Careers Advice By SJI Holliday
‘So I was thinking of becoming a serial killer,’ she said.
The man on the other side of the desk nodded and took a noisy slurp of his tea. ‘Mmm hmm,’ he said. ‘Do you have any experience?’
‘I’ve killed small animals,’ she said. ‘Frogs, mostly. I suffocate them in jars then cut them into pieces with a kitchen knife.’
He looked across at her, pushed up his glasses and nodded again.
She continued: ‘I’ve mostly worked in cafes. I’ve never stayed in one place more than a month. I get bored easily.’
He smiled, showing off his yellow teeth. ‘High IQ?’ he said, scribbling on his pad.
‘180,’ she said. She crossed her legs and started bouncing her dangling foot. ‘I didn’t do well at school though... teachers said I was disruptive.’
He was writing quickly now. ‘How do you get on with your family?’ he said.
‘I don’t talk to those... people. My mother refused to believe me...’
‘Of course,’ he said. ‘Alcohol..? Drugs..? Abuse..?’
She nodded and sighed. ‘The full set,’ she said.
‘Excuse me a sec,’ he bent down and pulled an A4 file from somewhere below his desk. He flicked through some pages, held it open with a thumb. ‘What about fires?’ he said.
She grinned at him, feeling hopeful again. ‘I burnt down my primary school.’
His shoulders shook with laughter. ‘You don’t fit the demographic,’ he said.
Her face fell. ‘But why?’
‘You realise that 90% of serial killers are male?’
‘Yes... but, that leaves 10%...’
He held the file out towards her, his hand was grubby. ‘Read it,’ he said. He paused to scratch his head and the musty smell of unwashed hair wafted across the desk. ‘Have you ever tried to, or even thought about killing yourself?’
‘Well, not yet, but...’
He shook his head and started to laugh again. He was on the verge of a convulsion. ‘You’re not really what we’re looking for,’ he said. ‘Sorry.’ He snapped the file shut.
She felt a fat tear roll down her cheek. ‘But it’s all I’ve ever wanted to do,’ she said. Her shoulders drooped and she sniffed, wiped her nose delicately on a tissue.
He looked her up and down, took in the smart black dress and the neat blonde hair. He took another slurp of tea, said: ‘Have you considered hairdressing, love?’
Copyright SJI Holliday 2011
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