“David, I need a break, “ said Brandi.
“Sorry, if trying to keep you alive is boring you,” said David.
“It’s not, but there’s a plantation in Suwannee, Georgia. I’d like to visit.”
“Sounds nice, if you’re into old building and boredom.”
She ran her hand up his leg. “I promise you’ll enjoy it.”
“Sure, why not.”
David was bored ten minutes after arrival. While waiting for a room to be cleaned, they walked through the maze of shrubs. David noticed something small sparkle in the distance.
“That’s weird, Brandi…”
Brandi slumped forward. Brain tissue and blood soaked David.
The pit in David’s stomach grew, when his eyes met Brandi’s.
“Brandi…I’m sorry…I wish things were different,” said David.
“I haven’t seen you in three years and now you’re sorry.”
“Brandi, your in danger. I’ll explain everything, but we have to leave.”
“Brandi, he left an envelope for me yesterday.”
“So,” she said with a huff.
“So, he’s going to kill you.”
“Where can we go?”
“I know a place.”
They drove for hours, until David pulled into a small motel.
Brandi stared out the window at a frosted over tree. “When will this be over?”
Photo copyright: Jean L. Hays
Pain radiated from Henry’s leg. A moment later, he collapsed with a thud.
Before everything went black a voice said, “ Your death will not be quick.”
He awoke to find Patricia bound and gagged dressed in her bra and underwear.
The kidnapper pressed a gun to the side of Patricia’s head. “Did Henry tell you what
happened to Hope and Jason?”
Patricia’s voice trembled, “They ran off together.”
The kidnapper laughed, “No, Henry killed them.”
The van came to a stop. Two men dragged Henry into a pre-dug grave. As dirt covered his body Henry screamed.
Photo Copyright: The Reclining Gentleman
Only one man stood at the midway point of the bridge. As Patricia approached with the rolling cooler she started to sweat.
“Where’s the money,” said the kidnapper?
“Where’s Henry? I want proof he’s alive,” said Patricia.
The kidnapper handed Patricia an iPhone. “Hit redial.”
The call picked up on the first ring. Seconds later came Henry’s hoarse voice, “Hello.”
“Henry, don’t worry….,” the call dropped.
“The money’s in the cooler,” said Patricia.
A van speed up the bridge. Tires squealed, the door opened and Henry dropped out of the van. As Henry and Patricia embraced, two gunshots rang out.
Photo Copyright: Dawn O. Landau
Randal peered out the window at the rocks of salt, as the helicopter zoomed over the beach.
“They’re a natural occurrence due to the high salt content of the water,” said the pilot.
Randal said, “Why are they in squares?”
“No one knows, I believe —,” the chopper shook.
It spun out of control and tossed Randal the only survivor into the drink. He awoke with a cough expelling the seawater from his lungs. Using a rusted pole for support he stammered to the crash site.
“Mayday, Mayday, I’m stranded on salt rock island,” he pleaded.
Photo Copyright: Janet Webb
Henry burst through his front door. “Hope, where are you?”
“Taking a bath.”
Doing his best to stifle a grin, he entered the small bathroom. Jazz music filled the room from a charging iPad.
“How was your trip?”
“Good, I learned something interesting?”
“Oh,” she said with little interest.
“Your two month affair with Jason.”
Tears trickled down her face. “I am so sorry. We never meant for you to get hurt.”
“Do you love him?”
“Yes, I’m so sorry.”
With a guttural scream he tossed the iPad into the water. Hope’s body convulsed.
“Tell Jason, I forgive you both.”
Photo Copyright: Rochelle Wisoff-Fields
At the sight of blood pooling under Jason’s body Henry trembled. What am I going to do? How can I explain this? With few options he needed to get rid of the corpse. The waterfall warning came back in a flash.
Jagged rocks lay at the base of the sixty-foot waterfall a quarter mile away. Henry placed Jason in the kayak and tossed the knife in the river. Confident it would be classified a kayaking accident. Although there was little blood Henry burned his clothes and bathed. He peered at the stars and smirked. Now, how to deal with Hope?
Photo copyright: Madison Woods
Emanating from the crackling fire the smell of trout penetrated the air.
Jason finished his third beer, “Henry, I’m so sorry.”
Unable to meet Henry’s eyes, “Hope and I are in love.”
Henry palmed the filet knife. “You’ve been screwing my wife for months and now you’re sorry!”
“We never meant to hurt you.”
In an upward arc the knife permeated Jason’s chest. Henry’s face became pale. “What did I do?”
Jason doubled over in a coughing fit a sucking sound coming from the wound.
With his final breath Jason said, “I forgive you.”
Photo: Copyright: Madison Woods
To move a harp seal named Coco to the San Francisco Zoo by plane took two months to plan. The first hour of the flight Robert sprayed her with ice cold seawater, fed her fish, and monitored her vitals. He was in the bathroom, when the plane nosedived slamming him into the walls and finally snapping his neck on the vanity sink. Everyone onboard was killed, when it shattered on the face of the mountain. As evening approached a camper eating freshly caught trout, glanced up at Coco sprawled in-between two branches.
“Is that a seal staring though a pipe?”