Ann Marie laid on the bed and browsed Facebook as the warm sonic tones of Maggie singing “All That Jazz” drifted down the hallway. It was a month before the end of summer and most of the pictures on Ann Marie’s newsfeed showed various acquaintances on vacation in sandy places or laying in the sun at the Quentin’s Lake Reservoir, so named for frontiersman Nathaniel Quentin who founded the first trading post in Deercliff in the early 1800s. Ann Marie scrolled through the newsfeed absentmindedly and then rapidly flipped back up to the top of the page to check her notifications. She had posted a picture of her and Big Mac about three miles up Harris Creek Road at one of the many waterfalls that ran alongside the road where they had stopped to drop a fishing line and enjoy a picnic. She saw that only four people had liked the photo and decided to turn off her phone’s screen and to drop it gracelessly onto her chest. Continue reading
“So this is where you’ll spend most of your shift, probably,” said Kate, holding the door open so that Todd could step into the borderline miniature kitchen. Todd slouched into the room and bumped up against the brushed steel stove top and Kate followed. There was scarcely room to turn around with both of them in there. Continue reading
The misshapen wooden steps in front of Delia Leonne’s trailer house sank into the mud under Todd’s weight as he ascended them. He took a moment to make sure he was properly balanced and then knocked on the brown plastic door. As he waited he examined his surroundings and saw stacks of sun-faded milk crates and a pile of pallets leaning up against a crumbling burn-barrel. The air was grey and little drops of rain sputtered out of the sky, touching the various pools of water that speckled the muddy yard. Continue reading
Delia Leonne woke up with the sun on the first of November. She could feel the sunlight spill through the sheer curtains that hung in her bedroom and lamented the fact that her mother would not allow her to hang blackout curtains. Continue reading
In a town like Deercliff there are no secrets. In the days following the assault of Maggie Nice, Sheriff Boyer made it her job to cultivate this small-town share-all mindset. She did not have to do very much before she was swimming in a proverbial sea of (mis)information.
“Where the fuck are you?” Ethan said into the phone.
“We’re on our way! Chill out, loverboy!” said Maggie.
“I’m losing my fucking mind over here!”
“Give us like ten more minutes and we’ll be there.”
Ethan exhaled. “Fine. I’ll be in the garage. Come meet me there.” Continue reading
Todd waved the police car in. Officers Bishop and Parker got out, both rushing to the passed out Maggie. An ambulance was only seconds behind, and the paramedics quickly took command, leaving the two cops to pacing the scene rapidly. Bishop made a slight gagging sound and sat down on the curb while Parker sent in a call to dispatch. Todd quickly walked inside, tapping Kate gently on the shoulder and pointing her towards the responders on the scene. He headed back to the dishwashing station as the officers entered the diner. Tyler, The Creator’s baritone voice barked out the words, “rape a pregnant bitch” and Todd smacked the speaker system, a small yelp leaving his lips. He hadn’t realized he was crying until looking at the blurry lights on his iPod as he shut it off. From the front of the house he heard Bishop say his name, and Kate’s high-pitched response.
Todd could hear sirens kick up in the distance as the authorities began moving through the small town. He knew that they were headed straight for him. More to distract himself than anything else, he picked up the phone and pressed the button on the side. Continue reading
There was more than one party that Hallows Eve in Deercliff.
“Fuck, Maggie Nice was here last night?”
“Yeah, she was the slutty Riddler.”
“No she wasn’t. That was Maggie Gibbons.”
“Fuck, Maggie Gibbons was here last night?” Continue reading