What would they do with the fish? Did you call Animal Control for something like this? Would thecops just scoop them out and toss them on the lawn to die? Did they need to do fish autopsies tocheck for... for drugs, maybe? On one of those CSI shows, they would probably do a fish autopsyand detect the exotic poison which had actually been the cause of death, and which was onlyavailable in a specific store, where they’d spot the killer on the surveillance footage, but since hiswife’s body was right there for testing, that was probably an elaborate waste of time. He realizedhe was putting off making the call with all these questions, but didn’t care.The thought struck him that most people, upon finding their dead wife floating in a hot tub fullof piranha, would not assume that she’d died while laying a bizarre trap for her husband, but rather had been the victim of a particularly twisted serial killer. That might be the case, but dying in her own piranha trap was just so
. With a weary sigh, he dug his cell phone out of his pocket anddialed 9-1-1. This being the suburbs, the call was answered quickly, and a brisk, professional voiceasked, “9-1-1, what is your emergency?”He hesitated. He didn’t really have an emergency, as such. The crisis was over. Nothing leftnow but the long process of cleaning up and straightening everything out. Should he just call theregular police number? The voice interrupted his meandering thoughts, “9-1-1, what is your emergency?”Well, hell. He’d committed to it now, might as well just talk. “Uh, yeah, I, uh... I mean, I foundmy wife. She’s dead. She’s in the hot tub, dead, I mean. I think... uh, it’s complicated.” Oh man,was this call going to come back to haunt him? He tried to sound bereaved. “I don’t know, somekind of accident? It’s, it’s weird.”The voice came back. “Are you in any danger, sir?” So professional. The voice knew what todo. The voice would make everything all right.He took a few steps back from the hot tub, just in case. No sense both of them accidentallyfalling in, though it would make a great Internet meme. “No, no, I’m fine. I mean, she’s been deadfor a while, I guess? I don’t... I mean, I didn’t check or anything. I wouldn’t know... she’s, just, Idon’t know.” Did killers babble like this, or were they cold and collected? He hoped it was thelatter, if detectives ever listened to this call.
Yeah, Sarge, you shoulda heard him. No way he’s akiller, rambling like that. Kind of a doofus, actually.
The operator asked, “OK, sir, what is your address? I’ll dispatch police and an ambulance rightaway.” He dutifully gave his information, resisting the urge to tell her there was no rush. Not avery bereaved thing to say. In fact, he threw in a request to hurry, hurry please. He even managedto get a hint of tears in his voice.He closed the phone and walked on unsteady legs over to the deck, sitting down with a thump.He still honestly didn’t know how he felt about this. Despite what movies would have us believe,he was aware that serial killers didn’t actually do things like fill hot tubs with piranha and feeddefenseless women to them. That left Donna as the fish-wielding would-be killer. Things had beenincreasingly tense between them for sure, even if he was imagining some of it, but murder? It waseasy to imagine her bungling a murder attempt, but making it in the first place? That was a bitmuch.He slouched down so he couldn’t see her naked back in the hot tub. He wondered how theywould identify her with so much flesh eaten away. His eyes widened and he bolted upright. Of course! Grab a blonde with about the same build, club her unconscious, toss her into a hot tub fullof piranha, and while they’re eating away all the flesh so the body can’t be identified, you’re jetting off to Cancún to start your new life! It made perfect sense... assuming you were a hack TVwriter banging out a script for a buddy cop show. Millard slouched back down.