Snapped

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Mystery and Crime  |  House: Booksie Classic



I'd been close. Close enough to capture the lie. Immersed in the emotion of your farewell, I proceeded undetected. This photo one of hundreds taken, it contributed to an incriminating portfolio of wheres and whens that destroyed your alibi. The veil obscured your tears to most, but I knew, having seen them before. They were always present at the farewell. They had little effect then; perhaps I was hardened to them. Smug in my accomplishments, dollars were imaginatively spent from the commission claimed. I cashed in on the suspicion. The consequences of which did not cross my mind. 

That would be the last of my photos. A sepia portrait of forgotten happiness framed by printed words followed. The headline disclosed your fate; a murder, an arrest, a trial. The greenest of monsters had prevailed. Cruel, unwavering judgement had been applied, determined acceptable by the sanctity of possession in marriage. A charred licence plate remained, preserving your existence and innocence. Mine is not so clear. I had swapped my envelope for his, and in such, sold my soul by blackening hers. 

Your name was Evelyn Hayes. I never ascertained your lover's name. I hadn't cared, it wasn't Mr Hayes. Your children grown, your money made, I'd been ignorant to your pursuit of the dreams of youth; happiness and a beginning. I'd stared into his eyes, apathetic, unforgiving and unrelenting. Seeking warmth, empathy and love elsewhere would be unsurprising. You'd seemed more beautiful with every exposure. The future you'd designed is illustrated in the snapshots littering my bureau. An imagined ideal I'd been eager and honoured to take. 

Redemption brought me here today. To spectate was to play the smallest part in lawful vengeance. The chamber was claustrophobic, furious with rambunctious rumours and prediction. The finest of society's worst, the curious, meddlesome and macabre clambered carelessly for a superior view of the proceedings. I loiter on the sidelines, reminded of the station from that last clandestine adieu. This scene far less beautiful, more brutal. I wanted to believe my virtue was upheld among such dark souls; in truth, I was interwoven in the kindred psyche. I belonged. 

Mr Hayes appears without delay, the uniformity of drab, ill-fitting prison clothing replaced with a pinstripe three-piece. The atmosphere was depleted of all life and silence triumphed; the fit of an expensive suit couldn't disguise the midnight in his soul. He relaxed into the chair, innocence implied, and I looked into the eyes of the devil once more. 

Spirited applause fills the room when guilt is affirmed. The destination agreed in a similar fashion, at the hands of another. Mr Hayes is lead away, resolute in remorselessness, to meet with a higher judgement. Complicit, I know the verdict should be shared. In my hour of retribution, how heavy will my soul weigh? 

I follow the sated crowd, meeting with familiar, softer eyes. I pray recognition is one-sided. Three men shaped Evelyn's present; the villain, the hero and the provocateur. All gathered at the unhappy ending. 



Submitted: April 22, 2020

© Copyright 2021 katwithabackpack. All rights reserved.

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