She liked to dig in bare feet. That’s why one of the toes was missing on her right foot. Shovel incident. She smashed the metal head into the packed dirt, carefully avoiding the wiggly painted nails. She had taken to using bright colors on her toes, so that she could easily see them while working. Right now they were a caution-reflector-yellow, gleaming through the rough spray of soil. She wasn’t very far along, the hole was shallow and she had hours ahead of her. The sun had just set and her florescent lantern cast a dim, eerie glow around her progress. It helped that this wasn’t the first time the piece of earth had been uncovered. But it wasn’t fresh and the weather over the last month or so had packed it down.
She thrust her weight against the shovel and lifted another heavy pile out of the way. Only about 4 feet to go. She barreled through her work, fueled by urgency and anger. Three years, she’d given him three years. If she had been younger maybe it wouldn’t have mattered, but time was passing unkindly and she saw her looks fading. She saw the girl he’d picked as her replacement, her perky breasts, probably a tighter, pinker pussy. Actually she’d checked, the pussy didn’t seem tighter. It didn’t matter, just like cars she was traded in for a newer model. The jean shorts started chaffing her milky thighs as she violently continued her task. There were three trash bags and a wheel barrow parked above her on the undisturbed ground. It had only taken three bags, she thought, to fit her problems.
They were reckless, like any budding couple, they didn’t get suspicious or notice her following them. They were blissfully unaware of the twitch she’d developed from watching them kiss, and the marks she left on herself every time she watched them fuck. They didn’t know until the moment she walked into the bedroom, drenched from the downpour outside. Even as they tried to understand what it meant that she was standing in there, they didn’t fully comprehend what was going to happen. So it was easy.
She took him out first as he attempted to confront her. Thunder covered the sounds that followed. The sick ‘THWACK’ from the baseball bat as it collided with his skull. He was a Yankees fan. Go Sox. She’d grabbed the bat from above his mantle. Someone had hit a home run with it once, and now so had she. The girl wailed and tried to run naked from the room, but was only met with a thick blade plunging deep into her belly. She ran straight into the the thing. Couldn’t get any simpler.
She dragged the impaled girl across the hardwood floor to the tarp she’d laid out in the next room. The girl coughed up a thick bubble of blood that erupted from her mouth and leaked down her cheek. She creased her forehead at the girl and scanned the deplorable mess. This girl didn’t look like much of an upgrade from herself. She was thin, but not so thin, and her round face was almost homely, her eyes dull brown to match her hair. She searched her orifices for anything special. Examined her breasts and touched her skin. The girl moaned and wiggled on the tarp, spurting fluid and dying pathetically. She didn’t wait for the girl to pass before she brought out the bone saw and began hacking pieces off. At first the girl tried to scream, but it was too much and eventually she just went still. When she was done she took each body part and stuffed it in the 40 gallon garbage bags. Then she went after him.
The hole was almost complete, she’d placed a ladder against the side so that she could climb in and out. Her shovel came down for a final time, it hit something solid and she smiled. She began clearing away the dirt from the lid of the coffin and grabbed at her crowbar to pry it open. After much coaxing, the lid opened to reveal the casket interior filled with roughly 9 other trash bags. She frowned. It appeared she was running out of room in this grave. Oh well, she thought closing the coffin, I’ll just pile these on top.
She had killed Michael and his girlfriend over seven different times. Each time she dug down into this grave or that she expected it would be the last. Then, while walking the streets she would see them in a warm embrace, cradling each other’s faces and looking lovingly into their eyes. She would follow them and learn their routine, until the moment when she could stand it no longer.
She grabbed the bags bursting with body parts from the wheel barrow and tossed them haphazardly into the ditch. Picking up the shovel she started filling in the hole once again. The ritual was familiar and she felt very accomplished by the time she patted the packed dirt down. This would be it, she said to herself, this would be the final time, they would not rise again.
She strolled out of the cemetery to her inconspicuous blue Subaru, where she loaded the wheel barrow and shovel. She shook away the grime as best she could and slid her bare feet into flowered flip-flops. Driving home was always a relief, she was tired and satisfied. That’s when she saw them walking the down Broadway, arm in arm, and her jaw dropped. She hastily parked the car, and pulled a sun dress she had in the back over her dirty clothes. Stepping out of Subaru she began to follow her ex and his new squeeze yet again.
By Emily Smith-Miller