Chop and Change


“It’s incredible how jealousy can define us. When I killed my first man…you can guess. A woman. Not the woman, but one I knew for a span of days and whose name graced the tracing paper on my left biceps: just below the speared heart and above My Julia, right there.

“I’ve always been the mercurial sort. Yesterday bacon was my favourite breakfast and tomorrow I’ll gut you for saying it ain’t brown toast. Anyway, back to him. My beginning. I never thanked him and it’s sad I never will, him being dead and all, but in ending his life I transcended my own.

His death wasn’t the fruit of endless planning and subtle intrigue. I didn’t switch up faces, I never stalked his family and I definitely never picked an untraceable instrument.

“His death was raw savagery.

“The sight of them together ignited an emerald blaze inside me. I became an inferno and he a scrap of paper in my midst. Fists were the arms of choice an age before guns or knives yet they showed no rust or obsolescence when I brought them out. Blood still clung intermittently to the fabric of my clothes days later – long dried but slightly sticky, a gentle reminder.

“They found the body of course but the police never came knocking. No one queried much my bruised knuckles and the woman only came a-callin’ once or twice after. So that’s that – first time I took a life, jealousy. But I told you it defined me. I wasn’t lying. Like a white-glove girl I went on a spree: my stilettos were beating hearts and wide eyes, my currency violent passion and my line of credit stemmed from never being caught.

“And now here we are. You get to join in my hobby. You asked me “Wh-why?” and I thought I’d give you an answer. It’s not a great answer, but in a few moments you won’t remember it anyway.”

No one ever noticed that scrupulously cleaned garage floor. No one even looked.


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