Skip to main content

Story A Day--- Cross and Martin, part 1--- "Introductions", 953 words.....

** Just a quick note before I post my first story-- I'm hoping to post a month of serial mysteries "à la the style of Sherlock Holmes". Not so much fanfic as just a bit of fun :-)**

Introductions

               Shall I relate to you how I first met my friend, Donaghey Cross, and the extraordinary circumstances that brought us together?

               It was during our last year at University, two weeks before finals, two weeks before the end of term, when a tragic event unsettled our academic security and threatened to break apart our fragile, naïve view of the world.

                Thinking back on the days leading up to the tragedy, I am struck by the ominous atmosphere that hung over the college. Black storm clouds draped our world, bringing torrential downpours. It wasn’t bleak enough already with impending exams, but the sky mirrored the moods of every struggling student, and perhaps, even the not-so-struggling student—as exams do have a way of propagating dread.

                The news spread through campus the way such news always spreads, with stifled whispers and fevered expressions. By the time it reached our ears in the Science Building, the campus had already gathered at the grizzly scene.

                Behind the Humanities Building, crumpled into himself, cradling a smooth, dark pistol in his limp hand, Corbet Adams, Honors Senior with his pick of prospective futures ahead of him, lay dead. His back to the gathering crowd of shameless gawkers, an oozing pool of his life’s blood spread from his head.

                As the rippling breaths of suicide reached contagious proportions, a single sigh behind my head shook me from my tragic trance.

                “Honestly,” an exasperated tone droned behind me. “Could they be more blind?”

                I did all within my powers to ignore the voice. But, by the third sigh and as many exasperated statements of disbelief, I turned to face the only figure who stood in opposition to the popular opinion. “You seem to believe that, contrary to appearances, that this was no suicide.” I barked, less to challenge his opinion and more to cease his annoying sighs.

                “Of course I do!” He barked back. Standing a head taller than myself, his dark blonde hair tousled in his sleepy eyes.

                “And, would you care to elaborate as to why you believe as such?”

                My exasperated sigher released one final breath before dropping his shoulders and turning his gaze to me. “Well, it’s obvious, of course. Corbet Adams was the school’s foremost narcissist. No one held a higher opinion of himself than Corbet Adams did. No, no, no… this was a man who was far too fond of himself to have even entertained the idea of suicide.”

                As he finished speaking, his sleepy eyes suddenly sharpened, his focus piercing through the cloud of distraught whimpers. “No! If they have sense enough to consider the facts in front of them, they will know there is more to this incident than a casual suicide.”

                “I don’t think there’s anything casual about suicide!”

                His sharp eyes resumed a measure of their initial drowsiness. “Perhaps not.”

 *****

                Once the body of poor Corbet Adams had been removed and a day given to the mourning of his loss, our minds returned once more to the task of our impending finals. And, I’m afraid, I must admit, I didn’t give another thought to my impertinent sighing man. I gave no thought, that is, until a week following finals, as we prepared to leave campus, when the coroner’s report on Corbet Adam’s case was released.

                An excited knock at my door brought me face to face with the blonde-haired stranger from the crowd. “Ha! See… see as proof! Corbet Adams did not die from a self-inflicted gunshot wound.”

                “What?” The shock of seeing the stranger at my doorstep, three weeks after the tragic event, speaking in a manner a familiarity which we did not, at the time, share, sent my mind spinning. The shirt I had been in the process of folding, was now clenched in my trembling fist, my patience waning.

                “Here, my dear fellow,” his long finger, drew along the news article. “Upon examination of the body of Corbet Adam, it is clear the victim perished from a rare poisoning of the African Milk Plant—a small piece of the suspect plant having been found in the pocket of the victim. Also, it is the opinion of this coroner that the convulsed contortion of the victim’s frame, which is a characterized symptom of ingesting the plant’s poison, is further evidence of the method of death.”

