Detective Inspector Edward Newson is investigating a series of very unusual murders, which he is certain were committed by a single killer, although the only links between the murders are the bizarre methods of torture and death used by the killer, his habit of playing loud retro music while he kills, and the fact that the victims seem to offer little or no resistance. A powerful construction baron is stabbed 347 times with a skewer dipped in anticoagulant and slowly bled to death. A politician is bleached in powerful acid and then forced to drink it. A former model's face is mauled, and she is left to starve to death while staring at her ruin in a mirror. In all these cases, and several others equally macabre, the victims were unpleasant people, loathed or feared by most of their acquaintance.
Meanwhile, Ed's personal life takes a nostalgic turn as he signs on to "Friends Reunited", an online high-school meeting place, and gets in touch with many of his former classmates, including two very different ex-girlfriends. Christine Copperfield, the beautiful queen bee of the class of '87, who he went out with for a week at the age of 14, and Helen Smart, the unpopular outsider who he dumped for Christine. A few meetings with Helen reveal that she is troubled by many issues from her past, including her bullying at the hands of golden girl Christine, who on one occasion shoved a tampon down her throat in the girls' changing rooms. Ed is shocked, but the years have not dimmed his fantasy-girl's appeal, and soon he and Christine are headed for a second chance... Until Christine is found murdered in her flat, choked to death with a tampon. Did Helen kill her, in revenge for her past cruelty? Or did the killer have a wider purpose?
This report prepared by Emma Hearn