Suspense Crime Sad


It was the last day of the year. He too would celebrate the end of the old year and the arrival of the new. But…there was that decision to be made, that he had kept putting off by day after day for too long, which he had to make before the end of the year, of which only that day remained.

He had to make that decision for Katia, his lover, and also for Mary, his wife.

Katia was his lover for three years, and he had promised her he would divorce her wife to start a new life with her. Together they would start a family, they would have children.

Even to Mary, still, his wife, who was tired of his double life, he had promised that he would make a decision in one direction or another: either he would leave Kate to stay with her, Mary or he would grant her the divorce that her wife had been asking for some time.

But Peter could not make up his mind. Whenever he had promised Kate or Mary that he would make a decision as soon as possible he was sure that he would do so. But then he fell back into uncertainty ( indecision), because he wasn’t at all sure ( convinced) about what decision to make.

Of course, he cared a lot about Kate, he would have liked to choose her, but, on the other hand, he didn’t even like leaving Mary, above all because there was Sylvia, the child he had had with Mary.

Peter hadn’t promised Sylvia anything. But he wished with all his heart that she had a peaceful and happy childhood.

It wasn’t he who had told Sylvia about Kate, it was Mary who had told her. Mary first had told the child that her Daddy had a friend, then that he had a lover. Sylvie was still too young to understand. “ What is a lover?” she had asked. “ She is a kind of fiancé “ Mary had said.

“ How can Daddy have a fiancé if he is already married?” Sylvia had asked.

Even for that last day of the year, as he had already done the previous year, Peter would be divided between dinner with his wife and daughter and after dinner with Kate. To tell the truth, he hadn’t even decided with whom he would wait for the stroke of midnight and the arrival of the new year.

Already in the morning, he had received requests from Kate and Mary for him to make up his mind about with which of the two he wanted to spend the rest of his life.

“ But decide once and for all! Or are you afraid to tell me that you want to be ( to stay) with Kate?” Mary had said to him. “ Oh, then grant me a divorce!” And then she had said that phrase to which he had felt mixed up. “ Decide once and for all, and leave me mistress of my life!”

Here, it was that “ LEAVE ME MISTRESS OF MY LIFE” that made him feel bad, that made him feel like a jailer.

“ Can I hope that at least at midnight, if not before, you will decide with whom you want to stay, whom have you chosen?” Kate said to him. “ Look: I’m giving you an ultimatum: if you don’t decide by midnight, I will make the decision! I will leave you because I can’t stand this situation anymore.

“ But what are you doing having dinner with us? Ah, have a great dinner at the end of the year with your lover instead…ah, it’s evident that’s with her you want to stay ( to be), but you don’t have the courage to say it” Mary kept repeating to him.

Neither of…his two women could believe that Peter just couldn’t make a decision.

“ Leave me mistress of my life”  Mary had said to him. Kate often said to him: “ You are the master of my life”

As the hours of the last day of the year passed implacably and midnight approached Peter still hadn’t made the decision that yet he had promised to make. He found himself at dinner with Kate and Sylvia, but he was tormented by the thought of Kate and by the decision to make.

“Your daddy, dear, oh, he is sitting at the table with us, but he’s not here with us…his mind and heart are all with his lover,” Mary said to Sylvia who complained because Peter hadn’t answered her question about Santa Claus. Sylvia had asked him how Santa Claus was when he had been young. “ Then let him go to her! Let him stay with her!” Mary shouted.

“STOP it, Mary! Stop talking like that in the presence of the little girl! “ Peter said angrily. “ Ah, I won’t stop no!” Mary kept shouting, spilling the tablecloth of the table laid on him. “ But go, go to Kate! I can’t stand this situation anymore!” Mary kept shouting, throwing glasses, plates, and cutlery at Peter. She liked an unstoppable fury. Sylvia had also started screaming, terrified: “Mom! Dad! Stop it!”

Peter ran away from home and rushed to Kate, who was happy to see him. “ Oh, so you’ve finally made your decision! Thank you, my love! We will wait for the stroke of midnight together” she said. “ Ah, look, I had to run away from home because Mary spilled the tablecloth with dinner on me” Peter confessed. He was frightened, terrified by his wife’s fury, and yet hadn’t made up his mind. But Kate was sure that Peter had made his decision and had chosen her.

Midnight was approaching. Peter and Kate were dancing to the tune of Viennese waltzes. Kate was beaming with happiness, Peter was more and more anguished. How to make that blessed woman understand that he hadn’t decided yet? Now it was sounding On the beautiful blue Danube, with its wide swirls, like the breath of the river, with its sudden narrows like the pressing of the time….Oh, yeah, Kate used to say that he, Peter, was the master of her life, but that wasn’t true at all! Ah, it was instead she, Kate who owned his life. Here, on the turn of the waltz, Peter felt a great rage rise inside him. Her hand went up from the waist to Kate’s neck, which he gripped tightly, continuing to dance. Kate kept smiling at him, she was thinking it was a game….When Peter’s other hand also tightened around her neck she widened her eyes and, after continuing to wobble for a few rounds of waltz like a rag, her body fell to the ground.

Peter stepped over Kate’s body lying on the ground and run away. He really didn’t know where to go.


January 06, 2023 14:19

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Mara Masolini
18:25 Jan 12, 2023



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Rama Shaar
05:48 Jan 12, 2023

I like the concept of a man torn between love and duty, and I like the twist. One piece of critique would be to build up towards the twist. Why did he realise all of a sudden that Kate was manipulating him or controlling his life? Maybe subtle hints or foreshadowing along the way?


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Wendy Kaminski
03:17 Jan 12, 2023

Wow, I did not see that twist ending coming! Really good way to work up a surprise in this story. I liked it!


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