Publisher: Azure Spider Publications
Publication Date: November 15, 2017)
Hearing a harsh laugh, Jeremy stopped, caution written in the deepening horizontal lines across his brow. Karen grabbed his shoulder, and they both realized their mistake—speaking too loudly, too openly—and turned in the direction of the eavesdropper.
“What makes you think it’s your baby, Jeremy?” said a female voice. He knew immediately whose voice and waited for Mary to creep in from the shadows.
Fixing her predatory, birdlike eyes on Karen, Mary said, “Tell him. Tell him what you did.” The veins in Mary’s temple stood out, blue and pulsating under her skin. The ferocity behind her pulled-back lips exposed her gums, fiery and red, revealing hatred—an about-to-explode-hatred.
“What’s this about?” said Jeremy, shaking his head.
“I-I,” said Karen.
Mary guffawed. “Can’t tell him, can you? Well, I will and gladly.” She flicked her tongue, spewing forth bullets disguised as words which hit their target right on the mark. “You betrayed us all. Me. Jeremy. Even yourself. I could overlook your betrayal if not for your supreme stupidity, although I suppose Jeremy will have to make his own choice. But what I can’t forgive is that you’re having his baby. His!” Her fevered eyes shifted from Karen to Jeremy.
Jeremy’s skin burned, and he kneaded the back of his neck. “What’s she talking about, Karen?”
Karen opened her mouth, but nothing came out.
Mary immediately cleared up the confusion. “I’ll tell you. I’ll tell you everything. It’s Rahm! Rahm’s baby!”
Torn and bloodied from Mary’s caustic tongue, Karen stumbled backward, barely recognizable as if her whole body, from top to bottom, had been exchanged with someone else’s. Others, hearing the commotion, crowded around.
“I was supposed to be next!” Mary screamed. “How could you? Now they’ll never let you go. Never! It’s all your fault!”
Jeremy went to his wounded wife. “Tell me she’s lying. Please! And not with Rahm. Tell me she’s lying.”
Karen crouched down, head brushing knees, keening as if she were at a funeral.
“She can’t tell you that,” said Mary, “because it’s true. I was there when it happened, over by the lake. I saw everything. Their silly games. Their flirtation. I saw it all.”
Jeremy’s open, beseeching hands rounded into threatening hooks. Rahm and Brian stood nearby, ready to jump in if necessary.
“Do it!” begged Karen. “Go ahead. Kill me.”
Instead his expression shifted from love to hate before fixing into a rigid mold that said I never knew you.
Karen shrank inward, cowering like a guilty person about to be sentenced. The last thing she remembered was Jeremy walking off without another word. He’ll never be back, she told herself. “God help me. What have I done?”
SOMETHING DOWN THERE *
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About Nancy Widrew