This is the second section of my very first Friday Fable. I hope it meets your expectations. But for now, please sit back and enjoy!
Right now. He remembered. But then again, Mr Dewitt would certainly always do so. How couldn’t he? Her nightmares were quite frequent. And they were always the same. Always. But alas, he never even knew what they were about. He deserved to, though! She was his own wife! However, all she ever told him was that they were simply about things with no importance- at least not anymore, anyway. She always insisted that he shouldn't worry about it, yet he always found there was a great difficulty when trying to ignore her bad dreams, especially when she would wake screeching and drenched in cold sweat. And then there was that word. What was it again? It was ‘answer’, wasn’t it? Oh yes, ‘answer’. She was always muttering it in her sleep, so poor Mr Dewitt heard it all the time. Even on those rare nights were she wouldn’t wake up wailing. It was always there.
Mr Dewitt was practically dragged by his teary-eyed superior to his private office at exactly once minute before nine o’clock. My, my -bankers are even punctual when dealing with unscheduled distractions? How convenient.
But of course, at that precise moment, Mr Dewitt didn’t know what was the matter, and even if he did, he would have never thought about his boss’ punctuality. However, the important thing is naturally what this news consisted of. And it is guaranteed that it is not pleasing. On the contrary, Mr Dewitt will be, without doubt, entirely lugubrious and dejected.
“No! No! It can’t.... It can’t be. No...”
“I’m afraid so, Mr Dewitt. Your wife has... gone to a better world. I am deeply sorry. I took the liberty of telling you the news myself, I thought that if it came form a police the shock could be greater. Please, if you ever need anything, do not hesitate to come to me. You have always been a very faithful employer. I insist. It’s the least I can do.”
If this had been an ordinary day, Mr Dewitt would have been touched by the compliment he received, but he wasn’t in the mood for that now. And he had the right to be!
“How... how did... How did she...?” Mr Dewitt spoke in barely more than a whisper, clinging onto every one of his unfinished words, as if fearing for his own dear life- even though it was his wife’s which had been lost.
“Ah. Certainly. Well, the police suspect that it was a suicide,” his superior spoke in a rush, avoiding to look directly into his eyes.
“A suicide? Impossible! But she was one of the most lighthearted people I had ever met! Why would she? How?”
“Yes, yes. I understand. She was quite the damsel, wasn’t she? Shame, really. And it isn’t quite just that.”
Mr Dewitt raised his watery eyes when his boss stopped and gestured him to carry on.
“The officer I spoke to said they’re calling it the most tragic suicide of the century. She was found in your bedroom. Stabbed her own wrist with some scissors. And the door was locked from the inside. I am so sorry. Terribly sorry. Really. Why don’t you take a leave for the rest of the week?”
Mr Dewitt finally blew his nose after hunting for his handkerchief in his coat pocket. He was quite downcast already, and the news of having to leave his job for the following four days seemed almost impossible. In spite of that, to avoid any disagreements with his boss, he agreed and began to leave with his pale, frowning face looking more sulked than usual.
“Oh. I nearly forgot!” his superior called after him, making him halt to a stop “She was found gripping a hole-punched card with the letters ‘J OK ER’ printed on it. How queer, don’t you agree?”
With that, he turned back to his desk and Mr Dewitt- not exactly the best husband in the world- let out one last snivel, soon to temporarily forget about his young wive’s death until his arrival at home.
To be continued...