a/n: ok this was a freaking commonwealth essay topic, i obviously couldn't hand it to my teacher, i would've been skinned alive. anyway, hope y'all enjoy it! in a way, this was written for my wonderful senior so... (:

It began innocently enough. He was just a child, barely five with his small fingers wrapped around his father's huge thumb as they walked into a departmental store. She was on duty on that day, boredom evident on her pretty face as she uncrossed her arms and absent-mindedly tapped her finger against her black stocking clad thigh.

"Excuse me, miss," came a rich, husky voice and she looked up, coming face to face with his father. She was taken aback for a moment but quickly regained her composure.

"Can I help you?" she asked as she smiled, licking her lips, deciding that this was a fine specimen of a man standing before her. 'Who cares about that kid,' she thought of him as she unbuttoned the second button of her almost translucent blouse and leaned closer.

Slowly, his father's lips curled upwards. "Why not?"

He despised his father. It was not always that way actually, for distant memories of being carried on his father's shoulders occasionally surfaced in his mind, much to his own disgust as he remembered the smiles he wore on his face back then, the sounds of genuine delight he made then... Gritting his teeth as he crushed the flyer he held in his hand, walking past yet another departmental store, he looked up at the rapidly darkening sky and hoped that the weather would hold for he had forgotten to bring an umbrella again, despite his mother's numerous reminders...

"I'm home," he muttered as he opened the door to the apartment he shared with his girlfriend. The lights were not switched on and his heart sank as he realized that his girlfriend was working the night shift once more. Dinner in a microwaveable container sat on the table with a note 'don't go hungry!' taped to it and he smiled as he removed his coat, making his way to the kitchen.

"Today was fine, mother," he addressed a photograph of his mother smiling, stuck on the refrigerator. "I saw that bastard on the streets though, he was drunk and tried to beg for money from me..." he frowned as he fiddled with the dial on the microwave oven.

"It's retribution, mother... It's his fault for abandoning you and making you hurt like that and for causing your death..." he removed the container with his dinner from the oven as he licked his lips. "Rest in peace, mother..."

He did not expect the divorce. After all, he thought the salesgirl was just being friendly and even when she came over to the house to visit occasionally, she brought him toys to play with. As he swirled the blood red contents of his wine glass, he laughed sardonically at his naivet back then.

After the divorce, the picture of things finally became clear to him. He started to stalk the salesgirl, much to the disapproval of his mother. His so-called friends at school thought he was infatuated with an older woman and spread vicious rumours about him, almost causing his expulsion from school. His mother was notified and her already ailing state of health started to deteriorate but he pressed on with his stalking.

He graduated from high school, much to his mother's relief. By then, the salesgirl had left his father and had hooked up with another man. His father was an empty shell of the man that he was before, not that he really cared. His hatred of the salesgirl grew, slowly, from a tiny seed in his heart, finally blooming in the form of a dark, carnivorous flower...

His girlfriend finally returned in the wee hours of the night, awakening him from his slumber as she accidentally knocked a glass of water off the table. He rushed to her side as she tried to pick up the glass shards, cutting her finger by accident in the process. By instinct, he caught her finger and was about to lick her wound when she snatched her finger away.

He frowned. "Is something the matter?"

She looked away, averting his gaze. "I... I..." she began and faltered.

An overwhelming sense of dread washed over him and the nausea that came along with it threatened to hurl the contents of his stomach out of his mouth.

There was an awkward silence, with the only sound being the steady dripping of the blood from her finger. "I..." she bit her lip. "I've been tested HIV positive..."

He lay panting heavily on the cool marble flooring, rage finally spent. He winced as he perceived the metallic taste of blood on his tongue, accompanied by the bitter taste of betrayal. She was just like his father and he groaned, realizing that he was just like his mother. Blind, so blind. A single hot tear rolled down his cheek and he hissed as he wiped it away with the back of his hand. How many years had it been since he last cried? He bit down hard at the end of his thumb in an attempt to stop himself from screaming out as painful memories from the divorce assaulted him, tasting blood once more. Trembling, he got up and caught sight of his girlfriend's bruised and battered body.

His eyes narrowed.

His girlfriend's dead body lay in a heap by the dining table as he poured himself yet another glass of red wine. He savoured the first sip, remembering the adrenaline rush he had felt after the kill, when he killed the salesgirl. He hated her with all his heart, his hatred was far greater than the love he had for his girlfriend.

He licked his lips with an odd sense of relish as he reminisced about the day he decided to go for the kill...

It was raining heavily that night, he had made up an excuse, telling his mother that he was having an overnight camp in school and would not return home. Despite his mother's numerous reminders to bring an umbrella, he had forgotten in the end so he trudged soaking wet in his school uniform, school badge removed, following the salesgirl as she walked home giddily, clutching her flimsy pink umbrella. She was wearing an almost translucent blouse again, except that it was now transparent due to the rain. From her gait it was obvious that she was drunk and he clenched his fist tight, fingernails digging into the soft flesh of his palm.

She fumbled with her keys and he cursed her under his breath as she finally found the right one, stumbling forward into her house. In her drunken stupor she conveniently forgot to lock the gate and shut the door. He smirked as he entered behind her, taking care to shut the door quietly. She lay spread-eagled on the leopard print sofa and he walked with lithe, panther-like grace as he made his way to where his prey was.

She did not notice his approach but cried out in pain as he pulled at her long, tangled brown tresses, bringing her head up to face him. She giggled as she got up. "Well, you're quite a pretty one, aren't you?"

