Tuesday, April 12, 2016

edna and the mailing labels

by nick nelson

illustration by konrad kraus

edna realized, from something one of derek's friends said earlier that evening, that the house was only about a mile away.

curiosity seized her.

she thought she would like to see it again.

she could go over there after derek was asleep and the children were put to bed in their separate room in the motel.

though maybe it was not such a good idea.

edna had been so happy since she met derek.

and the children seemed to like her too.

none of them knew the truth about her.

about what a bad person she used to be.

and that she had spent twenty-five years in prison.

for being the helper and accomplice of walter matthews, the serial killer.

walter had been convicted of twenty-four murders.

but edna, who had testified against him, knew there had actually been quite a few more.

edna no longer thought much about walter, who had finally been executed about two years ago.

or about the people they had killed.

but she was curious about the house.

was it still there? had it been torn down?

was anybody living there now?

she probably should not go over there.

what was the point? and no good could come of it.

but later, after derek and the children were asleep, she stepped out of the motel room for a breath of air.

their rooms were on the third floor of the motel building, and as she stood at the rail outside the room and looked out toward the old house she saw a light.

now she was really curious.

she couldn't help herself.

she went down the stairs and crossed the parking lot and headed on foot toward the house.

the streets were deserted. not even a police car.

or lights in the windows of the few houses she passed.

finally she came to the house.

it looked different, and yet the same.

a single light was on in a room on the second floor - her old room.

she went up the four short steps - how familiar they seemed! - and opened the front door.

she stepped into the hallway.

suddenly all the lights went on.

she saw the souls of all the people she and walter had tortured and killed.

they seized her and dragged her off to hell.


what is your reaction (if any) to this story?

did you a) feel sorry for edna, who had made a new life for herself?

or did you b) think she got what she deserved?

if your answer is a, check the appropriate box and mail your response in the attached envelope using the blue mailing label.

if your answer is b, check the appropriate box and mail your response in the attached envelope using the green mailing label.

thank you for your time.

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