Crashing to the Ground

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Status: Finished  |  Genre: Flash Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic
What will Matt Rustin do after he's lost the only thing worth living for?

Submitted: August 05, 2011

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Submitted: August 05, 2011

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He couldn’t bare to see her cold, lifeless body lying in the coffin in front of him. He tried so hard to push back the memories believing that, when he arrived home that afternoon, it would all be just a dream and she would be standing there in front of the sink, listening to Cole Porter and washing the dishes before dinner. He wiped the tears away sullenly from his eyes and walked back to the pew in front of the casket. The guests were slowly making their way past her and towards the back of the chapel. He heard their whispers, cautious questions about his whereabouts when she died. They wondered if he was with another woman, if the police verified an alibi. Through all of the talk, Matt Rustin stayed silent. The police had questioned him and cleared his story. He had been with another woman, but not for pleasure. He had been with his partner on an undercover sting when his wife was stabbed in their home. For this, he would feel eternally guilty.

After the service, Matt drove silently back to their home. He went to open the door with his keys, but noticed it already ajar. He went back to his Jeep and took the .357 from the glove compartment and chambered a round. Cautiously, he pushed the door open and moved swept the rooms, carefully to listen for movement but he heard none. It was possible he’d forgotten to shut the door. I was in a rush, he thought as he continued to search for any suspicious signs of a break in. I’m probably just being paranoid. Snap out of it, Matt. At the moment when he eased himself enough to drop the gun to his side, the scratchy sound of a record caught his attention. It was as if it had just turned on by itself and it was coming from the kitchen. He pulled the pistol back into a shooting position, sidestepping down the hallway and into the living room. The music was getting louder as he approached the kitchen and he could now hear the family Porter coming from the turntable. He saw her now, standing at the sink, her charcoal-colored hair draped across her shoulders, hands and arms deep in soap suds. She turned as he walked in.

“Where’ve you been, hun?” She smiled that all too familiar smile, the one that dropped him to his knees. This was a dream. He was sure of it.

“You’re not real. I’m imagining things.” He rubbed his eyes, trying to clear her image from his head, but removed his hands to find her still standing there, arms crossed in front of her chest, a puzzled look on her face.

“Are you feeling all right, Matt? What’s wrong?” She went to feel his head but he backed away, holding his arms out to stop her. She started to cry.

“I’m dreaming, aren’t I? You can’t be here, can’t be real. You’re dead, Renee. I saw your body on the floor. I called the police. You’re dead.”

“Of course I am, dear.” She took off her apron to reveal the stab wounds in her chest and abdomen. “You’re not imagining things, Matt. I am dead. But, so are you.”


© Copyright 2020 Ellison Drake. All rights reserved.

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