The Greenhouse Murders By: L.M. Mercer


The Greenhouse Murders
By: L.M. Mercer

“Well, if he wasn’t already mad, the husband went insane with jealousy when he figured out that his young wife had not only had an affair and conceived a child, but the young lovers were planning to run off together. So as a way of punishing her for that infidelity, the man tied his wife up and forced her to watch as he murdered her lover.” Susan shuddered, as she brushed blonde wisps of hair out of her eyes. “He then locked her in a ground-floor room in their home, so she couldn’t jump out the window and end her own life, until after the birth of the child. When the baby was born, he had planned to kill it just after its first breath, but when he saw the child looking up at him, he was unable to end the life of such an innocent. Some reports supposed that he had a moment of lucidness and others suggested that he was unable to destroy a child when he had longed for one of his own for so long.”

“So, instead of killing the child, he sent the baby away to an orphanage without ever letting his wife hold the infant or even see it. As a final act of cruelty, he let his wife live for a few days with the milk drying in her breasts and the knowledge that her child had been sent away to be cared for by strangers.” Justin stole a quick glance at his wife and noticed unshed tears in her eyes; he patted the back of her hand before turning his eyes back to the road. “When she was just beginning to show signs that her sanity was taking a vacation, he took her to the same place he buried the gardener’s body and killed her. Legend has it that he was haunted by the wife’s spirit and the guilt of his actions for the rest of his days.”

“Not that he lived very long after her death,” Susan commented as she impatiently brushed away the tears clouding her vision. “He died in a freak accident a short time later. The story goes that he slipped on something and sliced open his leg with the scythe he was sharpening. He had lived alone since the death of his wife and so was unable to summon help or stem the flow of blood, so he bled to death, all alone in the greenhouse he built her as an anniversary gift. Since then, every twenty-fifth anniversary of the wife’s murder, strange deaths have occurred. Before each death, the victim received notes warning of their impending demise, stating, ‘You will never be unfaithful again!’

 Susan returned her notes to the security of the briefcase before finishing. “And that’s all the information I have so far. Since it was supposed to have happened somewhere in this county, I hope to be able to either prove it’s just a legend or find out who the real couple were and maybe, I don’t know, a series of fanatical copycats.”

“Well, baby, that is one hell of a bedtime story.”

“Or far worse, if it’s true,” Susan said after a moment of silence.

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