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Body Packaging #4: Home Sweet Murder

Jun 9, 2011



A sinfully skilled tongue was engaged in a high-powered butterfly stroke as it made its way up living legend Heather Greystone’s silky inner thighs.  From her position with her shockingly beautiful face buried under a navy mohair velvet throw pillow, Heather had no idea as to the identity of the individual attached to the magical tongue. Its owner could have been young or old, man or woman.  She couldn’t give a shit less.  The night leading up to her morning in bed had been blurred beyond recognition by a series of drinks, drugs, and her deeply-rooted desire to forget what a terrible mess she had landed herself in.

Despite the incredible pleasure she had enjoyed, Heather reluctantly allowed her Cartier Tank watch to finally find its way under her pillow.  “Okay.  I think it’s time for me to wrap this up.”  A stack of magazines from Vanity Fair to Harper’s Bazaar sat on the mirrored nightstand next to her California king-sized bed.  Her alluring looks graced every cover.  Fresh.  Flawless. Looking completely different depending upon whatever role she was playing.  Heather possessed the unique ability to become any character she needed to play as if she were literally grafting their skin onto her own.  That talent had earned her an Academy Award®, a Golden Globe®, and most recently, Cannes’ highest honor– The Palme d’Or for her first feature film at the helm.

Heather barely noticed the handsome young actor who had spent the night with her.  She had a slew of appearances scheduled in order to plug her film.  It was critical that her movie enjoyed both commercial and critical success.  She slipped on a kelly green suit which fit her willowy frame like a glove.  The suit’s color perfectly accented her shoulder length strawberry blonde hair.  Heather took the young actor’s slightly crumpled headshots and gave him a maternal peck on the cheek although she was barely five years his senior.  “I’ll get these to the right people.”  A deal was a deal.  Her favor would buy his silence.  At least temporarily.

Her first stop was Wedgewood Hollows, a senior facility for which her corporation had provided mezzanine financing.  Wedgewood fit perfectly within her current marketing strategies.  Her film took a jaundiced look at America’s treatment of its elderly.  Additionally,  Heather focused her charitable efforts on Alzheimer’s disease which had afflicted both of her parents right around the same time.  Heather looked at the bewildered faces of the elderly residents surrounding her as she sat in the facility’s rather cozy meeting room.  It was the kind of room she had wished had been available for her parents.  The poor souls sitting beside her had no idea who she even was as the photo shoot progressed in front of them.

A pale white woman with droopy eyelids put her hand over Heather’s and smiled at her cryptically.  The poor dear had been robbed of her memories along with the rest of them.  Heather smiled at her. “How are you doing today?”

“I’ve had better days, Hezzie.”  Heather could instinctively recognize Dede Storm’s whiskey voice.  But it was coming out of a completely different person.

Heather struggled to conceal her complete shock.  She pretended that she was humoring the woman who everyone assumed was probably speaking gibberish to her.  “If they find out you’re here.  You’re dead. And they’re watching.”

Dede watched as a male nurse with a thick black mustache made his way towards her.  “Who’s behind it?”

“You did a lot for me, Dee.  But not even for you.  Now, do your Houdini act before someone here gets killed.”  Heather posed for the camera and held her former hairstylist’s hand.

“It’s big enough to scare you?”  Dede had thought that Heather was her one chance of getting to the bottom of this.

Heather looked over at another elderly woman and appeared to ignore Dede’s question completely.  “Missing person reports you say?  Fascinating.”

Out of the corner of her eye, Dede could see three large men in suits honing in on her position.  The male nurse took Dede’s arm and began rolling her wheelchair into another room.  “I think it’s time for your medication.”

Dede knew that she was cornered as the nurse began rolling her towards Wedgewood Hollow’s back entrance.  This was the end of the line.

Suddenly, the nurse climbed on board of the wheelchair with Dede and activated a hidden switch.  The chair accelerated like a rocket down the nursing home’s driveway.  Dede turned to the nurse and spoke in her real voice.  “Okay.  Who the hell are you?”

“That’s the thanks I get for like saving your freakin’ life?”  It was her cousin, Veronica.

“Are you shitting me?  Dede couldn’t get over Veronica’s masterful disguise.  “How fast does this thing go?”

“The fuck if I know.  But we’re about to find out!”  Veronica decided to max out the wheelchair’s speed as she saw the three men in suits getting into their car off in the distance.

© Jennifer Strauss 2011. All Rights Reserved.