It had been a beautiful day. The early spring sunshine was the perfect background for Kate and Matt as they took their vows. Cameras clicked as Matt kissed his bride amid the rainbow of confetti swirling on the light wind.
A few hours later the bodies of Matt and his bestman, Alan, lay on the floor of a hotel room. Kate was holding her husband and screaming. Her beautiful ivory dress stained in vibrant crimson. In a matter of hours, she had become both a wife and a widow.
‘He must have escaped through here’ said the investigating detective, pointing at the open door of a fire escape.
Kate’s parents stood quietly as the police gently interviewed their daughter. Later at the small house that had been Kate’s childhood home they watched her sleep, sedated by the family doctor. The following days were a blur of activity with police, family and friends coming in and out.
One afternoon the investigating detective and his female colleague arrived. ‘Kate is resting’ her mother informed them.
‘That’s ok Mrs Sloane, we need to talk to you first’ said the detective, ‘we have found the revolver that was used to kill your son-in-law and his brother’
‘You are on to them then’
‘It’s a start, Mrs Sloane. I know we have been through this before, but can you describe your daughter’s bouquet?’
‘Of course, it was a flowing cascade of peach roses with clouds of white gypsophila.’
‘Sounds quite beautiful’
‘Oh it was, and for the price we paid it should have been. Your daughter only gets married once … ohhhh’ Mrs Sloane composed herself. ‘It disappeared after. Perhaps it’s for the best.’
‘Quite so, indeed. We found it dumped in the waste bins of the hotel and the revolver was hidden inside the flowers’
‘Who would do such a thing?’
‘We have taken fingerprints from the gun, Mrs Sloane. And we have a match,’ the detective said. ‘Mrs Sloane I must speak with your daughter.’
‘Yes, of course’ she said. She guided the police officers to her daughter’s room where Kate was sat lost in her thoughts.
Several months later Kate clung on to her father as the judge gave out a life sentence. ‘Mildred Sloane not only have you stolen the lives of two young men because one of them dared to love your daughter, but you have broken her heart.’ The judge turned to the father and daughter, ‘I think I speak for the court in my hopes you will find solace and support in each other in the coming months.’
©JG Farmer 2018