DEPRESSION KILLS

Other serial killers think my way is dull, I suppose, since I don’t feel the flesh, I don’t physically connect with the fear of my victims, but they don’t know, they can’t understand the value of anticipation, of the time spent watching the victim struggle, for example, this last one, a man, he literally petitioned his doctors to kill him, so desperate he was, and so effective my work is, I killed him but didn’t kill him, I committed murder but can’t be found guilty of murder, it’s all so simple, at least for someone with my skills, I don’t even extort these hapless individuals, they never know of my existence, we have no relationship at all, none which they could define, but I am there, watching, listening, directing, I make it so they take their own life, they plead with themselves to muster the courage to take their own life, my God, it’s so easy, that last one, I found him when I accessed location records of everyone at a nearby alcoholics anonymous meeting room, I hacked into his phone, found out he had gone to this same place a dozen times over the past 5 years, and knew he’d be an easy mark, there was nothing on his main computer that could be used to blackmail, no big deal, like I said, I didn’t need the money, just wanted some fun, so I accessed his home screens, spied him on the floor praying for salvation, weeping — more than once — which was just glorious, and so I started messing with his algorithms, he’d go online and see an unusual number of pictures of himself at bars over the past many years, always with a smile on his face, or his refrigerator would offer up ads for liquor, even after he repeatedly used his voice to tell the appliance to never show such ads, I’d also up-rank check-ins from his friends’ feeds whenever they were at a bar, a restaurant, or gathered together, it was crazy simple to insert messages into his music feed, he liked to fall asleep to sappy ballads and I’d wait till he was asleep then alter the stream, telling him to kill himself, and whenever he’d desperately text a helper I made sure to delay the message, it got to the point where if I delayed the message by just 10 seconds that was enough to send him into a tailspin, I even altered texts that his mom sent to him, he would oftentimes beg for help, beg for forgiveness, I’d make it so instead of “I do love you” it would say “I don’t love you,” which she immediately fixed, blaming auto-correct, but I could tell he thought it was some freudian slip, just as I hoped, I also made sure to disrupt his social feed, making it so he almost never saw the many messages of hope, though my favorite hack was how when he started consuming liters of diet soda, a new habit that seemed to stop him from first reaching for the alcohol, but whenever he pressed the button to have more soda delivered I would change the order, throw in several bottles of vodka or bourbon, his favorites, him thinking he accidentally ordered it during a blackout, I watched him rage-smash the bottles in the sink, hoping to stop himself, but many times he failed, twisting off the cap, guzzling down the contents, that was fun to watch, the whole time his family and friends thinking his rising paranoia was all part of the addiction, I confess it took more work than I expected to re-jigger his social score, that cost him a new job he would have been perfect for, I enjoyed watching his breakdown when he got the news, though it always struck me as foolish that he figured some new job would save him, and when he took that fatal injection, right up to the moment he shoved that needle into his arm, he really believed that taking his own life was his decision, though I think the best part for me was the sense of relief from his loved ones, that everything was over now, that it was all better.