It was the saddest funeral I’d been to that month. That was what I was reflecting on as I sat on the duvet of my four-poster bed. Images of the day were floating through my mind; his father and mother holding each other as they stumbled through the eulogy, his baby brother in the front row stunned silent and ashen-faced, the casket being lowered into the rain-soaked slippery sod.
That was when I noticed the stain on the carpet. An ordinary blot of brown mud carried in on my shoes, no doubt. Nothing to be concerned about, beyond the ordinary hassle of household cleaners and the expense of hiring a carpet vacuum from the local hardware store. Or so I thought.
The lights flickered and the blot had moved. I stared at it frozen, my blood ice-cold. Its shape was twisting and turning, as if it were in pain, stabbed in the kidney like my friend had been in his final moments. The police had never released that detail. The mark was alive, leaving streaks and stains through the fibres of my carpet.
My friends had been slowly disappearing, one-by-one, the past few moths, like there were flies and I the fly-spray. Even my parents had voiced their concern (behind my back of course) that I’d been cursed. Out of sight, I had no need to hid my smile.
But the mud-blot knew better. It had formed into the perfect picture of my friend, whose funeral I’d attended that day. And its cracked voice whispered, “I know your secret!”