Friday, December 7, 2012

#FridayFlash 58: A Perfect Day

The air was warm and quiet. The lake was still and reflected the brilliant blue sky. He took a moment to appreciate the gift nature had provided. It was, he decided, a perfect day for murder.

“I’ve got the beer, you ready?” The greeting broke his contemplation. He schooled his expression to reveal no indication of his darker thoughts while he responded appropriately. It didn’t take long for the two men to load up the little fishing boat. Rods, bait, and the all-important cooler.

“I’m so glad you talked me into this,” Jake commented with a relaxed smile as they shoved off the dock. “It’s been way too long since I’ve had any time off. And it’s perfect fishing weather.”

“You work too hard. Everybody needs to escape once in a while.”

“You should tell my wife that!”

“I’ve tried. She’s not inclined to listen.”

“Yeah she’s a tough one, but she’s increased the business ten-fold and, you have to admit, she’s usually right.”

“So did you tell her where you were going today?” His question was perfectly timed with just the right easy tone.

“That would hardly be a wise decision,” Jake acknowledged. “No, as far as everybody’s concerned I’m in back-to-back client meetings downtown today. That way, if anybody tries to reach me and can’t, they’ll just assume I’m in another meeting. I’m covered for hours.”

“Brilliant,” he said with a smile, knowing Jake would misinterpret it. Everything about his attitude and conversation suggested he was happy to be relaxing with an old friend, but inwardly he was vibrating with excitement over what was to happen and what would come of it. This wouldn’t be his first time; that had been years ago. And there’d been others since. Several. But this would be the first time with somebody he knew. Somebody he used to respect.

He’d planned this one far more carefully than any of the others. He had a solid alibi lined up. Nobody could know they were out together, or even that he’d ever been on this trip. He’d thought through everything. The location was perfect; Jake’s lake was private and deep. Nobody would see. And it would likely be months, if ever, before the body was found. If he was even slightly lucky, Jake’s wife would sell the cottage property shortly after the funeral; after all, it’d been his hobby, not hers. She had never approved.

With location established he needed a method. A gun would echo for miles; hardly good for a subversive act that required a long time for a getaway. A rapid acting poison would be perfect except that Jake always brought the cooler. There was no easy way to change that tradition smoothly. A knife would be too messy and too risky; Jake might get the upper hand. He didn’t like to admit it even to himself, but success was more important than ego. After all, it was a perfect day for murder. It’d be a shame to waste it. And finally he came up with it. Sheer brilliance.

The only question had been whether Jake would tell his wife. The one who had put an end to their fishing trips and gambling excursions and general enjoyment of life. The one who had turned Jake into a boring, law-abiding, workaholic. And of course, the one who took over the books and stopped his handy access to cash. Jake had let her take over his life, but he hadn’t told her who he was meeting. It was indeed, a perfect day for murder.

He briefly considered actually fishing for a while first; it wasn’t likely he’d be out on a lake again anytime soon. But, he realized, success was more likely to be achieved by getting back to town as soon as possible. There was still a slight glimmer of a chance he might actually need an alibi this time, and getting back faster would make it stronger. Especially if he managed to get back before anybody noticed he’d ever left.

He was just about to make his move when he heard a sound in the distance. A sound that shouldn’t be there. A sound distinctly like a motor. “What’s that?” he asked, as though nothing more important that his fishing were being interrupted.

“Oh, I invited the rest of the old gang to come join us. I thought since I don’t get to see you very often any more it’d be great to have the whole group together.” The look Jake gave him was one of an excited child revealing a barely-held secret. He feigned the appropriate enthusiasm while feeling the crushing disappointment of wasted plans. But then he philosophically shrugged it off and settled in to enjoy the fishing.

After all, there would be other days.

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

One Word: Sail

They sail billowed and with it her relief flowed.  She was really doing it -- escaping the only life she'd ever known and travelling to the new world.  And nobody knew she was leaving.  She wondered briefly what the reaction would be, but knew she'd never be welcome back.

Friday, June 8, 2012

One Word: Chat

"Let's chat."  Such simple words but so many implications.  From your boss?  From your significant other?  From an old friend?  From a new friend?  Who would you most like to hear them from?  Why?

Thursday, June 7, 2012

One Word: Grind

The daily grind was getting to me. So I did the only logical thing that made sense — sold all my belongings except a backpack and some clothes and set out to walk around the world. One step at a time.