Note: While this is a work of fiction, the story is loosely based on the horrific killing of a young boy at the hands of a 19-year old boy  in Herne, Germany. 

Chapter I:   Two weeks before the murder of Timmy Jones

The following story depicts the murder of nine year-old Timmy Jones, who was murdered by his neighbour, nineteen year old Ted Perry, on March 20th 2016 in Barry, TEN. The story starts two weeks before the horrendous act of violence occurred…

March 7th, 2016

A normal day in Tennessee came to an end. The sun had begun to set and the fields before the town began to look slightly orange as Detective John Neal drove home from work in his black and beige State Trooper. He could already see the houses along Main Street when he drove through Hickory White towards the idyllic small town of Barry. A small village of only 500 inhabitants, your typical middle-american village: Not more than three streets connected the entire village (One leading to Hickory White in the north, the other to Oakland in the south, where he had come from. The other road led into the fields, where most of the farmers lived.), a town that consisted of hard-working, middle-class people, simple people, good christians that went to church every Sunday.

Barry had two shops, which had been a lot compared to other towns in the area: A butcher, run by the Millers, who had established the butcher shop in the early 1880s and it had been in family hands since , and a department store, run by Mr.Hanson, a Vietnam veteran, who had returned home and had built this store for the elderly people who could not get to Arlington or Memphis. Now an old man himself, his store solely existed for travellers, who needed something on their way to Memphis and old people who came in for a chat.

There was nothing exceptional about Barry, the only building that really stood out was the small church in the centre of the town, a 17th century wooden church, recently reconstructed two years ago. All three roads that ran through Barry crossed at the church, so it was impossible to miss it.

The church was usually the place to meet and chat after service. Most of the villagers attended Reverend Thompsons services, a quite young priest, but very ambitious. He lived in the small green house next to the church and spent his days with prayer and visiting the elderly and teaching the young children about the Bible. The children loved him, as did Johns three-year old two daughters, Trisha and Meg.

They usually spent thursday and friday afternoons in the church together with the other young children, a replacement for a kindergarten , as they were too young for kindergarten yet, but it gave his wife, Agnes, an opportunity to continue her work.

Agnes worked as a chemist for a global operating company in Memphis, but because she had to take care of the children, she was forced to work from home, but the Bible lessons gave her  the opportunity to return to Memphis for at least two days a week and continue her experiments in the lab. She was the most ambitious person John knew. When she started something, she became obsessed with it and wouldn’t stop until she had achieved her goal. Sometimes that had meant spending nights and days in the lab without eating, sleeping or leaving the lab. She had always been like that, even back when he had first met her .

She had moved to Arlington when she was sixteen because her father had gotten a job at a sales company in Memphis. They had ended up in the same English class and he had instantly fallen in love with her. He had not been able to stop thinking about  her shoulder-long blonde hair that had framed her  round face and those smiling eyes, that had screamed “Girl next door”, but it had taken him  a year to ask her out to prom. She hadn’t been into him at first, she had said he was too good for her, captain of the football team and extremely popular, but he had insisted and she had ultimately said yes. It had been the best months of his life. While he had not understood any word she said about her love for science, he had supported her with it as it had made her happy and he had wanted her to be happy. He had wanted to marry her, have kids with her and live out  their days in Arlington for the rest of their lives, but he had to wait. Agnes had wanted to go to College, study Chemistry at Tennessee State in Nashville, while he had wanted to stay in Arlington and become a police officer. He hadn’t been very happy with her going away so far, but ultimately it hadn’t been his decision to make.  While she had vowed to return and get married, he had not really believed it was possible. Surely, she would have met someone more intelligent than him, someone she could have been able to share her science with. But ultimately, she had returned after earning her degree and getting a job at AZO Chemistry in Memphis.

John could not have believed his eyes when she had stood on his doorstep, she had looked even prettier than before, more womanly, more curvy. They had gotten married half a year later, after five years being separated. He, of course, had not spent these years alone, while he had never entered a relationship in that time, he had slept with many women over these five years. While he had not particularly enjoyed it, he had felt as if he betrayed Agnes. He had never been able to resist the urge to fuck. It was a primal instinct he had told himself. Even Jesus had flaws, he sometimes told himself.

