Kevin pulled over to the side of the road after he hit the pothole and heard something pop. He parked the car on the side of the freeway and got out to inspect the damage, still in his army uniform. He looked at his tire, it was flat, a rip ran along the side of it releasing all the air. He kicked the tire. He didn't have a spare. He opened the trunk and got out his backpack, put it on his shoulder, locked the car and started walking. Everytime a car passed he raised his thumb hoping for some luck. A little later a blue Ford Mustang pulled over. He stopped and looked at the car, it looked brand new. The driver's window rolled down and a man stuck his head out.

"Need a ride?" the man asked.

"Yeah," kevin answered, "Can u give me a lift to town? I git a flat tire back there." kevin said pointing in the direction of his car.

"Sure, hop in, im heading to town myself."

Kevin walked around and opened the passenger door, and got in. Plastic covering covered all the seats.

"What's with the plastic?" kevin asked as he put his backpack between his feet.

"I just got this car, don't wanna ruin already."

"Yeah its a nice car."

"Im Jack by the way." the man said starting the car.

"Im Kevin."

"Nice to meet you."

Kevin looked at him, he looked like he was in his forties, with a thin mustach, dark brown hair, they drove for ten minutes in silence. 

Jack decided to break the awkward silence "So you just got back, or are you leaving?" Jack said, now picking up speed, there was no other cars on the freeway.

"Im sorry?" kevin asked confused.

"Did u already serve in the military?" jack asked.

"Oh, oh yeah, i just got back from Iraq. I got hit in my left knee, messed it up pretty bad, cant put any pressure on it."

Jack looked at his knee, "perfect" he said under his breath.

Jack sped up in his car, the engine roared, he stuck his hand in the door pocket and brought out a hammer. Kevin didn't see it he was looking out the passenger window. Jack passed the hammer to his right hand, kevin turned and saw it. He twisted to grab it but jack was too fast and hit his left knee. Jack heard the crunch as the knee shattered. Kevin screamed writhing from the pain. Jack then lifted the hammer and hit Kevin with the butt of the handle at the bridge of his nose. Immediatly Kevin fell backwards, unconscious.

Jack knew he had only a couple of minutes before he woke up, he swerved the Mustang unto the side of the road and drove on across the empty field. He drove untill the highway was out of sight, he stopped his car looked around to make sure that there was no one around. He put the hammer back in the door pocket and got out, he walked around to the passenger side and opened the door. He unbuckled Kevin's seat belt abd dragged him outside. He went back to his car and got out the rope, plastic bag, gallon of gasoline, matchbox, and his knife, he cut the rope in half and walked over to kevin. He flipped him over unto his stomach and tied his hands tightly behind his back, then he tied his ankles together, then flipped him back, and gagged him. Kevin stirred and woke up, blood covered most of his face but Jack still saw the fear on his face.

"You think you saw terror in Iraq?" Jack asked, standing above Kevin, "This is real terror." 

He held out the knife, showing it to kevin, who started to twist. Jack aimed a kick at kevin's stomach, and kevin was still, but moaning in pain. He flipped unto his stomach. Jack knelt down and grabbed Kevin's right hand, Kevin felt him and tried to kick him, but Jack grabbed his foot and stabbed his knife into it, it fell to the ground motionless.

"You think you know pain? This is pain!"

He grabbed his hand and sliced his thumb off kevin strained and moaned, but Jack kept going, slicing one finger after another, until kevin's hand was fingerless. He switched to the left one and finished off all the fingers. He stood back up, blood covering his hands, Kevin's hands, and the ground. He grabbed the fingers and put them in the plastic bag next to him on the ground. He turned Kevin over and looked at him. His face was pale and he was moaning in pain. Jack knelt next to his chest, raised the knife and brought it down underneath the rib cage, he dragged the knife making a large wound. He stuck his hand inside and grabbed the heart and pulled it out, breaking all the veins. He looked at kevin's face, it was white and his eyes were half closed now, he grabbed the gag and took it off, blood poured out of kevin's mouth. Jack stabbed the heart and threw it on Kevin's bloody chest. He stood up and grabbed the gasoline and poured it on kevin, then he grabbed the plastic bag filled with fingers, he stood up and pulled out a match and struck it against the box, he looked at Kevin who was barely alive now, and dropped the match. Kevin's body was engulfed in flames as jack walked back to his car. The back window was open, he grabbed the towel from the backseat. Wiped his bloody hands on it, grabbed Kevin's backpack, walked back to Kevin's burning body and dropped the towel, and the backpack in the fire. He watched the fire for a few minutes then walked back to his car, dropped the bag on the ground, put all the stuff in the trunk and drove off. 

