Jane and Helen read every book the library had on serial killers. They read sections out loud to one another, and they underlined passages. They even had a pact. If they turned thirty and they weren’t happy with their lives, they would go on a cross country killing spree. They would go out in a blaze of glory!
So when Jane saw that a behavioural analyst was scheduled to speak at the university, she called Helen up. The topic was serial killers, and there was no way they would miss that. They skipped off school for the day, and took the bus downtown. When the balding man with glasses came out onto the stage, Jane and Helen were front row centre with popcorn and soda.
It didn’t matter that it was mostly old information. They’d heard the stories before, but it was fun to be in a room full of people, hearing them again. They clapped and cheered when the analyst mentioned Canadian serial killers by name.
But then the analyst started talking about female serial killers.
“Female serial killers are rare,” he said. “They fall into certain types. Black Widow, revenge killer, profit killer, Angel of Death.” He went into a bit more detail, describing a few famous female killers. Jane kept elbowing Helen in the ribs when he said something obnoxious. “Often they are motivated by material gain,” the analyst said.
“Boo!” Helen yelled. “Boo!” She made the thumbs down sign with both hands. The analyst stopped talking to stare at them. He was clearly not used to being interrupted.
“Pardon me?” he said.
“What is this, a rap song?” Helen said, loud enough for the room to hear. “Women only kill people because they’re gold diggers?”
“There are several types of female serial killers,” he replied. “If you were paying attention you would have heard me name several other…”
“Right,” Jane joined in. “Women can also kill people because a man treated them wrong? These are my options if I want to become a serial killer? I’m killing people because I’m either a gold digger or a woman scorned? What, I can’t kill people because it’s fun?”
“Yeah,” Helen said. “Why can’t I kill people because it’s exciting and new? This is bullshit.”
“I’m sorry,” the analyst said. “We have more ground to cover. I’m afraid I’m going to have to ask you ladies to either quiet down or leave.”
“LADIES?!?!” Helen said. “We are NOT ladies!” She jumped to her feet and threw her popcorn on the ground. Beside her, Jane climbed up on a chair and turned to face the room.
“We are become death!” Jane yelled. “Destroyer of worlds!”
“Grow up,” someone yelled back.