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Too good to be true

too good to be true

Estimated reading time โ€” 5 minutes

I was perusing the job ads hoping for something that paid more than minimum wage when something interesting popped up, “$1,000 per week! Working only 30 hours!”

I was definitely interested so I clicked the ad assuming that it was going to be some type of scam, but it looked legit after reading through the fine print.

A cleaning job, they needed people to clean out apartments after people just up and left. Likely old hoarded out apartments which is why the pay was so good. 30 hours a week, two people go in and clear them out and make sure they are somewhat livable again. Even if the work was back breaking, the money would be too good to pass up.

After contacting the provided number and a 10 minute phone interview I had my first assignment for the following Monday, no more than 15 minutes away and I would be working with someone that had been there for a couple years to “Show me the ropes”. The only instructions I got was to wear whatever I had that was comfortable and could be thrown away if necessary. All the other supplies would be brought by the other guy since it was my first time.

The following Monday I showed up at the address they provided, mentally preparing for what I was about to walk in to. I had done some cleaning before but nothing in the extreme so I didn’t really know what to expect. Walking up to the building, I saw a guy in his 30’s smoking a cigarette next to a very beat up Ford F-150.

“Are you the newbie?” He asked while putting out his cigarette.

I answered that I was and He motioned for me to follow him.

“I already brought all out stuff up there, this is probably the best one for you to start in, I could do it myself. My name is Frank by the way, nice to meetcha.”

He opened the door and what I walked into was the most pristine apartment I have ever seen, it was cleaner than my own place.


“All we gotta do is take all this stuff and throw it away. If there’s anything you wanna keep, go for it. No one is coming back for this stuff, so no one is gonna ask any questions. The higher ups only expect us to do one of these a week, regardless of how bad it is, so we can bust it out today and still get full pay on Friday. Lets get to it guy.”

With that we started just moving all the furniture to the dumpster outside. It was all clean and new looking but it looked like it all came from Walmart, so very cheap. Definitely nothing id want to take home with me. A couple hours later and all we had left was the bedroom, and Frank had already gotten started on it.

“Hey uh new guy, you should probably take a look at this.” Frank motioned me into the bedroom closet and pulled open the doors. Inside was what looked like a shrine, complete with unlit candles and a macabre looking table cloth. There was a book in the center of the table that had been left open to a picture of… me? It looked like it was taken on a cell phone and printed out because it was me, standing in line at the mall staring at my phone. I flipped back to the first page and it seemed like the same thing with a different person. Same general build as me, kind of like a profile. With dread forming in the pit of my stomach I turned the page. More pictures of this guy, closer now. Pictures through his window, pictures on him sitting on the couch watching tv, pictures of him sleeping. Wait, those definitely weren’t through a window, these were taken from his bedroom. I turned to the next page and quickly pushed it back and walked out of the closet. The next pictures showed the same man, but he was in a bathtub filled with what looked like blood. He was completely torn apart and next to the pictures was what looked like a lock of his hair taped to the page.

I ran to the bathroom and threw up. After several minutes my heart rate started to go back to normal, and I called 911. By this time Frank had finished everything else up and left me to go home with a “Good luck with that dude”, the only thing untouched being the closet. It took about 15 minutes but the police finally arrived with a loud knock. I showed them in to the bedroom and they quickly examined the closet. After being questioned they said I could go on home and they would have an officer patrol my neighborhood tonight “Just in case”.


My blood turned to ice when I pulled in my driveway, there was an unfamiliar car parked in my driveway, but I calmed down when I saw a detective standing next to it, holding up his badge for me to see. I got out of my car and walked over to him, he told me his name was Detective Randall, then he explained why he was here.

“I was given a call after the officers searched the apartment. Unfortunately you guys did a decent job clearing it out but we still got something at least. Luckily you didn’t really touch the closet after you found the uh.. scrap book. This guy has eluded me for the past two years. His MO is to stalk his victim for a couple weeks, slowly getting closer and then when the coast is clear he moves in for the kill. He likes to cut apart his victims and leave them in a bath. He always takes a lock of hair, that’s how we knew for sure this was our guy. I’m not sure why he left the scrap book, but its enough evidence to put him in the chair for sure. We don’t have him in custody yet, but I can assure you we are close now. I will have someone posted outside your front and back door for your safety until we can get him, and if you leave your home, an officer will escort you. From what we have seen, he only stalks one person at a time and it seems like he only just targeted you, so he would have still taken a week or two before trying to get closer. We have most likely scared him off now, so try to get some sleep tonight.”

With that, he handed me his card and drove away, a police car filling the spot right after. I walked into my house and hopped in the shower, trying to wash away the memory of what I saw in the disgusting scrapbook that sicko created. Even though I was exhausted, I knew I wouldn’t be getting any sleep tonight, but I laid down in my bed regardless. I turned out my light and rolled over when my heart stopped. As soon as I had started to roll over, I heard what sounded like a camera shutter coming from my closet.

Credit : Austin Johnson

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