R-3199

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Chapter 3

I think it was a Sunday morning and we were just being put back into our cells when I got the letter. It was from my mother’s nurse. It had been 10 years since my mother had died and she had looked after Angie. She had provided for her and put her through college. Now she told me that Angie was getting married. My baby Angie had grown up so fast. She probably didn’t even remember me. Then out of the same envelope came a small note. It read

Dear dad,

I don’t know how long it has been since I have called anyone that. I don’t know why grandma would never tell me anything about you. She thought I stopped thinking of you because I stopped asking questions about you. I never did. You weren’t there when I played my first soccer match, you weren’t there when I got my first kiss, and you didn’t even come for my graduation. I never knew you were in jail. I always thought you had just left us. Then on her deathbed, grandma told me you were in jail, on death row. She told me all that had happened. I don’t hate you for killing mum but I will never come visit you. I will never bring my kids to see you and I will never tell them about you. Please don’t try to contact me.

Angie.

I was broken. I didn’t know what to do. The kid must have asked Steve why I was so quiet for he asked me what happened. I showed him the letter and the note. He read through it and then slowly he asked, “You want to talk about it?” I looked towards the left of my cell, sat close and then without thinking twice I poured out my story to him through the bars. “That evening, I was supposed to be working on this house that had to be completed in like a week. We were putting the finishing touches to the place. I begged my boss Kevin to give me the evening off. Told him how the missus was giving me trouble because I wasn’t spending time with her. Told him Angie was at my mothers and that I really had to make it up to my missus that night. So I walked home, got her some real nice flowers. Wild Daisies, she loved daisies. I was gonna surprise her. Boy, she was gonna love it. I let myself in through the back door thinking I’d probably find her in the kitchen cooking dinner for me. I walked into the kitchen quietly where I found that there were already flowers in a vase. She had gotten daisies for herself. Then I saw the plates in the sink. Who could she have eaten with? Then I saw the half empty bottle of wine. Alarm bells began going off in my head, something inside me screaming “No!” I picked up the vase full of flowers and went to the bedroom. I could hear them, but I couldn’t believe it. I had to see this for myself. At this point I barely had an idea of what I was doing. I still thought there had to be another explanation for all of this. Then I opened the door and I saw them. The flowers I had in my hand just dropped to the floor and I almost fell to the floor from the shock. I steadied myself against the door and they saw me. He got up and tried to run. What came over me I don’t know but the next thing I knew, I was hitting him over the head with the vase. The first shot must have knocked him out cold but the next one broke his skull. My missus screamed and tried to stop me. In my anger I hit out at her, connected squarely with her temple and she was dead before she fell to the floor. I sunk to the floor and when the authorities found me that night, I was still crouched on the floor, holding the bloody vase in my hand, covered in their blood.

I couldn’t hold back. I told him all about Angie. I told him about how I held her in my arms for the first time, how I had taught her how to ride a bicycle, how I would put her on my shoulders when I went to work at the construction site. I told him about how I used to worry that she’d have so many boys after her I’d have to walk around holding a club threatening any guy who came within a mile’s radius of her. I talked to him about my case and how at the court, the guys from the site had come and wished me the best and said they’d look after Angie for me. When I think about it now, the kid was a great listener. I must have gone on for hours; he patiently listened to all that I told him. The kid had what I think they call good listening skills. He was good that kid, real good.


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