Do Or Die: The Perfect Murder

Reads: 166  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 1

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic

She heard a few screams from below—they probably belonged to horrified citizens upon discovering his body—and turned away.

What a shame that such a lovely night had to be ruined by this.

 

JANUARY 14TH, 2015.

SEVENTH AVENUE, MANHATTAN. 

2:50 PM. 

 

Red. White. Black. Gray. Blue. Gray. 

They all just looked like colored blobs to her. Colored blobs that zoomed by, pushing the speed limit just barely. 

Not even the beautiful type of color, either. The type of color that was bright and bold and full of life. 

Four more cars passed. 

Gray. Gray. Gray. Gray. 

Everything was gray. The sky, the streets, the world. 

The idea seemed so cliche, but so fitting at the same time. Although from what Kyomi had gathered from her twenty-something years of life experience, gray was an ugly color. A sad color. Not quite as corrupt as black, not quite as pure as white. A muddied mix of everything in-between. Turmoil. 

Gray was lost between worlds of sunny yellows and rosy pinks.

Kyomi thought to herself. I feel the same way. 

She sighed, but not in exhaustion or defeat. It was only a sort of… mental refresh. Her eyes instinctively fell upon the watch wrapped around her right wrist. 

The watch told her it was 2:14 AM. 

A bitter feeling of despair clutched at her heart and didn’t let go. 

The hands of the watch were stuck. Forever trapped underneath cracked glass. 

The watch was neither broken nor whole. 

looked alright, from the outside…

But on the inside, it was frozen in time. 

that time. 

day. 

place. 

Kyomi closed her eyes, trying desperately to forget.

Forget what you saw. Forget what you heard. Forget what you did. 

Forget it, forget it! FORGET IT!

IT NEVER HAPPENED! 

It never… 











 

(Oh, but it did.)

 


JANUARY 12TH, 2015. 

UPPER EAST SIDE, MANHATTAN. 

11:54 PM. 

 

“I’m telling you, it’s a great idea,” Hale said. “No, not great. ” 

Scott repressed another yawn, her heavy eyes trailing the New York skyline. It was far too late to be discussing important matters like this, but Hale really wasn’t someone to argue with. 

In any case, I need to try to stay alert. I don’t want to let anything mentioned in this meeting slip past me, simply because I just wasn’t paying attention. 

“If this proposal of yours is so magnificent, why do you insist upon being so cryptic about it?” Lindner probed. 

Hale smiled lazily—everything about his disposition appeared lazy, really—and lifted his chin. “You always struck me as the impatient type. But, you know what they say…” His smile shifted into a smirk. “Curiosity killed the cat.” 

Lindner visibly stiffened, her posture rigid as ever. She was an experienced executive, but it was clear that she still hadn’t gotten used to her boss’s unpredictable (and, frankly, somewhat eerie) personality. 

Not that anyone could blame her. Nobody could really tell what was going through Adryan Hale’s mind at any given moment—not unless he wanted them to, of course. This paired with the fact that he was only 5’1 and had an unusually young-looking face made things even stranger. 

In fact, Scott herself was growing increasingly uneasy with the way Hale was acting at this particular meeting. He always had been a wild card, going off on his odd little whims, but now… 

We’re in the dark about this so-called ‘magnificent idea’ of his. 

And I can’t help but feel like something is… wrong…

“Ah, speaking of which!” Hale’s expression immediately brightened, although the same could not be said about the mood. “This plan of mine involves something you might be a little… uncomfortable with, to say the least.” 

Scott gulped, trying to swallow the ever-growing lump in her throat. Hale had a tendency to make huge understatements and oversimplify things just a tad bit too much. 

And following that reasoning, it would only be reasonable to conclude that—

“Right now, we’re backed into a corner. Wakefield-Pearson has secrets on us that have to secret. And if they don’t, well…” Hale made a slicing motion across his neck. “We’re done for.” 

Where exactly was this conversation heading? The road ahead looked foggy. Unclear. 

And it certainly wasn’t a good thing. Not for Scott, anyway. She was the kind of person who very much liked to be in-the-know, and at that moment she just… wasn’t. 

