The Malibu Reaper

Mac Connors, Class of 2025

Anne Mallory was a kind-spirited woman who couldn’t hurt a fly. She had no originality in
her life and repeated a trite routine every morning. She lived alone, since her mother had
passed away several years ago and grew tired and weary of her life at every waking hour. She
had never worked a job, since her father had made his fortune in the oil business, before
moving to California when Anne was only a child. Anne longed more than ever to return to her
childhood home, but her indolence prevented her from ever doing so.
While ruminating on her childhood one evening, Anne turned the radio on to listen to
some ballroom tunes that were broadcasted fortnightly. “We’re at the Zenda Ballroom,” the
announcer said spritely. “Next up for you, folks, is a classic by Mr. Benny Goodman called
‘Memories of You.’ Take it away, Benny.” The music then started playing over the radio and the
lull of Mr. Goodman’s clarinet gave Anne a background to brood over her current situation. The
music, however, cut out quickly and another voice came over the radio, bellowing a warning,
“The famed killer James McGee, otherwise known as ‘Boulder’ has escaped from the Los
Angeles County jail and is about.” The voice then faded away and the beauty of the ballroom
returned to the radio.
After Mr. Goodman’s song ended, a breeze blew across the balcony and Anne decided
to go back inside and have a cup of tea. Anne moved about, boiling the water and dropping the
bags into the pot. It was not late, maybe half past eight, when a knock arose from the front door.
“Who’s there?” Anne inquired. Nobody answered and Anne ignored the sound. Her tea finished
boiling and she poured it into her cup and sat on the couch. As she sat down, the door creaked
open and Anne looked in the direction of the noise. “Hello?” Still nobody answered. At this
sound, Anne jumped up and ran to the kitchen to get a knife, but as she grabbed it she heard
tapping on the floorboards from the next room. “Who’s there? Answer now, or I’m calling the
police.” Anne was now frightened and a deluge of fear rushed over her entire body.
As Anne moved slowly over the telephone next to the couch, a figure appeared in the
room and stood silently in the archway. Anne turned around and went to throw the knife at him,
but he fired a gun and shot her dead. She fell to the floor, blood dripping from her chest and the
cup of tea she had just made was knocked over and shattered all on the ground. The figure
soon heard the sound of people and ran away from the house. The night was still and Anne was
never to return to her childhood home again. All that remained was the wind and the music it
carried from the radio on to the lonely abyss.