We sat quietly on the plastic bench under the sycamore tree in the park. The kid sitting next to me looked anxious. He kept fidgeting, as if an old woman like myself could harm him in some way. I almost laughed.
Between us was the manila envelope with the information he had requested. There wasn’t much there, but he didn’t need to know that. The important thing is that he paid me.
Above us, the wind rustled the leaves of the sycamore, shaking a few of the loose ones down to our feet. The breeze was cool and reminded me of my younger days.
I was afloat on a sailboat, alone and scared. Twenty feet away from me my husband laid dead at the bow of the ship, his body wrapped tightly in plastic bags.
I did the best I could to try and weigh the body down. I tried shoving rocks down his throat and continued until his mouth was full of them. I added various heavy objects from around the house to the bag as well. Bricks. An old toaster. His favorite books. Anything to drag his corpse down.
Of course I had cinder blocks to tie to his feet as well, but that would have been too much for me to carry down to his first love, the San Marie. It was the name of his sailboat, and coincidentally, the name of the lover I found him with on it.
She was easy to deal with, nothing more than a street whore trying to make a quick buck. Her death didn’t even make it into the papers back in 1934. Hell, my husband’s death would go unnoticed if I did things just right.
But here I was with him now, his mouth over spilling with rocks, tied up in a bag with a bunch of heavy possessions from their broken home. She looked anxiously around. Dawn was just starting to break and she could see the silhouettes of the mountains all around her.
This location was always an awe inspiring spot for her. It was a lake that was nestled a little bit away from the Colorado River in the Rockies. Many wealthy men would take their special ladies out for picnics on the water under the majesty of the giant Rockies.
My husband was not one of those wealthy men. No, he was one of those men that had inherited wealth and lost most of it to alcohol, gambling, and now apparently, other women. He had always told me it was due to the Depression but I knew it was a lie. The thought left me aggravated as I stormed to the front of the boat.
The cinder blocks were already tied to his feet and with a violent shove, I watched as his body made a loud splash in the water before hurling to the depths below. Hopefully his body would be picked clean by the fish.
I kept the sails up after the body fell and stripped down to my one piece suit. With the sun rising and people soon heading for the lake, they would want an explanation as to why I was out here alone. I let my red hair out of its ponytail and felt it tumble down my back.
I reached over and dropped the anchor off the side, secretly hoping it would smash into my husband’s corpse. I felt the chain for any signs of the collision, but there were none. I sighed and went to my towel and laid down.
I closed my eyes and above me I could hear the wind rustling the rolled up sails and rope. It was a cool breeze that sent a shiver down my back.
“So how much did we agree on again?” I heard a nervous voice ask. I opened my eyes and saw the young man next to me squirming on the bench, eyeing the envelope, cash in hand.
“$500.00,” I said, “and those pictures of that handsome young man you’ve been sneaking into your house are all yours.” I sickened even myself for extorting the neighbor for his affair, but I had no choice.
“Fuck,” he said, looking anxiously around. He goes back to the money in his hand and counts it once again. “Fuck, alright. Here, just take it okay? And you promise you won’t say anything?”
“I won’t,” I reply. We make the exchange and I watch him pop up and walk away. I stare off, thinking about how I would have killed him twenty years ago for cheating on his husband. But those were different times.
Now I needed the money to survive and if that meant and old woman like myself blackmailing the neighbor kid, so be it. There are only so many ways to make money for medication at my age.
The wind rustles through the trees again. I involuntarily let out a sigh as every joint creaks with age as I begin to stand. I grab my cane and head home, thinking back to that beautiful day on the boat once again.