Sunday, 24 July 2011

The Cool Side Of The Pillow...A Short story

Two weeks have passed. 
It is just another one of those slow days, all is heavy, my head, my body, even the air that I am breathing, feels thick and hot.  
Sun shines between the tiniest gap in the heavy curtains, illuminating the dust particles, which spin slowly, float silently and then fall ever so gently to the floor. 
Dust to dust.
It's the kind of day in which normal people are rejoicing, tweeting upon devices. "The sun is shining and all is well with the world," it never fails to delight and unite the nation.  Wonderful, just how happy the sun makes people feel.  It warms our bones and refills the energy cells.  People smile and are pleasant to each other, they perform random acts of kindness and wear their prettiest clothes. 
Here though, here inside, peeping behind the brocade, lying in the dark, the act of moving ones body out of this bed, to take part in the mass worship of this beautiful day, was just impossible.  Even the effort of lifting the head, to see this spectacular blue sky, the creator of this great enthusiasm and happiness for others, was exhausting and disappointing.  There was no desire to move from this place, not even a stirring, I turn the pillow over, and lay down my head.  This is the sweetest sensation, its coolness almost soothes the numbness of my inner pain.  This cooling comfort is bitter sweet, as I stretch out across the cold cotton sheets, across to your place.  That place, the place you have lain for more years than you have not.  The coolness emphasises its emptiness, loneliness seeps through. It reconfirms my nightmare, it is indeed a fact.  You are no longer here, you have gone and this time, will not be coming back.
It's dawn and I am sitting in the kitchen nursing a coffee, something I seem to be making a habit of.  At this time of day the world seems eerily silent, yet so beautiful, the sun has risen and for the first time in so long, I feel the urge to greet it. The door bolted, heavy and unyielding, like a tall jailor, yet surprisingly is easy to release.  I remove the chain, open the door and take the first steps out of this gilded cage.  This will be the first time I have smelt fresh air, since you left. 
There is nothing quite as lovely as the world at dawn, I remove my slippers and walk out onto dew soaked grass, it must have been a cold night the frosty petals surrounding me are glittering, the morning light holds a gentle magnificence.  The air smells sweet and the chorus has begun, how different life can feel when out doors.  My feet and ankles begin to feel cold from the damp grass, but I welcome this sensation, feelings are new to me, I am existing in a world of numbness.  Symmetry, once always so important to me, the perfect square of green lawn, with mirrored boarders running along each edge, all lay ahead, although overgrown and in need of attention.  Weeds do not grow where you want them to. For the first time, this did not worry me, there were no desperate feelings of anxiety to put it right, my inner voice was telling me to "Let it be, just let everything go."
I begin to walk across the lawn towards our, my sheltered area.  It's a tiny corner, secluded by a large conifer hedge, this is the place where we would sit and drink on a sunny evening.  All major decisions seem to have been made here, long discussions late into the evening, it's a place that never seemed to get cold.  Today though, just walking towards it, I begin to shake, bile has risen to my throat, I feel dizzy and I cannot take another step.  Lack of food, cold air, whatever, I was not going to sit there today.  I was going back, back to my self imposed prison.  My haven, everywhere is spotless, there is nothing amiss, no stains or spills, not a cup out of place, nor a grain of salt to wipe away. The overflowing piles of junk mail mixed with bills and bank statements have disappeared, there are no empty boxes, or dead batteries. There are no nails that needed to be saved for another day, there are no random shoes, nor half full glasses of wine left overnight.  No, all traces of disorder have vanished. Just like you.
Fifteen days, the sad memorable face of Sinead O'Connor, singing her heart out, is haunting my thoughts. It is a song, that in the past bored me.  I remember being startled by the gorgeous face and huge sad eyes, of this Irish beauty lamenting her lost love, yet the song itself left me cold.  The words were then irrelevant to me and the tune dull.  Yet today it had taken on a new meaning "Since you've been gone I can do whatever I want...." Such wonderful lyrics.