John was a good christian,  at least people thought of him that way. He never missed church and raised his children to be good christians, as had his parents done for him. Probably the only thing, they had done right for him…

His parents had been circus performers, touring the state as a clown and as a lion tamer. They had been successful at first, but after a fire had killed most of the circus animals, the circus had never recovered. Still full of enthusiasm, they had arrived in Barry and had wanted to start a circus in the village. The idea had bombed and had gotten next to no visitors. At that time, John had been born, and his parents, deciding not to tour with a baby, had settled down in Barry. John’s father had worked at the Snider Farm, taking care of the cattle, but he had never earned enough to provide his family with a good life, so mother had to start working too. She had worked in Millers butcher shop, but neither her nor dad had been happy with their work and it had slowly began to eat away at them.

Dad had started drinking when John was only three and he would get really angry sometimes. When he had his moods, he would take off his belt and began to beat John and his mother. As a result of the beatings, mom had begun drinking too.

John had spent his childhood mostly on the streets of Barry, playing with the other kids and trying not to be home as much as possible, for home had meant beatings and seeing his parents passed out on the floor.

Whenever he had nowhere to go, he had fled to Pastor Manning, Reverend Thompsons predecessor, who had told him about the Bible and had shown him the way of god. He had been a good, kind, old man who always had an open ear for the problem of his community. John had spent so much time with the Pastor that he had wanted to become a priest himself when he was eleven.

But then, at age twelve, his father had passed away, a result of the alcoholism, and soon after, his mother had passed away too. Now an orphan, he had moved to his uncle Darin in Arlington, who had been a police officer. John had admired Darin, the complete opposite of his father, kind, just and funny. He had shown John how to shoot with a gun and had taken him on patrol with him, whenever he had picked him up from school. That’s when John had discovered he wanted to be a police man. For the first time, he had the chance to help people like him, who had endured pain and it had made him happy.

John had started his police training at Oakland Police Department, Uncle Darin had helped him get the job and he had been working there for twenty years. It was a mundane job most of the time, lots of paperwork, smaller crimes. Mostly a break in or two per month, or traffic accidents. Nothing terrible seemed to occur here and nobody could have imagined the horrific events that were about to happen in two weeks…

John crossed the town sign and drove down Main Street, the church right ahead of him he drove past the various working-class houses that led to the church. A few people were on the street, going to the department store which was to his right, a few hundred yards from the church, some pensioners where sitting in rocking chairs on their porch, watching the people on the street. He turned right at the Church into Franklin Street and drove down two hundred yards before turning right into his driveway. Agnes’ car, a brown Skoda Octavia was already in the driveway. While she was home, the kids were still at the

Bible lessons, so they would have some much-needed alone time.

Agnes job and the kids had basically made it impossible for the two to fuck. Either the kids were around or Agnes had been to tired from work. John couldn’t remember the last time they had sex, must have been months ago.

He left his car and entered his house, a big working-class house with two floors, three bedrooms and one bathroom on each floor. He entered the hallway and turned left into the living room, where Agnes was lying on the couch. Exhausted from work, supposedly. She had a book resting on her chest. John watched it move up and down her breasts as she breathed. He loved those breasts, even more so, now that they had gotten bigger during pregnancy. He moved to her and gave her a kiss on the mouth. She woke up.

“Had a good day?”, she asked him, still tired.

“Quiet, as usual”, he replied, trying to kiss her again, but she denied him.
“I’m tired, darling. I need some sleep before the kids come back” The usual answer. “Maybe next time” She had said that for months now. It began to make him frustrated.

“Is something wrong with me?”, he asked.

“No, I’m just tired, baby. let me sleep” that was not the right answer to that question. She closed her eyes again and continued to sleep. Same procedure as every day. John was annoyed, but he knew that waking her up now wouldn’t help his cause, so he decided to call Plan B: Olivia Jones.

