An Easy Touch by Roger Woodcock

She is sprawled across the kitchen floor, crimson blood eddying from her body like ripples in a stream. I gaze down at her inert body, the ugly, sarcastic smile still frozen on her lips. I stare blindly up at the ceiling, my mouth opening as I emit a blood-curdling scream.

It was her own fault. Couldn't she see? The taunts, the sniggering put down of my manhood. No man should have to listen to that, day after day, week after week. It wasn't my fault I`d lost my job, the hospitality industry was having a rough time, didn't she realize that? It wasn't as if she’d contributed to our finances. `A bad back,` she called it, said she'd work if she could. I realized too late she was just a lazy bitch.

I drop the knife, the noise as it hits the ceramic floor tiles echoing around the empty house.

Who did she think had put a roof over her head, had gone cap in hand to the Bank begging for a stay of execution on the monthly mortgage payments? And was she grateful? Was she shit, just more taunts, more put-downs. Well now she`d paid the penalty. God knows I hadn't meant to kill her, she should know that. Why didn't I have the guts to tell her to go, pack her bags and get out of my life. But I`m too soft. What was it my friend Billy had said. `An easy touch.` Well not any longer. I pick up the phone, my bloodied finger stabbing out the number. I gaze again at her body, my mind awash with the futility of it all.

`It was an honest mistake,` I cry to the room as I drop down on my knees beside her.

`They will understand. An honest mistake.`


Published in Issue #25

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