Wednesday, 26 November 2014

Dear Gloria

Dear Gloria,
I was lost until I found out for sure who you really are. I know you don’t want it all to come out -
what Dad did all those years ago - especially since we have both changed our names. I see that
you are now Gloria Badger (where did you get that name from?) and have somehow risen to the
illustrious heights of Detective Inspector. Well done, you.
I have thought about you often since the day they took you away from me - my beautiful little
sister - and I honestly believed I’d never see you again. But when we bumped into each other
that day when you came to my office, I knew I had to tell you who I was. I remember you looked
at me strangely, almost as if you already knew. Your blue eyes gazed into mine, perhaps not
quite as innocent as before.
I promise I won’t tell anyone. It will be our secret, my darling sister. It’s not the only secret we
share. I know about you and Ferdy. It was the last thing he told me before he died. He was an
old romantic, wasn’t he, writing all those love letters. I’ve spent most of the evening reading
them and they’re really very touching. I expect you’d like them back.
Well, my dear, come to see me - perhaps one evening this week - and we’ll read them together.
We shall both keep our secrets.
With love forever, Michael. xxx
Dear Michael,
I say ‘dear’, but you’re not really, are you? You’re just a stranger I bumped into while I was on
a case and you’ve got it into your strange, sick head that I’m your long lost sister. My name
is Gloria Badger - unfortunate but true - and always has been. We are not related. We are
You weren’t a stranger to Ferdy though, were you? What was that twist of ribbon you sent
me? Was it the murder weapon, or merely a lost decoration from your porcelain doll collection,
you twisted freak? And what was the envelope of poppy seeds all about? If they were meant
to scare me, you should have tried arsenic-laced chocolates, like every other self-respecting
And you’re quite wrong about Ferdy and me. There was never anything between us. He is the
murder victim and I am the police officer investigating that murder. It must be a different ‘Gloria’
in the love letters, which I will not be coming to your lock-up to read. I’m sure you must have a
I expect you’d like to know that your letter gave me a bad feeling. Well, it didn’t. It made me
sublimely happy to know that I could never be related to such a sad, lost individual.
With no regards, Gloria.
P.S: I will prove that you killed Ferdy.
Dear Diary,
I’m scared. Yes, Gloria Badger, D.I. Cool, Calm and Collected doesn’t admit this to anyone but
you, Diary. And you’d better keep your mouth shut.
I keep dreaming about Ferdy. I dream of his touch, his warm breath against my neck. His dark
eyes pulling me into the gravity of his love, the maelstrom of the his darkest, sweetest thoughts.
Then I open my eyes and see blood, brain matter like glue and wake with the sticky, cloying
stench of guilt in my nostrils. I knew I should have got rid of his love letters - no sloppy texts or
emails from him - but I just couldn’t stand to, even though they turned out to be lies, of course -
all that ‘you’re the only one I’ll ever love’ garbage. So I secreted them in odd places, filed behind
radiators, hidden away in the pasta jar, one in the toolbox in the garage. But, of course, they
could all be found. And were.
Those love letters... silent witnesses to his death, joining the dots, screaming out my name.
Most of all I regret that I didn’t have Ferdy’s baby. But I was too much of a coward to face the
morning sickness, the exhaustion, the mother-toddler groups. The loss of my all-important
career. This is what I can’t forgive myself for, even as I cold-bloodedly frame my brother for
Ferdy’s murder.
But his blood still soaks my dreams. I wake up drenched in it every morning; trail it around
behind me all day. Some time, sooner or later, that trail will lead back to me. Then the punisher
of crime will become the punished.
Good night, Diary.

The copyright of this post belongs to Alisha Bailie.

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