Not drawn from reality, I promise.

Choices... choices... Image from WikiMedia by Frank C Muller.

Choices… choices…
Image from WikiMedia by Frank C Muller.

Murder She Wrote

Alia plotted the death of her father-in-law while she made him a sandwich. Maybe she could tip the radio into the hot tub the next time Greg listened to opera at full volume late into the night. But then she’d never be able to use the hot tub again, and she loved that hot tub.

“You almost finished in there?” Carl hollered.

“Yep, almost!” Alia called back, staring at the plate on the counter.

She could slip some pesticide into the sandwiches she made for him every day while he watched t.v. in the living room, an unmovable lump on the sofa. It wouldn’t be that hard to do, surely.

But half the time he fed part of them to their ancient Labrador, and poor Rufus didn’t deserve the indigestion the sandwiches gave him, much less a poisonous garnish.

Knives, guns, or anything violent would be too bloody, she thought, as she picked up the plate. She’d spent so much time on her furnishings, saving pennies but making everything just so. Blood would not go with her shabby chic decor.

“Here you are,” she said with a smile.

He grunted, not even glancing away from the screen.

“Enjoy,” Alia said with a pained smile, turning back to the kitchen, to start making dinner for herself, her husband, and their daughter. Not that Violet, sliding into the body-conscious hormone-mazed shores of puberty, would do more than pick at her food. At least Carl always left before dinner, out to a bar, a late movie, or tinkering with his latest project in the garage.

No time for murder, she decided, remembering that Violet had swimming practice today, and would have to be dropped off right after dinner.

Carl would just have to live.



About Caitlin Stern

I have a MA in English, and have so many fantasy/urban fantasy WIPs it's not even funny. I'm an avid reader of science fiction, fantasy, mystery, romance, biography, fiction, and anything else that catches my interest. I collect books, and bookmarks I find that are visually appealing and useful.

4 responses »

  1. Marcia says:

    Oh, I like this snippet, Caitlin. It has me wondering. Who is Carl, if not her husband? Why does she hate him that much. Yeah, he’s a lump, but most of us have learned to live with that, and not be thinking about actual murder. And I love the description of Violet’s coming hormonal challenges. Nice job!

    • caitlinstern says:

      Carl is her father-in-law, as the first sentence says. I figured they should get some of the love usually aimed at mother-in-laws.

      I think a lot of little things can drive you around the bend, but Alia isn’t ever actually going to kill Carl. She just likes to think about it, as he’s recently retired, and hanging around much more than usual.

  2. Kim Magennis says:

    I really enjoyed this Caitlin. There is something in the tone of this piece that is just delicious. It makes me want to bring a shovel and indulge in murder most foul!

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