Meanwhile, Hale was quite disappointed upon receiving no vocal response from the rest of the room. 

“Oh-kay, then. How ‘bout I just give it to you straight?” 

“...that seems like the best option,” Lindner chimed in. 

“Alright!” Hale clapped his hands together and beamed. “Now, with all that being said, I’m sure you can tell this is pretty important. A do-or-die, basically! And, I’ll let you in on a little secret.” He paused for a few seconds. “Someone going to die.” 

Those five words echoed endlessly in Scott’s mind. 

Someone is going to die. 

She was aware of Hale’s tendencies, but she never could have guessed he would go that far. 

It might be some sort of joke. After all, he does like kidding around like that… 

She drew in a breath. 

No. It’s not. 

The voice, the manner… it’s all too real. 

“That’s scary, isn’t it?” Hale asked. “Which is why we have to make the first move!” 

“Mr. Hale… I’m afraid I don’t quite understand what you’re implying with this,” Scott interjected, her voice shaky. 

“Hm. I see.” A pensive look flashed across Hale’s face for a split second before being replaced by his usual happy-go-lucky-to-the-point-of-being-off-putting expression. “Simply put: we’re going to kill Bruce Wakefield.”

Multiple pairs of eyes went wide. 

“F-First of all, he has nothing to do with this scheme of theirs. Ross was the one to pull the threat on us, not Wakefield,” Scott argued. “Secondly: we can’t kill him!” 

Hale laughed. Like many other aspects of him, the sound was more than just a little unnerving. “First of all, while Ross was the one to threaten us, I know for a fact that Wakefield is the one behind the scheme. And, secondly…” A wide, manic grin spread across his face. “I just don’t care!” 

“Murder isn’t ethical, no matter which way you look at it,” Lindner insisted. “Besides, this is a goddamn we’re talking about. If the authorities find out—”

If. And they won’t. Not if I’m involved, anyway,” Hale assured. “One more thing: if you want to keep working for me, you’re going to have to be able to throw ethics out the window.”

Scott bit her lip and clenched her palms into fists. Her intuition got something right, apparently. 

“There’s a difference between methods being unethical and plain heinous,” she said. “And this is—”

“Business,” Hale interrupted. “That’s how you play the game. And if you don’t like it, well…” He jerked his thumb towards the exit. “Door’s right there.” 

A stony silence fell upon the room. Nervous glances were exchanged. A few particularly brave individuals reached to their hips for guns that were not there. 

Weapons would be futile, anyway. If you pulled a gun on Hale, he’d probably just pull out a bigger one and press the barrel right to your forehead. 

The unspoken truth was obvious. 

No one could leave. Even if they wanted to. 

There were reasons they had for working there. Motives. 

Blackmail, essentially. 

Hale’s offer for them to just leave if they wanted to was nothing more than a cruel joke. 

“No objections?” Hale propped his chin on his hand, dark indigo eyes glistening with some unknown emotion. “Good. Looks like we’re all in, this time. But even so, I need someone to actually… do the deed.” 

Scott ducked her head, paying an unusual amount of attention to the floor in order to avoid eye contact with Hale or Lidner or anyone else. Almost like a schoolchild who didn’t know the answer to a math problem. 

Not me. Not me. Not me. Not me. 

Please. Please. Please. Please.

“Are you sick?” Hale suddenly asked. “You look pale.” 

Scott looked up and immediately felt a wave of nausea crash over her. 

He’s talking to me. 

“I—”

“That’s a shame. I was under the impression that you could handle anything,” Hale remarked, feigning disappointment. “Like, for example…” The corners of his eyes crinkled upwards in sadistic glee. “Killing a man.” 

Scott crossed her arms over her chest, her eyebrows drawn into a v-shape. “I assure you, I handle anything,” she said as defiantly as she could manage. She couldn’t look weak. She couldn’t sound weak. That’s exactly what would put the target on her back. 

“Wonderful!” Hale exclaimed. “Hearing that from you makes this decision all that much easier!”

Scott felt her body begin to shake. Her heart was pounding in her chest, louder and faster than ever before. 

“Decision…?”

“Yep!” Hale nodded eagerly. “All things considered… I’m glad to give you the task of assassinating Mr. Wakefield.” 

