All Nonfiction Bullying Books Academic Author Interviews Celebrity interviews College Articles College Essays Educator of the Year Heroes Interviews Memoir Personal Experience Sports Travel & CultureAll Opinions Bullying Current Events / Politics Discrimination Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking Entertainment / Celebrities Environment Love / Relationships Movies / Music / TV Pop Culture / Trends School / College Social Issues / Civics Spirituality / Religion Sports / Hobbies
- Summer Guide
- College Guide
- Author Interviews
- Celebrity interviews
- College Articles
- College Essays
- Educator of the Year
- Personal Experience
- Travel & Culture
- Current Events / Politics
- Drugs / Alcohol / Smoking
- Entertainment / Celebrities
- Love / Relationships
- Movies / Music / TV
- Pop Culture / Trends
- School / College
- Social Issues / Civics
- Spirituality / Religion
- Sports / Hobbies
- Community Service
- Letters to the Editor
- Pride & Prejudice
- What Matters
1945- A dark movie theater in Loyal, Wisconsin. A
few minutes into the movie, he wraps his arm around her
shoulders. They cuddle; her long, thick curly black hair a
cushion on his large, muscular forearm.
When the movie is over he drives her home in his
rusty red Chevy truck. He dreams of getting a mustang.
After all, mustangs are the best. She wants to help him
He pulls into the driveway, parks the car, and like
a gentleman, he opens her door and helps her down.
They walk hand in hand to the porch, where they share a loving kiss under the pale yellow glow of the porch lights, fireflies buzzing around their heads.
“I had a great time. I always do. I love you.”
“I love you more. Have fun at the shelter tomorrow,” he says as she walks inside. The screen door
slams shut, and they jump. She turns, smiles softly, and climbs the stairs to her room. He hears her call out to her parents, letting them know she’s home. He waits for her bedroom light to turn on, and watches her shadow flit around the room. Soon, he hears the low hum of the radio playing, and he turns and gets into his car, knowing she’s safe.
The next morning, the boy,Charlie, is woken at 7:00 am by the phone’s shrill ring piercing the quiet
peacefulness of the morning. He hears his father’s voice, heavy with sleep, answer. There is some mumbling, and then he sucks in air sharply. The father’s heavy footsteps clunk on the floor, and a moment later, he is standing in
his son’s doorway. Something is wrong. He cannot look at his son.
“Son, get dressed. Lily’s gone missing.”
Lily, his own personal sun. She was his girlfriend of almost 3 years, and they were in love. He fell asleep at night to the sound of her voice, thick and sweet, like
maple syrup, but better. So, so much better. When she laughs, it rings throughout the place. Her smile lights up the room. She could make an alcoholic wife abuser
become a saint who raises puppies for poor orphans and homeless kids.
Gone? She couldn’t be. She was perfectly fine last night. He doesn’t remember seeing anything at her house. How could she be gone? In silence, Charlie dresses. He can’t speak. The shock is too much to bear. He doesn’t believe it. She can’t be gone.
He and his dad walk out to the cool, crisp, mid-October morning. A foggy haze holds the dawn in its icy grip. The frozen grass crunches beneath their heavy
boots. Charlie’s truck, normally sitting in the driveway, is
gone. The empty space stands out like a sore thumb. The only clue that a car was once there are the tire marks. He turns to his father, and angrily shouts “He
stole my truck? That sick bastard took Lily and my truck!”
“Don’t worry son. We’ll get it back,” the father says quietly as they begin walking silently toward Lily’s home. The house is surrounded by policemen. Charlie
sees the family, and quickly jogs over. Her mother,sobbing uncontrollably, rests on her husband’s shoulder. Lily’s little sister stands next to them, in a red nightgown and two braids, a blanket hanging limp in one hand, and her thumb in her mouth. She gazes confusedly at all the unfamiliar faces until she spots Charlie, and her face lights up. She runs over, and in a soft voice whispers “Chawie, who these pweople and where Liwy?”
He wraps her blanket around her small shoulders and says Lily is lost, and these people are going to help find her. She solemnly nods, and then lays her head on
her shoulder. He picks her up, and carries her into the house and up to her room. After he tucks her in, he walks slowly towards Lily’s room. Once there, he kneels
at the foot of her bed and prays, eventually falling asleep.
He is shaken awake around midnight. They’ve found Lily.
Charlie and Lily’s parents are escorted to the police station by the sheriff. They are brought to the back of the building. The coroner’s office.
Lying on the cold, metal slab is Lily’s dirty, mangled body. She is wearing a flannel night gown,
covered in dirt and blood. Her hair is a tangled mass of twigs and grass entangled in her once shiny black locks. Her face is covered bruises, ugly black, blue, purple, yellow, and green spots that ruin her porcelain
complexion. There are more bruises and gashes on her neck, arms, and legs. Those are only the ones you can see. They stare in disbelief at her body. Her mother
collapses on the floor, silent tears pouring down her face.
Charlie moves forward and brushes the hair off her sweet face. She looks peaceful, like she’s asleep. Some part of him keeps expecting her to open her eyes and
wake up. But she doesn’t.
He wants to cry. He wants to fall on the floor and break
down in tears, but he can’t. He knows Lily wouldn’t want
him to cry. She would say there are better, more important reasons to cry. She was selfless like that.
Another reason everybody loved her. Except for the heartless person who murdered her.
A week later Charlie is taken out of class by the principal.
They walk down the hall, an eerie silence settling between them. A tall, skinny, slightly bald man with a wire thin mustache waits for them. In a nasally monotone voice, he asks “Are you Charles
“I’m going to need you to come with me. There are some
questions we need to ask you.” Charlie nods again. The
man silently walks out of the room, Charlie a few steps
behind, into the empty hallway. Their footsteps echo up and down the school, and the large front doors close behind them with an ominous clunk.
They arrive at the station, where two officers are waiting.
One snaps a pair of handcuffs around Charlie’s wrists,
while the other says “Charles Dunwood, you are under
arrest for the kidnapping and murder of Lily Margaret
Jacobs. You have the right to remain silent. Anything you
say can and will be used against you in a court of law.
You have the right to an attorney. If you cannot afford
one, an attorney will be appointed to you.”
He shakes his head. “No. No. No. I didn’t kill her. I love
her. How could I kill her?”
He is taken to the second story. Two muscular men stand guard outside his small, cramped cell. They don’t say a word.
Two months later, in the federal court, Charlie is convicted of heinous crime of kidnapping and murdering Lily. His sentence: a lifetime in jail. He is not released to attend her funeral. He is denied visitors. He dies alone in jail in 1968 at the age of 40 of a heart attack. He is buried
with a picture of Lily that he kept on his nightstand all
those years. Lily’s younger sister and her family are the only ones at his funeral. His casket is covered with lilies, and he is buried next to his love. They share a headstone.
Lily’s real murdered was eventually caught and killed two
years after Charlie died. He had committed 10 murders,
including Lily’s. He was known by the press as the Clone
Killer because of the way he mimicked whoever was closest to the victim in every way, from the car they
drove to the same body wash. He was unstoppable.