Mary gazed out of the window at the snow whilst waiting for George to arrive. This was their second date and she wanted everything to be perfect. She had resolved not to tell anyone about him until she was sure. Mary had already confirmed that he liked lamb stew and hers was second to none. No one would ever have the nerve to say differently. Mary and her temper were as legendary as her stews.
She twirled her long red hair around her finger as she stood there watching the snow falling. It was beginning to settle and would eventually start drifting, but the road from the old cotton mill was pretty straightforward. Soon the clacking of the looms would stop and George would be on his way. She sat down on the cosy sofa in front of the roaring log fire becoming mesmerized by the flames. At one point, she could see a horses’ face reminiscent of her childhood.
Muffled sounds in the snow, indicated George’s car had pulled up outside and Mary went to the door to greet him. He hugged her tentatively but not too tight; he wasn’t sure yet.
The table had already been set in the small cottage and George offered to open the wine he had brought. Retrieving the bottle opener as directed, he noted the block of carving knives sitting on the worktop. He and knives were not good bedmates; he frequently seemed to cut himself. He blanched as that familiar squeamish feeling passed through him. Knives served a purpose though. Pouring two glasses he took them to the sofa and handed one to Mary.
“Dinner won’t be long George I thought we could sit here and enjoy a drink before I dish up the stew.”
He confirmed that stews needed to be timed to perfection. It was not only his favourite, but a specialty of his also. Comparing recipes, their ingredients and cooking methods seemed to match. He sat down at the table as Mary entered with the crockpot. Dunking a spoon in to taste, she decided that it just needed a bit more salt. George tried it and disagreed stating it was perfect but Mary had her way and sprinkled in more.
They finished the meal and George agreed to clear the dishes for Mary. He settled her on the sofa again with a glass of Merlot, and set to clearing up whilst Mary made the most of the unexpected help. Returning to the sofa he stood behind her gently caressing her neck with cold steel as he plunged one of her carving knives deep into the back of her neck. The initial shock kept her upright for a while and then she keeled forward. Wiping clear all of his fingerprints he took one last look around and returned to the car. How many more would he have to kill before they got the recipe to his exact liking?
© T K Geering 2016
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