I’d seen her again one evening.

She had her arm wrapped around his waist, her head thrown back in laughter. I was not sure who he was until he was closer; Richard. I hid behind the Mercedes parked in front of me. As they walked across the parking lot of the shopping complex, I heard her giggle repeatedly. He must be a really funny guy. Of course I recognized her. My Amanda. Mandy. I’d loved her from the first day I saw her. I’d tried to impress her in every way I could all through secondary school and even university. But I could easily see beneath her seemingly kind expression that she was uncomfortable with me. She thought I was a weirdo, just like the other students. They all think I’m strange. They avoid me like I have some disease like HIV. I know it’s because mama was jailed for killing papa and Abigail, our house girl after she’d found them in bed together. I had been twelve. Aunty Rose had taken me after my mother had been sentenced. I remember crying as she carried me away. I never visited mama. Aunty Rose did not even let her send letters to me. I had wanted to change schools, but she’d said she didn’t have any money to pay for new uniforms and all those other new things that come with a new school. She cared for me, I just wasn’t sure she cared about me.

As I walked home that night, my shopping bag in my hand, I thought about that day when I’d told Mandy that I liked her. She had smiled, that smile of hers reserved for very uncomfortable situations, like she was cringing inside.

”Thomas, ermm.. I’m really not interested in a relationship right now”

”Oh.. Okay. No problem” I’d said. If I was white, I’d have been beet red.

I was so embarrassed, but I’d understood, well I’d believed her and I always thought, after university when I started working at a nice company and had more money, she would look my way. Of course, she had lied to me. The next week she had started dating Richard. Not ready indeed. I felt my hands clench into fists as I ground my teeth in barely suppressed anger. Happy, from a rich family, smart Richard. He was handsome and I knew I did not stand a chance competing against him. Not with my skinny body and all my crooked teeth. I’d fix my teeth but I didn’t have money of my own. Not yet at least. Mandy would never look at me. Not with love in her eyes at least. She always seemed discomforted even by the mere sight of me, you’d think I was a stalker. I feltĀ raindrops, cold raindrops hit my face and then my glasses and then my shopping bag and all too soon it was raining quite heavily.

The loud honk jolted me out of my thoughts of Mandy and memories of that day came crashing back. Papa and Abigail. Papa’s pistol.Gunshots. It was I who had killed papa and Abigail. Right before mama had walked in and seen me crying. She’d gone to prison for me, she’d wanted me to have a future. I don’t know why I’d done it. I felt like I was watching someone else take control of my body, take papa’s gun from his cupboard and I watched his shocked face become perforated by the tiny bullet. Abigail was going to wrestle the gun out of my hand, but she hadn’t made it. I’d shot her twice in the chest. And then the tears came. And wouldn’t stop coming. I hadn’t killed anyone else since papa. Hadn’t felt my evil twin want to claim my body until the day Mandy lied to me. I wanted to make sure she never lived to smile another day. I imagined tying her up and slowly cutting into her soft flesh and watching her bleed to death from every pore in her body. No, I had to stop him. Mother had been put away for me, I had to try. Try to be normal. As hard as I tried, I knew Mandy would be my downfall, the straw that broke the camel’s back. It had become a burning need. To make her suffer and pay.

The day I killed Mandy, it was sunny. Such a beautiful day to die. I’d kidnapped her and sedated her on that deserted path from Richard’s house, she had been going to buy milk that Saturday morning, like she always did when she spent Friday night with him. I’d put her in the rented car, all tied up, just like I had imagined it. It was so beautiful to watch her, completely at my mercy. Her cries were like a harmonious melody as the new blades I’d bought cut into her soft skin. I felt like removing one of her eyes, but then I thought they might not recognize her if I did that and what fun would it be if Richard never found her? So I just cut. She begged me but I told her it was too late. When she’d said she’d even date me if I stopped, I remember laughing out loud and feeling even angrier. She really did think I was stupid! So I took a hot iron and burned the skin of her palm until there was nothing but red remains. She fainted a few times, but when she finally died, I knew it. I felt him leave me. I couldn’t believe what I had done. The girl I’d worshiped all my life was nothing but disfigured remains. I carried her outside and ran to the hospital. All the way there. Of course she had been dead.

I haven’t been able to stop telling this story. I told it in court. To my psychiatrist. And even to mother; they released her. Aunty got a good lawyer who saved me from the death penalty by claiming insanity. I guess she did care about me after all. I don’t deserve to live, I know. I feel saner nowadays and my twin rarely visits.

I think its all those green pills that keep him at bay.