domenica 12 gennaio 2020

Il post numero 300 [in inglese]

Due anni e mezzo dopo, ripubblico il mio post "Il post numero 300" in lingua inglese, perchè credo sia una bella storia thriller, ambientata nel mondo dei giochi da tavolo, e volevo potessero leggerla anche altri al di fuori del nostro stivale.
Questa traduzione è soltanto merito di Infinite Jest. Grazie!

Post originale in italiano:


We found the first one on sunday.
Fabrizio, the new assistant assigned to me, called to tell me he would come and pick me up in 5 minutes.
My coworkers who arrived earlier already secured the apartment waiting for the arrival of the CSI unit. The tenants of the building were out on the balcony, asking questions.
We passed under the yellow tape.
The man was in his bedroom, standing on his treadmill, dead. Someone fastened his forearms to the handles with three layers of barbed wire. His arms were mangled. His pajamas pants were blood soaked.
Two pieces of adhesive tape on his mouth prevented him from screaming. The forensic scientist who made the autopsy told us the man had a pacemaker, the cause of death was heart attack.
None of the other tenants heard or saw anything, of course.

On the day after we found the second one in a flat a few miles away, but it took some time to relate it to the first one. The name of the man on the treadmill was Enrico Chiozzi, 54 years old, a worker in a factory.
We found the second man tied and wrapped by more than 300 kg of chains and locks, his lungs and chest crushed by the weight of all that metal, his name was Mauro Donati, 29 years old, he worked as a restaurant waiter.
It took more than three hours to the firemen for untangling that complicated heap of chains and locks.
The morning after, all newspapers revelled in the news. They wrote we had a new serial killer in Turin, a creative one, the kind you find in Jeffery Deaver novels. In the finest crime novels tradition, we grope in the dark. Turin didn't bother to help us, silent and demure as usual.
The third victim came, a 32 year old woman, Anna Mondini, secretary. We found her dead in her flat, drowned in her bathtub filled with glue up to the brim. The killer used 14 buckets of powdered upholstery glue of the most common type, the one you find in stores and you have to mix up with water.
The woman on the bottom of the tub looked like preserved in amber.
But this time we found something else. A writing made with a permanent marker behind the toilet. Looked like written by a male.

I asked my coworkers to go back to the first crime scenes and search deeper, for more traces, even at the cost of dismantling all the furniture to the last screw and removing all the tiles from the floor. The order was to call me anytime, as I eventually gave up sleeping.

Nothing happened on the next day.

I was invited to dinner at Fabrizio's. I met Erika. They got married two years ago. They had a red-haired cat called Rust, but they were dreaming about having a baby soon. She was a primary school teacher, on a temporary job. I liked her freckles.
The tiramisù was interrupted by a call on my mobile phone.
They found the fourth one.

We drove to an abandoned warehouse close to the municipal stadium, an old shoe factory closed in the 90s.
The body was just lying on the floor with all the debris and rusted rods around him.
He looked like someone bashed him with a metal bar or a baseball bat. The bones of his arms and legs had been fractured, his face swollen and unrecognizable. I looked around me. There were hundreds of shoe prints on the floor, that place was probably a meeting place for junkies and drifters. Used condoms were lying on the floor, like dried-up jellyfishes on the sand.
On a pylon, surrounded by hundreds of writings made by vandals, I saw one that looked like brand new.
I took a picture with my phone.

An agent catched us up by the car. He was accompanied by a civilian who showed up at the police station one hour ago.
I kept my fingers crossed, hoping for a witness. He was not. But he knew all the victims.
Maybe we do have a lead, I thought.

We moved to a bar. Fabrizio and I ordered the two double espressos we desperately needed, the man ordered just a glass of water.
His name was Alessandro, 46 years old, an architect. He recognised all the victims from the pictures on the newspapers. They all frequented his boardgaming association 011PLAY, they met every Wednesday and Saturday night at an old bowling club.
I showed him the picture of the last victim. He ripped it from my hands. He said: "Unbelievable, Marco..."
All different people, with different ages, different gender and different jobs.
We found a guiding light, finally.
I took the phonecall of another agent. The line was heavily disturbed, he had to repeat three times.
They found a writing made with a feltpen on the back of a painting, in the house of the man on the treadmill.

