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He was just lying there, sleeping. His chest was rising and falling at a steady pace. It appeared as though his sleep was peaceful.

For now.

I was home early for the first time in a while. Work had been riding my ass on a project for weeks now, which meant I’ve neglected my home life by working extra hours to complete the project. It was good for us that I was working so much. The extra hours meant extra income. Even though I was salaried, my boss told me that since our client accelerated the project, they wanted to compensate everyone for the overtime they put into the completion. It was a nice gesture that he often didn’t hand out, making it hard to pass up.

That was one reason I was excited about coming home early. My bonus was massive, and I wanted to surprise my husband with our overdue honeymoon. Thanks to this job, I wasn’t able to schedule vacation time around our wedding. We’ve been married for just over six months, and I was finally able to take time off and spend money on something special.

That’s why this hurt so much.

The betrayal.

His body was as still as it’s ever been; one arm draped across his chest, and the other gently underneath the head of another woman – a woman I recognized and cared for deeply. I wonder how they were able to fall asleep in the middle of the day. I’ve only been away for five hours. She must have been on her way over as soon as I left for work. I’m not sure I can blame her. He told her that our marriage was failing, for all I knew, and it was over for him. But does that excuse her actions? We’ve been friends since we were kids, like diapers and binkies. Could she so easily have an affair with my husband and not ask me how things were between us?

Maybe she did ask, but I was too busy to answer. It’s happened before. I get caught up in my thoughts and half-listen to conversations. It’s a trait I despise about myself, but something I’m trying to improve. My husband knew that, and so did she.

Do I allow myself to justify her actions? Or is there as much fault on her part as there is on his?

My mind told me I knew the answer to this question, but my heart didn’t want to cause harm to both of them. Only one shall die tonight.

Her pretty blonde hair would have speckles of red in it soon, but she won’t notice until she wakes up. To make sure she didn’t wake up too soon, I needed to sedate her further. Luckily, my inability to sleep forced me to seek out medical help. My doctor gave me some heavy-duty sleeping pills. They work like magic. If this doesn’t work, then I’m fucked.

I crushed up a few and sprinkled the powder into her mouth. To be completely honest, I had no idea if that was going to work. I figured the powder would soak into her system through her tongue, keeping her asleep while I took care of my husband. Since she didn’t wake to me force-feeding her sleeping pills, I assumed it worked.

He started moving and moaning in his sleep, so I knew I was running out of time. Luckily, he keeps a switchblade on his bedside table. It’ll be a suicide – or at least look like one. He was a distraught man as it is. Always upset about how miserable it is for a stay-at-home husband. He doesn’t work, doesn’t have any hobbies, so boredom overcame him. It will be tragic.

I slowly lifted his right hand off his chest and wrapped his fingers around the handle of his blade. He moved again, making me freeze to see what happened. Then he stopped, and the snoring commenced. I had to move quickly, so I gently placed the blade on his throat to see if it would spark any movement. With stillness as the response, I applied pressure to his hand and dragged the edge of the blade across his throat. There was a gurgling sound, and his eyes shot open, locking with mine.

“I’m sorry,” I whispered, letting a tear trickle down my cheek. He mouthed something, but I couldn’t make it out, and the gurgling was too loud to hear any words escaping his throat.

My heart began to ache as I watched the life pour out of my husband’s throat and onto our bedsheets. I laid one hand on his chest so I could feel when his heart finally stopped beating. I felt it slow down until the beats were so faint that I knew he was gone.

It took only a minute for the blood to pour from the cut and for him to stop breathing. His eyes remained open wide with a look of shock frozen in place. Out of respect for the dead – and for the sake of my friend – I closed his eyelids.

The sleeping pill must have worked; she did not budge an inch during the struggle, even though his hand beneath her head shook violently.

The blood flowed down his throat, to the pillow, and into her hair. As much as I wanted to kill her as well, I wanted my husband’s dead body to be her last memory of him. My husband, her lover, dead in the bed next to her. With the only thought convincing her, it must’ve been a suicide since the knife was still in his hand.

I wonder if she will call me to break the news, or if she will be too ashamed that she destroyed my marriage – my life – and keep quiet. Only time will tell how I will come to hear about my husband’s suicide. After all, the only woman at my house at the time was his lover.

And I was still at work.

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Published by Elle

Everyone has a backstory...what's yours?

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