daringdesigns.com / artwork by don seeley

Summer Mornings

Max listened to the children laughing as they played in their yard across the street. The curtains blew uneasily and the shrieks and giggles coming through the open window mixed with the sound of a lawn mower and the smell of fresh cut grass. Summer mornings always made him smile.

The smile lingered as he looked around at the long thin lines of blood that made their slow way down the walls of the room. He drew a deep, slow breath and set the pewter statuette gently onto the nightstand. As he moved closer to the window, he took special care not to disturb the room's comfortable stillness. Feeling quiet contentment, he turned back toward the bed. On it, his roommate, Tim, lay face down, sightless eyes staring into the center of a wet, red halo.

Max smiled. It wasn't nearly as hard as he'd expected. Perhaps the secret was in staying calm, not getting emotional. Five minutes ago he had made a cup of tea and set it next to his armchair. He picked up the statue and walked quietly, silently into the bedroom. He brought it down once, twice. Once again. And again...

Max sat down, leaned back into the armchair and smiled as he sipped his still warm tea. Maybe it was the sunshine, maybe it was the warm air, but something about Summer mornings always made him smile.