A Theoretical Death

A murder. It was perfect. The perfect time, the perfect place. Only one thing didn’t fit this flawless plan - the victim.

A chilly December morning. The body had been found, floating face-down in the icy depths of the river. The corpse had been so frozen that it was almost impossible to discern its facial features. And when it had been recognised, emotions were divided.

The mayor’s daughter. A horrible woman. Twice times divorced, and three of her previous husbands had died horrible deaths right after legal trouble. And she was a flat-earther.

You either loved her or you loathed her. Half the town fell into the latter category.

The murder was exquisite. Not a drop of blood in the snow, no tell tale footprints and the autopsy itself was a mystery. But a fortune was missing from the body.

The Golden Brooch. The town’s pride and joy, the only reassurance that they had any importance in this world. And now it was gone. 50,000 coins worth of glittering gold, as well as a meagre topaz encased in the centre.

For once, this town made national headlines. The Shadow Killer, they called him. Yes, he had murdered before. But those lives were insignificant. Now, half the nation was searching for this monstrosity of a man.

It was three years later that I found it. Hidden between my bedsheets: a brooch so shiny it burned the tips of my eyelashes.

I found her later, leaning against a tree. She watched the sunset, and the pink flames blossomed around her silhouette. I was tempted to smirk. On her breast pocket rested a golden brooch encasing a topaz.

“A fake?” I asked.

“Both real. Forged the day we were born, two continents apart.”

The silence seemed to stretch like a spandex suit.

“Why?” I asked finally, when no other words seemed to suffice.

“Why do you think?”

“The same reason as everybody else.”

We walked away.

After all, she was a flat-earther.

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