“M-Me?!" she stuttered. "I'd be mad to accept this, Hale!"

"Oh, yeah? But don't you think..." Hale stood up, addressing the entire room. "It's just enough madness to make her interesting." 

"I..." 

“Exciting, isn’t it? You’ll make a great assassin...” Another smile, though this one was tight-lipped. “Kyomi Scott.” 

 


JANUARY 13TH, 2015. 

THE BRONX.

BUILDING 7172, 9TH AVENUE. 

1:56 AM.

 

It was showtime. Only a matter of time before a bullet would find itself in someone’s body and the population would be down by one. 

She was wearing black leather gloves. Their only purpose was to keep her hands clean, although her conscience certainly wouldn’t be. 

“So, are you ready?” he asked. 

She looked out the window, nervous eyes scaling the building. It looked to be millions of stories tall. 

“I’m ready,” she said. She wasn’t. 

It’s now or never.

She was acutely aware of the handgun pressed to her belt, though it felt more like a ticking bomb than anything else. 

“Okay, then.” He smiled a smile that was probably intended to be encouraging but really wasn’t. “Remember, Scott. The company’s counting on you!”

“R-Right.” 

The car door swung open. She was automatically hit with a gust of wind that bit at her face. 

The car door closed behind her as she took her first few steps towards the building. 

The words ‘Wakefield-Pearson’ were emblazoned on the front of the establishment in capital letters. 

She entered the lobby. It was empty and dark. 

she thought as a small weight was lifted off her shoulders. That’s one less thing to worry about. 

She continued down the hall. The moment she reached the elevator, a familiar voice sounded in her ear. 

Hello? Can you hear me?” the voice wondered. 

It was the earpiece. 

“Yes,” she responded. 

“Gosh, you’re too loud. Quiet now, you're gonna wake the beast!” 

“Okay. Was there anything you wanted to tell me?” she asked, her voice lowered to nearly a whisper. 

“Mhmm. Wakefield’s here, just as I suspected.”

She shivered at the mention of him. The image of that very name printed on a gravestone flickered through her mind. 

“I was already on my way up. His office is on the highest floor, right?”

“Yes, but that’s not important. Because right now, he’s at the rooftop.”

“...the rooftop?”

“Don’t ask questions, there’s no time to dawdle. Just go to the highest floor and look for the last door in the west corridor. Open it, and you’ll find a staircase. I’ll be waiting in the car after you’re finished,” the voice explained. “As for everything else, well… you know what to do.” 

“Understood.” 

And then the voice went silent. 

She entered the elevator and raised a shaky finger to the button marked thirteen. The doors slid shut, locking her in an ascending metal cage. 

It’s for the greater good of the company, It’s only one person. Nobody’s going to find out. 

And, in the grand scheme of things… one death out of the seven billion doesn’t really matter. 

Right? 

… 

Right?!
Before she knew it, the doors were open again. 

She stepped out. Like the lobby, the hallway was dimly lit, only barely illuminated by the glow of the full moon seeping through the windows. The carpeting might have been bright pink or yellow or blue, but in the darkness, it looked like gray. 

Anxiety was coursing through her veins. She was hyper-aware of every little noise; the sound of her own breathing, footsteps, and heartbeat. 

Come on. It’s just one bullet. It’ll be quick and painless. 

She finally reached the last door. The paint was peeling and the hinges were barely functioning. 

It was such a great disparity from the rest of the building. 

creak, revealing a set of stairs. 

Well. 

Nowhere else to go but up. 

 


JANUARY 13TH, 2015. 

BUILDING 7172, 9TH AVENUE. 

THE ROOFTOP.

2:07 AM.

“Who’s there?”

She froze. 

Yup. That was definitely Wakefield, no doubt about it. 

But how could he distinguish the presence of another person so quickly? She had made an active effort to be as discreet as possible upon arriving.

But there’s no backing down, now. 

She said nothing to answer Wakefield’s question, but instead, took out her handgun and aimed it at his head. 

His eyes widened. “W-What are you—”

“You tried pulling a gun on us, so it’s only fair that we return the favor.” 