He drove for ten minutes and reached town, he drove to the diner, went inside, hands in pocket, to the bathroom. He locked the door and washed his hands, scrubbing even harder under his nails. He finished and went back to the counter ordered a soda. He sat in a booth and drank his soda. He watched a family eat their lunch at the opposite side of the diner. The little girl waved at him, he ignored her. He put some money on the counter and walked out. As he was fishing his keys out of his pockets, three cop cars sped past him. He smiled, they found out. He got in his car and drove to his hotel room. He went inside and turned on the t.v. A movie was on, but was interrupted by a local news report.

"A body was found today, about two hundred yards off the highway, the body was burned by the suspect therefore making it hard to identify the victim," an anchorman was saying, "but a bag was found some distance away from the body, apparently abandoned by the suspect, this bag contains severed fingers, the police believe they are the victim's fingers. They have sent them in for a positive i.d. Cops say that they suspect the man who did this is the one who killed the two kids in Los Angeles last month and the three people in San Diego, three months ago, and many more around the country. Authorities are warning people to not travel alone at this time, if you need to travel, do so in a group of people. We will inform you further when we get more information."

Jack turned off the t.v. And went over to the window, he looked out he could see the police departement, he wondered if they would find out who he was. Michael stood up, sick of the sight, he walked to his patrol car. He sat in the driver's seat, hands on wheel. He hadn't seen a body like that in years, his partner came in and sat down in the passenger side.

"You know Kevin's coming home today, i wonder if i'll get to see him today. This is gonna be a lot of work." Michael said, sighing.

"Hey, we're the lead detectives on this case and we need to finish it." Carl said.

Michael sighed and started the car, driving to the station to await the i.d. Confirmation.

Ten minutes later his phone rang, the chief wanted to see him. Micheal and Carl went to his office, the chief was sitting behind his desk tapping his pen anxiously.  He looked up at them, "sit down." he had a folder in his hand.

Micheal and Carl sat down in the two chairs on the front of the desk. The cheif sighed and put the folder down. 

He looked at Micheal, "im sorry." he said and slid the folder towards him across the desk. 

Micheal picked up the folder and saw it was the i.d. Confirmation, he saw the i.d. Picture and his heart dropped, it was Kevin's picture.  He stood up and threw the file across the room, "no, no, no!!!" he cried and left the room. 

Carl picked up the file and saw the name. He sighed and put it down on the desk, "I'll calm him down." he said and followed Micheal.

He walked out of the office and saw Micheal going down the stairs, he ran after him. Micheal reached the main door and walked out, tears in his eyes, anger, and hate swelling up inside him. He walked over to his car, opened the door, and sat in it, Carl stood on the passenger side, but Micheal didn't unlock it. Micheal started the car and drove away leaving Carl standing there by himself. Micheal got his gun out of the holster and put it on the dashboard. 

He drove to the edge of town and stopped the car. He cried, first he lost his wife to cancer, and now his only son to a murderer, he cried. For an hour he sat in his car weeping, he looked up and saw a blue Mustang drive out unto the highway, he closed his eyes. An hour later he opened his eyes and saw the blue Mustang coming back. He started the car and drove to his house. 

He parked the car and stepped out, he walked up to his house, the chief was standing in front of the door waiting for him. Micheal ignored him, opened the door, and went in but the chief came in after him. Micheal sat down on the couch, the chief stood in front of him. 

"Listen you need a break." the chief said, "take two weeks off..."

"No, i'm gonna find that guy and kill him." Micheal said.

The chief looked at him, "Ok, you can be on the case, but be careful, if you take this too far i will not hesitate to put you in jail."

Micheal looked up at him, "If i catch this guy i will tear him apart, i don't care about jail."

The chief looked at the broken man in front of him, then left. Micheal grabbed his gun and looked at it. then put it down and got out his whiskey started drinking.

