An insurance salesman called at 6:34pm. I didn't realise what he was selling until it was too late - normally I don't even answer those calls. I hung up when I saw it was 6:38. I said my mantra all the same, but there was blood on my shoes the next morning, and a claw hammer was missing from my garage. I found it the same day the missing woman reports appeared. It was wrapped in plastic in the trunk of my car. The hammer, not the woman. They never found her. I always feel guilty about that. The remorseful part of myself wishes I could remember, so I could let someone know, and the families would have something to bury. But the remorseful part of me is weak, and I do not remember.
Eight months passed before the next incident. A power cut damaged my alarm clock and I slept beyond 8:02am. The next day, a man went into an underground parking lot, but he didn't come out. That night, I couldn't find my straight razor. I didn't look very hard for it. They never found the man or the razor, and eventually people said he simply ran away with a secret lover. I do not remember what happened but I doubt that is true.
Four months later, I was on a business flight to Europe. The time zones threw my system out of line. I woke up in a strange hotel with a corpse at my side. Bleached blonde hair, blackened green eyes - not my usual type. The remorseful part of me wanted to report it - that was the first time I'd been faced with what I'd done. Instead, I slipped out of the hotel and disappeared into the early morning shadows. I told myself that no one would miss a prostitute. As far as I know, no one did.
These incidents keep happening. I say my mantra for weeks or even months at a time and all is well. But real life has a habit of breaking a pattern. I have moved three times over the last year. I meet people in bars and they ask me why I move around a lot. I tell the men that I am escaping from bad women. They laugh, and welcome me into their circle. I tell the women that I am a restless nomad, always wandering, and searching. They cluck and fuss, and seek to be what they think I need. I am sure I have left behind more than bad memories and broken hearts - I simply don't let myself remember.
I do not know why I am telling you this. None of it really matters because, like you, I am just a regular guy.
I could be anyone you know.