Two weeks previously.   
I scanned my home with a warm feeling of contentment, it was looking beautiful, sharing our home and entertaining gave me great joy.  I had spent the day preparing, plumping up cushions, polishing surfaces and lighting scented candles.  Together we had strewn fairy lights through the hedge and around the sheltered area in which we dug a fire pit, as the evenings were yet still cold.  We stood back and admired the light, it was magical, like hundreds of baby stars twinkling and together with the glow of the fire, heavenly. I was so exited about tonight, it was my first attempt at matchmaking. 
"Stop interfering, If people want to have a relationship, they will find their own partners."  
You had moaned to me.. 
Yet, I knew just how lonely my friends were.  John a recently divorced male friend and Jane a widow, both were extremely good fun, attractive and fed up of spending every weekend alone.  Although, things did not go quite according to plan.
They began to go wrong at exactly 8:05pm when John phoned to say that he was sorry but he was running extremely late and it was very possible, he may not make it at all, so not to wait for him.  John, a country vet, was unfortunately on call that weekend, there was nothing he could do.  I was so disappointed, I had desperately wanted them to meet and Jane was already here.  Although, she seemed to take it well, in fact she appeared almost relieved, even though I hated to admit it, I considered that maybe you were right, maybe she didn't want to meet anybody else just yet.  She decided to drink after all and asked me if it would be ok if she stayed the night, something she often did when we went out together.
You opened the champagne and walked her into the garden, to show her the fairy lights, whilst I went to prepare the spare room, it was then through the bathroom window I saw you in the dark, together. I hadn't bothered to put the light on, I was only reaching in to grab a hand towel, but something distracted me.  I had just glanced out for a second, it was one of those moments when you need to look twice, not quite believing the messages your eyes were transmitting to the brain.  A cold fist reached in through my breastbone and squeezed my heart tight.  Jane had lifted her hand and was running it through your hair, she stroked your hair.  I thought that was an odd thing for her to do, next, she threw back her head and laughed, teeth flashed, white and even, hair shinning in the moonlight, glossy and black, it fell down to the centre of her back in waves, she was wearing her red silk wrap dress. I was with her when she bought it.I remember remarking at the time.
 "Such a sexy dress.."
You bent down kissing her softly on her lips and then along her neck, your hands now on her hips.  In that way, in the way you hold me, thumbs upon my hip bones, fingers resting on the buttocks.  She began to kiss you back, passionately, her breasts pressing against you. Her dress falling open, exposing her long, tanned limbs, adorned in matching silk underwear, she always wore silk underwear. 
My best friend. 
Your hand, your hand moved slowly upwards, tenderly caressing her thigh, taught and muscular, she had great legs. 
My best friend.
I watched as you stroked the soft, silky fabric of her pants, your long fingers teasing and tantalizing her, back and forth, so gently you were stroking her. I knew this because, I know your touch so well, she lifted her leg and wrapped it around you. Then pushing aside the flimsy fabric you slipped your fingers underneath and inside. 
Inside, my best friend..
I fell silent inside, not daring to breathe, frozen, I could do nothing only stare in disbelief. I know now that I was in shock, I felt so calm, too calm.  I knew that I should run out there, scream at you and make you stop, but, I didn't.  I just stood there, wide eyed, in a form of masochistic trance my emotions somewhere between arousal.and repulsion.  Her was head thrown back, eyes closed, lips parted and moist, her back had arched, throwing her hips forward, crushing her body into yours.  Your fingers were still inside her and your head now between her breasts.  Sucking, kissing licking, breathing her in, her essence, her softness.  She had never looked so beautiful, you were devouring her and she was loving it! 
My best friend.
It was at that moment, that I knew, exactly, what I was going to do.  A calmness like no other, crept slowly through my body, making me so sure, convinced, full of self assurance, more than I have ever experienced before.  Considering my heart was pumping with such ferocity that it rocked my body to the core, I was totally in control, I knew exactly what I was doing.  It must have been the ice flowing through my veins, cooling me, steadying my hands.
