Adultery

Short story thriller / mystery.

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1. Adultery: A Short Story

I sat up, naked on the bed, alone in a silence that rested heavily in my ears. I caught sight of the large mirror next to the bed, and was struck still by the reflection that looked me in my eyes. The light that filtered through the half open door hit my pale face in a cold, ghostly glow, exaggerating the contours of my face into an unrecognisable shape. My skin appeared smooth, flawless, like an artists impression rendered using computer imaging. Artificial. Beautiful.

I stared, unmoving, until I no longer seemed to be looking in a mirror, but at a scene laid out before me. A striking, unfamiliar woman, sits naked on my bed, next to my husband, who sleeps beside her. She seems at ease in my bedroom, her body language betrays no fear or guilt. The cold light seems to sparkle on her bare skin, like tiny diamonds. This other woman stares boldly back at me, and my imagination fancies there is malice glinting in her eye.

Slowly, dreamlike, I moved towards them, and instantly the illusion is broken, and I am simply looking in a mirror, staring at my own shadowed reflection in a darkened bedroom. I turned and looked at my husband, asleep. Pulling myself together, I slip quietly into the adjoining bathroom. Another mirror. A familiar, pale face.

I turn on the cold tap with trembling fingers, and as I lean over to splash my face, I see a sparkle on the floor. Bending down, slowly and carefully , I see an unfamiliar object that makes my heart pound as if it seeks to beat itself to death. A single, diamond earring. I pick it up and clench it in my fist, so tight I feel the spike cut into my skin. I know in my soul, without a shadow of a doubt, that it is hers.

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