2024 Storytelling Week

As the officer unravelled the cloth cover, she instantaneously realized who was responsible. The lifeless, bruised body of young Maisie Porter was displayed before her eyes on the table. Barely a week ago, 17-year-old Maisie was vibrant, full of joy and affection. What led him to commit such an atrocity? What prompted him? She knew his handiwork, she had defended him before, but was it plausible to shield him this time?

‘Indeed, it’s Maisie,’ her eyes welled up as a rush of thoughts filled her mind. She pondered over how she would break the news to her best friend that her daughter was the one pulled out of the river. How could she look her straight in the eyes and disclose it, knowing fully well it was her own son who was responsible.

Her 19 years old lad. Her ‘blue-eyed boy.’ Her ‘unexpected bliss.’ A cruel murderer.

At the tender age of 13, he took his first life. A naive boy whose future was abruptly ended by a ruthless act, that happened too swiftly for her to intervene.
She assured him not to fret, she expressed her love for him and guided him on his statement to the police. She hoped it was just a one-off incident that could be blamed on a sudden hormonal outburst and repressed rage towards his father, but fast forward to 6 years later, yet another young girl murdered.

‘Mrs Sheath? Mrs Sheath, are you alright?’

Brought back to her senses, she found herself shedding tears while looking at Maisie.
Taking a deep breath, she slowly covered Maisie’s formerly bewitching face with the sheet.

‘Do you require anything Mrs Sheath? Would you like me to call somebody on your behalf?’
‘No, I need to talk to Marlene, I need to convey to her that the identification is confirmed… her daughter is gone.’
‘We’re here to help you Mrs Sheath, allow us to drop you home.’
‘No, her parents ought to be informed by someone they are acquainted with.’

With that, she left the room, taking a moment to compose herself.
‘If this is your choice, Mrs Sheath, as a professional, I need to accompany you.’

The ride back to her home was slow and agonizing. She doesn’t really remember responding to the officer’s attempts at conversation. It was all just a haze.

As they arrived at the Porter’s home, a stone’s throw away from hers, she spotted Liam, her son, spying on them from the dining room window. This sent a shiver down her spine.

Taking slow steps up to Marlene’s door, she fortified herself for what she anticipated as the worst experience of her life.

This is a sneak preview from a short story that is currently in progress. The decision to complete and publish this story is yet to be determined. I hope you relished this excerpt!