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Death by Chocolate

by Ana Sofia Brito about a year ago in Mystery · updated about a year ago
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A Murder in Three Acts

Death by Chocolate - A Murder in Three Acts

Act I

Tilly had spent the entire night trying to get rid of the body. She was exhausted, famished and scared but she was happy with her decision. No one would believe her if she told the truth. She would lose her family and friends. And for what? A mistake? No! No way, she was going to end up in a filthy prison cell. It was still dark and the suburban street was soulless. Soon, people would come out of their homes and a new day will begin. She had to get a grip and act naturally.

Tilly did what she did every morning. She went to the only bakery opened at that time, just down the road, bought fresh made croissants and a pint of milk. She could have just opened the door of the house because she had the key. However, she decided to knock. She wanted to make sure that Lisa and Peter acknowledged her presence. She wanted them to know that nothing out of the ordinary had happened the previous night.

Lisa opened the door still in pyjamas and with Sebastian half-asleep in her arms. “Sorry for waking you up.” – apologised Tilly taking Sebastian from Lisa’s arms. “I forgot my keys.” Lisa did not seem to mind and walked to the kitchen with the milk and the croissants. “Coffee?” – asked Lisa yawning. “No sugar, right?”

Lisa had just returned to work after two years of maternity leave. She worked as a marketing consultant in a big firm in the city. She had given birth to the twins Isabelle and Sebastian and Tilly was their nanny. Peter was the CEO of a Trust of Primary Schools in South London, a demanding job that required many hours away from the family. They were good, hard working people who did not deserve to deal with scandal and murder. No, she had to deal with it as soon as possible. Many people would get hurt if she came clean.

“Any plans for today?” – asked Lisa sipping her coffee and nibbling a croissant. “The twins had a pretty good night, I thought you could take them to the park and pop in the library for the Baby club session.”

“Not the library.”- thought Tilly. That was where everything had started. That was where she had met Matt, the single Dad of a beautiful 4-year-old little girl called Olivia. She was not supposed to date so soon after breaking up with Richard, an almost ten-year-old relationship that ended in tears. They had been high-school sweethearts and were going to get married. On the day of the wedding, she woke up absolutely certain that, she could not go through with it. She had just finished university and wanted to live her life to the fullest and Richard was not included in her plans. When she called off the wedding, both families and Richard were left devastated. She moved out of her parent’s house, withdrew all her savings from the bank and booked a flight to Taiwan. Tilly spent one year teaching English around Asia, working in orphanages and falling in love and out of love everywhere, she went. When she ran out of money and was forced to return home, her parents had already forgotten the scandal of the run-away bride and Richard had moved on with his life.

Act II

Tilly met Matt in the library when she attended the baby club with the twins and they instantly felt attracted to each other. Soon, they started spending the long summer afternoons together while the twins and Olivia napped in Matt’s living-room. Matt was an artist that earned his living as a freelance photographer. As Olivia was going to start school in September, Matt asked Tilly if she could put a good word with her boss and get him a part-time job as an Art teacher in any of the schools in the Trust. Peter hired Matt as an After-school Art teacher and after a couple of months, Tilly moved in with him.

In November, it was the twins’ birthday and Lisa prepared a party to celebrate their third birthday. Peter hired Matt as a photographer and he attended the party with Tilly and Olivia. Lisa invited a few friends and colleagues who had children and her best friend Nessa who prided herself for being single and available. Nessa started to flirt with Matt as soon as they were introduced to each other. Tilly could feel her blood boiling each time she caught them talking and flirting. Nessa was a natural teaser and she was enjoying the show as much as Tilly was hating it. Lisa was too busy with the other guests to notice what was going on. She did not really know Matt that well and was not sure of how serious his relationship with Tilly was.

They were all so absorbed with their own dramas that no one noticed what was about to happen. Nessa managed to lure Matt to the shed in the back garden while Lisa and Peter brought a magnificent chocolate birthday cake for the twins. All the guests gathered around the cake. “Where is that boyfriend of yours?”- hissed Peter. ”He should be here taking photos. We are about to blow the candles.” Tilly felt the anger raise to her chest. She knew exactly where he was. She also knew that he was not alone. Nessa, that little slut was with him. It was not a surprise when they both returned to the party, giggling and flustered.

