Marli's Party was Deadly
by Beck Fenton

Bachelorette parties are not usually booked for a solid weekend, but Marli had to overdo everything as usual. Twenty of us girls met at her parents summer "cottage" to drink her into marriage. She had the whole affair catered by the exclusive "Margo's Specialty Services" of course. Along with the food and pools of booze came twenty young and handsome guys. Specialty services indeed.

Marli had grown up on the island. She maintained her golden tan and sun-bleached blonde hair year round. But during the summer she seemed to glow with good health. I, on the other hand, am allergic to the sun and wander around with pale white skin that makes me look like I died weeks ago.  I wasn't looking forward to this get-together, but I was interested enough to come along anyway. I was hoping there would be a chance to get laid. It had been way too long between relationships.

Most of us arrived on the last train of the night. Some of us had met Marli at the modeling agency, others had gone to school with her. I was her personal psychic. I'm the one who told her that she would meet her Price Charming at the opening of the art gallery. I had been with her while she rejected man after man. She came to me with every little detail of her life. I listened and often raised my prices. Marli never hesitated to meet whatever price I asked.

Normally I resist drinking. When I do have something alcoholic, I get rather silly. I start to predict all kinds of outlandish happenings. Most of them come true. That's why I don't drink. They are the kind of predictions that no one wants to hear. "Your transmission is going."  "You'll witness a murder." "You have overdue library books."  "You'll find a dead body next month."  Exciting stuff, huh? Plus I get horny and I'm not very picky. So I usually don't indulge.

There was one band playing a variety of music in the garden. Beethoven. Bach. Mozart.  Dead composers all. Pearl Jam was entertaining down by the water.

I decided to have a quick drink to help me enjoy the screeching violins. I looked around for a handy corner to hide away from the crowd.  Conversations flowed around me as I felt the martini warm my throat. I sank into an overstuffed chair in Marli's game room, munching peanuts and sipping my drink. I remember thinking how sexy a waltz could sound. I remember having  someone bring me another martini. I do remember that much. A tall, slim dark-haired waiter with brown eyes that twinkled. I remember those.

I woke up in the early morning. A damn seagull screaming away invaders. I was stiff from sleeping in the chair, all curled up into a ball of tight muscles. I groaned as I straightened up. I saw my clothes on the pool table. Starting to stand was difficult because of the nude male body on the floor. I could only stare at it, I mean him. I hopped over the body, hoping to get out of the room quietly. I managed to fall right on top of him and screamed loud enough to ... well, you know.

I expected everyone to come running, but no one heard my screams. They were all sleeping in the other wing of the house. Dressing rapidly, I made a quick phone call to the local police before locating Marli. She was just coming into the kitchen, looking perfect as always. She became so excited when I told her about the body. Police were coming and this was going to be the best party ever. Marli ran upstairs to gather all the guests, hoping I'm sure, for a Hercules Poirot question and answer interrogation.

I knew it was pretty simple. I had seen peanuts on the floor by the body. I surmised the caterer and I had started to fool around and the taste of the nuts I was eating was enough to send him into cardiac arrest. Allergic reaction. Poor boy. I wish I could remember more, but the police would find out I was right. I usually am.

Beck Fenton is new to the publishing scene, but has been writing stories for several years. She graduated from Vermont College of Norwich University in 1997. That's where she discovered the thrill of writing. Her stories have appeared in Nocturnal Ooze Magazine and Nice Stories, both online publications. She lives with her husband, Ted Pendleton, and their springer spaniel, Chyna.  When she's not writing, you can often find her reading tarot cards, which is where the idea for Marli's party originated.  Contact Beck.

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