It could have been worse I suppose. I could have been alive when they put me in the ground, but I was dead thank God, because the whole thing would have had me spinning in my too narrow, too shallow grave. Metaphorically of course.
I had hoped for a spectacular death or a quiet one. An ending that became the warped framework of urban legend or left people saying: “At least she went peacefully.”
Neither of these scenarios ended up fitting with my actual death. I got pathetic, depressing end. Dazed with a blow from the cat’s litter tray and strangled with a faulty phone charger. Not a death to really brag about.
There was no great, white light. No tunnel or long lost loved ones. Just the grotty ceiling tiles of my rented kitchen, and the realisation that the mould above the oven was back.
My murderers were panicking; two less than athletic men with women’s tights as masks. Clearly new to the criminal game they stood bickering in the doorway. Clearly they had never killed anyone before and my death had not been part of their evening plans. However, I was more concerned with the corpse cluttering up my kitchen floor.
My ex had been right. I was not good-looking. Frog eyed and puffy faced; I did not make a pleasing sight. My state of appearance might have had more to do with my recent death than any general daily impression, but I was inclined to believe that even life could have done little to improve on what I could see.
Before any certain decision could be reached on my part, the two idiots by the door had finished squabbling and began tearing apart my kitchen instead. One dived beneath the sink while the other rattled through the drawers.
The banging alone was enough to wake the entire building, and then what would the neighbours think of me?
The one beneath the sink popped back out, grinning and waving a roll of bin bags at the other. They shoved, twisted and wrapped my poor corpse until it resembled a macabre present, held together with liberal applications of gaffer-tape.
I went down the stairs headfirst. They had managed four flights from my flat before losing their grip and sending me crashing down the final five.
When they finally got me outside I was thrown into the boot of a thirty year old Skoda where you would have been better off pointing out where there was paint left than trying to say where it had flaked off.
There were mutterings of shovels and borrowing Jim’s before the lid slammed closed and I found out first-hand how dark car boots actually were.
All of this led to my too shallow, too narrow grave on the edge of Hemmingway Woods and watching my murderers curse tree roots and throw glances at the rising sun. They said it would have to do.
I knew the dog walkers would find me first; the ones who trek out to Hemmingway Woods at six in the morning with hiking boots and walking sticks. They would call the police who would bring white tents and hazmat suits.
Dog walkers are worse than any informant. You can’t go anywhere without being seen by some fanatical dog walker.
Within the week the finger-prints on the bin bags would be matched to the criminal records. All those petty crimes my murderers committed rising up to bite them for their stupidity in their first attempt at the big time.
I could rely on one thing though. There would be no jail sentence and the press would find something far more interesting to report on the following day, leaving my death firmly unsolved. Evidence would fall on the desk of some barely know officer; vanish without trace, and within the fortnight the case would have crumbled.
Those who knew me would speculate on what had happened and soon enough there would be all sorts of stories telling the truth behind my death. People would be free to take their pick. They wouldn’t have to find out I was murdered by amateurs. No one would ever find out that I was murdered by amateurs.