The prompt for this story was to work 3 particular words into a story. The words are:
was like art. Beauty could come from the most haphazard of movements,
the biggest of seeming messes. Yes, murder was an art form, and she was
excelling at it.
It had all started off quite accidentally.
She was visiting her sisters, just a family get together. One of her
sisters seemed…off. She cowered when her husband neared her. And he
hovered often, barely allowing the three sisters to have a decent
The girls had been close ever since their
parent died. Cheryl was divorced with two kids. She had left them with a
babysitter tonight to have a little ‘grown up’ time. Evie was the
youngest. No husband, no children. Just a handful of cats. She was a
veterinarian. And then there was Joyce. She was the middle child. She
married Joe about three years ago, and over that time, things had
changed. The girls didn’t get together as often. Joyce was pulling away
from Evie and Cheryl. IT bothered the two sisters greatly.
dinner was arranged by Evie. Though not the oldest, she was the most
dominating, perhaps because she was at home with doing things on her
own. Between herself and Cheryl they nearly had to beg Joyce to attend,
and even so, Joe would allow it without attending himself.
Dinner was tense. Joyce was quiet. Guarded. Joe drank heavily of the wine. He wouldn’t allow Joyce to have any.
By evenings end, the tension and anxiety in Evie’s home was palpable.
Joe was ready to leave.
Cheryl and Evie pleaded for another hour or two with Joyce.
And then Joyce herself spoke up.
Joe wasted no time in backhanding her.
just rolled with it. To Evie and Cheryl, it seemed like Joyce was used
to such actions against her, and had learned to move to avoid the most
harm, while still fulfilling Joe’s sadistic punishment.
Never the less, the two sisters were shocked. They both rose to Joyce’s defense.
This angered an inebriated Joe even more. He backhanded Cheryl. She slumped to the floor, holding her cheek, eyes wide.
Joyce remained unmoving on the other side of the room.
The next thing to happen was the room going dark, a clatter of glass and a heavy thump on the floor.
Cheryl got up, fumbling for the overhead light switch.
stood over Joe, calm and collected. Joe was crumple on the floor at her
feet, her antique Tiffany glass lamp shattered around his head and
shoulders, blood pooling slowly around him.
frantic. What to do? Get Joyce to a shelter? Call the cops? Yes. Yes.
That’s what they needed to do. She ran to her purse and retrieved her
Her shaking fingers fumbled. Before she even
pressed the 9 key, Joyce had slapped the phone from her hand, causing
Cheryl to jump and back away, a gasp leaving her.
Such a simple word.
Joyce looked to Evie. They seemed to communicate wordlessly.
Evie gave a nod. “You two get him to the bathroom and strip him down before he wakes.” She disappeared from the room.
Joyce wasted no time doing as told. Cheryl needed a little more prompting from her little sister.
Once Joe was in the bathroom and stripped, the girls heaved him into the bathtub.
returned. She had changed clothes. She wore one of her surgery aprons
and a pair of blue surgical gloves. She held her medical bag.
were things in that bag that looked terrifying to Cheryl and Joyce. But
they were needed items for Evie’s line of work. Animals get themselves
into the most precarious and dangerous of situations. Tangled in barbed
wire, impalements on branches, deep gouges, bites from wild animals.
instructed her sisters to leave the room. Gather bleach and garbage
bags. If there wasn’t any, or enough, go buy some. Pay cash.
Cheryl was frantic, though Joyce was surprisingly calm. They did as asked.
morning, Joe had been disassembled neatly and with precision, his parts
and pieces placed into garbage bags and the entire bathroom and tub
cleaning thoroughly with bleach. Three times.
dumped the body parts in various places around the city. They made a
pact and comprised a story for police. Joe wasn’t very well liked by
anyone, if his body parts were even found, the police would barely look
at Joyce and her sisters as suspects.
Something changed in Evie that night, however. She kept something. It invoked something in her.
It would set her on a path in life that was thrilling and challenging.
took a midsized box upstairs to her attic, clearing away cobwebs. She
opened an old steamer trunk, settling the box inside. She opened the box
for one little peak at Joes severed head. She gave a smile.
Filling the trunk with moth balls, she closed everything up and went downstairs for a spot of coffee.
a way, she wasn’t just freeing her sister. She was freeing all three of
them. It marked an independence day for them. Her sisters were free.
And something within herself had free. A mind numbing madness. A drive. A
need. A new life waking up inside of her. A killer born.