Olivia lived a bit outside, close to the farmhouses and worked as a journalist for the Arlington Post. She was married to Kevin Jones, a succesful car salesman who spent most of his week in Memphis and was only home for a few hours on weekends. It wasn’t a fulfilling marriage for her and she would have left him years ago if it hadn’t been for their nine-year old son, Timmy. It was technically John’s son, but her husband didn’t know and Olivia had begged John for years to leave his wife for her, but John always had to refuse. Barry was a small town and small town folk didn’t take these things lightly. Especially in the eyes of the highly christian people, adultery was the biggest sin you could commit on earth, so they stayed with their agreement that they were just fuck-buddies and it worked. Whenever John couldn’t get Agnes, he went over to her and they would spent a few hours together. John knew it was wrong, but he was a simple man and he had his urges from time to time.

He got back to his car and got out his phone and called “the pizza service”, his codename for Olivia in case Agnes would have questioned the many calls. The phone began to dial and he waited eagerly for her to pick up. After three rings, she finally picked up.

“Hey, you got time?”, he asked her casually. There was silence for a moment.

“Sure, you wanna come over right now?”, she replied in her high voice, a move she made to hide her thick southern accent, which she thought would make her sound less credible, but she couldn’t fully hide it.

“I’ll be right there”, he said and hung up. Starting his engine and pulled out of the driveway. He drove towards her house near the forests, but parked a few miles north, in an empty field. Making it less suspicious than parking directly at her house for hours. He began to walk towards her house, a white wooden house with a big front porch and a large driveway for his big pick-up truck and her Fiesta. There were only two other houses on the way to her house: Mr Petrelli, a truck driver, who was on the road most of the time, either from work or to visit his new girlfriend in Missouri. The two had met at a biker bar in Dallas and had been on tour in their free time. He was only home a few days a week and that his house reflected that: His front garden was dirty, most of the few flowers were withered and the colour on his once grey house began to fade away slightly to a more white look. That was the house to Olivia’s right, on the left was the Perry house.

The Perry’s were a pretty normal american working class family: Mr Perry worked as a car salesman in Memphis and was away for most of the week, his wife was a history teacher at Arlington High School, the school John had gone to when he was younger. Mrs Perry had started her work when he had been a senior, so he had only known her briefly as a teacher, but he had heard many good things about her. Most of her students described her as a kind but demanding teacher who would always try to get the most out of her students. John’s impression of her at church confirmed that. She was very active in church and helped organise flea markets or travels for the church. Both of the Perry’s were very devout and pious and never missed a service.

They also had a teenage son, Ted Perry,  he must have been somewhere between seventeen or nine-teen, a senior at Arlington High. He was what most people would call a nerd: skinny, glasses and not very tall, maybe 5”9 at best. He spent most his time in his room, probably playing video games and wasn’t really known to be very popular. John couldn’t recall seeing him with friends very often, the only person he knew he had contact with was Gaten Fisher, a sophomore at Arlington High, also kind of a loner. The two were said to play video games together when their parents were in church.

Mrs Perry objected to that, as she had complained about it a few times after service,  but she said that she had to accept  the fact that he wasn’t too keen on being a good christian. Apparently, he didn’t believe in god at all, but a lot of people didn’t, so that’s not a problem with John.

John walked towards Olivia’s front yard and saw Ted in his front yard. He was playing with a wooden sword and was beating up a cardboard cutout of some sort of video game character, John didn’t really know anything about video games, never even played one in his life, so he had no idea what character that was.

He was really engaged in beating it up and John couldn’t help himself but laugh a little at the odd site. Not only did it look really childish, his appearance wasn’t helping him at all: He was short and very skinny, almost like a skeleton, his short, blond hair paired with the round glasses made him look like a skinny man dwarf, pretending to be a man. It looked ridiculous.

When John came close to Olivia’s door, Ted seemed to have noticed that John was there and turned around. John smiled at him and waved his hands.

