With slick, wet hair, nude from the waist up she pulled her black duffle bag out from under the bed and gave a deep sigh when she found it was unscathed by the pool of blood around Jared’s half naked body. She marveled briefly at how much blood he had truly lost since yesterday. She thought that might be something noteworthy to add to her diary once she got home. She also thought it was a shame she hadn’t brought a camera but when the police find the body there will be plenty of coverage she knew. Murder victim’s in Rockies resort. She slipped into a pair of tight black skinny jeans and pulled a stylish red turtleneck over her head. She fanned her silk blond hair out and brushed it quickly with her fingers in front of the mirror. She noticed the twinkling sparkle from the enormous diamond ring affixed to her left hand and she smiled pleasantly. She pulled the closet open and out spilled Jared’s ex-fiancé, a deep purple gush around her throat with an offensive looking Columbian necktie staring at her with what she viewed as some form of sarcasm. She frowned at her work. Those who appreciated the art of murder would criticize her, the sloppy form of the tongue partially cut in an amateurs attempt at vile mutilation. She didn’t like that word. Mutilation. Maybe, crime of passion, or bitch had it coming. She stroked the diamond engagement ring once belonging to the not so beautiful Marie and shut the door against her ex-rival of love.
“It was never about the ring, hunny,” she said unkindly to the rock on her ring finger, “it was about you fucking my man. Though I have to admit, the ring was an added bonus I didn’t foresee.”
She laughed and laughed until her sides hurt and when she quieted she realized she had just killed the man she loved. She stared at the mess that was Jared and a tear strolled down her cheek, as sparkly as the ring on her finger. She brushed it away hastily. With time escaping her rapidly, she ripped the knife free from Jared’s stomach and ran to the bathroom sink to rinse it with water hot enough to blister her skin. When she was satisfied the knife and sink were clean, she tossed it into the duffel bag and wrapped it around her shoulder. Jade picked the ‘Do Not Disturb’ sign off the table and swung it around her finger as she stared one last time at her masterpiece.
“Good bye, my love. It was truly a night to remember,” she blew a kiss and exited the door. She wrapped the sign around the door knob and made her way to the elevator.
“Wait! Hold the door,” cried an elderly lady. For whatever reason, Jade did hold the door for her, sticking her arm between the closing frames and when the woman tapped the already pressed ground floor button she folded her arms across her chest and smiled at Jade.
“You’re the lovely lady from room 506,” she smiled.
“Yes, and I remember you. The darling and her gentlemanly husband. It must be nice to go on a second honeymoon, as young as you are,” Jade teased. The older woman blushed and smiled, waving her hand like it was nothing big.
“Well, I think I wasn’t the only one to have a wonderful night,” she winked at Jade and gave her a knowing smile.
“Oh. It was that loud, huh?” Jade blushed to herself.
“Nothing wrong with a good sex life, my dear. Any man that can you make squeal like that is a sure keeper,” the woman said and the elevator dinged.
They stepped off together and with a sincere farewell, they parted ways. It wasn’t until Jade hit the open, cool air of night that she felt her mind clear and her chest rise with happy content. The hotel was completely isolated within the Rockies, surrounded by the thick Citadel forest. The drive up with Jared was less than exciting, with nothing but greenery and a thin layer of snow that lined the hard, solid earth. She had at least expected to see a bear or two but nothing moved within the thickness and only the radio static kept her from completely falling asleep. She was never a nature nut and the scene was underwhelming and boring. She groaned now, staring out at the bleak darkness of the forest as she realized she couldn’t take Jared’s car back home. She would have to walk up to the highway and manage to hitchhike if she wanted to leave this damned world behind. Her booted heels clacked off the concrete sidewalk and soon the crunching of peddles underfoot could be heard. Albelack road was completely barren, non-paved which gave her a shudder at the under developed region. It would be a long walk, and she realized she might maybe make it to the highway by sunup but she doubted it. She shivered in the cold air, wishing she had brought gloves and a hat. Or maybe a thicker jacket. She looked back and the barely twinkling lights of the booming hotel in the distance nearly disappeared by large coniferous trees was dissolving behind a thick blanket of fog.
The forest was deathly silent and only the hoot of an eerie horned owl broke the quiet. A dense fog lay upon the ground, swirling like hands as she passed by completely concealing whatever was beneath it. The only light was the half-moon high up and she noticed the sky was cloudless, unlike before when she first awoke. Coming through the fog, she saw a dark figure and a stab of fear pierced her stomach. It was a man, she could tell by the height and robust nature though his face was concealed in the shadow of a large hat. His body was cloaked with a large beige colored trench coat that ruffled the ground as he walked and he passed her on the other side of the road without a moments glance. She heard something hit the ground and realized the man had dropped a pack of red matches. She bent down to pick the packet up.
“Sir, wait you dropped…” but when she looked up again, he was gone. The fog was so thick she could barely see her hand in front of her face but she lifted the pack towards the sky to read what it said with squinted eyes in the dim moonlight. ‘Newton Hotel’ was scrawled across thick red cardboard in a golden flourish of expert handwriting.
“That’s mine,” said a gruff voice and she screamed, startled by the man in the trench coat standing in front of her, so close that she could smell his sour breath. She stared but his face was still invisible to her eyes and she handed the packet over to him with wide, watery eyes, her shoulders uncontrollably shaking beneath her thin leather coat.
“S-sorry. You scared the hell out of me,” Jade said hearing the fearful tremor in her voice, but he said nothing and only turned away to disappear in the fog once more.