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Switchblade: Desparation

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I stand in the cool, grey hallway outside of our room, promising myself that this is the right decision.
I should never have let you move in.
Rap-tap.
“Gimme a minute,” you say. “I’m changing.” I smile darkly.
A minute later, you let me in.
“Hello,” you say.
“Lilly,” I say, “I need to discuss something very important with you.”
Your smile vanishes. You sit on your bed and pat the space beside it. “What is it?”
I close your door and lock it, lest we be intruded upon. “Would you mind looking away for a moment?” I say. You tilt your head curiously. “I, ah, have an important piece of paper held in my bra, and it would be a bit of an ordeal to remove it without exposing myself.” You close your eyes and gently place your hands over them.
“You can open your eyes now, Lilly.”
You do so, and smile gently. “So,” you say. “What do you need to talk about?”
I hold up a folded piece of paper. “Lilly,” I say, “do you remember what this is?”
You blush violently. “Ah—!”
I nod as understandingly as I can. “It’s a love letter to Allen.” You look down at your feet. I smile. “I found this on the stairway. I realize that I should have stopped after I realized what it was, but I didn’t. I’m truly sorry for that.”
“O-Oh…” We are both silent for a moment.
“Has Allen seen it yet?” I say as calmly as I can. You nod. “Has he responded yet?” You shake your head softly.
I smile again. “You know, Lilly,” I say, “there was a time when Allen paid me to do both the cleaning and the cooking.” Then, I added “There was no need for a third person.”
“But now we can each spend more time on our own tasks. Plus, I’m really glad I got to know you two,” you smile sweetly.
“Yes,” I say. “Now, Lilly, there’s something you should know.”
“What is it?”
“Before I came in… I was keeping the love letter in my hand.”
You look at me with a perplexed yet innocent expression. “So… why…”
I open my right hand to reveal a something wrapped in several white handkerchiefs.
“Would you like to guess what is inside of this, Lilly?”
You laugh, nervously, as if wary of some practical joke. “What?”
I quickly unwrap the long, thin object. “Can you tell now?”
After a few moments, you smile uncomfortably and say “That’s Allen’s golden knife. It used to belong to his mother.” I nod.
“This kind of knife,” I say, “isn’t legal now. Can you tell me why that is?”
“…” You shake your head and rise to your feet.
“This is a switchblade. If I just press—here,” I demonstrate, “the blade opens in under a second.”
You nod, no longer smiling. “Wh-What are you—“
“"There are many possible futures for each of us. Before tonight, I foresaw three futures, then four, and now, two.”
“What are you saying?”
I smile darkly. “I’m going to kill you, Lilly.”
You scream.
“Shut up,” I say. “Allen’s not home. Nobody can hear you now.”
You try to run past me; as small and fragile as you are, it is easy for me to hold you back. “You b****!” I hold you back to keep you from kicking my shin. This is too fun. “You’ll never get away with this!”
“Lilly,” I say, “there are at least two ways to decide that you want to kill a person.
“Another person—or me, in another context—might have thought to herself “I need Lilly dead—how can I kill her and get away with it?” You start to give up the struggle. I see tears running down your cheeks.
“Another person—or me, in this context—thinks to herself “I need Lilly dead—how might I accomplish this as quickly as possible?”
“Before tonight, I was so stupid that I only saw three futures for Allen. The first—he falls in love with me, and we get married.” You try to punch me in the ribs, but I grab onto your hand. “The second, he goes on to marry some other person I haven’t met.” You try to bite my hand, but I kick you away just in time. “The third, he goes on to never marry anybody.
“Now, I see a fourth future which I’ve been missing all the time—that you yourself would steal Allen away from me, and that he would somehow let himself fall in love with a person like you.
“Obviously, I couldn’t let that happen. Allen could never be truly happy with you. But how could I dispose of you without putting my own happy ending at risk?
“The simple answer—I couldn’t. Either I give up my chance at love with Allen, or I let you try to steal his happiness. In other words—I put your death before either of our lives.
“I’ve given up on my happy ending. I suggest that you do the same, Lilly. You were nice while you lasted, but I’m afraid that this is the ending.
“At almost any time in your life, you will find that there are many possible futures for yourselves and for those around you, and that your choices can affect which future will come to pass.
“Sadly, Lilly, this is not one of those times."



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