Beautifully carved silver, Spanish in style, with such a fabulously polished, walnut stock, an over and under, so easy to use, you just point and shoot.  I am talking about your Beretta shotgun left abandoned, stood beside the cupboard in the hall, right next to where I stood.  So many times I have asked you to lock it away, but like everything else .."Yea, later."  Twelve steps it took me to walk outside, locked and loaded, armed with my twelve bore.  Just carrying it, filled me with the sensation of immense power, for once I was totally in control.
I actually had only intended to fire a warning shot, I wanted to scare you, to make you stop.  I wanted you to drop her, to leave her be.  Part of me also wanted to walk outside, to find that you were already finished with her.  Just so that I could pretend, nothing had happened and everything could return to normal. Sadly it did not happen like that. You were still fucking her with your fingers.  She, my best friend, was still moaning in ecstasy and continuing to encourage you, it was just too much, I fired.
The blast virtually removed her beautiful face, and not in a metaphoric way.  It certainly tore that fabulous hair from her head, her scalp was now hanging ghoulishly, dangling toward her feet, the fountain of blood blending into the red silk.  Just one cartridge and her head had virtually left her body, her blood was everywhere, chunks of skull, flesh and brain.  Once again, even in death she was all over you. 
My best friend. 
It was only seconds, yet I saw you shocked, dumbstruck, eyes filled with fear, silently pleading to me, as I lifted the barrel and took my aim.  I was a good shot and you knew it, you had seen to that teaching me to shoot targets and clays. "It was something we could do together, a mutual hobby."  I fired the second cartridge, point and shoot, I aimed for the heart and tore you apart. 
Just like you had me.
Guts spilled out upon my neatly manicured lawn, my carefully planted white garden that glowed in the evening light, now splattered with red.  Even in the dark I could see the pure white rhododendron was now marbled, the carefully strewn fairy lights were glowing pink and there was a dark stain spreading across the lawn. It was like a scene from the worst horror movie, only there was no point in hiding, as the bad guy, was me. 
At this point, I think the brain switched off, you know the non psychotic brain, the place in your mind that this carnage would normally totally freak you out.  I just stood there surveying you both totally detached from the situation.  I noticed that Jane had perfectly manicured nails, she had obviously planned her outfit well as the red was the same colour exactly as the silk, yet the silk was now much darker.  You looked pathetic, broken and twisted up, covered in blood and insides of both of you covering your shirt.  You still had a beautiful face though, I was glad that I didn't shoot you in the face, unlike Jane, who was really a mess. I bent down and picked up the spent cartridge, I loved the smell of cordite, it conjured up memories of frosty mornings, when your breath was visible and the cold air made your nose tingle.  The frosty grass that crunched under feet and trees that looked like flames with warm, wet, panting spaniels at my feet. 
Happier times.
I have seen so many episodes of CSI and Dexter to know that I would never get away with this, that soon someone will miss you and come looking for you or Jane, but, I had now, I had the time until they do.  I dragged you first as you were the heaviest and dropped your corpse into the fire pit face up.  After dragging you, Jane was a breeze, the only problem I had was her hair and scalp, well most of her head came away and I had to place that into the fire pit separately.  I laid Jane on top of you in a kind of peace offering, you would be together in death.  I knew where to find your petrol cans, left strewn as always behind the hedge.  I grabbed one and poured on the entire contents, over you both, the fire pit was still smouldering but I wanted a more dramatic finale, so I lit a match and dropped it in.
Strolling over to the small bistro table, where earlier that evening we had intended to have our pre dinner drinks.  I picked up your glass of champagne, which was still cold and sat down.  I could feel the heat, as you exploded into flames, and watched as your face blistered, then turned black as you melted into one another and I toasted you.
Ashes to ashes..Dust to dust.


