake to look him in the eyes. He looked like a regular guy. Like your janitor, or the guy stocking shelves at the supermarket. Until he smiled. Then his face turned evil. No better way to describe it. And those eyes, they trapped me like a mouse frozen in front of a viper. I never even saw the knife dart forward, but I sure felt it when the blade buried itself in my left shoulder, slicing upward, severing who-knows-what and leaving my left arm useless.

I fell back on my butt and stuck my right hand under my coat to try to stop the flow of blood. He just squatted there over Joe, waiting for my question.


He smiled that smile again. Creepy.

“Have you ever done it? I mean, you’ve shot a guy, all you cops shoot people. But have you ever stabbed someone? The feeling of the blade cutting through meat and gristle. The feel of warm blood flowing over your wrist. Their last gasp…”

I pulled the gun from my left armpit and shot him in the shoulder of his knife hand. He fell back on his ass. The shock and pain were on his face now. That, and a question. I figured I’d answer it for him.

“Ever since I got a feeling someone was following us, I only drew a gun with my left hand. I was hoping you’d take the bait. Looks like you did. But, thing is, I’m not left-handed.”

I shot him in the other shoulder, just in case. He fell flat on his back. I called 911.

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