“Good day, soldier!”, he told him, but the boy didn’t greet back. He just looked at him, a bit angry and then got back to beating his cardboard. Weirdo, John thought. It’s not  a sin to greet someone, he thought as he pressed the doorbell. Olivia opened the door immediately. She looked lovely. She was short, around 5”3 or 5”4 and very slim. She was wearing a tight blue shirt which showed off her fit body and hourglass shape. It also gave her small breasts some wonderful shape and made them look bigger. John couldn’t wait to tear it off her, as she had obviously chosen it to impress him. He looked into her bright smile, her teeth, while slightly crooked at the front, it still made her smile very lovely. She had long brown hair with blond streaks in it,which made her look at least five years younger. Her face didn’t look thirty either, she had an oval face, well tanned with a small nose and stunning brown eyes which seemed to look sparkly at times. He loved those eyes.

He smiled at her and said: “Everything, ok, Ma’am?”

The boy next door was still around, so they pretended that he was on duty during his visit. It was cheesy, but it seemed to work as no one had suspected them of adultery during their ten year affair.

“Yes, Detective. So, are you ready for our interview now?” He smiled.

“Yes, Ma’am. May I come in” The dialogue the had chosen was cheesier than in some porn movies, but it was fun. She smiled and let him in.

*************

Detective Neal was fucking Ms Jones again… Ted Perry thought. It was pretty obvious, but somehow none of the villagers had put two and two together. But Ted had known for a while. He had always suspected that there had been something wrong whenever  Detective Neal came to Ms Jones’ house. He would usually arrive whenever her son, Timmy, was at school and or in today’s case at a friend’s house. Detective Neal would usually stay for a few hours and then leave, which wasn’t that suspicious given that he did regular visits with the people in town, but the frequency in which he visited Ms Jones had made Ted suspicious and curious. So, when he was fifteen he had decided to spy into the house to see what they had been doing there. He had walked around the house and had looked into the windows on the front floor, but he couldn’t see them. Which was weird because he knew that the only rooms on the second floor were the bedrooms and a bathrooms. In the backyard, the Jones’ had erected a tree house for little Timmy in a big oak tree which stood a few yards away from the house, but made it possible to look into the windows of the bedroom. Ted had grabbed some binoculars and had climbed into the tree house and had watched into the bedroom. Detective Neal and Ms Jones had been in there, completely naked and they had fucked each other. Ted had loved that sight. Seeing Ms Jones naked had been a pleasure for his eyes as he had dreamed about her before. She had an amazing body, like an hourglass, a very flat stomach, achieved from hours in the gym and small, but attractive breasts with tiny dark nipples that had rocked up and down as Neal had penetrated her. He had continued to look at them, zeroing in on Ms Jones’ body and her face as she had moaned in pleasure. It had aroused him greatly, even to this day, he still uses the memory to wank whenever he feels the need for it.

They hadn’t noticed, as they had been too busy with themselves and Ted had left after he had witnessed her climax, imaging the sound of the moan she must have made as he had looked at the look of pleasure and joy on her face. She had been on his mind ever since and he wanted to have her the same way Detective Neal had her. But he also knew that she was not into him, not many girls were. They just saw him as an ugly geek.

No, hot girls only wanted hot guys, guys with chiselled jawlines and a muscular body and six-pack – like Detective Neal, or the guys on the football team. Girls wouldn’t want to waste a single thought on a guy like him – skinny, short, glasses, acne on his left cheek and a wonky eye. Personality did not seem to count for these women, otherwise he would have had a girlfriend, or two by now. He was very funny, but it seemed most people didn’t get his jokes. He liked to joke about gaming and comic book characters, as that was the world in which he felt comfortable in. Ted loved to be a hero, he loved to fight for the right thing and go on an adventure in a galaxy far away from here.