He slapped her, a clear indication of his revulsion as he wondered why he was even touching this woman, no, he corrected himself, this whore who had torn his perfect family apart and caused his mother to suffer.

The smile on her face was replaced by a slight frown as she gingerly touched the red mark on her cheek. "So you're the violent sort?" she asked as she leaned closer, causing him to back away as he became aware of the overpowering smell of her cheap perfume.

Thunder boomed loudly and he jumped. She licked her lips. "You're afraid of thunder, my boy? Well, come to mama, I'll make you feel real good..."

"You're not fit to be my mother," he spat as he rummaged through his bag, finding a long string of twine. He grabbed her wrists and tied them together as she watched, amused. She lay flat on her stomach on the sofa and posed so that from an angle, one could see that she was wearing nothing underneath her tight black leather mini skirt.

Something inside him stirred.

"Well?" she asked, parting her legs. "You're just like the rest, aren't you? You're all after the same things. But it doesn't really matter, does it? I'll just discard you one by one after I'm tired of you..." she giggled.

A low growl escaped his lips, like how an animal would growl when provoked. He lunged forward and gripped her hips hard as he unzipped his trousers, thrusting into her from behind.

"No, not the back," she struggled against her bonds but to no avail, they would not come loose.

"Whore," he muttered under his breath as he thrust so hard that it was almost cruel. A thin trickle of blood made it's way down her inner thigh as she whimpered. "How many have you done before me? How many families have you wrecked?" he asked with a faint, almost unnoticeable trace of bitterness in his voice.

She did not answer as a flash of lightning illuminated the night sky and there was yet another loud clap of thunder. He did not jump this time, for he was too blinded and consumed by his hatred to remember anything else, including fear. He pulled out a swiss army knife from his pocket and sliced off a piece of skin from her back and she screamed in agony but the thunder drowned out her cries.

"This is the kind of pain my mother felt when you tore my perfect family apart," he said through gritted teeth as he pressed the cool metal blade against her flesh, then he started carving out a broken heart on her skin as he continued with his thrusting. His breathing was harsh and erratic as he reached for the nearest irregularly shaped object he could find, a huge, broken glass shard from a vase and used it to penetrate her.

She opened her mouth to scream but he tore off a strip of material from her skirt, using it to gag her as he stabbed her repeatedly, flying into a frenzy until at last, he lay spent, atop her, laughing maniacally as the thunderstorm raged on outside...

He was roused from his reverie by a telephone call. He groaned as he made his way to where the telephone was and answered it.

"Hello, this is the National Blood Bank and we are calling-"

He slammed the phone down on the receiver and swore.

He swept all his girlfriend's belongings off the dressing table by the bedside in the bedroom the two of them once shared. One by one, he methodically smashed the crystal figurines that she had bought each year to commemorate each year they had been together, starting with the first. There were shards of crystal embedded in his hands and blood was flowing freely but he was oblivious to it all. He opened the wardrobe and threw out all her clothing, including the sweater she loved to wear, the one that he smelled every time so as to feel her presence beside him each time they were apart.

A small, red, leather bound book fell to the ground.

He frowned as he picked it up, flipping through the contents. The words were written in his mother's hand and he froze as he perused the contents carefully.

"I've been diagnosed HIV positive. Because of that woman he had an affair with."

The book fell from his hands and the loud thud reverberated throughout the silence of the room.

He opened his mouth to scream but somehow, he found that he could not make a sound. And when the full force of the realization hit him, he reared backwards and fell to the ground, immobilized by what he knew. He felt tears welling up at the cracks of his eyes but no, they would not fall.

Slowly, he started to giggle and his body shook as he burst out in a fit of hysterical laughter. "It's all my fault..." he whispered amidst choked gasps for breath to no one in particular. "I'm just like him and it's all my fault..."

She was into the tenth year of her counseling job at a centre for troubled youths and today was her day off. As usual, she was doing the laundry, hanging out the clean white sheets of her curtains out to dry when she heard footsteps.

He exited the staircase, swaying unsteadily, making his way past her, crimson slithering like a snake entwining itself around his arm. She frowned as she turned to look at him, wondering if he would be a potential troublemaker. He ignored her presence and continued walking towards the edge of the rooftop, where a small division separated one from earth and hell.

When it became apparent that he would not stop, she panicked and being careful not to alert him, followed him.

He got on the ledge and sat down.

"Hey," she said in an almost murmur and he turned to face her, pain evident in his eyes and tear stained face.

She stepped back, unprepared for the raw display of anguish. "Is there... Something wrong?" she asked in a tone she often used with the troubled youths under her care.

"Wrong?" he laughed sardonically. "Everything in this world is wrong. Define wrong."

She shuddered as she felt the hair at the back of her neck stand on ends - something from this man was giving her the creeps but she just could not pinpoint what it was. "Death's not the only way out," she said in a shaky voice, almost sounding unconvinced by what she just said.

He smiled, a grotesque smile that stretched his lips at an unnatural angle and he stood up on the ledge.

She decided that there was something inhumane about him but nevertheless, pressed on. "So please," she said, almost begging, with a pleading look in her eyes. "Can I help you?"

He howled, a long lonely cry that one would hear from a wolf who had been lost from it's pack and had spent too many years alone and she backed away, in fright, perhaps.

He threw himself over the ledge.

a/n: i am so addicted to the song 'untouched' by the veronicas since i heard it while watching miss usa 2009, hmmm. random! anyway, hope you enjoyed this, please read and review, love y'all!