Please note: this is a work of fiction. It has been crafted by the author and is not a direct opinion from AHS.

Prompt credits to Brady Graham. TW: murder

“I loved my husband. Really and truly, I did. He was my whole life. And I mean that. Everything. I guess that’s why I did what I did. Harold had me working hard, you understand. While he was at work, I would cut the vegetables, clean the house, take care of the children. Not nearly as much as he had to do, being the man, but…a lot. I never felt angry with him. Just tired. The pressure…it weighed against me. I carried it on my back like a dumbbell that threatened to crack it at any moment. I was so tired. And my girlfriends, well. They were so focused on such trivial things. We would have tea, and they would talk. And talk. About sewing, about cooking, about their men. I wondered if they had the same thoughts I did. I wondered that a lot. If they thought about wiping blood off their damned kitchen knives. If they ever thought all of this was pointless, so pointless. That it seemed like they were repeating the same day over and over again. And then Mary, well, she implied something I didn’t like. I was talking about the tiredness. The pressure. Then she said it. It was small, really. She said, ‘Lizzie, are you sure you can provide for Harold like this?’ And, Lord forgive me, it made me so angry. So angry. What right did she have to say that? There we were, in the kitchen, having tea, and I just…I just did it. It was like sewing, almost, like that first puncture of the needle into the fabric. Then I couldn’t stop myself. I stood, looking down at her, for what felt like hours. But it couldn’t have been, of course, because Harold got home at five, and it must have been two-thirty when I took her body up there. To the attic. My mother’s dresses were up there, and Harry never went. Not unless the roof was leaking. And it was summer, so I felt safe. For a moment, the pressure was gone. I was released. I could breathe, could stand, could dance. Perhaps I shouldn’t have felt so secure…

“The next woman happened quicker, it seemed. The moment I invited her into the kitchen, I felt it again. That…that urge. I had to do it, I couldn’t stop the thought. So I pulled it out of the knife block. And there I was again in just a moment, staring down. I dragged her up. I scrubbed. I greeted my children as warmly as ever. I kissed my husband. Three other women, just like that, and he didn’t know a thing. Momentary release of pressure, before it was back again, almost heavier. Eventually, I got rid of the bodies, built up my strength, I suppose. There couldn’t be a smell.

“But Mary had been right. My husband wasn’t happy with me. I knew when he’d made that decision. I could see the love leave his eyes. God, I saw him leave me as soon as it happened. Of course. I know him better than anyone. I knew his whole schedule. Every day, every night. I knew to be prepared. I knew how to get him into the kitchen, too. I knew. And so I did it. It was easy. That’s when people really began to suspect me. It was thrilling, almost. Then they found out, of course. I cried, I screamed, really took my time with the whole thing…of course, that only bought me so much time. Now I’m here. And I believe I’m ready. Maybe telling this story helped, in a way. With the pressure. The weight’s gone, even if it won’t last too long. “

Elizabeth smiled at the executioner. Smiled. “And those are my last words. Go on, sir, do what you must.”

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