Jack walked out the door shutting it behind him. He walked down the hall passing several workers, surprised that they couldn't see the gun bulging out under his shirt. He went up to the main desk, 

"How can i help you sir?" the man said. 

Jack looked at him, and smiled, "I want to extend my reservation for three more days."

"And what room is yours?"

"23, and my name is Jack Gunner." he said, he liked to use his real name, because it made him laugh that the cops have never been able to trace him, even though he's had a lot of hotel rooms.

"Ok, all finished. You'll have to check out on friday, at three."

"Ok" jack said and walked out the door. There was a cop car parked outside the burger joint across the street. He smiled, they were so close to him and they had no idea. He got in his car, then an idea popped into his head. He opened the glove compartement and found a pen and paper. He closed the glove compartement. On the paper he wrote "Come close yet? Im closer than you think." he got out of his car and walked to the restaurant, he went inside and ordered a soda, watching the cops, he emptied out the contents, and dried the inside of the cup with a napkin, he crumpled up the paper, and shoved it inside. He closed the cup lightly so it would pop open at the lightest touch. He walked outside, looked back at the cops, they weren't watching him, he smiled and put the cup on the front hood, and walked away. He got to his car and laughed out loud. He started the car and drove towards the highway, then his heart dropped, he wasn't wearing gloves, the paper and cup had his fingerprints all over them. He swerved around, and sped towards the restaurant. He was too late, the cop car was gone, and so was the cup. He parked in the hotel parking lot, angry at himself, he punched the steering wheel and yelled, what a fool, what an idiot!!! He decided to leave this town, he started the car and drove off.

He got to the edge of town, but the cops beat him there and there was a checkpoint. He drove up to it, a cop came foreward and he rolled down the window.

"Im sorry sir but you can't leave now."

"Why not?" Jack asked.

"That information is confidential, turn around and go home."

"But im not from here, i reserved a hotel room and now its too late to renew the reservation."

"Im sorry sir but you cant leave." the cop said and stood back. 

Jack was forced to make a u-turn and go back to his hotel. He went inside there was two cops questioning the man at the desk, he walked past them to his room. He opened the door, went in, closed and locked it, and sat on the bed. The room was pitch black, the heavy curtains were shut with no light on, he pulled out the gun from his belt and held it in his lap. He waited ten minutes then laid back, relaxed the cops hadn't found him out yet. He closed his and fell asleep the gun cradled in his arms.

Micheal woke up to knocking on his front door, he stood up, the whiskey bottle fell from his lap and smashed on the ground, he stepped over it, and opened the door. 

Carl was standing there, he looked at Micheal in shock,  "man, are you ok?"

"Do i look ok?" micheal answered. 

Carl walked in, "Well pull yourself together, we found a note from the killer with fingerprints on it. It's being examined right now."

Micheal looked up in shock, he research similar killings. This man had tortured and murdered many people and not once had he left a fingerprint if the reports were right. And now he left it on a note?!

"Ok let's go." Micheal said standing up. The news of possibly catching the killer renergized him.

"Are you sure you're ok? Because we dont need a drunk detective on this case."

"Im fine." Micheal said walking past him, Carl followed and Micheal shut the door and left.

They went out and got in Carl's car and drove to the police departement. They got into their office as the chief walked in with the profile. Both of them stood up waiting to hear it. The chief handed the folder to Carl. Carl opened it and read it he passed it to micheal when he was done. micheal opened it and read it, the man's name was Jack Gunner, born in San Diego, California. He was 43 years old, not married. according to the file he never stayed in one place more than a year, he's checked into hotels all over the country. He always paid in credit card, as if to tease the police. He always drove the same car, a blue 2001 ford mustang.

Micheal looked up, "i saw the bastard." 

Carl and the chief looked at him.

"What?" carl asked.

"Earlier today, i drove to the highway and sat there, i saw his car pass right in front of me."

A man walked in, "Sir they found him, he's checked into the hotel, there's two cops there right now."

The chief looked at the man, "Tell them to evacuate the hotel but make sure he dosen't leave." 

The man ran out, the chief, Carl, and Micheal followed. Micheal and Carl ran to their car as the chief ran to his. Micheal got int the driver's seat and started the car, he went out the parking lot with seven patrol cars behind him, sirens blaring they sped to the hotel.

