Over the Edge

[Prompt: Use these seven words in your story: smug, substantial, meddle, slink, ethereal, artisanal, convolute ]

    Clara really wanted to slap that smug look off her ex-boyfriend’s face. He had no right to meddle in her affairs. They had broken up over a month ago and she wanted nothing to do with him and his ‘artisanal’ ways. Stupid hipster. What she ever saw in him she might never know, because it certainly wasn’t his convoluted arguments about how he thought she was mediocre. If he found her so below his expectations, she had to wonder why he was bothering to harass her. He had purposely stalked her while she was on a date so that he could ambush them later and bait her into a heated argument until her date awkwardly fled the scene. She had been so embarrassed and all her ex could do was grin victoriously.

    It was probably for the best, Clara reasoned with herself, that her date had left the way he did and likely wouldn’t call her for a second outing. If a man wasn’t willing to stand up for her against a troublesome ex-boyfriend, then he probably wasn’t a good match for her.     Clara fumed, but didn’t stop her ex from following her up to her apartment. He prattled uselessly as they climbed the stairs. Her anger pounded so loudly in her ears it deafened his nuisance words. She allowed him to slink in to her apartment after her before shutting and locking the door. The gall of the man to even think she wanted him there astounded her.
    His voice traveled to somewhere in the living room where Clara could see him relaxing into the recliner, smug smile stretched from ear to ear. She stepped into the kitchen and pressed her palms to the counter in an attempt to calm herself. She prayed to whatever ethereal being existed to grant her clarity.
The knife block in front of her drew her attention and Clara quickly turned her back to the knife handles. Images of repeatedly stabbing her ex-boyfriend had a comforting effect on her. Maybe, she tried to reason with herself, she could use one just to scare him a little. If he feared for his life, maybe he would finally leave her alone.

    Her fingers toyed with the handle of the butcher knife despite her foresight reminding her that the aftermath wouldn’t be worth the pleasure of seeing the fear in his eyes. She drew the knife out of the block and ran her finger along the sharp edge.
    “Hey, are you listening to me?” The object of her ire entered the kitchen, then paused at seeing the knife in her hands.
    Maybe she would just cut out his tongue, Clara mused while sliding the butcher knife away. Her ex relaxed once the knife was put away, but visibly grew nervous when she drew out the paring knife instead.
Clara put forth a smile, “I’m sorry, what were you saying?”

    “What are you doing?”    He asked.
    With the other hand she pulled out the filleting knife to compare it next to the paring knife, “I’m trying to decide which one of these would be better for cutting you into little pieces.”
    “The fuck?”
    “You’re right,” Clara gave in to the role of madness, “the cleaver would be better for dividing you into chunks first.”
    She slid the smaller knives back into the block then opened the drawer below the counter to retrieve the cleaver. When she turned to her ex she was mildly surprised to find him still present. The snide look on his face and his raised brow that called her bluff threw her rationality over the edge. Clearly he didn’t think she was being serious! Well, she argued with herself, a threat was made and she might as well follow through with it. She swung the cleaver down at where he had set his hand on the counter.
    In retrospect, Clear wasn’t sure whether or not she meant to cause substantial damage or not. Yet now she sat in the back seat of a police cruiser and her ex was being carted away in the back of an ambulance. She watched, feeling detached from it all. Regardless of what the police officer was saying to her, Clara didn’t believe she had done anything wrong. She looked down at the blood staining the dress she had picked out with such a hopeful outlook for the night. What a waste, she huffed at the hair sticking to the sides of her face, unable to brush it aside due to her wrists being cuffed behind her back.
    “Are you ready to tell me what happened?” The officer in the front seat was asking.
    “I just wanted to scare him,” Her voice sounded distant even to her own ears, “but then he kept screaming..”



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