stories

Standing Woman - Chapter 2 - page 1

Cut to the quick, I stared at his face for a moment, then nodded slowly.
"Actually, my wife."
"Hmm, your wife, is it?" For a few moments he regarded me with deep interest. "I wondered whether it wasn't something like that. Otherwise nobody ever bothers to talk to me."
Nodding. "Then what did she do, your wife?" "She complained that prices were high at a housewives' get-together. If that had been all, fine, but she criticized the government, too. I'm starting to make it big as a writer, and I think that the excitement of being an author's wife made her say it."
"I know you were a writer."
I shook my head.
"One of the women there informed on her. Anyway, it seems my wife has a pretty good idea who it was that did it."
"This is just my own guesswork," he said, "but wasn't your wife a good-looker?"
"Yes, well..."
"Just as I thought. They were jealous of her. Women do things like that in cold blood." He sighed.
"She was planted three days ago, on the left side of the road looking from the station toward the assembly hall, next to that hardware store."
"Ah, that place." He closed his eyes a little, as if recollecting the layout of the buildings and the stores in that area. "It's a fairly peaceful street. That's good, isn't it?"
He opened his eyes and looked at me searchingly. "You aren't going to see her, are you? It's better not to see her too often.
Both for her and for you.
That way you can both forget faster."
"I know that."
I hung my head.
"Your wife?" he asked, his voice turning slightly sympathetic. "Are they making her do anything?"
"No. So far nothing. She's just standing, but even so..."
"Hey." The manpillar serving as a postbox jerked his chin to attract my attention. "It's come. The mail truck. You'd better go."
"You're right."
Taking a few wavering steps, as if pushed by his voice, I stopped and looked back. "Isn't there anything I can do for you?"