A dark look passed over his face. “Hm. I suspected something like this might happen. In that case…” 

Suddenly, she found herself staring down the barrel of a gun. 

They both had their fingers on the triggers. 

She narrowed her eyes into slits, glaring at the older man in disdain. 

How could he have seen this coming?! 

Hale said nobody knows… and nobody will know… 

So then, why…

Why is my life at risk, too?!
It was like some cruel, twisted karma. 

Do I deserve this? After all, I was the one who aimed first…

The predicament was quite clear. 

If she shot, he would shoot, too. 

It was only a matter of who would be brave enough to make the move. To take the risk. 

I have to catch him off-guard. I need…

Her stare shifted from the barrel of Wakefield’s gun to the horizon. 

Disregarding everything else about her situation, it was actually a very nice night. The city’s glowing lights below and beyond lit up the horizon like stars, as the moon hung high above the seemingly endless pitch-black sky. 

It looked like a beautiful painting, framed by the rooftop’s barred guardrail. 

I need the upper hand!

It all clicked into place. An idea formed itself in her brain, and although it wasn’t necessarily ideal it was likely to work. 

She began to walk towards him, her mouth pressed into a firm line. Every step felt like a death wish, but she tried to ignore that. 

Instinctively, Wakefield backed up, maintaining as much distance as possible. Although, his gun never lowered. 

you had backed into a corner, didn’t you?” she asked, her voice laced with undertones of arrogance. “Feel free to take a look at where you are, right now.” 

Wakefield refused to surrender, but it was clear that his hands were shaking. 

Not that she was any less terrified. She was just trying her best to hide it. 

I have the edge now. I just need to push it just a little more, and then it’ll be over. 

Just a little—

SLAM!

A punch was thrown at her face. It landed. 

good god, it hurt. 

Before she could even regain her composure, she was thrown to the ground. 

THUD!

Oh no. 

‘Upper hand,’ my ass!

She needed to get back up and kill the man. Quickly. 

If not, then… 

The vision of Wakefield’s gravestone from earlier came to mind again. Only this time, it was name that was carved into it. 

A spark of determination ignited itself in her chest, giving her enough strength to get back on her feet. 

She gritted her teeth together, her left cheek throbbing from the previous blow. 

Oh, hell. Everything hurt, at that point. While the fall wasn’t enough to give her any serious injuries, it was still painful. 

Now, back to the mission. 

Things really weren’t supposed to be this complicated…

She brought her hand to her handgun and—

Wait. Nevermind. 

She didn’t. She couldn’t. 

Because the gun was no longer there. 

Shit. 

Pupils constricted in panic, she looked to Wakefield just in time to catch him snatching what used to be gun from the ground. 

Was he prepared for something like this?! 

The objective was no longer murder. 

It was survival. 

Because, in the end, what was worth more? Her job, or her life? 

Actually… that was a horrible example considering that it certainly wasn’t easy to answer. 

“You wouldn’t,” she said, her voice monotone. “You’d be a killer, too.”

“It’s called self-defense. And as if one to talk,” Wakefield scoffed. “I absolutely despise hypocrites.” 

was being hypocritical, wasn’t she? 

No matter what… I’m guilty in this situation. 

The only thing I can do is pray that the jury doesn’t think the same thing. 

Ideally, the attempted murder wouldn’t reach court at all. But only ideally. 

Hold on. 

There was one more detail that she was forgetting, a detail that had the potential to be her saving grace. 

Their current positioning. 

The gears in her head began to turn. 

The guard rail is a little less than three feet high, and Wakefield’s roughly 5’11… 

An invisible lightbulb flashed over her head. 

That’s it!

Still, I’m going to have to be careful. Very careful. 

One wrong move and she’d have a new hole in her head. 

“You know, even though you’re hunting us down, your group isn’t 100% clean, either,” she brought up. It was a half-truth, of course. Although she didn’t know of any secrets specifically, she was aware that every company had something to hide. So it was only natural that she would try to take advantage of that. 

Score!

Wakefield’s eyebrows rose. “T-That’s a baseless claim! You have no proof, unlike us!”

“Is that so?” 

