Mixed Drinks

by Jennifer Weber

So very gently she removed the pink melamine cup, its innards rust-colored from years of service as a receptacle for coffee, from the cupboard and placed it on the Formica beside the tall plastic container sheltering the pallid substance ominously labeled Formaldehyde. The skull-and-crossbones juxtaposed with the dread four-syllable word (the definition and common use of which she had learned from her intended victim) leered knowingly as she installed the roach-brown quart bottle of beer next to the funerary juice. The idea had occurred to her the moment the cylindrical bottle of embalming fluid had been unearthed during one of the family's weekly junkyard forays where anything from living room furniture to costly perfume to bawdy paperbacks might surface at any given time from the mounds of dreck in which these objects had been immured by time and societal apathy. She had contemplated the possible solution to her problem almost constantly since then, aware that his alcoholism and her steady job as underage drink-fetcher provided the perfect opportunity to mix one of his preferred adult beverages with something slightly more potent. Appropriately, as she plotted murder the shabby house was preternaturally quiet and eerily still. When the urine-yellow liquids coalesced in the stained cup she wondered for the hundredth time whether sirens would begin wailing within minutes of his taking the first sip, which would turn out to be his last... right after his greedy fingers, filthy like the pink cup and guilty as sin, accepted from her hands the last thing his hands would ever take from her.

6S - C3

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