She liked to watch his lips as he spoke. They moved without pause and in time with his large hands. He never tripped over the smooth stream of words. Their movement was meditative.
“Following so far?” He asked kindly between sentences. His hand found its way around her shoulders, she leaned her head on his bicep. They settled deeper against the pillows, shifting so she fit against his side, rib to rib.
She smiled and nodded, still focused on his mouth. His eyes were a dull mud, his skin slightly pockmarked, but his mouth was wide and beautiful.”Your research. It is fascinating.”
“Not everyone thinks so, I’ve been called a sensationalist, a true crime author. It’s hard sometimes.” He confessed, the corner of lip twitching with a stoic unhappiness. She didn’t prompt him further, she rarely needed to. “But where was I? It’s been a month since the last body, the police are clueless. But they’ll catch him. These men are always caught eventually. Sometimes a victim gets away, or the police get something right. But it’s always because they slip, they can’t help it.”
“Why can’t they?” She asked.
He tapped himself on the forehead with his free hand, the other rested on her, lightly tracing his fingers up her side. “They are not normal men. Advanced stages of psychopathy render them incapable of blending. Serial killers do not have the emotional intelligence to stay hidden for long. They’re notoriously narcissistic, love hearing about themselves, so much that they seek out the people who study and search for them.”
“Like you?” She drew a finger down his bare chest, following his breastbone with a neatly trimmed fingernail. It left a red trail against his pale skin. She watched it fade, and then drew it again.
“I suppose.” His chest swelled a little under her hand. “I’ve never met one.”
“You’d know?” She asked, watching him wet his lips with his tongue. There was a twitch of amusement, or perhaps annoyance at her question. She waited, holding her own breath until she felt him exhale.
“I’ve been writing on these men for years. I’d know.” He said firmly. He looked down at her, and moved a piece of her brunette hair behind her ear. Then he tweaked her chin and moved to shift himself into a sitting position.”Speaking of which, my editor is going to kill me if I don’t get some work done tonight. You know the rules. For the process.”
He looked to the door of the bedroom, but she was already sliding off the bed and searching for her clothes. She never complained about the odd hours he banished her from his loft, and he never asked where she went. She suspected he hadn’t thought to.
I am a theme thief this week, but a subtle one. Kathryn‘s opened ended prompt was gender conformity/non-conformity, I did my best to steal something. See what the rest did over at the Legal Theft Project (which I will link to when the page presents itself).