February 8, 1983, a plumbing company was called out to a large house in a respectable leafy suburb of North London. The occupants of the flats in the property have been complaining to the landlord about blockages. Some of them noticed a strange odor along the lines of a dead animal. The guy tasked with the job of finding the cause of the blockages opened a drain cover and, immediately repulsed by the stench but determined to keep going, pulled out flesh and small bones.
Two of the house’s occupants come outside and talked to the man. One of them stated, “It looks to me like someone has been flushing down their Kentucky Fried Chicken.” The person that says this is Dennis Nilsen, the occupant of one of the flats. He’s seemingly intelligent and charismatic with the appearance of the cliched accountant. In truth, he’s a seriously deranged serial killer, a former soldier, and an ex-cop whose crimes may be too disturbing for some readers.
Nilsen grew up in a world where being gay was not as accepted as today. He was lonely and did not have a loving childhood. In his early teens, Nilsen realized he was homosexual, but this was something he kept quiet. He felt confused and at one point he touched his brother while he slept as if he was exploring his feelings. The brother woke up, and from then on, he belittled Dennis, at every opportunity calling him a sissy. Later, Nilsen moved to England to train in the Army Catering Corps where he picked up a drinking addiction and sexual fantasies of the dead after seeing so much killing and almost being killed himself.
In the early 70s, he moved to London and joined the police force, and he became successful surrounded by coworkers that enjoyed his company. It was then that for the first time he started going to gay pubs and had short-term relationships with other men. However, he did not like casual dating and wanted the men to stay with him. He started murdering the men he never wanted to leave.
Suddenly, Nilsen found himself in an actual relationship for a year, but it ended after both men were sleeping with other people and abusing each other. This would be the last living love of Nilsen’s life. He met men, but like others before them, they had no intention of staying with Nilsen. This was problematic for Nilsen, and he began to drink more heavily. He would go to bars and that was when he met his first victim, a teenager who’d been trying to buy booze without much success. Nilsen bought him some and ended up back at the house where Nilsen took out a tie from the drawer and strangled him and then drowned him in a bathtub full of water. After that, he bathed and caressed the body. He would set the body to watch TV with him and other activities. After, the body stayed under the floorboards for months, until Nilsen burned it in his garden.
He would continue to do this with his victims. The relationship with one ended when bloating and putrefaction started. It would start all over again with Nilsen setting the body to watch TV with him, listen to music, sharing his bed. He would even bathe them and talked with them. He chatted to them while he was cooking and he asked their opinion about the bad weather, but all of them would decompose and essentially leave him.
Even though Nilsen committed these obscene acts, some part of him knew it was wrong. Sometimes he’d spit at his own reflection after a murder, sometimes he’d break down in tears, but it didn’t stop him. Eventually, he was caught, and seemingly happy about it because he did not want to hurt anyone anymore.