The first paragraph of Edgar Allan's Poe's short story, The Tell-Tale Heart, sets the tone of the macabre horror that continues throughout the tale. The narrator tells us that he is not mad, but that he hears "all things in the heavens and the earth" as well as "many things in hell." In the second paragraph, the narrator continues, admitting that he "loved the old man," but that he plans to murder him anyway. The following paragraphs tell in detail how thoroughly the narrator planned his killing, looking in on the old man after he was asleep each night. The narrator's later acts describing the fear in the old man when he awakes to a noise; the murder itself; and the resulting dismemberment of the body build the horror until the climactic ending when he rips up the planks of the floor to reveal "the beating of his hideous heart."