                He pushed the paper into my empty hand and leaned against the doorframe, a smug grin crossing his thin lips, his sleepy eyes fixed on my face. “I didn’t think the coroner would listen to me, as he seemed quite comfortable with giving the cause of death as the obvious suicide. I give him more credit now than originally, as his corpulent frame spoke of one that would prefer to accept the obvious answer, however erroneous it might be, rather than expend the effort to search out the truth.”

                “But, if he died from the poisonous sap of this, this … African Milk Plant, then why was he shot and by whom? And, why did they go to the trouble of making it look like a suicide?”

                “Ah, for that, we would need more information. My guess, it was probably some foolish prank or dare gone awry and rather than admit their guilt, in what might have been an accident, they chose to try and cover it up.”

                Without another word, my unknown guest turned to leave.  “Wait, please ... your name?”

                He spun on the toe of his shoes and with a quick, sly grin, he presented his hand to me. “Donaghey Cross, and you are Dylan Martin. Pleased to meet you!”  

Comments

  1. haha oh I just saw your traffic feed. Those Christchurch visitors are all me! I've had your blog opened all night, trying to get a chance to read it. The kids have been thrown into bed, I have my cuppa and two chocolate biscuits - I am ready!!

    ReplyDelete
  2. This is so good. I love the characters and can picture them in my head. Great stuff. I fed your fish by the way too! :)

    ReplyDelete
  3. LOL... aw, glad you finally got a chance to read it :-)

    I'm glad you liked it... everything will be in rough draft form as there's no time to really edit, so you'll have to excuse any errors you might find...

    And, my fishes love it when people feed them!

    ReplyDelete

Post a Comment

Share your thoughts!

Popular posts from this blog

Y is for Yeth Hound.....

Yeth Hound--- one of the incarnations of the "Black Dog" myth, this one located specifically, in Devon, England.

"Black Dogs" appear in myths across the world, most are associated with death and bad omens... i.e. Hell Hounds.

The Yeth Hound is said to be the spirit of an unbaptised child that takes the form of a headless black dog. The Hound wanders the woods at night making pitiful wailing sounds (though, I'm unclear as to how it makes wailing sounds without having a head).

The Black Dogs were possibly one inspiration from Sir Arthur Conan Doyle's ghost dog in The Hound of the Baskervilles-- "an enormous coal-black hound, but not such a hound as mortal eyes have ever seen."



Heed Not, the Lonesome Cry
Heed not, the lonesome cry, the baleful wail echoing through the woods. Seek not, the black hound's sigh, look not where the headless creature stood.
One sound, your limbs will shake, your heart filled with the deepest dread. One glimpse, your sou…

I is for...

... Iron Maiden


The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins? ---Edgar Allan Poe


---and not the English heavy metal band from East London...

Day 2 in the realm of morbid/macabre torture devices finds us back in the Middle Ages (there was definitely a fashionable trend of imaginative torture devices during this time). Though, the Middle Ages isn't really when we should be turning our attention when we discuss the Iron Maiden. In fact, there has been some debate as to the exact appearance of this monstrous creation.

It's probably easiest to relocate such a torturous thing back to a time when it seemed everyone was as skilled at exacting a confession as they were at creating the tools to exact those confessions. It's easier to blame ancestors from several hundred years ago than to accept that anyone of civilized disposition would be capable of doing such horrible things with such terrif…

V is for...

... Vrolik Museum



The boundaries which divide Life from Death are at best shadowy and vague. Who shall say where the one ends, and where the other begins? ---Edgar Allan Poe




How about a morbid museum?

Still used by the medical faculty and students at the University of Amsterdam, the Vrolik Museum is a unique collection of odd bones and skulls, pathogenic specimens, and an assortment of anomalous embryos.

The collection was amassed by Dutch anatomist, Gerardus Vrolik (1775-1859) and continued by his son, Dutch anatomist and pathologist, Willem Vrolik (1801-1863). And since Willem's death, various donations have expanded the collection even further. Most specimens are human, though a few zoological specimens have trickled into the collection. Preserved remains, plaster casts, and various models show an assortment of congenital deformities and malformations.

This is one of those places that isn't for the faint of heart---certainly not for those who are easily moved or triggered by…