Michael would say he was interested in how things came apart. Where other children were carefully architecting wooden blocks to stand in tall many-colored towers he snatched the cornerstone and enjoyed the tumble. [increasingly destructive and aging appropriate incidents here; maybe with physical harm maybe not]. As an adult he termed his knack the Least Effort For Maximum Entropy. He’d even written it out in a notebook like a motto, like “Be Prepared” or “Semper Fidelis“. Sometimes the acronym would earworm him and he’d find himself muttering, “Lef’ me. Lef’ me. Lef’ me.” He could make it feel like betrayal though he’d never been wronged.
[Turn all the above into an awesome exchange between a psychologist and a police officer; but not now]
“We would call him an assassin,” said Dr Trunket.
“Don’t romance it up. He’s a murderer. Plain. Simple, ” countered Detective Ralph Barnes. “But I still don’t get it. Why’s he come out here to Okarche? Can’t be the money. Revenge seems unlikely.”
“Revenge isn’t even part of the equation…not his revenge anyway. And there’s a better than fair chance he did this one gratis.”
“Old John had lung cancer. You tellin’ me you think this was mercy?”
“Exactly. I have a theory our international assassin does domestic charity work.”
Before I run out of time I need to say this is forming up in my head faster than I can capture it in the discussion format I was attempting to get across. My knowledge of police detectives, psychologists, assassins, and Okarche are sort of holding me back.
The central idea forming here is of a Bourne/Bond type assassin who for potentially guilt-based reasons operates in an alter ego of more of a Kevorkian/Equalizer role. Helping loved ones go to the grave with as little suffering as possible—while still stirring up trouble.
Maybe the upside is the loved one gets offed in an acceptable insurance manner that allows those left behind to benefit, but the action typically results in feelings of transferred guilt for the unknowing. Maybe this is the ‘destruction’ Michael likes/seeks.
In any case it turns out Detective Barnes ends up on the case and cracking the thing wide open. And that I’ve unwittingly started writing a mystery which even has the feel of serialization to it. Classic. Crap.