But reality was different and it always hit him hard again and again: He wasn’t the muscular God of War or the man of steel, he was a skinny dude in the middle of nowhere, who was extremely intelligent, but apparently not intelligent enough to make friends. He only had one real friend, apart from his online friends, Gaten Fisher. A sophomore who he played Legend of Zelda and Magic, the Gathering with. Gaten had an enormous amount of Magic cards and had a massive comic book collection. From Arrow to rare Wolverine comics, he had them all, so Ted spent a lot of time at his house, reading the comics and trading cards with him. They mostly did that when their parents were at church, so they had the house to themselves for a while.

Gaten was raised by a single mom, who had an online business, knitting hand-made scarfs and hats. Her husband had been killed in Afghanistan a few years ago and she had used her knitting talents as a way to cope with the loss. Gaten had not taken it that well, while always a loner by nature, he had tried to isolate himself from most of his former friends. He had needed a place to hide, he had told Ted once, after a particular bad night, where he had not been able to stop crying for hours.

Ted thought it was pathetic, mourning that long seemed stupid to him. Then again, Gaten was not the smartest anyway. He was mostly average at school and didn’t do anything particularly well, nor particularly bad. He was a slow learner which had frustrated Ted at times. He had offered to study with him, to teach him some things, as Ted was a straight A student, but Gaten couldn’t follow his teachings and Ted had felt that his intellect was wasted on him.

But since they didn’t have anybody else, they continued their friendship and Ted enjoyed going through his comic book collection. Ms Fisher on the other hand, wasn’t too keen on Ted. She thought that Ted would isolate Gaten, that he would prevent him from making new friends…

He didn’t like her very much, he saw the disgust in her eyes whenever she looked at him, he knew what she was thinking: “Why can’t my son hang out with cool kids” She blamed him for it, and she was partially right about it. Gaten had tried to make friends with people in his classes, but Ted couldn’t have it. They weren’t what Gaten needed, they weren’t like them. They had a connection based on comic books and gaming, the people he had tried to befriend were probably so dumb, they could barely read. They had been into sports and stuff like that. Nothing for Gaten, Gaten typically was out of breath just by walking up some stairs and his body was far from athletic: He was tall and fat, around 290lbs probably, so why would the football people even be interested in him? He hadn’t even known the rules of football, so why should he do it. It was ridiculous, he would have only made a fool out of himself.

Ted continued to fight his Lex Luthor cardboard cutout with his wooden sword. He would have loved to have a real sword, but dad wouldn’t allow it. Why would you want a sword boy? Time to arrive in the twenty-first century, he had told him. What did he know? Ted loved sword fighting, he had studied the different techniques on the internet and practised as often as he could. Sometimes he would take Gaten as his sparring partner, but not often as he didn’t have a sword and didn’t enjoy getting beaten with a stick.

For some reason, Gaten also didn’t understand why he couldn’t fight with Ted’s plastic replica of Links sword from Legend of Zelda. One day he had actually taken it to defend himself and had almost put a dent in it. 150 bucks Ted had paid for it and it was almost ruined by  an imbecile. Ted had refused to talk to Gaten for weeks after that incident. But ultimately had decided to forgive him. Mom had talked him into it.

The poor woman couldn’t stand to see her boy alone. Sometimes mom almost seemed obsessed with trying to find him some friends. She taught history at his high school, which made things really awkward sometimes. He  would constantly see her in the hallway, seeing who he talked to, what he did. Sometimes he felt like he was under constant surveillance. Of course she only wanted the best for him, but she did not realise that what she thought was good for him, sometimes really wasn’t.

From time to time she would introduce him to some of her students and wanted him to help them study, since studying came easy to him it seemed like a good way for him to connect with other people, but Ted hated being a teacher.

It wasn’t that he didn’t like teaching people things, he loved to share his wisdom with others, but he wasn’t very good at teaching it. When he started talking to people he barely knew he started to sweat and wasn’t able to think clearly. And then there was his biggest issue with himself: His voice. He hated the sound of it, high and shaky, like a bird coming into puberty. Sometimes people had laughed when he had to do a presentation in class and that humiliation had only made it worse. As a result he sometimes began to stutter and his voice got even weaker. Sometimes he had nightmares about public speaking. Whenever he had a presentation coming up, he wished he could lock himself up in a dark room and hide from his responsibilities.

