Karen reached for the pantry handle.
What was waiting behind the pantry door was two years in the making. This was not a walk-in pantry. It was a drawers-slide-out pantry. One might call it a glorified cupboard. But it housed pantry items—sour cream and onion dip, a popcorn maker, unused navy napkins from Katie’s high school graduation last spring. And now it also housed Judy. Judy was slim and slight. Able to sneak and hide in pantries.
Karen hesitated. Her phone buzzed in her pocket. The caller: Judy’s husband Will. It was Tuesday. And Will called Karen every Tuesday. Had been for the past two years. According to Will, calling was safer than texting. A written record much more damaging than a consistent phone log.
The phone kept buzzing. Karen didn’t pick up. She heard a rustling in her pantry. Mice? Then she heard, “Answer it you bitch. Answer it! You know you have been for the last goddamn how many months you motherfucking—”
Karen swung the door open. And as she did, Judy launched her little frame past the popcorn maker and took hold of Karen’s throat.
In the skirmish, the call was accepted—the result of an inadvertent bump.
Will listened in horror as his wife strangled his lover.
Both the trial and the funeral were well attended. And the navy napkins did not go to waste. When they cleaned up the blood. When they served croissants at the wake.