  1. amazing.... what happens next?

  2. Brilliant!!! Your writing floats freely on the pages.. encouragingthe reader (me in this case) to continue on. Hanging on every word, even though I have read them in your previous posts ... each word continued to grab me to continue on. I hope there will be a full novel coming forth in the near future, of how she continues on with life and deals with the betrayal and the consequences of her actions ~ whether her acts are discovered or not. Wishing you a wonderful Sunday! XO HHL

    Falling Off A High Heeled Life

    ATTEATUDE and Chocolate

  3. Thank you I really enjoyed doing this xx

  4. As I told you in personal e-mail- GOOD STORY! Now that it's done- pretty scarey. Lots of people can understand this fantasy. PRAY it IS a fantasy!
    xxx t

  5. Awesome....abfab dahling! seriously though awesome...<3 you x

  6. Raw, visceral and full of emotions that we all share. You have a rare talent in capturing those feelings of betrayal that are so frustratingly enmeshed in our feelings of want and desire. Scary but beautiful.

  7. Hi Ruth, I kept looking for new posts in my reader but I was subscribed to the other blog. Glad to be hooked up again :-).

    Great story. Totally scary!!

  8. Wow! Amazing. I wasn't expecting that! Love you xx

  9. Hiya Ruth, well I finally got around to reading and initially thought it was gonna drag on with some grieving reclusive old widow staring out at melting snowflakes and babbling on about how lonely she was. I never imagined it would lead to a Tarantinoesque Chick-with-Beretta style showdown, dazzling evening dress striding out through a moonlit night with a smoking twelve bore as the ultimate fashion accesory: one down and one to go. Blowing her 'best friends' face off like that then admiring the nails! Fuck... those dangerous stolen moments can really get us into trouble. (Though foreplay on the croquet lawn was taking the piss a bit!)

    Great writing Ruth... keep it up as it's one of the few profession that makes us thankful we've lived. What's a scar or wrinkle when you can write such wonderful things?


  10. Thank you Bubble Gum.. Shane..
    As I have always said I wish there was a "like" button for comments.. yours are always so entertaining .. its like having a little guest post xx Glad you liked it .. I nearly lost my trigger finger last night in a much less glamorous incident so was unable to reply before.. all is well with it now.. I am such a dramatic bitch ..giggle xx

  11. Hi, Ruth,

    As you might know from (Re)Making Love—the second edition coming out soon on Amazon but first is up there now—in real life I watched my husband kiss another woman. I did not go the route of this story, as you know. I suppose that's why it's a memoir.

    I love the opening of your story and the calm with which you tell it, knowing already the violence to come: That is a writerly, in the best sense of the word, move.

    Always keep me posted on new entries and I will do the same. Hope you'll take a look at the blog currently as we share our stories with one another. I am deeply indebted to you for investing in my memoir with your time and sense that we have made a virtual friendship through Facebook and Twitter.

    And I will always read your work.



  12. Mary you are a darling .. I love your work so I am thrilled that you enjoyed this .. yes I enjoy our virtual connection and loved being inside your memoir as I love the way you think .. you are a very generous soul xx

  13. Fabulous Ruth, really enjoyed reading that :-)
    Luke xxx

  14. Wow loved it your so talented keep writing this would be an amazing novel x

  15. Can you do another version where instead of blowing them to bits you join them in a threesome?

    1. Giggle, Pasty boy.. is that by the way pasty as in Cornish...or as in pallor?
      The answer to that is ..there might already be that version in existence... waiting to be published.. xx

  16. You know it is Pasty as in Cornish. I look forward to the publication then. If you need it to be proof read you know where to find me ;) xx

  17. Beautiful- and in my mind could have been a wonderful ending if I had caught them...

    1. LOL, yes I am sure.. but then that would make this a porn blog, rather than a "Tale Of The Unexpected" ;) xx