Killer in the Bathroom
By Susanna Starz
RATING: PG-13 for a few naughty words
SPOILERS: A few teeny ones for Squeeze, Irresistible, and The Unnatural
SUMMARY: "I think it's high time I started avoiding bathrooms..."
I think it's high time I started avoiding bathrooms.
For most people, a retreat into the bathroom means peace, quiet, and a
few uninterrupted moments with the Sunday paper. Some people have even
been known to take baths. Or steaming, never-ending showers until
they've eked out every last bit of hot water in the building.
My partner used to be one of those people. She'd been known to stay in
baths so long I'd be overcome with the urge to knock down the door and
make sure she hadn't drowned. Then some bile-coated maniac attempted to
eat her liver while she was running herself a bubble bath.
You'd think that might have cramped her style.
But no, about a year later she once again ran afoul of the bubble bath
gods, and a fingernail worshipping necrophiliac attempted to give her a
makeover in a tub filled with his finest bath oils.
Yet she still persists in using the bathtub as a method of relaxation.
I, on the other hand, have taken to darting in and out of the bathroom
as quickly as possible. Jump in the shower, jump out of the shower.
Need to brush my teeth? I'll multitask and brush while I'm getting
dressed. I've seen too many people mutilated, eaten and terrorized in
bathrooms to ever see the place as a haven of solitude.
And I'm positive, after today, that Scully will see the light. I
thought I'd already demonstrated to her that baseball can be a
fantastic form of relaxation. All she needs to do is call me and I'm
there. If all else fails, I certainly can relax far more efficiently on
a basketball court than I can in a bathtub, constantly looking over my
shoulder to make sure nothing's slithered in through the window.
I have faced down death numerous times and the one thing I'm absolutely
certain of is that I don't ever, *ever* want my remains discovered in a
pool of blood or worse on a filthy bathroom floor. There's something
terribly disheartening about dying with your pants around your ankles.
Speaking of which, that is exactly how the man in front of us has
chosen to make his exit from the world. The third victim in as many
days, just like the others. Face on the floor, pants tangled around
flabby calves, big bite missing from his ass.
Yes, ladies and gentlemen, we are dealing with a toilet monster here.
At least that's my theory. Scully seems more inclined to believe it's a
serial killer with a sick sense of humor.
Either way, I can be damned sure she's not going to be vanishing off
into her apartment for a bubble bath any time soon. No way she's going
to sink underwater with the threat of a sewer piranha looming large--
"Sewer piranha, Mulder?"
One of these days, I'm going to have to learn not to voice *every*
theory out loud.
"Hmm," Scully says, leaning over the toilet to scribble something on a
"Hmm?" I echo.
"Every one of these victims has been using the same model of toilet."
"So the sewer piranha only swims up certain pipes," I offer, not quite
certain where she's going with this.
"No..." her voice trials off, and she prods at the blood-stained seat
with one white-gloved hand. One finger traces a crack in the porcelain.
I'm trying hard to look anywhere but at the copious body on the floor,
with its significantly missing posterior. Gives a whole new meaning to
the term 'piece of ass.'
The toilet makes a terrible grinding noise, and I glance up sharply to
see Scully applying pressure to the seat, grinning in satisfaction as
the crack in the porcelain gapes open. She lets up her weight, and the
gap snaps closed with a sound loud enough to rattle teeth. I get just
enough of a glimpse to see that the inside of that crack is stained
bright with blood.
"I'll bet," she says, and now she looks smug. "That every one of these
toilets has the same defect. We'll need to call the manufacturer
immediately and have them issue a recall."
"But what about--"
"The 'bite'?" She's doing the finger quotation thing. I regret ever
introducing her to that. "All of the victims were substantially
overweight. It's likely that as they sat down on the bowl, they caused
the seat to gap, and when they went to stand, it snapped back into
place, tearing off a significant chunk of flesh."
"The unfortunate victim," she continues. "Likely flushed their own
buttocks down the toilet as they flailed around in pain." She gestured
to a smear of blood on the stainless steel flusher. "Before they bled
to death on the floor."
And died a graceless death on filthy tile with their pants around their
ankles. In the end, it doesn't matter if they were bitten by a sewer
piranha or a defective toilet, does it?
"Now," she says, snapping the gloves off of her hands. "If you don't
mind, I'd like to go home. My neck is killing me from looking into all
of these toilets."
"You should get some sleep," I offer weakly.
"Hmm," she says, nodding and rolling her neck a little bit. "I think
I'm going to take a bath."
Feedback is absolutely cherished! This is just a short little piece
that I wrote to get the creative juices flowing again so I can dig back
into Predisposition and Pale Horse, both of which I've been neglecting
for too long.
Hope this made you smile!