Free, any way you slice it [Daily Slice entry for 3-11].
|The Widow and The Fat Man|
"I'm sorry, William; truly, I am," Jen said to her husband of twelve years, even as she made yet another meandering line from left to right across her chosen canvas. "I just can't take it any longer. This is the only way out for me; please don't hate me for it." She bent to inspect her latest stroke, then continued.
The surface was nearly covered in random lines now. Most of the early ones were fine and almost indiscernible among the later, thicker lines. As she progressed and grew more confident, she varied both pressure and angle. If the effect pleased her, she would repeat the stroke; if not, she would try something else. Through it all, her canvas remained immobile, strapped tightly to the table. Occasionally, she would carefully wipe and dab along one of the tracks, just to see how or, even if, a pattern was emerging.
"If you'd remained faithful, I think I could have forgiven you much of the rest: the verbal abuse, the capricious cancellation of credit at my favorite stores, the nearly unbearable burden attending your demands for 'spousal performance'--truly, dear, you could at least have attempted to lose some weight--and on and on. You must have paid those other women handsomely; I can think of no other explanation."
Agitated despite her efforts to remain calm and controlled, the strokes became wider and deeper, her anger reflected in ugly hatches that obliterated some of the finer lines. She looked up at the clock, then back at her husband. His eyes were filled with tears, but he said nothing. The thick wad of cotton taped to his mouth prevented it. His screams and moans, so clear at the beginning, had gradually given way to an occasional whimper as knife-stroke after knife-stroke parted his beloved corpulent flesh.
Jen spoke to her husband one last time. "But, I shall now be forever known as 'Poor Widow Johnson', who suffered the loss of her dear husband at the hands of some madman. Goodbye, dear William."
Jen leaned on the blade one last time, piercing William's heart. She watched the light go out of his eyes, then gathered up her things. Leaving the ramshackle out-building, she went inside to call the police and announce her horrific discovery.