Tell A Tale in 500 Words

A Perfect Murder By Bobbie Brotherton

Initially, Debbie was flattered and surprised when Howard asked her out. He was one of the cool kids in the class, and timid Debbie was too invisible to even be unpopular.

Their date, a movie had seemed perfectly normal. But during the ride home, he suggested a walk on the beach and she stupidly believed him. He was all over her like a malodourous dog. She tried to fend him off but he was twice her size.

‘I’ll say you wanted it.’

From then on, there was no escape. She became his prisoner, his personal punching bag, a mere accessory to augment his sick fantasies. Being cunning, he never left marks, at least not where they’d be seen. He always knew where she was and when she was alone. He knew where the empty classrooms were as well. Even her home wasn’t safe, he’d conned her sister into giving him the spare key.

Attempts to stand up to him were met with the threat every teenage girl during the mid-nineteen- sixties dreaded;

‘I’ll tell everyone in school. They’ll believe me.’

He even had proof, having whipped out his camera while Debbie, tied to the bed was helpless to stop him.

As the term progressed, he became meaner and more ruthless. Their last little play session had culminated with Debbie passed out cold, his hands around her throat.

Alone in the empty classroom, Debbie numbly buttoned her blouse, straitened her skirt and smoothed her hair. With some semblance of normalcy; she gathered her books and in a daze, walked down the hall trying to block out the scraping sensation of sandpaper under her skin.

‘How could I ever have thought he’d want me for a girlfriend?’ thought Debbie as an abrasive river of rage and mortification raged through her. She would never be free, not even after the term. He’d follow her onto to sixth form, through college.

One of them would have to go; Debbie swore it wouldn’t be her. Plans were hatched then discarded until the idea came to her, poison baked in a sweet little offering.

Could she go through with it? What if it didn’t work? What if it did, could she live with herself?

There he was again, that arrogant stride and sly smirk, like a wolf licking his chops. Grabbing her upper arm, he started pulling her along. Pushing back on her heels; she started to wrench her arm away when he brandished the incriminating photo in her face.

Her nerves finally snapped. Rearing up, she snatched the photo and tore it up, shoving the pieces in her pocket.

He reeled back in shock and disbelief.

Fear was swept aside by a reckless scorn. All she could do was laugh. Like an overflowing fountain, hysteria bubbled up and spilled forth.

His face turned white. She watched him deflate like one sorry burst balloon. He slowly turned and slumped away.

She had killed him after all, and it was perfectly legal.

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