My heart stopped as she walked to the front of the class. She made one quick glance over her shoulder at me, and it was clear what she was going to do.
It was a joke. We were sitting around, drinking coffee one night after our Creative writing seminar, talking about topics that would shock and offend our classmates. Marybeth suggested kidnapping, mayhem, torture, etc. Mike had some ideas related to S&M ("lets call it Whip/cream!"). My idea-field dressing.
You know, the way you cut up animals after you shoot them- maybe we oughta do a story about field dressing relatives you don't like-taking them out and leaving them to the coyotes.
A week later I heard the news report on the radio. A young girl had been found lashed to a pine tree in the woods behind a local grocery store. The official cause of death was exposure, but no photos were being released. The back of my neck bristled.
I asked around to see if anyone knew her and it turned out it was one of Marybeth's nieces. She was a pretty girl, mature for her age (said with a wink) who had, according to a couple of people, dated one of MB's former boyfriends. When I asked Mike about the coincidence he just looked at me and laughed.
Now it was class time and Dr.Henderson asked if anyone had any ideas for a quick short story and Marybeth raised her hand- "I do"