Tilly was the first leaving the party, she was furious with Matt and did not want to spend another minute in the same room as Nessa. She apologised to Lisa and left the party as soon the twins had blown the candles. Instead of returning to Matt’s place, Tilly went for a walk; she could not believe what had just happened. How could she go back to Matt’s after his betrayal? Why on earth did she move in with him, in the first place? She had promised to herself never to get into a serious relationship. She had tasted absolute freedom while travelling alone around Asia, meeting new people every day, having flings with whomever she wanted, living life to the fullest. She did not belong to these suburban little lives, 9 to 5 jobs, kids and homes. This was not her. She needed to leave. She would ask her parents for some money and get the first plane back to Thailand. First, she needed to hand in her notice to Lisa and give her a couple weeks to find a new nanny for the twins.

Act III

Tilly walked back to Lisa’s house feeling much better with herself. She had a plan and she was going to stick with it. She was going to make it happen. She was almost reaching the house when she heard someone arguing. She recognised the voices instantly. Tilly hid behind a tree and looked at the two people arguing on the other side of the street. Nessa was holding a plate with a slice of chocolate cake and was shouting at a man. At first, she thought Nessa was arguing with Matt but then she heard her yell - “You know what you are, Peter? You are a fucking coward! That is what you are.” “And you are a slut, Nessa!” Peter shouted back. “How could you do that to me? How could you do that to us? Especially at the twins’ birthday party. You disgust me!” Nessa started to laugh, an ugly horrible sound that made Tilly’s heart freeze. She could not believe what she had just seen. Lisa’s best friend. Lisa’s husband, Peter. How could they?

She watched Peter walk away back to the house leaving Nessa looking miserable, alone in the street. Tilly forgot where she was and what she believed in. She crossed the road to confront Nessa. Nessa had placed the plate with the chocolate cake slice and a little dessert fork on a fence of a house nearby and was trying to light a cigarette. “Hey, you!” called Tilly. “Aren’t you ashamed of yourself?” Nessa looked around to check if there was anyone watching. “Do you call yourself a friend? “Your boyfriend is something!” – smiled Nessa. “Quite delicious! You need to keep him in doors, little girl”. Tilly lost it. She grabbed the plate with the cake and smashed it in Nessa’s face. Nessa grabbed Tilly by the hair while punching her in the stomach. Tilly managed to get hold of the little fork and stabbed her in the neck until she fell dead on the ground. They were lucky that everything happened very quickly and the alley where they were was pretty far from the main road.

Tilly was shaking all over but she knew that she had to keep going. There was nothing, she could do. Nessa was dead. She grabbed her by the feet and pulled her through the alley dumping her small body near a few overflown bins, hidden behind a decrepit tree. She walked where they had parked the car praying that Matt was still in the party and had not gone home. She looked at her mobile phone and realised that it was just 7.30 pm. The road was pitch black and everyone was at home. Fortunately, she found the car and drove back to where she had left Nessa’s body. Matt would have to do his own arrangements. It was his fault; he could not keep his friend in his pants.

Tilly drove to Matt’s house and parked car in the driveway with Nessa’s body in the boot. She quickly packed a few clothes and left a note on the kitchen counter: “It’s over. You can donate the rest of my things to a charity shop.”

In the morning, Tilly explained to Peter and Lisa that she needed to leave. She no longer wanted to work for them. She was heartbroken to leave the twins behind but she felt suffocated with life in London and she needed to feel free again. Lisa realised that this sudden decision might have to do with Matt and Nessa so accepted Tilly’s resignation.

On that same evening, Tilly was on her way to Thailand, she had a couple of friends with whom she could stay when she arrived in Bangkok until she found some school where she could teach English. Her parents called her a couple of days later to give her the news of Matt’s arrest and Nessa Hill’s murder. Tilly sighed with relief. She was free again.

Mystery

About the author

Ana Sofia Brito

Primary School Teacher and Drama Practioner, Ana Sofia Brito lives with her family in London, UK. She loves writing, cooking and travelling. The Adventures of Clarisse in the Birds Valley is her first novella.

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