We begin a new short story serial today. I hope you enjoy it.
Honestly, who uses a cut-throat razor nowadays? They’re museum pieces, Sweeney-Todd relics; deadly silver scissors that can slit the life with one flick of a careless wrist. Even if you don’t sever an artery there’s still a risk of infection and I hardly think swishing the blades under a cold tap whilst humming I Got You Babe counts as a proper cleansing routine.
But Dave loves his cut-throat. I can hear him singing to it as he shaves, then as soon as I open the door he clamps a hand to his jugular and starts making choking noises.
‘That’s not funny!’ I snap.
He looks contrite for a millisecond before his face splits in a big grin. ‘TGIF!’ he chortles, as if the day grants him some kind of clown-like immunity. It’s April Fool’s Day on Monday. Worst day of the year.
I push past him, shrugging off my dressing gown. ‘Why’d you still use that thing? Most people don’t even wet-shave, let alone with one of those.’
‘Most people?’ No-one else would have noticed the darker tone in that voice.
‘Most men then,’ I say sulkily.
‘Can’t shave your armpits with an electric.’
I knew we’d get on to this. ‘They’d still never use one of them.’
‘Wouldn’t they,’ he says softly, darkly.
Every morning he makes some comment. But I don’t see why I should shave my body when he’s as hairy as a gorilla; a fact I pointed out one Friday night and so caused the collapse of a whole weekend. But I won’t give in. ‘An electric takes about ten seconds instead of all this palaver with foam and towels,’ I say. (He leaves the towels on the floor all wet and sticky, another bone of contention.)
‘If a thing’s worth doing, it’s worth doing well.’ He chants the words like a chorister singing a psalm.
‘One of these days you’ll do it so well you’ll slice your head off,’ I retort, and get in the shower quick. I hear him shut the blades with a flick of the wrist and I pull the curtain tight, thinking of Psycho.
Comments welcome as always.
4 thoughts on “New Short Story Serial: Two Looks Like Murder Episode 1”
Did you mean to say “slit the life”? It’s not a usage I’ve seen or heard before, but I know what you mean 😉 Cheers, Jon.
Yes, it’s actually a poetic reference. I thought it was Shakespeare but looking it up I see it’s Milton, from Lycidas
There’s a couple of other well-known phrases in there: ‘Fame is the spur’ and ‘tomorrow to fresh woods and pastures new’