Tag Archives: murder

Happy Fourth

Billy turned down the volume on his car radio as he pulled into the empty parking lot. He checked his map. This was the place. An old strip mall full of abandoned nail salons and Mexican restaurants. A general sense of unease coated the area like grease on fries. He was a long way from the suburbs.

“Hey Billy!” A familiar voice shot out from one of the buildings. “Come on in! Glad you could make it!”

Billy couldn’t help but smile. Red was always coming up with these crazy shenanigans for the holidays. And the Fourth of July would be no exception. But he had never taken the group so far into the south side. Still, Red’s voice seemed to melt away any inhibitions.

Billy shuffled out of his car and into the dilapidated building. It was once a Payless shoe store. The kind Billy used to go to in middle school. It was weird seeing it in such bad shape. It was an empty concrete husk with scrap metal laying haphazardly along the edges of the floor and a single barrel in the center of the room. Red leaned against it as he shook with excitement. Another figure lurked in his shadow, Billy recognized him as someone from his school but could not seem to place a name to the face.

“How the hell are ya Billy? It’s been too damn long!”

“It’s been two days.” Billy shot back with a grin.

“Well, do I have something planned for us tonight!” He gestured to the plain looking kid next to him. “This is John. You probably know him from Algebra.”

Billy and John made brief eye contact before turning back to Red.

“So John here!” He clasped him on the back upon mentioning his name. “He says we can shoot fireworks at him for $50. He needs the money or something I guess.”

Billy smiled sheepishly and stepped back.

“What the hell is this man?”

John spoke up. “Look, I need the money and Red said I could stand all the way at the back of the store while you shoot. Just do it man, everybody wins.”

Billy tried to play off his comments with a shrug, but he still felt uneasy about the whole situation. Red was not helping with a manic energy that shook Billy. He was not sure why Red wanted to shoot fireworks at this kid and it was unlike him to be so outwardly mean.

Before Billy could protest, John was already walking to the other side of the room. Red was suppressing a deep chuckle. He inched a bony elbow into Billy’s chest.

“Hey Bill.” He whispered. “So you know how my Pa was fired from the plant the other day?”

“Yeah?”

“It was this fucker’s dad that fired him.” He gestured into the barrel.

Billy’s stomach flipped over. He could tell this was not going well. And when he peered into the barrel he was expecting the worst. Only to find a standard pack of fountains and sparklers. The relief was breeze that swept away his anxiety. If only that was all he found in that barrel inside that abandoned payless shoe store.

“Check it out man.” Red lifted the fireworks and underneath were two hammers. One for Red. One for Billy. “Let’s fuck this guy up. By the time he turns around and realizes it, he’ll be trapped.”

Billy paused for a moment. This was wrong. He knew it was wrong. But Red was his best friend. He reached into the barrel and grabbed his hammer. His hand shook with the implications of what he was about to do. When would they know when he had enough? What if they accidentally killed him? So many questions. He looked over to Red who was already getting in a few practice swings.

Red flashed a toothy grin. “Happy Fourth Billy.”

Framed

I DIDN’T DO IT

A puddle nestled between the gaps in the cobblestone road splashed as I sprinted past. Soaking my aching feet. The shopkeepers looked up from their wares at my racing figure in horror. It seemed that the news traveled faster than I could run.

My stepfather always had it out for me. Though he was a pillar of the community, he was a cruel man. It started with little things. My mother’s ‘stolen’ necklace stashed under my pillow to turn her against me. A local grocer’s till found under the floorboards of my room to portray me as a criminal. He took care to never abuse me. At least not in any way that could leave a mark. He would always say the same thing: “Who are they going to believe?”

But it had never gone this far before. That man wanted to ruin me.

“You! Stop!” A policeman yelled from a passing alleyway.

He shouldered a flintlock rifle to scare me into submission. I didn’t stop. Even when my leg exploded in pain at the cracking of the gun. I collapsed onto the ground, clawing my way down the street. I had to escape.

“Get him!” An orchestra of fast footsteps grew louder.

I felt a boot press against my bloody leg. Though the agony was unbearable, I pushed the impending screams down to the pit of my stomach. I looked up at the grizzly man in uniform.

“Alan Whitaker. You’re under arrest for matricide. You fucking scum.”

I could hear the ferocity in his growling voice. He was right to be angry. A woman was dead. My poor mother. I found her head under my pillow when I got home, her hacked up body was crammed under the floorboards. When I confronted my stepfather in his study, he only laughed.

“Who are they going to believe?”

Dig

The foot squeezing my rib cage kept me pinned to the ground. A soil spattered edge of the shovel pressed against my trembling throat. My Adam’s apple struggled to gulp repeatedly, stopped each time by cold steel. The man standing above me in a jet blue suit stared into my soul with squirming pupils. He pulled the spade away, releasing me. My body convulsed with involuntary coughing and wheezing.

