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A Man of Few Words - by Swan Morrison

Making a Killing

The idea for my business arose when Mrs Richardson-Smyth was imprisoned for conspiring to murder her husband.

She made the mistake of enquiring amongst locally known undesirables on the subject of contract hits. She was not to know that it would be an undercover reporter who would make contact, purporting to be a hit-man. Neither was she aware that the entire proceedings, far from being confidential and leading to huge inheritance and insurance payouts, would form a documentary on prime-time television.

This was not an isolated case, however, and bitter experience taught many that criminals and murderers could often be somewhat dishonest individuals.

There was clearly a need in the middle and upper class suburban market for dependable contract killing.

I realised that I needed some practical experience and some additional capital, so the obvious first step was to dispose of my own husband. I had, in any event, been considering this for some time. He was a keen DIY enthusiast and so was delighted when I appeared to share his interest by taking a course in household electrics.

The police were very sympathetic when I explained that Richard had been undertaking some DIY rewiring which might have accounted for the bath taps becoming live.

The business grew through friends and word of mouth as other wives and partners sought a partner elimination service which was both reliable and confidential.

The ‘hobby-gone-tragically-wrong’ strategy has continued to be one of the most successful approaches. Mr Geenslade’s interest in DIY car servicing was accepted by the coroner as the reason why the brake pedal detached itself as he drove down the steep hill from his house. In addition, the evening class in car maintenance, which this contract necessitated, has subsequently saved me a lot of money on garage bills.

My local college has commended me for my positive attitude in learning so many new skills at evening classes following the tragic demise of my husband. These now include; forestry conservation (You may recall Mr Henderson’s fatal chainsaw accident); swimming and life saving (Although I was unable to save poor Mr Patterson from drowning) and, of course, archery and shooting (Mr Hilliar and Mr Maynard).

Parachute packing for Mr Frobisher-Jones not only allowed a successful completion of the contract, but also provided me with enough silk and nylon to make eight double sheets.

There were some worrying police enquiries following the last death. I had been interested in building my business and had given little thought to the fact that all my clients, thus far, were neighbours in the same village.

Thus a year has passed undertaking contracts elsewhere. However, my village waiting list grew to over fifty in the interim. Initially, I thought this impossible both due to my time and the risk of raising further suspicions about a cluster of deaths. Then I realised that my motor maintenance skills could be employed once again.

Indeed, today is the day of the village men’s coach outing to the mountains.