Really, she couldn’t care less about whatever scummy thing Wakefield-Pearson had swept under the rug. It was nothing more than a distraction.

And as Wakefield continued to blabber about how he and his company was innocent and her accusation was complete bullshit—which, it sort of actually was—she was getting ready to execute her plan. 

At last, it was time. 

Here goes nothing. 

And… everything. 

Smoothly and fluidly in a practiced motion, she swung out her leg and kicked Wakefield right in the stomach. 

Immediately, he lost his balance, losing both guns in the process. 

But before he could breathe or speak or yell, he stumbled back over the railing. 

So, Kyomi Scott could do nothing but watch as Bruce Wakefield fell to his death. 

The way he was flailing his limbs and grasping at the air as he went down… it made him look like he was drowning in the night. 

SPLAT!

She glanced at her watch.

2:14. 

The hands were frozen. It must have been broken from her little tumble.

She heard a few screams from below—they probably belonged to horrified citizens upon discovering Wakefield’s body—and turned away. 

What a shame that such a beautiful night had to be ruined by this. 

She took a few steps towards the staircase opening before freezing in her tracks. 

Suddenly, the realization settled in. 

He’s dead. 

Bruce Wakefield is dead. And I’m the one who killed him. 

She felt like throwing up. She felt like grabbing her gun, shoving it to her forehead, and pulling the trigger. 

I’m a murderer. 

A MURDERER! 

No. No, no, no, no. 

Forget it. Forget it! It’s not real!

This isn’t happening. THIS ISN’T HAPPENING!

This isn’t…









 

(Oh, but it was.)

 


Kyomi was beginning to feel a little dizzy. Hundreds of repressed memories found their way back into her brain, and they were taking center stage. 

It was odd, not feeling the constant ticking of the watch against her wrist. 

It’ll never tick again. Not after that. Not ever.

Another car passed by. It was jet black. 

I am a criminal.

A criminal without a cage. 

I was cleared of suspicion, but only because Hale pulled a few strings. 

She let out a humorless laugh. 

Even justice is corrupt, in this world. 

You can get away with anything, so long as you know the right people. 

But what If you could go back?
Right back to the start...
Would you take the chance and make the change?
Would the world forgive you? Would he forgive you? Would
you forgive you?

A generic ringtone cut through the silence. 

Kyomi slipped her phone out of her pocket and checked the caller ID. 

Her heart practically stopped. 

It’s him. 

“Hello?”

“Check the news. There’s something you might want to see.” 

“But I’m not—”

“I know you’re near Times Square. There are plenty of screens over there.” 

“...understood.”

She clicked the bright red ‘hang up’ button and turned off her phone. 

What could possibly be so important that he had to call and tell me about?!
But… there’s only one way to find out. 

And so, Kyomi took a deep breath and started to run. 

 


JANUARY 14TH, 2015.

TIMES SQUARE, MANHATTAN. 

3:01 PM. 

 

Eventually, Kyomi arrived at her intended location. Her chest rose and fell in rapid, shallow breaths and her legs were aching in exertion.

Times Square was bustling, as usual. Dozens of screens and advertisements lit up the area in neon colors, and—

There! 

She quickly located a specific screen that was broadcasting the news and watched it intently. 

The words ‘BREAKING NEWS’ flashed at the bottom of the screen, as two reporters stared at the camera with solemn expressions on their faces. 

“47-year-old managing partner Bruce Wakefield was recently found dead on the road, right near Wakefield-Pearson headquarters,” the female reporter explained. 

“Several details about this incident remain unknown, although it is widely believed that Wakefield’s death was a suicide,” the male reporter added. 

a voice in her head whispered. They have it all wrong. 

You did it. All of it. 

You’re a murderer, and this was the perfect murder. 

She could try to forget, but the broken clock strapped to her wrist would never let her. 
 

“According to an investigation report, the time of death was precisely…” the female reporter hesitated a little before speaking again. 

“2:14 AM.”


Submitted: March 15, 2021

© Copyright 2021 Commander Cryptic. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments:


Facebook Comments

More Mystery and Crime Short Stories

Other Content by Commander Cryptic

Short Story / Horror

Short Story / Mystery and Crime

Short Story / Mystery and Crime