“Do we understand each other then?”

“Yes.” I wiped away tears with a hand caked in dirt.

“Get diggin’ then.”

I reached for the shovel, but the well dressed man pivoted it out of my grasp. He gave me a disapproving look with empty eyes.

“Your hands. Use them.”

I nodded obediently, then I rolled onto my knees and sunk my nails below the withering grass of the forest floor. Tearing into the earth’s crumbly flesh. Buried rocks and roots cracked against my knuckles, insects wriggled from out their furtive burrows. Occasionally I looked back at the man. He leaned casually against his shovel, tapping his foot impatiently.

“You done yet?”

The pit was barely a foot deep. My spine racked nervously.

“We got all day.”

I dug til the clouds bled orange and purple. The evening breeze whistled its way between the twisting pines. I was sure to take it all in. Memories of the most mundane variety were increasingly precious to me.

“Stop.” The voice boomed, echoing through my core.

The man fiddled his fingers playfully. A wicked smile revealed his festering teeth. The blade of his shovel scraped a trail as he walked toward the pit. I stepped out to face him. I had resigned myself to die, but my fists disagreed. They squeezed around the sharpest pebbles I could find. The man met me at the edge of the hole. He had swung the shovel over his shoulder. His wrist twitched with anticipation. There was not a moment to lose.

“Thanks for your-“

I threw the rocks with the force of a coal train. They clattered harmlessly off his surprised expression. All I needed was an opening. I sprung low to the ground, tackling the man off his feet. A pained exhale exploded from his chest as he slammed to the ground. I took advantage of his shock and wrested the shovel from his grip. He laid there, breathing heavily as I rose to stand. I used the shovel to finish the job.

Thinking back, I should’ve called the police. Instead I buried the mutilated corpse. And stuck the shovel into the ground. It was all I knew about him. I thought it a fitting headstone.

Friday Fictioneers- Genesis

Photo prompt courtesy of J Hardy Carroll

100 words


The clock had taunted me for weeks. I drove by the house every night for merely a glimpse.

Tonight I had decided to make it mine.

The door was unlocked, it creaked mercilessly as it opened.

I walked to the parlor where the clock stood grandly overlooking the room. The moonlight brushed its ornate design. When the minute hand of the clock hit twelve, a deep bell chimed.

While I stood there in awe, the lights flipped on.

A woman froze with her finger still on the switch.

We made eye contact.

She didn’t scream loud enough to save her.


For the sequel please refer to my previous Friday Fictioneers post- The Criminal

Check out the community’s posts here.

Friday Fictioneers- The Criminal

This is my first Friday Fictioneers post. I hope I have done everything correctly 🙂

I call it The Criminal, it is 100 words and inspired by the lovely photo by Gah.


A full moon shone on me like a spotlight.

That pointed finger from the heavens was all that tied me to the crime.

Still I obsessively scanned the street below my bedroom window.

Still I jumped at every passing siren.

I wondered if they had found her body yet.

Tucked away so expertly from scrutinizing eyes.

If they caught me I would be thrown in jail.

But I stood there, paralyzed.

Crippled by nerves.

A free man too scared to leave that very spot beside the window.

I hoped that they’d find me soon.

So my prison sentence could end.


http://www.inlinkz.com/new/view.php?id=793545

Disillusionment

I was but a bright eyed boy when my dear mother passed. Her throat slit while she slept. My father was sent to prison under suspicion of her death where he eventually fell ill and expired. Of course, he was entirely innocent of the crime.

It was a drifter that came to our door that day. He was soaked through his heavy wool coat. Bones rattling to a deathly rhythm, one that had shook the life from his eyes. I distinctly remember a dark presence burdening him, radiating like black steam. I begged my mother not to take pity. But she was a foolish woman. Too kind for her own good.

When the man had finished with her he rooted through our kitchen and stormed out the back. Not before giving a patronizing pat to the back of my head. It was at his touch that the darkness began to take root. The feeling was that of a hand crushing my skull, fingernails digging ever deeper into the depths of my mind. A madness that to this day has failed to cease.

Perhaps I should have stayed. With my testimony, my father surely would have avoided his unjust sentence. Instead he came home to a dead wife and policemen welcoming him with shackles in hand. The only witness had slipped out the door.

On the road life was less than pleasant. Every passing day was a testament to will and desperation.

Travelers would occasionally stop and offer whatever help they could. Though never enough to loosen the grip on my head. Once you have seen evil it becomes a part of you. A part that if not properly drowned, will pound electrifying spasms of torment into the chest. I think that is why I kept walking. Each step staved off the darkness, I knew nothing else.

I woke this morning unable to make it to my feet. Three weeks of hunger and exhaustion had taken its toll. I fear death will take me soon. But more than that, I fear the thoughts that encroach while I lay here.

Before it all goes black I will see true darkness.