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In Medias Res penny Shelly. But she did; lots of times too – I know because I watched and she struck him almost every night. That’s why –” “Com’on, let’s go.” The booming voice shattered the moment. “The old bat’s too far gone. She ain’t got nothin’.” But it seemed the young gallant could not tear himself away from her intense gaze. Instead he leaned in to catch her words over what the Sheriff was braying. She leaned forward too, to leak her secret in sotto voce, “That’s why I had to kill her, you see. I had no choice.” He jerked upright. His eyes darted to the Sheriff. The Sheriff was leaving. He gaped back down at her. His assessment dawned across his suddenly pale features. I watched his expression change from shock, to horror, to sudden comprehension. Of what, I cannot begin to imagine. “You do understand,” she continued. “I took care of the children. They were my responsibility until the parents got home. Those tent revivals went on late into the night – almost every night that summer. She was a bully. He would turn into a milk-toast. I couldn’t allow it.” She lifted me in her firm grasp and poured a second cup as she spoke. It felt so nice to be unburdened of the cooling liquid. It appeared she too was unburdening herself of a cold truth and I heard the relief in her voice as she said, almost conversationally, “The bath water was warm and it didn’t take very long at all, you know.” She lifted the cup and its attendant saucer, and waited patiently for him to accept it. Compelled, he leaned forward to accept the offering. Seeming unable to look away, he remained in that awkward position, tilted his jaw, and said, “Uh, Sheriff . . .” Everything that happened after that happened very quickly. The enormous Sheriff and his Sancho squire exchanged hurried words, the Sheriff demanded she, “Come with us,” and they unceremoniously bustled her right out the front door. She went, meek as a kitten but as dignified as the queen of the realm. 36

Profile for Odyssey Project

In Medias Res: Vol. 2, Summer 2013  

The Odyssey Project's original publication featuring brand new fiction, poetry, reviews, profiles, interviews and more from Odyssey Project...

In Medias Res: Vol. 2, Summer 2013  

The Odyssey Project's original publication featuring brand new fiction, poetry, reviews, profiles, interviews and more from Odyssey Project...

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