He hated this part of relationships. The exhilaration of firsts had ended. The first glance, the first date, the first time their hands had gently brushed each other. He held her hand in his and stroked her icy fingers. Neither person said a word. He studied the beauty of her well-manicured nails. She was leaning back in the tub. Eyes fixed on Logan.
“I’m really sorry things didn’t work out better.” He let go of her hand and it dropped back in her lap. She had no words left to say.
He really was sorry. The smell of bleach and ammonia burned his eyes. He lifted her perfume and inhaled deeply. The vanilla bean scent flooded his nostrils and cleansed his conscience for a moment. He sprayed it on her and for a moment he remembered their first date. He had been sure Jen was the One.
No, she lied. She failed the test.
“Do you mind if I use your cell phone?”
She didn’t answer.
“Of course you don’t.” It was polite to ask anyway. He slid on his black leather gloves before he pulled her cell phone out of her purse and dialed the number.
“9-1-1 What’s your emergency?”
“I’d like to report a murder.” He made his voice deep, much deeper than his true voice. It didn’t sound fake. That was an amateur mistake. He kept his voice calm and measured. The deed was done. Losing control of ones emotions is what led to people getting caught. No reason to get excited.
The first one had been exciting but each time they got easier, more routine. He lightly kissed his gloved fingers and pressed them against her bottom lip.
“The address is 7815 Wi-.” He flipped the cell closed. The police would have to look for a while to find the place. When they did everyone would likely assume that loudmouth on the second floor who was searching door-to-door for her had done it.
A stroke of luck really.
He gently laid a white rose on Jen’s chest next to the Alpha Mu Epsilon charm. The metal rings on her shower curtain scraped as he pulled the curtain almost closed. He turned on the hot water and watched it cascade from her forehead down the length of her body.
The evidence would wash away along with his painful memories. When the room started to steam up he pushed in the lock and closed the bathroom door. Emotions roiled inside him with alternating waves of regret and rage. Why couldn’t she have been faithful? Been worthy? He screamed out a word usually reserved for foul-mouthed bar-hoppers or other such riffraff then went in to the kitchen and dropped her cell phone in the bucket of bleach he’d used to clean up the blood in the bathroom.
He had invested almost a year in this relationship and now she was gone. Certainly there was a woman out there who would appreciate all he had to offer.
You are reading A Face in the Shadow by Tiffany Colter.
Tiffany is a writer, speaker and writing career coach. She is a frequent contributor to print and online publications in addition to her regular marketing blog at www.WritingCareerCoach.com
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This story is copyright Tiffany Colter. 2007. It may not be copied, distributed, sold or included in any larger work without the expressed written permission of Tiffany Colter.
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