A Boxful of Truth
My time was limited. Each month, both a friend or family member would disappear on the 1st, and their body found on the 10th, mutilated. The police were useless, they didn’t care, they were getting paid to sit around all day, so why would they investigate such things? I had taken it upon myself to find the murderer, no longer would I lose the ones closest to me. I knew I’d be next, I had but one friend and my mother left. Every night I dreamt of the murderer and the victims. The bodies covered in blood, their faces almost unrecognisable with their insides ripped out.
It all started in January, the first month of the year. On New Year’s Eve my father and mother proposed to forget the past, as long as it didn’t reoccur. Dad had left that evening, and didn’t come home. I found mum sobbing in the hallway as she demanded I go to my room. Then, we didn’t see him for ten days straight, until his body appeared in the middle of the town hall, cut into pieces. Police took the body away and asked a few questions, but that’s all they ever did. From then on, someone I knew disappeared each month. I began collecting the evidence that police left, and secretly I had built my own investigation.
“Who cares, whoever the killer is, they’re doing you a favour.” My mother’s voice rang out, when I lost my best friend.
“I care,” I sobbed.
“She was an unfaithful, backstabbing bit-“
“NO!” I screamed, “Don’t you care at all?”
“Everyone has their secrets Amanda, she was just good at hurting you with them.” My mother whispered, before stalking off into her bedroom.
After a long day at school, I came home tearful. My face was red and blotchy, my lip fat and inflated, my knuckles bloody and sore. Just as I was about to seek my mother’s attention, and tell her how horrible kids were in high school, I smelt smoke. I limped towards the smell, and there stood my mother with my box.
“This is a box, full of truth. We wouldn’t want the police to get their hands on it now would we?” My mother frowned. She towered over the fire she created. I attempted to snatch the box from her, but she poured its contents into the firey hell.
“Why?! How?! That was mine…” I stammered, backing away. Mother’s eyes never faulted, they were glued to the flames.
“The City police are on their way. The investigation is being given to the capital. Their first stop was here.” She mumbled, her voice monotone like a broken robot.
“I knew it… How wasn’t it obvious before…? You’re the killer.” I stuttered, trying to recollect myself. The room began to spin, as the smoke made my mind hazy. My breath quickened, it became harder to breathe, my chest feeling tighter by the second. Before I could react, my panic forced me to faint.
“Miss Lisa, I’m detective Mike, and this is my partner Janice. We’d like to ask you a few questions.” Two officers stood by bedside. I was laying in a hospital bed, my head pounding, and my mind foggy. I looked around, as my memories reformed.
“What questions?” I mumbled, sitting up.
“There was a fire, who started it, how and why?” Janice persisted.
“My mother… the deaths, I had collected evidence and she burnt it. I came home and she had it… Then I just… collapsed I guess.” I replied.
“This evidence, what was it and do you have any leads?” Mike questioned.
“My mother’s the killer, she has to be. My father… My friends… She said they all had it coming… It makes sense. She was always out and about when the murders occurred.” I whisper, my voice cracking.
“We did manage to recover some items from the fire, but we’re going to need your help with what they are and from which murder,” Mike spoke again.
I nodded, “Sure, but where’s my mother?”
“In custody, till she is deemed fit,” Janice spoke.
“You’ll be staying with our team for your own safety and the investigations closure,” Mike added.
“These are the items we recovered. The floor is yours,” Lee instructed, stepping back from a plastic wrapped table. He held a note book, recording my statements. The rubber gloves felt droopy, and pain attacked my mind with each item I touched.
The valentines card; my father had been having an affair with a mistress, and when my mother found out they fought nonstop. On New Year’s Eve he promised to put an end to it, only to see the mistress that night.
The mobile phone; It was Steph’s phone, full of sly rumours and gossip all based around me. She was my best friend, using me of course.
The bong; my brothers secret, he had been a druggie for a while. It feel out of his pocket when the police carried his emotionless corpse away.
Two matching rings; My grandparents wedding rings, never had they taken them off, yet before their bodies appeared, I found them under my mother’s bedroom sink.
“That’s all that was saved? There was so much more. I don’t know how I didn’t see it… But, it all links to my mother,” I coughed.
“Yes, we see that. I’ll just put this into the system and we’ll move onto something else,” Lee frowned, patting my shoulder. I stood staring at the items, rage and anger. My mother killed everyone I loved, why would she do this? But I knew that already. I knew why she targeted them. Well, not her, but close enough.
A month had passed and nobody was hurt. The trial was closed, and my mother was sentenced to life in jail. Today, I would visit her for the first and last time. I needed to do this, for myself. I stand at the booth, no one near. My mother was already there waiting.
“Why’d you do it?” I asked, needing the clarification.
“I could ask you the same thing sweetie,” my mother grumbled.
“You took the blame oh mother dearest, congratulations,” I laughed.
My mother looked apologetic, “Where did I go wrong? I was only protecting you.”
“No, I was protecting you,” I gritted my teeth. “Father was a cheater, he wasn’t going to stop. Your parents were abusive, didn’t care for you once. Brother beat you for money, Jeremy was meant to be my lover but you ruined that and all my friends hated us. Everything I did was for you. I protected you. You didn’t protect me. You let HIM hurt me. You let your little lover touch me. You let him do whatever he wanted, all because you needed to feel loved when father was no longer around. All you ever did was take the blame for me,” I erupted.
“I know, I know. I’m sorry. What will become of you now?” My mother whimpered.
“I’ll be the mother I never had,” I spat coldly, patting my stomach as I stood up.
A single tear rolled down my face as I strolled outside. The doors swung back and forth, slowly coming to an end. The wind picked up, and began to howl. The sun began to set, as darkness approached. Everyone’s got something coming, no one is innocent. All I’ve ever done, is help karma with its job. But now it’s time I retire, and let my angel grow.