Welcome to Holden Farms. I'd like to introduce all of you to the new important person in my life, Mary Holden. She is the daughter of my eternal love, Ray Holden III. Beware, she has a foul mouth and worse temper.
Enjoy the refreshments and today's featured art - a Watercolor portrait by our favorite artist - Marielle!
INTERVIEW WITH A KILLER
Walking towards the servant quarters, I can't help thinking about my father. The news: a twelve year old girl raped in my own mansion. How can I not think on the past? To my right, Saul matches my pace in silence, eyes studying me.
"What's on your mind, Saul?" I ask while we wait for the elevator doors to open.
"I'm keeping my opinion quiet until you speak to this girl. No need to add my fuel to this fire."
I have no idea what he means and step into the hallway. Putting my hand on the identification machine on the wall, the double metal sliding doors guarding the servant quarters opens after the laser scans my palm. Stepping into the hallway, I stop at the first door on the left and tap the digital lock to enter.
A young girl with blonde hair and pretty pale blue eyes sits at a desk in the center of the room. She could be a mirror of my young self and I can't help wondering if this is some mistake. The girl is beautiful even with the dark rings under her eyes and it takes me several moments to gather my wits.
"My name is..." I begin, but the girl cuts stops me by raising her hand.
"I know who you are, everyone knows you. Do you think the people that live here could possibly be unaware of you? Do you have any fucking idea how much the servants talk about you?" Her pretty face contrasts with angry words and I can't help feeling the hostility is for me.
Saul snickers at me and I wait for the girl to continue. She pushes hair from her face and leans her elbows on the desk.
"First, get rid of that." She nods in Saul's direction. "I'll only speak with you. Alone."
Saul leaves without a protest and I'm left with the girl, each of us trying to imprint a stare into the other's eyes.
"Tell me your name. And please, tell me me what happened yesterday."
"Get me a cigarette, I'm fucking dying for one," she says. "And you can call me Mary."
Removing a pack from a pocket, I slide her a cigarette and a lighter and wait for her to continue. I can feel the anger flowing from her in waves and know there must be something I'm missing. She takes a deep drag and closes her eyes, a soft laugh escaping her lips along with a puff of smoke.
"There was no rape. The old man simply saw something he wasn't supposed to see. Tell him to mind his own fucking business."
"Excuse me? No rape? Can you please explain that?"
"I wasn't being raped. I'm...with him."
"...with him?" The cold hate in her eyes explains it all. I know the look so well I could tell this story of hers without hearing another detail. Someone's been touching this girl for a long time. "George did the right thing telling me. Men of a certain age shouldn't be involved with girls of a certain age."
"I can and will do whatever I want. I'm not a fucking servant. I just stay in the servant quarters..." She stops and I lean forward, eager to know the rest. My heart skips and I feel sweat on my forehead.
"If you are not a servant, Mary, can you please tell me your full name?"
"My name is Mary Holden."
The world stops for a moment and I grip the table to keep my brain from spinning. I know the truth before she speaks.
"Ray is my father."
I woke to the sound of my own screams this morning, images of Ray on my mind, pictures that will remain with me all of my days. In this nightmare I see him crucified in the town square, having been convicted at kangaroo court for molesting me.
In these moments, it all feels hopeless. I can't turn on the news without seeing how little the world can ever change. The same wars in the middle east, the same racism in America. And like a common bond that links all cultures, women are treated like cattle throughout the globe.
Oh, Ray, where are you? I can't accept you won't return. How can any of this have meaning if you're gone? Why am I doing any of this? Is it as basic a truth as I'm just a hopelessly broken monster tilting at windmills, a Stephen King-esque Carrie version of Don Quixote?
Some days I wonder more than what I'm doing. Some days I wonder who I am. What have I become. Sitting at my writing desk, I hear whispers of the mad I've sent to the grave. And one clear thought forms in my mind.
I am the butcher of Vegas.