Mary knew that what she was about to do signified a dramatic change in her life. Closing her eyes, Mary felt a single tear squeeze through. The silver pearl clung to her lashes briefly – just as she clung tightly to the box in her arms – before it slipped into the swiftly rushing river below.
Sharp edged memories chased against the red background of her eyelids. Each image caused her physical pain. Pain was better than nothing. At least, that was what her psychiatrist had convinced her of.
In their session that morning, Mary had railed ferociously at Dr Diaz as he’d made her take out each object the box contained; put a name to it; a story; to truly feel what each item signified.
Once, the trinkets she kept there had merely been a collection of prizes to Mary. Little pieces of junk like the kind they gave out at carnival games. Just keepsakes to remember the occasion by.
Diaz had turned them into nasty souvenirs, fashioned from blood and impure thoughts. Mary despised him for it though she accepted the truth of his analysis.
‘They’re links you need to be rid of, Mary,’ he’d said in that tone modulated to soothe even as it disparaged.
His words ran through her mind as she unlatched the box and removed a ruby cufflink.
“This one was Steven,” she thought, studying it.
Mary dangled it out over the bridge, then pulled it back and stepped away from the railing as the voice in her head chided her.
Mary nodded in agreement. Why hadn’t she seen it before?
Diaz was the only one who knew. The only one who called her “Mary”.
“What’s his angle?” the voice insisted, “Fame? Glory? A book deal? Or just unyielding power over the world’s most prolific – and still sought after – female serial killer?"
Mary turned and headed back towards the city. Bloody Mary was back in control of her thoughts and actions now. That was the only thing significant right now.
The poisoned pen Diaz used would make a mildly interesting addition to her trinket box.
© Alison Pearce 2009