Jen DeSantis’ Choice: 1
Title: A Deadly Gift
It started when Kathy pushed past the rest of the girls and stuck her nose into the vase.
“God, they smell devine!” she crooned. “Who sent them?”
“I … don’t know,” Jenny replied, her fingers drumming nervously on her desk. “They were here when I got back from the copier. No note. Nothing.”
“Well, who’s the guy?”
Jenny blushed and reached out to touch one of the delicate petals. “I don’t have a guy.”
The women clustered around Jenny’s desk began speculating over who might be the unknown suitor. The cast their eyes around the office, wondering if it was one of their own or if the roses had been delivered anonymously. One of the girls began looking around on the floor for a note while Jenny pulled a single stem out of the vase and held it to her nose, her eyes far away and dreamy.
“Guys,” Kathy whispered, her voice shaky. “I don’t feel so well.”
The soft whispering faded quickly as they turned to look at Kathy. Her chest rose and fell too fast and the skin around her lips and nose was tinged with blue. White foam collected in the corners of her lips and her eyes rolled in her head. Kathy’s hands splayed on Jenny’s desk as she fell, knocking the glass vase to the floor.
Someone screamed thinly as Kathy began to convulse on the carpet. Jenny watched her roses fall gracefully out of their vase. The water that spilled out caught her eye. Instead of clear water, it had a greyish-green cast to it. The liquid hissed as it hit the carpet while thin tendrils of smoke wisped up from the spreading stain.
As Jenny’s throat began to close, she watched with horror as her friends began to cough uncontrollably. The rose fell silently to the floor at her feet.
Just before she lost consciousness, a shadow passed over her eyes. Peter, the mail boy, walked slowly to her side and knelt down, a gas mask affixed tightly to his face. Behind the plastic, Jenny watched his eyes crinkle into smile as he watched her die. She’d discovered her secret admirer.
Jennifer DeSantis is a Horror and Paranormal Author and host of the #FridayPictureShow. She lives near Philly with her family. In her spare time is an aspiring ninja.