His mother had suggested he should join drama class to boost his self-confidence, but he had never signed up for it. He had watched one of the lessons from outside and it had seemed terribly embarrassing: The students had to squeal like pigs while rubbing each others backs. He wouldn’t want to be part in such activities. So unsanitary, he had thought. He hated it when people touched him or whenever he had to touch someone. The feel of someones hand on his body irritated him, almost scared him. It made him so uncomfortable, he would try to leave as fast as possible.

So instead of working on his self-confidence, he preferred to be in places where he was confident: Video games. He could text and voice chat with people from all over the world without stuttering, after all he was a skilled gamer and knew how to play. He sometimes altered his voice with a voice changer app he had found. It made him sound a lot deeper and he loved the sound of it, so manly, so powerful. He wished he could use the app in real life too, but it would just be silly, a skinny real life Bane.

But his favourite thing about the internet was that he was accepted there. People didn’t judge him for his looks, as no one could see his face, and even if they could, they probably didn’t look better anyway. All that counted there were your gaming skills, and boy was Ted excelling there. Sometimes he played with the idea of going pro, joining the ESL, but he was sure that the pro gaming world was too competitive for him.

Nevertheless, it would be cool to be a progamer. The pro gaming sport had evolved from nerds in their basements to arenas full of fans who cheered for those nerds. They even made decent money. Ted had read that some of the stars of the industry made up to  $454,544. And they had hot chicks too, probably mostly gold diggers, but these nerds (who looked similar to him), skinny dudes with glasses, had girl friends that some Hollywood stars would be jealous about. They were living the good life and Ted would have loved to have a piece of that cake. But he knew his future wasn’t too bleak either. Straight-A’s meant he could go to an elite university and study to become a game developer, which didn’t pay too badly either.  He already had an offer from Yale and one from UCLA, but he wasn’t sure where to go yet. Yale would give him an amazing education, but it would also mean a lot of stress, lots of studying, UCLA would be a bit easier for him…

He had decided to ask some of his internet friends for help, slingshot43 aka Benedict from Germany had advised him to go to UCLA, as he had planned a year abroad there. The idea of meeting some of his online friends intrigued him, he often wondered how they would look like. It probably would be awkward because he knew so much about them, but actually didn’t know anything at all. He knew that Benedict was a twenty-five year old german law student, he had said that he lived in a town called Augsburg, which must be quite small compared to american mega cities. They played Call of Duty together and he knew that he had a girlfriend, who was living with him, but she wasn’t into gaming so he didn’t know her. They often talked about the latest gaming news, as he also was very interested in video games and computers and sometimes talked about school. He was very busy with university, but still spent half his nights playing video games. He said he needed it to relax from having to study all day and Ted related to that. It calmed him down when he was angry and made him feel better when he was sick.

He often imagined how Benedict looked: he had a pretty average voice, not too high, but not very low either. It was a pretty neutral voice, definitely not a good radio voice, without much edge to it, so he imagined Benedict as a pretty average guy too. Maybe 6 foot tall, well fed (he often ate late night pizza when they played) and a little moustache (he didn’t know why he imagined him with a moustache, but he liked a moustache, so he imagined he had one), probably wearing glasses and medium long, curly hair.

He probably didn’t look like that at all, but there was only one way of finding out: Going to UCLA to meet him. But it would also mean revealing himself to Benedict, revealing the lie he had established. He wondered how Benedict would react to his real voice, whether he would accept him for who he really was, how he really sounded or if he would laugh. He would probably laugh. He would probably be just like the others, so going to UCLA would only shatter Benedicts image. Ted knew Benedict couldn’t be like he imagined him, so he would only disappoint him. DrLECTER_666 had told him the same.

