Home > 500 Words > 500 Words – Mrs. Wilkins Smith: She found the safe.

500 Words – Mrs. Wilkins Smith: She found the safe.

August 23rd, 2009

500wordsIcon“I cannot deal with these fucking holy rollers!” Wilkins Senior screamed at Marlene.  “Get them the fuck out of my house.  What ever made you think I’d accept them here?”

Marlene chuckled.  “Listen to you trying to sound all educated.  Why don’t you go hang with your bar buddies and leave me alone for once?”

“Marlene, I’ll give you five minutes.  Don’t make me embarrass you in front of your lady friends.”

“Oh… You mean, you haven’t already?”

The back of Wilkins’s hand rushed toward her face and connected with her cheek before she could duck out of the way.  It was just as well.  Missing would only infuriate him further.

Marlene met his eyes.  Hers were watery and dark, but steady.  Her voice was clear and firm.  “Never in front of outsiders, Wil.  Are you an idiot? Are you looking for trouble?”

One of her friends had already made for the phone in the kitchen.  Marlene’s pleading eyes lifted in the woman’s direction.  “Annabelle.”

“I’m sorry, Marlene.  No more.”  The woman began to dial.

Wilkins flew into a rage.  He snatched the closest thing to him – a seventy-year-old crystal vase – and chucked it at Annabelle.  Marlene screamed.  Annabelle dropped the phone and caught the vase just in time.  She set it down and calmly picked up the phone again, a small smirk playing on her lips.

“And ma’am? He just attacked me with a vase.  I would like to press charges for assault, as well.”  She looked pointedly at Marlene, “I won’t drop them.  He will go to prison.”

Marlene put a hand over her lips and crumpled to the floor.  Wilkins flew from his place in the doorway and landed atop her unmoving body.  He pulled back his fist.  Before he could let it go, three of the women were out of their chairs and grabbing various parts of his body.

One large-framed woman grabbed both Wilkins’s arms.  He got free once and cold-cocked her in the face.  She laughed as she effortlessly caught his hands again and pinned him to the floor.  “That’s a freebie.  Do it again and you’ll wish I’d beaten you instead of my husband.  You better hope it doesn’t leave a mark.”

When it was over, and Marlene was ushering the last woman out the front door, the phone began to ring.  One of the boys picked it up.  “Mama? It’s Daddy.  He wants to talk to you.  He says it’s important.”

Marlene stared at the boy for a moment before standing shakily and walking to the phone.  “Get me that stool to sit on, boy.”  she whispered as she took the handset from his hand.  “Hello?”

The boy had the stool in position just in time.  Marlene sagged onto it, almost missing, as her husband’s voice growled into her ear.  “You will pay for this, Mar.  Do you understand? You will pay.”

Marlene hung up the phone and tears began to course down her cheeks.  “Mama? What happened? Mama, you okay?” Brand began alternately shaking and hugging her.  “Mama, stop crying.  Mama, what’s the matter? Did Daddy say something bad?”

Marlene smiled down at her favorite son and kissed both his cheeks.  “No, Brand.  Daddy just said he wasn’t sure when he’d be home.  It’s past your bedtime.  Why don’t you go lay down? I’ll tuck you guys in.”

After getting the boys to bed, Marlene walked into the bedroom she shared with her husband.  She opened the closet door and walked to the back.  The knock-off Monet hanging there made her laugh.  She always asked Wilkins what possessed him to hang so beautiful a painting in the closet where no one would see it.

When he was still a good man, he told her it was because the painting was too beautiful to share with anyone but her.  She blushed as she thought, “How naive I must be.  To fall for such a line.” and reached for the painting.

It slid gently aside and behind it was a safe.  She turned the dial nine right, seventeen left, forty-eight right.  Wilkins Junior’s birthday.  It popped open.

She reached inside and came out with a small bag of brown powder and a Colt .45.  She laughed, “Heroin.  Fucking bastard.”

For the rest of the story: Mrs. Wilkins Smith

Categories: 500 Words Tags: No tags for this post.
Comments are closed.
%d bloggers like this: