And Nobody Thought To Ask Why
Frey was a thin shell of a woman, quiet, nimble with frayed nerves. Her once
youthful, cascading hair had now been reduced to wisps, greyed with constant
worry and nervousness. She had not been like this. During her young years, Mr.
Frey had been told, she was the life and soul of a party, she would grow out of
it, they had said. But she had not, maybe the death of her best friend had
affected her in a way none of them could imagine and he grew more resigned to
this fact with each passing day. After all, what was one to do at the
precarious age of fifty? So the childless couple led their platonic life as
Mrs. Elena Frey took to staring out her darkened window glass, fearfully.
And nobody thought to ask her why.
Mrs. Elena Frey never thought back to the day her friend had died. She was, in her opinion, better off forgetting his lush spun gold hair, his cheeky smile and amused brown eyes. And yet, every time he accidentally entered her thoughts, she could picture him with stark clarity. Face gaunt with fear, no trace of his easy going smile, his hair slick against his forehead, stuck with sweat. She was not there present in her reminiscing but she knew the truth. She had been there, a carving knife in her hand. He had tried reasoning with her but Elena Frey had been beyond reason.
“The voice—it told me to.” She had screamed as she stabbed him.
And she never thought to ask the voice why.
Elena’s father was a child psychologist, her mother was a self-professed believer of the Ouija board. But their profession or belief was not strong enough. Elena’s invisible friend had become a new source of amusement in the household. They would ask her questions and she would tell them what her friend replied. He was always polite and so sweet, that they continued asking her things to see what she would come up with next. Sweet thirteen year old child-like answers, nothing to be worried about, nothing to be suspicious of. They did nothing, not when she grew past the age to have an invisible friend, whispered late at night to herself or even when ‘KILL’ began making itself common on her rough sheets in a completely alien handwriting.
And they never thought to ask her why.
Alastair’s body was found eight days after he had been killed. Elena’s friend had told her everything she needed to know about disposing evidence. The wood carving knife had been returned to the janitor’s closet where it had not been missed and the park was as good as any other excuse when the short policeman had questioned her. The policeman had been suspicious but she was thirteen. What child would want to kill her best friend? So, they ignored all the tell-tale signs. Her eyes would wander during questioning, her fingers nervously rubbing together, haltingly and carefully answering each question. Everyone found it surprising when she did not react to the news of his murder. No tantrums, no ugly crying, just a cold, hard shell of a face. Blank.
But they never thought to ask her why.
Mrs. Elena Frey quietly disintegrated. Her mental health deteriorating with each passing year. And then one day, when Mr. Frey was out, she heard a loud, even knock. She started at the sudden noise in the silent air of her house and wondered who was calling at such a late hour. Then she fretfully made her way down the stairs, then pausing at the door, she undid the seven big bolts and pulled open the creaky door. Her eyes went as wide as saucers as she took in the sight in front of her. Thirty seven years of memories could not have prepared her for the sight of Alastair Berne standing at her door step, his lush spun gold hair shining, blood clotted over his chest where she had stabbed him, his smile warm and brilliant. My pills, Elena Frey thought, distantly as her best friend whispered a chilly greeting.
The next day when Mr. Frey came home he was stopped by the sight of his wife lying face up on his carpet near the door, a carving knife in her hand. The second time Mrs. Elena Frey ever held a knife in her hand.
“Why?” Mr. Frey whispered when he saw the hollow look in her eyes.
“Why?” Her parents screamed, when they received the news, their old bodies shaking as they cried themselves to sleep after going for the funeral of their only daughter.
“Why?” The policemen asked, suspecting murder, even though it was an obvious suicide.
And nobody knew the answer why.