Dr.LECTER_666 was someone he had met on the dark web, his secret passion. He didn’t know Dr.LECTER_666s real name, he wouldn’t tell, obviously, since being on the dark web was quite dangerous, you could literally get arrested for accessing it, so no one gave out specifics about themselves. All he knew was that Dr.LECTER_666 was visiting chat rooms in the dark web and gave advice for people.

Ted had first found out about the dark web from a news report about a man who had sold illegal weapons in the dark net and it had immediately fascinated him. He began researching it, watching youTube tutorials about how to access it and soon after decided to download Tor, the browser needed to access the deep web, though he later upgraded to Tails, since it was much more secure. What did he want there? He honestly, didn’t know, but it gave him a thrill, the sensation of doing something forbidden, a bit like watching Ms Jones and Dt Neal in their bedroom. At first he had just wanted to browse around a bit, just to see what kind of things were on the deep web. From what he had heard there were sites for selling drugs, weapons, hiring hitmen and much darker and more disturbing things like hacked webcams with unsuspected people (mostly girls) being filmed, torture live streams and even snuff films.

While he wasn’t hoping to find any of these peculiar things, and he certainly had not planned to do something illegal, his curiosity had led him to some of the most disturbing sites on the internet.

He first had come across a site that live streamed web cam footage from people all around the world, who weren’t aware that literally everybody could see them. While there wasn’t that much juicy stuff (his highlight so far had been a girl from Florida changing clothes), it had begun to fascinate him and he had continued to come back to the site. Mostly he would look at girls while they were accessing their computers. He often wondered what they were doing there, whether they were looking at videos or perhaps they were writing an important term paper. Sometimes he would watch guys too, but most of the webcam guys on the site were usually seen watching porn and masturbating to it.

Sometimes Ted was hoping that he would find someone he knew on the site. Maybe someone could have hacked Sophia’s webcam or Connor’s. Oh, he would love to see Connor jerking off in front of his computer…

Connor Stevens was a senior at Arlington High and was quarterback of the football team, he was tall, muscular and very handsome: He looked like he was made in a nazi lab: broad shoulders, big arms, a wide back,  square-jawed face, blue eyes and long blond hair. If Adolf Hitler could have seen Connor, he might have jizzed his pants. Connor was extremely popular and was in a relationship with probably the most beautiful girl in Arlington: Sophia Mendes. A petite latina (her grandparents had left Mexico and had settled in Tennessee and had opened Sanchito’s diner, which was still open today) with long pitch-black, curly hair, big dark eyes and a round face. She looked like a movie star and definitely had the wardrobe of one: She often wore elegant dresses, and seemingly never left her house without her ray-bans. She was very religious and she spent a lot of time with the Christian Youth of Arlington, organising field trips with them or planning other charity events. They were Arlingtons It-couple, everybody adored them… well, not everybody for Ted hated him, deeply.

He didn’t have much of a problem with Sophia, as she had never bothered him, but Connor was the biggest bully in school. He had tried to force Ted to do his homework for him in eighth grade, but Ted had refused. Connor wasn’t dumb, he was actually a decent student, he just had been lazy and more focused on football. After Ted had declined the offer, Connor had beaten him up. He had not stood a chance. Even in eighth grade Connor had been close to 185-190lbs of pure muscle, while Ted was, well, Ted.

He had ended up with a broken nose, and a black eye. He had never told anyone, it had made him ashamed. He did not want to be weak. He had lied that he had slipped while running and had fallen on his face. He doubted that mom had believed him, but she had never questioned him about it more thoroughly, probably because she had felt how uncomfortable it had made him. He had never wanted to be hurt again from that point and he had decided to change his life and start training. He began doing push ups – every day, after three months, he had been able to do twenty-eight pushups in a row. He had been really proud of himself that day, but that had stopped soon once he had tracked his progress in the mirror. He had still been skinny, he had gained some muscle on his triceps and chest, but he still looked like a stick figure. He had been frustrated and had continued to train, but he still didn’t gain muscle, so after five months, he had decided to stop it altogether. He had realised that he would never look like Connor, never be as strong his Connor, never have a girl like Connor…