Jack woke hearing voices out in the hall, he walked and looked out into the hallway, he saw everyone walking past his room. He put on the vest he had madr in case of a failure under his jacket, put the gun in his jacket pocket and cracked open the door, and slid out among the crowd. He saw two cops up ahead at the door, looking at everyone as they passed them. Jack held his gun tightly. He walked closer and closer, he was at the door when,

"Hey stop!" 

He drew his gun and turned around firing it, he hit a cop in the back. Everyone screamed and started running around, he looked the cops were trying to stop a kid from running out the back. The cop fell to the floor dead, the other tried to draw his gun but Jack shot him in the chest and he fell dead. Jack walked out, he heard sirens in the distance, getting closer and closer. He ran to his car, the parking lot was now filled with screaming people. He grabbed a teen who running in front of him. The teen struggled but Jack put the gun to his head, and the guy froze. He dragged him to the car and shoved him in. 

The sirens were now closer, Jack shut the passenger door and looked up he saw the cop cars close in. He raised his guns and fired three shots. Hitting the first car, they swerved, slid and stopped. He got in the driver's seat, the guy was struggling around, Jack aimed the gun at him, "be cool and you'll live."

The guy stopped moving. Jack started the car and drove out the parking lot, the cops raised their guns but didn't shoot because of the guy inside. Jack swerved the car unto the street and drove towards the highway, the cops right behind him. He drove for ten minutes, the checkpoint was cleared, the cars were moved away, he drove past it unto the highway. He looked in the rearview mirror, the cops were gaining on him, he pulled out the trigger of the device he had made and pressed it, the back bumper came off and flew back on the road slowing down the cops as they swerved to avoid it. He smiled and drove on, he looked back again and saw the cops gaining on him, he stuck his hand out the window and fired two shots backwards, one of them hitting the front windshield of the first car. He couldn't get them off him. he pointed the gun at the guy next to,  "Whoa, come on man, please. You said you'd let me go."

Jack looked at him, "i lied." he pulled the trigger and hit him in the chest. 

He reached over opened the door and shoved him out. The body dropped out and he shut the door.

Micheal and Carl were driving the first car behind Jack, they saw the door open and the body fall out, Micheal swerved away from it but didn't slow down. He sped up, Carl looked at him, anxious. Micheal pulled out his gun and stuck his arm out and fired, he saw the glass crack, but nothing happened, It was bulletproof. He sped up more, he swerved to the right as Jack shot at them. Micheal lost control of the car slightly but got back on the road chasing after him. Everything was blocked out of Micheal's mind except the car in front of him. Carl rollled down his window and sat on the edge and started shooting. The wheel of the Mustang exploded and the car slid sideways, swerving off the road and flipped and rolled three times before it came to a stop, upside down. 

Micheal parked the car, drew his gun and got out, he walked cautiously to the car with Carl by his side. The other cars stopped and the cops started approaching slowly. Micheal approached the car, the front windshield was shattered and he saw Jack upside down, with blood running across his forehead. Jack's eyes suddenly popped open and he extended his arm and managed to get a shot off, then Micheal opened fire, Jack shut his eyes, blood came out of his eyes. Micheal looked at carl who froze, then fell to his knees, a red stain on his chest. Micheal grabbed him before he hit the ground, but he was already dead. He put him down gently and approached the car slowly, Jack was struggling out of the window. He managed to get out, Micheal stood over him with the gun pointing at him. 

Jack laughed coughing up more blood, he had felt the bullet miss the vest by an inch. He put his hand on the jacket zipper.

Micheal raised his gun, "stop!" 

But jack unzipped it revealing the bomb vest he had made. He took out the trigger from his pocket, Micheal turned and ran.

"Get back!" He yelled waving his arms. 

The cops backed away but still had their guns aimed at Jack. 

Jack pulled the trigger and the bomb exploded. Micheal ran away but wasn't fast enough, the explosion hit him, he felt evey bit of it as it tore through his back. From a distance away, the chief watched in horror as Jack exploded, and the explosion engulfed Micheal. Everyone rushed foreward. Micheal's back was torn apart, unrecognizable, he was dead, and jack's body was the blood all over the ground. 

"Lets get this cleaned up, and get out of here." the chief said sick.

He walked back to his car, and sat down, he lost four people to this maniac. Unable to stay there any longer he drove away. This was a bad day.

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