My cellphone kept ringing and ringing, and they were all bad news. There was a fifth body.
The slaughter wasn't about to end.

We hadn't time enough to step by at the police station, so we took our witness along.
We headed to the block of the former Wholsale Markets. Parked our car on the opposite sidewalk, as a little curious crowd was already there.
The man's feet were coming out from an opened dumpster.
We put on our gloves and pulled him out. He could be in his 40s or 50s.
Alessandro recognised him. Massimiliano Carvini. Another boardgamer attending his association.
They stabbed him on the neck, and they carved something on his forehead, deeply.
"Looks like a letter" I said.
"Looks like... an alpha" Fabrizio replied.
And then... Alessandro's phone rang.

The man who was on the other end of the line declared to be guilty of all the murders of the 011PLAY association. He was calling from a downtown flat. He wanted to end it all.
Alessandro managed to get his address.
We headed to our new destination, sirens wailing.

The flat was at the fourth floor of a quiet building.
We called for backup on the radio, and we started blocking the stairs in the meantime. We went back up to the landing. Last name TOMMASI was on the doorbell.
"What now?" Fabrizio asked.
"And now hands up and step back" Alessandro answered, pulling a gun under my ear.
Nobody bothered searching him.

"What the hell are you doing?" yelled Fabrizio.
"I want you to wait for me here, on the landing. Only for ten minutes. And then you can come in. Nobody will shoot" Alessandro promised.
Always pointing his gun at the two of us, he took a key from his pocket, put the key in the lock, and he went in, locking the door rapidly.

We waited for backup. They took ages to get there, not just ten minutes. We broke down the door. We stepped in, holding our guns.
The twins were at the table. Homozygous. Identical.
There was a small board on the table. They were palyng a game.
"Quoridor" said Alessandro , or maybe his twin, "It's an abstract game."
On the floor, Erika was lying in a puddle of blood. Her body looked like huddled up. They shot her in the forehead. Drops of blood on her face, like brand new freckles.
Fabrizio screamed.

"Quoridor is an abstract game" the Alessandro on the right repeated, "The aim is making your pawn reach the other side of the board".
They wore the same clothes. It was impossible to ditinguish them.
"During your turn, either you move your pawn one step or you put a wall to impede your opponent. But you always must leave him a way out" said the Alessandro on the left.
"Simple, perfect, unforgiving. You can explain the rules in five minutes. Abstract games are totally underestimated".

Fabrizio pushed me away, as I tried to calm him down. He kept pointing his gun to the twins'heads, moving the barrel left to right.
"They were all mediocre gamers, the reflection of meaningless people" the right one explained, "they all chased the new colorful and dazzling releases. Awful games, with a bad design, broken mechanics invented by incompetent game designers and hasty publishers".

"RUNAWAY LEADER the man on the treadmill, FIDDLINESS the one under the chains, ANALYSIS PARALYSIS the woman in the glue bathtub, BASH THE LEADER the one bashed to death, ALPHA PLAYER the one who was stabbed."
"People live and play with trial and error, they make mediocrity a way of life, they laugh st their flaws to justify their own daily failures."

Fabrizio was screaming.
"Throw the gun away, Fabrizio" I said, putting mine away "Look, I'm putting mine back in the holster"
"Only one of us killed Erika" explained the Alessandro on the left, "the other twin is innocent, he stayed with the two of you all day long"
"Why Erika??!?!" Fabrizio screamed. His gun was shaking in his hands.
"Apparently the PLAYER ELIMINATION is our capital vice"; the Alessandro on the right was smiling.
"Noooooo, noooooooo"
He was walking back and forth in the room.
"Fabrizio please...if you do it...they win this game!"
"Come on, agent, shoot! Shoot Erika's murderer!" said Alessandro on the left
"Now you can decide who is the winner and who is the looser, establish who lives and who dies in this game. Become KINGMAKING"
 "Don't choose, Fabrizio, don't do it..."
"The killer raped her before he..."

Fabrizio shot.

5 commenti:

  1. Emozionata, rispondo: prego!
    Elena P (aka Infinitejest)

  2. CRITICAL DICE! (che però già esiste) :)

  3. Sto racconto a distanza di quasi 3 anni mi mette ancora i brividi!

  4. Quella storia è un fottuto capolavoro.

  5. Thank you Dado for this masterpiece.