But he had still needed a way to defend himself from the bullies – skinny nerds were an easy target after all, so he had decided to do sword training. He did not need much strength to inflict much pain with it, so it had seemed like a perfect fit. One day, after some bullies had tried to beat him up again, he had grabbed a broomstick, which had been lying around and had started beating up his attackers. He had been vicious, it had felt so good to let it all out, the anger, the frustration, the hatred. The bullies hadn’t stood a chance and had left him alone since. They must have told other people, as he had been left alone since. Most people had just left him alone from that moment on, keeping a respectful distance. It had felt so good. Even Connor had stopped his annoying remarks for a while. Mostly he had called him names, sometimes had made fun  of his looks, but from then on he had kept quiet. Sometimes Ted wished he would insult him again, just to do give him a reason to attack him. But Connor never fulfilled him that wish, so he had kept his revenge plans on hold and hoped that he might find Connor or Sophia on their webcams, catching them in a compromised position, showing the whole world that they aren’t that perfect, maybe even blackmailing them and watching them panic in fear. Oh, how he would love that.

But so far, no one had hacked their webcams. The closest to home he had found had been a college girl from Memphis, Sabine. She seemed like a nice person, tidy bedroom, good-looking, good webcam quality. Ted sometimes watched her when he had nothing else to do Memphis wasn’t too far away and maybe he would meet her one day, he thought.

As he thought about it, he decided to conclude his daily sword training and check the site, maybe someone had indeed hacked Connor’s webcam. The excitement began to brew in him as he went back into the house, got upstairs into his room, locked the door (in case mom would be home early), hung up his sword on the wall and started his laptop. Maybe he could hack the webcams, himself? he thought, but he wasn’t that skilled a hacker to do that, so he hoped for a miracle. He opened tails browser and began his daily journey to the dark web.  He checked the available webcams. Sabine was online, he could see that she was sitting on her bed. Of course, no one had hacked any webcams in his area, so he decided to do the next best thing and check in on Sabine.

She sat on her bed and was reading a book, the quality of the webcam was good, but not good enough to make out what the title of the book was. He could see it was a hardcover book and quite thick, probably between six hundred to seven hundred pages. She read a lot, sometimes she would sit on the chair next to the bed, sometimes she would read on her desk and like today, she would read on the bed. She wore her glasses today, it suited her oval face and made her look very intellectual. Her blond hair was held back by a ponytail today, sometimes she wore it open, which he preferred. She seemed completely sucked into the book, it must be a good one. Ted wished he could make out the title, maybe he would like it too. He continued to check out her appearance. She wore a comfy look today, a green top, no bra as far as he could see and black sport shorts, which showed off her thick thighs. He could hear music playing, she must be playing it from her phone. She often did when she read, it sounded like country. Maybe Carrie Underwood, he couldn’t tell. Once every two minutes she would turn over the page, normally she read faster than that, but maybe the book was very complex and hard to read or she just had other stuff on her mind.  Maybe she had trouble with her boyfriend. Ted knew that she had a boyfriend, as he had heard her argue with him over the phone, but he had never appeared in her room when Ted was watching. It was better that way, he was probably a douche and Ted didn’t want to see her with somebody else.

He continued to watch her reading, trying to image what she was thinking at the moment, sometimes imagining him reading beside her. For other people it must look like a boring activity, but for him it was exciting. He loved watching other people, tried understanding them and find out more about their daily lives. It was his little secret hobby.

He heard a door shut somewhere in his house. Mom must be home. Damn it! Enough for today, see  ya later, Sabine, he whispered to his laptop and closed the site and got up and unlocked his door again. He couldn’t wait to return later.

 

This is the end of Part 1 of Chapter 1, since it is a very large chapter I will chop it into different parts and publish them whenever a part is finished. Please note that this is not a final draft, a lot can change concerning plot, characters or the structure of the novel. If you have ideas, inspirations or criticism feel free to tell me in the comments. I know Part 1 was very exposition heavy, but establishing characters takes time, Part 2 and following will have more action. 

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